Barton Gellman
Barton Gellman (Marie Marzis/ftwp Mulit Use - Freelance)
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Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Reporters Barton Gellman and Jo Becker have won a George Polk Award for their Washington Post series last year describing Vice President Cheney's substantial and largely hidden influence on Bush administration policy, Long Island University officials announced.

Gellman and Becker reported in four articles how Cheney "has shaped his times as no vice president before him" on key issues such as terrorism, tax policy and the environment.

The university said the series showed Cheney's "emergence as a singularly decisive, influential, yet behind-the-scenes force in White House policymaking." It named the reporters winners of the Polk Award for political reporting, one of 14 it bestowed.

Gellman is a special projects reporter on the national desk. Becker is a former special projects reporter who now works at the New York Times.

Among the other Polk Award winners is Oakland Post Editor Chauncey W. Bailey Jr., who was posthumously honored for local reporting for his investigation of the Your Black Muslim Bakery organization. Bailey was fatally shot by a bakery employee last August.

The awards will be presented at an April 17 ceremony in New York. The Polk Award memorializes a CBS News correspondent who was killed in 1948 while covering Greece's civil war.

-- Darryl Fears

© 2008 The Washington Post Company