For our August 2011 cover story, editor Keri Mitchell dug up the details and personal anecdotes surrounding Dallas ISD’s mandatory desegregation process now in its 40th anniversary. She interviewed key individuals from every angle – the students, parents and teachers as well as the attorneys and judges involved in the Dallas County court cases that followed.

Most residents who were around in the 1970s remember the ordeal, and Mitchell’s story provides a complete retrospective told in the words of those who experienced first-hand the event that forever changed DISD and the city.

The Dallas Bar Association recognized Mitchell’s outstanding legal reporting with the Stephen Philbin Award in the magazine feature category. She received the award today during the DBA’s luncheon at the Belo Mansion.

The Philbin Awards were established in 1983 in honor of Stephen H. Philbin, a DBA member and leading authority on Texas media law. The award recognizes Texas journalists in both print and broadcast whose work contributes to the public’s understanding of the legal system.

Mitchell did just that through her story on 40 years of desegregation in Dallas schools, plus she did follow-up reporting here on the blog, digging even deeper into the inner-workings of the legal system to tell us the difference between integration and desegregation.

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