Former Detroit News staffers to be inducted into Michigan Journalism Hall of Fame

The Detroit News

Correction: This story has been updated to reflect that we neglected to claim one of our own: Marjorie Sorge, also an inductee, is a former Detroit News reporter.

Three former Detroit News staffers are among the latest inductees into the Michigan Journalism Hall of Fame.

Joanne Gerstner, Susan Whitall and Marjorie Sorge will join four other journalists in the 2021 class when they are honored at a ceremony this fall, according to the hall website. Coordinators are slated to announce June 1 whether it's virtual or in-person.

Joanne C. Gerstner is among seven journalists being inducted into the 2021 class of the Michigan Journalism Hall of Fame.

Gerstner, a former News sportswriter, is an award-winning sports journalist, author and researcher who teaches at Michigan State University.

"I am extremely honored to be selected for the Hall of Fame," Gerstner told The News. "We have a long and amazing tradition of women in sports media in Michigan, and I am the product of the women who paved the way for me. And there will be many more to come in the Hall."

Gerstner acknowledged the Association for Women in Communications Detroit for the nomination.

Susan Whitall receives a 2018 AP Award for the News' Aretha Franklin spot news coverage, with editor Felecia Henderson.

Whitall, who reported for the News' features section, is an award-winning journalist who has worked as a music magazine editor, music historian, columnist and author. 

Whitall, on Facebook Friday evening said she's "happy to be inducted."

Sorge is a premier auto and labor writer who went on to become editor of two auto publications before entering corporate communications.

The other inductees are:

  • Al Allen, a radio and TV reporter on the streets of Detroit for 50 years
  • Tom Henderson, reporter of sports, science and tech, venture capital and banking
  • Jean Jennings, 40-year automotive writer, editor and teller of hilarious tales
  • Edward Lapham, news-breaking auto editor, leader and mentor

"This year’s inductees have made major, sustained contributions in print, broadcast and online media to news, sports, business, automotive and cultural journalism," the Hall of Fame said.

Meanwhile, the induction of the 2020 class, postponed from last spring, is scheduled to take place virtually on April 25.

Among the inductees are Tom Gage, the longtime Tigers beat writer for The News, and the late Angelo B. Henderson, who was a Pulitzer Prize-winning print and broadcast journalist.

The Hall of Fame has been honoring journalists since 1985 and "recognizes reporters, editors, publishers, owners, photographers, broadcasters, educators, and others who have made outstanding contributions to the profession," according to its website. It started as the Newspaper Hall of Fame in 1952.