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Financial Times editor Lionel Barber receives Media Society award for ‘outstanding contribution to financial journalism’

By Arun Kakar

Financial Times editor Lionel Barber has received the 45th Media Society Annual Award for outstanding contribution to financial journalism.

Barber was appointed editor of the FT in 2015 after 20 years at the paper, where he previously served as Brussels correspondent, Washington correspondent and US managing editor.

Before joining the FT, Barber held positions at The Scotsman, The Washington Post and The Sunday Times.

On receiving his award from former deputy Prime Minister Sir Nick Clegg, Barber said: “Truth is I don’t see myself as a financial journalist, but as a courageous newsman trying to connect the dots between finance, politics and business.

“Being editor is part rock band manager, part guardian of the gold standard. My job is to keep creative people happy, but also to protect editorial integrity and quality. I’m deeply flattered, thank you.”

Under Barber’s editorship, the FT reached its highest-ever total of “paid readers” in November, when it revealed a combined digital and print readership of more than 900,000. 

Media Society president Peter York added: “Lionel’s great achievement has been to bring the FT from a great legacy newspaper to being a modern global multi-platform one. At the same time as maintaining standards with a scrupulous regard for truth.”

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Hosted by BBC media editor Amol Rajan, attendees at the dinner on Wednesday last week included ITV chief executive Dame Carolyn McCall and Today programme editor Sarah Sands.

Previous winners of the accolade have included David Dimbleby, Sir David Attenborough and Jeremy Paxman.

Picture: The Media Society

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