Jessica Soho


Jessica Soho
Jessica Soho
Occupation Broadcast Journalist
Years active 1984-Present
Awards Asia Journalist of All Times

Jessica Soho is Filipino broadcast journalist, documentarian and news director who received a George Foster Peabody Award[1] and was the first Filipino to win the British Fleet Journalism Award in 1998.[2]

She has reported for the GMA network for over 15 years

A Ka Doroy Valencia awardee, Soho was also one of the 100 Filipino Women of Distinction chosen during the centennial celebration of the Philippines.

Her story of a hostage crisis in Cagayan Valley made her the first Filipino to win in the New York Film Festival for Coverage of a Breaking Story.

She helped conceptualize the one-hour documentary television program I-Witness, which ran for over 10 years becoming the longest running late-night program on the air as of 2009[3]

Her documentaries on the Kidneys for Sale business and Kamao death sport made her the first Filipino reporter, with GMA Network as the first Filipino network, to win the George Foster Peabody Award on 1999.[4]

Soho hosts Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho and was honored on October 14, 2008, by Quezon City with the Outstanding Citizen Award.[5]

Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho (KMJS) was recognized as the Most Development-Oriented Magazine Program. Program host Jessica Soho got two awards – the Best Public Affairs Program Host and the Best Magazine Program Host in the Gandingan 2009: UPLB Isko’t Iska's Broadcast Choice Awards. Gandingan 2009 is the first award-giving ceremony in the field of broadcasting instituted by Community Broadcasters’ Society (UPCBS) of the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB). It pays tribute to the best broadcast programs that air over TV and radio.[6]

In 2004, at the annual Cebu Federation of Beat Journalists event, she stated that "Provincial and regional journalists, in my view, are the real heroes in this profession. The dangers and risks you face and encounter are no doubt far greater than those that we face in Manila," in reference to the 55 journalists in the country that had been killed to date, "But despite the hazards of the job, journalists must work hard and strive to make Philippine media strong, robust and credible."[7]

Contents

Career

Jessica Soho is a Filipino reporter, host, producer and currently the acting news director of GMA Network. She joined the GMA team in the mid-80s, fresh from college, barely finished with her undergraduate thesis.

Soho's first voice-over report was a feature story on the inauguration of the Light Rail Transit from Baclaran to Monumento. Later she was assigned to the defense and military beat. Eventually, Soho's reputation and responsibility have increased dramatically since then.

At the UP College of Mass Communications, Soho met the journalist Luis Beltran who inspired Soho to finish Mass Communications.

She is the first Filipino to win in the New York Film Festival for Coverage of a Breaking Story for her account of a hostage crisis in Cagayan Valley. She also received the Ka Doroy Valencia Award given by the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas. In 1994, she received the Grand Prize from the Asia Pacific Broadcasting Union for her riveting coverage of a breaking news story. Soho is included in the list of 100 Filipino Women of Distinction.

In the documentary "Kidneys for Sale", Soho explored a depressed area in Manila and discovered the unemployed selling their kidneys to make ends meet.

Work History

Jessica Soho is a graduate of the University of the Philippines.

An accidental journalist whose dream was to become a lawyer, Jessica started as a reporter in 1985, choosing to work in television despite her lack of training in broadcast journalism.

She learned the ropes at GMA-7, where she started as a news reporter covering the military-defense beat among other editorial beats. Then as now, she also covered unusual news events such as man-made and natural calamities, from killer earthquakes to super typhoons, even coup attempts and high-profile hostage situations.

She has helped produce a number of News and Public Affairs special and programs including the network’s election coverage from the 1980s until the most recent one.

She has also been sent on a number of significant overseas assignments such as the exile of the Marcoses in Hawaii; the Hong Kong Handover in 1997; President Corazon Aquino’s first state visit to Indonesia and Singapore in 1986; President Fidel Ramos’ state visit to France and Germany in 1993 and many more.

She has also reported on the plight of overseas Filipino workers in Hong Kong, Singapore, Japan and South Korea.

She founded and conceptualized the program EMERGENCY. She was the first Executive Producer of the program.

She is one of the founders of the premiere investigative news magazine show, Brigada Siete. She was also the host and chief reporter of the program.

She was head of the Special Assignments Team (SAT) of GMA News and Public Affairs. This section produced special/investigative reports for GMA’s news programs, Saksi and Frontpage: Ulat ni Mel Tiangco.

She conceptualized I-Witness, the pioneering and highly-acclaimed documentary series of GMA. She is also one of the original hosts of the program.

On the side, Ms. Soho has been a member of the screening committee of TOYM for four (4) consecutive years. This committee screens and selects TOYM nominees.

Recently, Ms. Soho has pioneered in the coverage of world events such as the crisis in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Israel.

She is currently Vice President for News of GMA News & Public Affairs.

Awards

  • George Foster Peabody Award for Investigative Journalism.
  • 2003 Rotary Club of Manila, Journalism Awards, Hall of Fame Recipient
  • 2002 PMPC Star Awards for Television, Best News Magazine Show and Best News Magazine Host – jessica soho reports
  • 2002 Catholic Mass Media Awards, Best News Magazine Show – jessica soho reports
  • 2002 KBP Golden Dove Awards, Best Public Affairs Program for Metro Manila and Best Public Affairs Host – jessica soho reports
  • George Foster Peabody Award for Investigative Journalism. This is regarded as the Pulitzer Prize for Broadcasting. Two documentaries reported and produced by Ms. Soho, “Kidneys for Sale” and “Kamao” (Fist) has won for her network, the Philippines’ first Peabody award.
  • New York Film and Television Festival for Coverage of a Breaking Story. Ms. Soho’s coverage of a hostage crisis in Cagayan Valley in Northern Philippines won the bronze in the festival. She is the first Filipino to have won this award and in the news category. She has also been a consistent finalist in this same festival since.
  • Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU) Grand Prize Winner. “Kape at Balita”, hosted by Ms. Soho for both radio and TV won this award in Kyoto, Japan for coverage of a breaking story.
  • Ten Outstanding Young Men (TOYM) Award. Ms. Soho won this award in 1993. This is usually given to the best and brightest Filipinos in various fields.
  • TV Journalist of the Year given by the prestigious Rotary Club of Manila. Ms. Soho won this award for two (2) consecutive years: 1989 and 1990.
  • Golden Dove Awardee / Broadcaster of the Year (Ka Doroy Valencia Award) given by the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkasters sa Pilipinas. She is the first recipient of this award.
  • Journalist of the Year given by the Rotary Club District 3180
  • Cultural Center of the Philippines or CCP Gawad Natatanging Parangal (Special Awardee) for two (2) consecutive years: 1989 and 1990.
  • Best TV Special for “The Anatomy of Rape”, a documentary/special report hosted, reported and produced by Ms. Soho. The award was given by the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP).
  • Best TV News Magazine for “Within the Walls”, a documentary/special report hosted, reported and produced by Ms. Soho on prison life. The award was given by the Catholic Mass Media Awards.
  • Political Reporter of the Year Award for coverage of “The Ipil Massacre” given by the Metro Pacific Corporation Journalism Awards.
  • Best Host in the 1999 Golden Dove Awards given by the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkasters sa Pilipinas.
  • Fleet Street Awardee for Investigative Journalism given by the British Embassy in Manila in 1998.
  • Special Award for Journalism given to the program I-WITNESS by the Star Awards for Television. The program was hosted then by Ms. Soho and three (3) other hosts : Cheche Lazaro, Luchi Cruz-Valdes and Mike Enriquez.
  • Ambassador of Dreams given to Five Outstanding Filipinas led by the former President Corazon Aquino.
  • 100 Filipino Women of Distinction. Ms. Soho was included in a book on top 100 Filipinos of the first 100 years of the Philippine Republic. The book was authored by Joy Buensalido and Abe Florendo.
  • Community Outstanding Young Achievers (COYA) given by the Quezon City Capitol Jaycees and the Sampaguita Jaycees Inc.
  • Outstanding Alumnae of the College of Mass Communication, University of the Philippines.
  • Outstanding Citizen of the Province of La Union and the City of San Fernando, La Union respectively given by the Governor and the Mayor.
  • Finalist, Best Documentary in the Asian TV Festival for “Kamao” (Fist), a documentary on the plight of Filipino boxers.
  • Finalist, Best Documentary and UNESCO Awardee in the 2000 New York Film and Television Festival for “Katas ng Payatas” (The Essence of Payatas), a documentary on the tragic garbage dump in Metro Manila.
  • Outstanding Contribution in the field of Media for the successful People Power II revolt given by the Council on Philippine Affairs or COPA. COPA is composed of various organizations that make up the “civil society” in the Philippines.
  • Outstanding Broadcast Journalist Award given by the Metrobank Foundation in October 2001.
  • Ten Outstanding Women in the Nation’s Service (TOWNS) Awardee for Media for 2001.
  • Best Documentary Program for I-WITNESS given by the Star Awards for Television for 2001.
  • Best TV News Magazine for I-WITNESS (episode by Jessica Soho) given by the Catholic Mass Media Awards for 2001.
  • Best News and Current Affairs Special for 2001 given by the Asian TV Festival for SAKSI sa KASAYSAYAN. Ms. Soho was Supervising Producer for this special.
  • Juror, 37th Grand Anvil Awards - Public Relations Society of the Philippines (PRSP)
  • Grandslam Winner, 2002

Golden Dove Awards Best Public Affairs Show for Jessica Soho Reports Golden Dove Awards Best Public Affairs Show Host for Jessica Soho Reports Star Awards for TV Best News Magazine Show for Jessica Soho Reports Star Awards for TV Best News Magazine Show Host for Jessica Soho Reports CMMA Best Public Affairs Show for Jessica Soho Reports CMMA Best Public Affairs Show Host for Jessica Soho Reports

  • Best Public Affairs Presenter, Highly Recommended : 2001-2002 Asian TV Festival
  • Journalism Awards for Broadcast Journalism Hall of Fame : Rotary Club of Manila, 2003
  • Finalist, Best Social Issue/Current Events Program : New York Festival, 2004

(Mona Lisa Hospital, Jessica Soho Reports)

  • Awardee, Mary Kay Philippines 3rd Anniversary, 2003

(Women with a Heart)

  • Finalist, Unicef Children’s Rights Awards, 2004

(Missing Story, Jessica Soho Reports)

  • Finalist, Best Current Affairs Program : Asian TV Awards, 2004

(Hospital, Lova Palooza and Manok ni Idol, Jessica Soho Reports)

  • Finalist, Japan Prize, 2004

(Quiz Bee, Jessica Soho Reports)

  • Finalist, Barcelona TV Awards, 2004

(Quiz Bee, Jessica Soho Reports)

  • Best Magazine Show : Star Awards for TV, 2004

(Jessica Soho Reports)

  • Anak TV Seal, 2004

(Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho)

  • Certificate, Special Issues : US International Film and Video Festival, 2005

(Sana’y Muling Makapiling)

  • Anak TV Seal, 2005

(Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho)

  • Certificate Special Issues : US International Film and Video Festival, 2006

(Sana’y Muling Makapiling)

[8]

  • Anak TV Seal, 2007

(10 Most Admired Femal Personalities )

  • Best Magazine Show : Catholic Mass Media Awards 2007

(Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho)

  • Finalist, Best Infotainment : Asian TV Awards 2007

(Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho)

  • Finalist, Best Public Service Program : Catholic Mass Media Awards 2007

( Sana’y Muling Makapiling)

  • Finalist, Social Issues Category : New York Film Festival 20008

( Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho and Sana’y Muling Makapiling )

  • Best Magazine Program Host : UPLB Gandingan Awards 2008

(Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho)

Membership in Organizations/Conferences Attended

  • Former Director and Secretary of the National Press Club
  • Former President, Defense Press Corps
  • Fellow, Nihon Shimbun Kyokai (Association of Newspaper Editors and Publishers of Japan)
  • Grantee, International Visitors Program of the United States Information Service
  • Delegate, Confederation of ASEAN Journalists (Singapore, 1991)
  • Delegate, International Media Seminar organized by the United Nations Population Fund (Bali, Indonesia 1992)
  • Delegate, Producers’ Meeting organized by the Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU) (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia 1992)
  • Delegate, Radio-TV News Directors of America (RTNDA) Convention (Los Angeles, California 1996)
  • Delegate, Radio-TV News Directors of America (RTNDA) Convention (New Orleans, Louisiana 1997)
  • Delegate, Seminar on Democracy given by the British Council (Colchester, Essex, England 1998)
  • Voting Member. Radio TV News Directors of America Convention
  • Vice President for External Affairs UP College of Mass Communication Alumni Association

References


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