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Red & Black Scholarship Fund

Create opportunities for young journalists


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Organized by The Red & Black

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Direct your donation to The Red & Black scholarship fund and help to expand opportunities for young journalists. Our scholarship fund covers three major initiatives. 

The William H. Fields Scholarship 

The William H. Fields Scholarship Fund supports The Red & Black's mission of journalism education by awarding scholarships to Red & Black student staff members. The objective of the Fields Scholarship is to provide financial support to students by offsetting some of their college expenses while they work at The Red & Black. This scholarship was created in recognition of the time commitment required to participate at The Red & Black, which could intrude on a student's other part-time job. Scholarships are awarded to students who contribute to any areas of The Red & Black’s operations and are not eligible to earn sales commissions. The scholarship is available to students in the newsroom, creative services, administration and production.

Each year we award up to six scholarships of up to $1,500 each. Your donations allow us to continue — and expand — this program.

Meet the 2022-2023 Fields Scholars

The Wade S. Ricks Scholarship

Wade Ricks had a journalism career that spanned decades. It all started in the newsroom of The Red & Black, where Ricks worked as an editor and columnist. A transfer student to the University of Georgia, Ricks found his home — and his calling — at The Red & Black, said his wife, Janet Kolodzy.  At The Red & Black in the 1970s, he wrote under the byline Rick Ricks. Although he later used Wade S. Ricks, friends and family continued to call him Rick. From The Red & Black, Ricks went on to work at news outlets including the Cleveland Plain Dealer, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and CNN. He later went into law, working as an advocate for the overlooked and the underserved, according to friends.

Created to honor Ricks, who died suddenly in October 2021, the Wade S. Ricks Scholarship Fund supports a current Red & Black student staffer who embodies Ricks' commitment to enterprise journalism and community. The inaugural scholarship was presented at the 2022 student awards banquet. 

Each year we award one scholarship of $1,000 to a student. Your donations allow us to continue — and expand — this program.

Meet the 2022 Ricks Scholar

The Juanita Cousins Traughber Scholarship

During her time at The Red & Black from 2005 to 2008, Juanita I. Cousins made an impact on the publication as a reporter, columnist and editor. When she was named Editor in Chief in 2007, she made history as the first Black woman named to the top position since The Red & Black's founding in 1893.

As an alumna, Cousins — now Juanita Traughber — has helped support the next generation of journalists as a donor to The Red & Black. In 2021, she gave the seed funds to create a dedicated scholarship fund to support diversity in journalism. The goal of the fund is to support diversity both in coverage and within newsroom leadership.

The Juanita Cousins Traughber Award will include a $1,000 scholarship presented annually to a member of The Red & Black staff who has demonstrated a commitment to these principles both through their own reporting and through their leadership in the newsroom. The first award was presented at the April 2023 at the annual student awards banquet.

Each year we award one scholarship of $1,000 to a student. Your donations allow us to continue — and expand — this program.

Meet the 2023 Traughber Scholar

The William Rawson Smith Scholarship

William Rawson Smith was known as many things – a writer, author, musician, brother, husband and father. A past member of The Red & Black board of directors, Smith was a graduate of the University of Georgia and a local musician.

On Feb. 19, 2023, Smith died unexpectedly from complications of amyloidosis, a rare and often under-diagnosed blood disease.

In Georgia, as Georgia Trend’s first staff reporter he covered business and politics across the state. He also contributed to the NY Times, Atlanta Magazine and many other periodicals during this time. He started Highpoint in the Atlanta neighborhood of Virginia-Highlands in 1992, eventually closing the alternative publication when he was hired as a financial reporter by the Chicago Sun-Times.

After covering the markets in Chicago he returned to Atlanta to work as an editor/writer for CNN Interactive, leaving to work in executive communications at the Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank. This would lead to his speechwriting career for CEOs and corporate leaders, and he went on to work for UPS and then Coca-Cola as a communications executive.

Smith is survived by his wife, Amy Bonesteel Smith, their children, Jinkinson Payne Smith, Georgia Elizabeth Smith and Ellery Haverty Smith, as well as siblings Elizabeth Crew, Clarence Smith, Laura Brown, James Smith, E. Kendrick Smith and Anthony Smith.

Created to honor Smith, the fund will be used to create a $1,000 scholarship for a current Red & Black student staffer with demonstrated interest in business and investigative journalism. The inaugural scholarship will be presented at the April 2024 student awards banquet.

Each year we award one scholarship of $1,000 to a student. Your donations allow us to continue — and expand — this program.

About Us

Our student-run newsroom serves the University of Georgia and Athens communities with daily news at redandblack.com and a weekly newspaper, The Red & Black, which was founded in 1893. Every year more than 250 students participate in our organization, getting hands-on experience in community journalism and newsroom leadership.


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The Red & Black

A 501(c)(3) Public Charity

EIN 58-1410389