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Columbia College announces the 2019 John Jay Award Honorees

Thursday, January 24, 2019

From reporting that ignited 2017’s #MeToo movement to award-winning creative work, this year’s John Jay Award honorees have made a lasting impact on the world of culture, public service, finance and beyond. Columbia College is proud to celebrate their professional achievements on Wednesday, March 6 at the 41st annual John Jay Awards Dinner. Proceeds from the dinner will support the College’s prestigious John Jay National Scholars Program.

Named after Founding Father and first Chief Justice of the United States John Jay CC 1764, the John Jay National Scholars Program provides exceptional College students with financial aid and special programming focused on promoting intellectual growth, leadership development and global awareness. With the goal of enhancing their academic and extracurricular interests, John Jay scholars are mentored and actively partake in panels, discussions and presentations by leading professors, professionals and distinguished individuals from a wide variety of fields.

“John Jay scholars and Columbia College students can look up to John Jay honorees as beacons of hope, leadership and inspiration. Our honorees have made a huge difference in the world after graduating, setting outstanding but not impossible standards for Columbia College students to aspire to,” said James J. Valentini, dean of Columbia College and vice president for undergraduate education. “Once again, we are thrilled to be honoring five of our distinguished alumni for their vision, courage and professional achievements. We are grateful for their enduring commitment to Columbia College.”

The 2019 Honorees:

James Brett CC84, BUS’90 Managing Partner, JTB Capital Partners

Erik Feig CC92 Founder and CEO, PICTURESTART

Jodi Kantor CC96 Journalist and Author

Tom Kitt CC96 Composer/Arranger/Orchestrator

Alisa Amarosa Wood CC’01, BUS’08 Partner, KKR

More than 200 honorees have received the John Jay Award since its inception in 1978, including Emanuel Ax CC’70, Ric Burns CC’78, Max Frankel CC’52, Dede Gardner CC’90, Art Garfunkel CC’62, Allen Ginsberg CC’48, Maggie Gyllenhaal CC’99, Eric H. Holder Jr. CC’73, Benjamin Jealous CC’94, Joel I. Klein CC’67, Robert K. Kraft CC’63, Tony Kushner CC’78, Robert J. Lefkowitz CC’62, Arthur Levitt CC 1921, Terrence McNally CC’60, George Stephanopoulos CC’82 and Jenji Kohan CC‘91.

Tickets to the 2019 John Jay Awards Dinner, a black-tie optional ceremony held at Cipriani 42nd Street, are available here. To learn more about supporting the dinner, please contact Columbia College Alumni Events and Programs at or 212-851-7846.

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