He is also, you might be surprised to learn, a distinguished journalist. So says the University of North Texas' Mayborn School of Journalism. It has named him to the "C.E. Shuford Hall of Honor," where his name will hang alongside local reporting legends like Bill Moyers, Bert Shipp (father of Brett), John McCaa, and the Star-Telegram's Bob Ray Sanders, among other industry veterans with "lifetime achievement and distinguished contributions to the journalism profession."
It's worth pausing here to meditate on Rawlings' numerous "distinguished contributions to the journalism profession." Like that time he wouldn't let media into that Dallas ISD meeting he stormed out of in a huff, which resulted in some good journalism. And he has supplied a bottomless well of material for D's Zac Crain, who is a journalist. He also employed former journalist Sam Merten as his spokesman.
Beyond that there's....not much. The Dallas Morning News' coffee pot is more deserving of a journalism honor than is Rawlings.
The journalism award becomes slightly more explicable when you realize that the Mayborn School conflates advertising and public relations with the "journalism profession." These programs are contained within the J school, and a look at the list of Shuford honorees reveals names like Marilyn Pippin, who "has worked in the public relations field for 30 years at companies including MBRK Advertising & Public Relations, The Richards Group and Sanger Harris."
And Rawlings has done advertising, cutting his teeth as CEO of the Tracy-Locke ad agency before moving up to Pizza Hut. Still.
em>Send your story tips to the author, Eric Nicholson.
Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.