NPR and The Washington Post announced the first recipient of The Stone & Holt Weeks Fellowship is Nathan Rott, of Missoula, MT. The 2009 graduate of the University of Montana with degrees in journalism and anthropology was selected from a pool of nearly 350 applicants from across the country.
Designed to give a promising individual the opportunity to launch a career in journalism, the Stone & Holt Weeks Fellowship consists of two, 12-week sessions: first at The Post, experiencing original newspaper reporting, and then learning the craft of NPR’s style of journalism. During the Fellowship, Rott will also gain broad exposure to the relationship between journalism and citizenship, public education, social change and democracy. After a stint at The Post beginning in early September, Rott will move to NPR in early December to complete the six-month reporting fellowship.
The Fellowship was created by NPR and The Washington Post to honor the memory of Stone and Holt Weeks. The brothers were killed in a tragic highway crash in July 2009. Stone and Holt were the sons of NPR digital reporter and former style reporter for The Washington Post Linton Weeks, and his wife Jan Taylor Weeks, an artist and teacher. Stone was 24 and Holt was 20. They were intensely involved in history, politics, journalism, the environment and community service.
“Nathan’s compassion and tenacity serves him well as a journalist, and is evident throughout many aspects of his life,” said Ellen Weiss, senior vice president of NPR News and a member of the Fellowship selection committee. “We were impressed by his passion for storytelling and his signature reporting style.”
“We are very happy to be helping Nathan launch a journalism career that he might otherwise not have had,” said Peter Perl, The Post’s Assistant Managing Editor for Personnel, “We chose him from among more than 300 applicants because we see his potential to make a contribution very much in keeping with the spirit of the Weeks fellowship.”
Rott has written on a range of topics, at times drawing from his experiences working as a wild land firefighter and EMT first responder, as well as living near the native population of Montana. His work has been recognized with a Hearst Journalism Award, a Society of Professional Journalists Mark of Excellence Award and multiple honors and scholarships.
In addition to journalism, Rott is a volunteer for a Missoula homeless shelter, Habitat for Humanity, Ronald McDonald House and Kiwanis. He spent time as an actor/director for Missoula Children’s Theater.