Loyola University Chicago

School of Communication


Ponce wins lifetime achievement award

Ponce wins lifetime achievement award

Veteran news anchor Phil Ponce, Visiting Professional in Residence at Loyola’s School of Communication, is one of four noted journalists who will receive Lifetime Achievement Awards from the Chicago Headline Club.

Ponce, long-time host of WTTW-11’s Chicago Tonight, will receive the award on Friday, May 12, at the Peter Lisagor Award banquet at the Union League Club. The banquet, named after the late Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, recognizes outstanding reporting by journalists in Illinois and surrounding states.

The three other recipients are Dorothy Tucker, longtime reporter at CBS-2, Rick Pearson, veteran political reporter for the Chicago Tribune, and Chuck Neubauer, an investigative reporter for the Tribune, Sun-Times and Better Government Association.

Ponce has been Visiting Professor in Residence at Loyola since 2018, teaching journalism classes and conducting guest lectures based on his expertise in interviewing in his role on Chicago Tonight, the nightly television magazine of news and culture on WTTW-11, the most-watched PBS station in the country.

Before his retirement last year, spent 25 years as a television reporter and anchor, conducting nightly interviews with newsmakers, authors and artists and moderating panels on topics ranging from business and medicine to the arts and education.

Ponce’s career includes serving as one of Jim Lehrer’s anchors on The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer and moderating political debates ranging from the presidency to Chicago mayor. He also has been a columnist for the Tribune.

He has an undergraduate degree in English from Indiana University, a law degree from the University of Michigan and practiced law for six years before becoming a journalist.

Ponce’s other awards include Illinois Journalist of the Year, the Studs Terkel Award for Journalism and the City Club of Chicago’s Award for Excellence in Journalism.

Ponce and his artist wife, Ann, live in Chicago. Their two sons, Dan and Anthony, also are Chicago news broadcasters and frequent guest lecturers at the SOC. Their daughter, Maria is a Chicago photographer.