Kathleen Rutledge and Rose Ann Shannon

Two former longtime newsroom managers were inducted into the Marian Andersen Nebraska Women Journalists Hall of Fame May 5 during Nebraska Press Women’s spring conference in Omaha.

Kathleen Rutledge, former editor-in-chief at the Lincoln Journal Star, and Rose Ann Shannon, former KETV Newswatch 7 news director, are the newest inductees into the hall of fame.

Rutledge retired in 2007 as editor-in-chief of the Lincoln Journal Star, managing a staff of 90. She was the first female executive editor of a Nebraska metropolitan daily newspaper. Beginning as a death and weather clerk, Rutledge later became a statehouse reporter during a time when it was unusual for women to be given hard news beats. Under Rutledge’s management, the newspaper reflected the diverse community that it served. Her commitment to readers encompassed caring about covering all types of stories, urging reporters to include voices of ordinary people, rural as well as urban.

Shannon was a well-known Omaha broadcast journalist for 45 years, retiring from KETV in February. As news director for more than 24 years, Shannon oversaw a staff of 55. Her career was launched in 1973 as a KMTV intern, and she was the first female news staff member when hired full time. Also involved in journalism education and free press issues, Shannon served on committees to allow cameras in Nebraska courtrooms, and with organizations on First Amendment issues relating to open meetings and open records. She also chaired higher education communications committees.

The NPW Hall of Fame recognizes women journalists for their talent, initiative, intelligence and stamina, making a difference for their profession, their communities and those who follow. Their portraits are on the second floor of Andersen Hall, home to the College of Journalism and Mass Communications at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.