Photojournalist Education: University of Kentucky, BS in mathematics; University of Kentucky, MA in math education
Jahi Chikwendiu has been a photojournalist for The Washington Post since 2001. On the job, he has covered a wide range of stories that include D.C.’s broken school system, the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, AIDS and poverty in Kenya, genocide in Darfur, cluster bomb victims in South Lebanon and the 2011 formation of the world’s newest country, South Sudan.
Chikwendiu spent the first three months of 2009 in Africa covering the Barack Obama inauguration from the Kenyan home village of the president’s father and other stories in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, Kenya, and South Sudan. In 2014, he spent well over a month in Missouri covering the issues surrounding the fatal shooting of black teenager Michael Brown.
Before coming to The Post, Chikwendiu taught high school math for a year. During a spring break trip to The Post, he met photo editor Michel du Cille, who encouraged Chikwendiu with his interest in photography. Chikwendiu then spent a summer break as a freelance photographer at his Kentucky hometown newspaper, the Lexington Herald-Leader, which eventually offered him a full-time position. Two years later, he joined The Post.
Honors & Awards:
Kentucky News Photographer’s Association, Photographer of the Year,1998
Sports Photographer of the Year- Kentucky News Photographer’s Association, 1999
Photojournalist of the Year – Atlanta Photojournalism Seminars, 2003
2nd Place Photojournalist of the Year – Best of Photojournalism (Nat’l Press Photographers Assoc), 2004
1st Place Portfolio – White House News Photo Association, 2004
2nd Place Photojournalist of the Year – Best of Photojournalism (Nat’l Press Photographers Assoc), 2005
2nd Place Portfolio – White House News Photo Association, 2005
1st Place Nature for Crisis in Darfur, Sudan – World Press Photo, 2005
3rd Place for Crisis In Darfur Story – Days Japan International Photojournalism Contest, 2006
Photojournalist of the Year - White House News Photo Association, 2008
2nd Place Photojournalist of the Year – Best of Photojournalism (Nat’l Press Photographers Assoc), 2008
3rd Place POY – Northern Short Course (Nat’l Press Photo Assoc), 2008
Best Audio Slideshow–Best of Photojournalism (Nat’l Press Photo Assoc) -DC’s Broken Schools System, 2008
1st Place Photography and Audio (narrated) category -Cluster Bomb Victims After the 2006 Hezbollah/Israel War, 2008
Photojournalist of the Year (Virginia News Photographer Assoc), 2012
1st Portfolio – White House News Photo Association (WHNPA), 2013
Photojournalist of the Year - Best of Photojournalism (Nat’l Press Photographers Assoc), 2014
Only a fraction of the pledges for Ferguson reached the neediest parts of town. All the corporate goodwill - and millions in investments -- were not enough to overcome a long legacy of racial discrimination and economic exclusion.