Newspaper gives Pulitzer award money to Pittsburgh synagogue

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette donates $15,000 from Pulitzer prize to Tree of Life synagogue targeted by gunman in deadly 2018 attack.

Cnaan Liphshiz, JTA ,

Tree of Life synagogue
Tree of Life synagogue
Alexei Rosenfeld

Employees of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette donated to a local synagogue the $15,000 they had won along with a Pulitzer prize for their coverage a deadly anti-Semitic shooting at the building.

The newspaper won the money and prize in April for their “immersive, compassionate coverage,” as the judges wrote, the paper noted Wednesday. In the shooting in question, a gunman killed 11 people and wounded seven others on Oct. 27 at the Tree of Life synagogue.

Splitting the monetary award among those who had participated in the news coverage “just didn’t seem right,” the report said.

Publisher John Robinson Block suggested to donate the prize money to Tree of Life to help it repair its bullet-riddled temple in Squirrel Hill.

On Aug. 29, in the Post-Gazette newsroom on the North Shore, the newspaper’s executive editor, Keith Burris, presented a $15,000 check to Rabbi Jeffrey Myers and Samuel Schachner, president of the congregation.

“We feel bound to you and your congregations – by memory and duty,” Burris said in a speech. “And we offer you, in humility, our service – as scribes and witnesses.”