Springfield, MA – Broadcaster Bill Schonely and reporter Sam Smith have been selected as the 2012 recipients of the Curt Gowdy Media Award from the Basketball Hall of Fame.
The Gowdy Media Award is named in honor of the legendary sports broadcaster and former Basketball Hall of Fame President, the late Curt Gowdy. This prestigious award is presented annually to members of the print and electronic media whose longtime efforts have made a significant contribution to the game of basketball.
Schonely was the voice of the Portland Trail Blazers from their first preseason game in Longview, Washington, in 1970 through the 1998 playoffs. "The Schonz" called 2,522 games during that time.
"We couldn't be happier for Bill. He's been one of the strongest pillars for our franchise since its inception 42 years ago," said Trail Blazers president Larry Miller. "This is a testament to the impact he's had on fans in the city of Portland and broadcasters across the country."
Smith started with the Chicago Tribune in 1979 and eventually focused solely on the NBA for the newspaper four years later. After spending 28 years with the Tribune, Smith, who served four terms as the president of the Professional Basketball Writers Association, joined the Chicago Bulls, covering the team on Bulls.com.
"Unquestionably, Sam Smith is one of the most influential writers in basketball history," said Bulls chairman Jerry Reinsdorf. "For almost three decades, Sam has been and continues to be a must-read for anyone following the Chicago Bulls and the NBA."
Previous winners of the Gowdy Award, which has been presented since 1990, include legendary broadcasters Marty Glickman, Chick Hearn, Dick Enberg, Johnny Most, Dick Stockton and Marv Albert, as well as Leonard Koppett, Bob Ryan and Jim O'Connell on the print side.