Iris St. Meran of NewsChannel 9 named 2023 Journalist of the Year

The Syracuse Press Club is pleased to announce the winner of our prestigious 2023 Bill Carey Award for Journalist of the Year. For this award, the club annually recognizes one journalist who stands out among peers for contributions to news coverage in a 12-month period (2022).

Iris St. Meran, a news reporter at NewsChannel 9, has dedicated 15 years of her career to the Central New York community. Hailing from Boston, she affectionately now calls Syracuse her second home. Over the years, she’s created special connections with Central New Yorkers by sharing their stories and volunteering her time to help make the region a better place.

Prior to NewsChannel 9, Iris worked at Spectrum News in Syracuse and Utica for more than a decade as an award-winning multimedia journalist and anchor. There, she had the honor of working with and learning from Bill Carey every day.

Bill taught her how to be fair, ask the tough questions and tell a good story. She will always remember his sense of humor and how he always made time to offer advice to young journalists.

Iris is known for her fair, impactful and compassionate storytelling. From her half-hour special honoring Black history in CNY, to her stories addressing mental health in schools, Iris produced an impressive body of work in 2022 demonstrating journalistic excellence, professionalism and a deep understanding of the Syracuse community. 

Iris previously earned a first-place award from the New York Associated Press for her series on the heroin epidemic in Central New York called, “Addicted: Heroin’s Hold.” That series is an example of her commitment to amplifying voices in the community. In another multi-part series, “Troubled Water: Crisis in Flint,” Iris found inspiration in the Michigan community’s ability to come together in the midst of crisis. Iris co-hosts a podcast called “The Ladies’ Room” which highlights women who overcome challenges and make an impact in their communities and beyond.

Iris got her start in news at New England Cable News (NECN) in Boston where she worked as a desk assistant and web producer. She graduated from Emerson College with a bachelor’s degree in broadcast journalism and minors in marketing and music.

Last year, Iris was recognized as one of CNY Business Journal’s 40 Under Forty honorees. She also serves as a board member of the YMCA of Central New York and The Gifford Foundation.

In his nomination of Iris, Tom Walters of Onondaga County Libraries wrote:

Iris is extremely well-rounded in her journalistic approach. Unlike others who excel in one type of field (spot news, political work or human-interest features), Iris has a stronghold on simply telling great stories about people. This year, she evolved even more by being the executive producer and host for the special 30-minute program “Honoring Black History.” She can fill in for an anchor at the drop of a hat. She does great work out in the field for her day-to-day stories. She is warm and caring to the people she reports on and to her fellow co-workers.

She has actually learned from Bill Carey himself. Iris worked with him every day, and it was a relationship of mutual respect. He helped hone her skills at the very beginning of her career and it shows in the quality of her work. I know for a fact that Bill was very proud of the journalist that she had become.

Congratulations Iris! We look forward to celebrating your hard work at the SPC banquet on May 6, 2023.

The prestigious Bill Carey Journalist of the Year Award is named after longtime Syracuse broadcaster Bill Carey. In a career that spanned more than 40 years, Bill was involved with covering virtually every major story in greater Syracuse since the 1970s. He finished his career as a senior reporter with Time Warner Cable News (now known as Spectrum News 1). Bill was a Syracuse Press Club Wall of Distinction honoree, and a recipient of the Bliven-Ganley-Rossi Career Achievement Award. He had won three Emmys, six RTNDA Murrow Awards and dozens of awards from the Syracuse Press Club and New York Associated Press Broadcasters Association. He was known as a skilled writer, a disciplined editor and a beloved mentor and guiding light to many young journalists. Bill died in 2015 and is missed by many. 

Past winners:

Patrick O’ Toole of Spectrum News named 2022 Journalist of the Year

• The Post-Standard’s Patrick Lohmann named 2021 Journalist of the Year

• The Citizen’s Kevin Rivoli named 2020 Journalist of the Year

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