An international fraternity dedicated to the elimination of prejudice will honor the personal and professional achievements of veteran journalist and foundation executive Jack Marsh of Sioux Falls, at its annual convention, Saturday, Aug. 7, in Chicago.
Pi Lambda Phi was founded at Yale University in 1895 as the first non-sectarian fraternity in the United States, accepting members of good character without regard to race or religion. Marsh joined the fraternity in 1968 while an undergraduate student at Baldwin-Wallace College, Berea, OH.
The Big Pi lifetime achievement award, being presented for the first time since 2001, will recognize Marsh and Maury Fertig, chief investment officer at Relative Value Partners and author of The 7 Deadly Sins of Investing. It is the fraternity's preeminent award. Among previous recipients are Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig, Olympic decathlon gold medalist Rafer Johnson, Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell and U.S. Senators Arlen Specter, Ben Cardin and Herbert Kohl.
Marsh, 61, is a vice president of the Freedom Forum and executive director of the foundation's Al Neuharth Media Center at The University of South Dakota. He lives in Sioux Falls, but divides his time among all three Freedom Forum offices, in Vermillion, at the John Seigenthaler Center in Nashville, TN, and at the Newseum in Washington, DC. Marsh oversees the Freedom Forum's Diversity Institute and its efforts to advance diversity in the media. He also is responsible for Freedom Forum scholarship and award programs that encourage and affirm high journalistic standards.
Marsh is founding director of the Freedom Forum's American Indian Journalism Institute at USD and among the founding organizers of the annual Crazy Horse Journalism Workshop at Crazy Horse Memorial, South Dakota. From 1998 to 2001, he served as director of the Newseum's NewsCapade, a high-tech traveling exhibit that visited all 50 states and Canada. Previously, Marsh held a variety of journalism and newspaper executive positions in Rochester, NY, Utica, NY, Vineland, NJ, and Sioux Falls, during his 27-year career with Gannett Co., Inc. He is a past president of the New York State Associated Press Association and the South Dakota Associated Press Managing Editors. He serves on the board of directors of the Crazy Horse Memorial Foundation and its executive committee.
Marsh, a native of Niagara Falls, NY, is a political science graduate of Baldwin-Wallace College. Marsh and his wife, Betty, a school counselor, have two grown daughters, Dr. Elizabeth Jensen and Colleen Olson, and four grandchildren, all of Sioux Falls.