NBTB 2016’s keynote speaker: Kim Komenich, Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer

komenich_kimKim Komenich, who won the Pulitzer Prize for Spot News Photography in 1987 for capturing images of the “People Power” revolution that rocked the Philippines, will be the keynote speaker for Newsroom by the Bay 2016.

Then a staff photographer for the San Francisco Examiner, Komenich made 30,000 images from 1984 to 1986 while covering the fall of the Ferdinand Marcos regime.

Remarkably, the work is coming to life again in “Revolution Revisited,” a book and exhibit of photographs taken by Komenich between 2009 and 2012 during trips back to the Philippines to find and photograph the people he met during the revolution 30 years ago.

Screen Shot 2016-03-10 at 7.23.29 PMThe project website (at right) features “then and now” photos of people Komenich met, along with captions that describe when and where Komenich captured his subjects and short videos that bring their stories up to date.

Thanks to a Kickstarter campaign that ended just two weeks ago, 295 supporters raised more than $40,000 to publish the book, which “locks this important period in Philippine history on the printed page,” Komenich said, in a statement on the fundraising site.

Komenich also was a staff photographer and editor for the San Francisco Chronicle and a 1993-94 Knight Fellow at Stanford.

The book and a 50-print exhibit premiered at the Leica Gallery in San Francisco on Feb. 23. In a review published March 3 on Balitang America, an online news site for Filipinos in the U.S. and Canada, Komenich connected “People Power” to the pitched presidential election now underway in the U.S.

“It’s a generational thing. Thirty years is roughly one generation and I’m always concerned,” Komenich said. “One of the reasons these photos may jog people’s memories is how passionate people were about their democracy.”

In addition to covering the Philippine revolution, Komenich has photographed conflicts in Vietnam, Guyana, El Salvador, and the former Soviet Union. Most recently, Komenich’s photos from his three trips to the Sunni Triangle in Iraq in 2005 earned him the Military Reporters and Editors’ Association’s 2006 Photography Award. He has received the Distinguished Service Award from the Society of Professional Journalists, the 1987 World Press Photo News Picture Story Award, and three National Headliner Awards. He is a 2005 recipient of the Clifton C. Edom Education Award from the National Press Photographers’ Association.

Kim Komenich continues to photograph today and is an assistant professor for photojournalism at San Francisco State University.

Screen Shot 2016-03-10 at 6.53.04 PMClick here for Words on Pictures, a podcast series by the National Press Photographers Association, to listen to Komenich’s thoughts on growing up in Manteca, California, and the early influences that shaped his vision. View more of his work at www.kimkom.com and learn more about “Revolution Revisited” at www.revolutionrevisited.com

NBTB’s keynote will take place at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, June 28 on the Stanford campus. For more information, please contact newsroombythebay@gmail.com.

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