Command information in the form of Army Journalism began during World War I. Hand and type-written news was spread by couriers to soldiers in combat zones.
This era of Army information saw the beginning of news bulletins at various levels of command. Writing was done by the intelligence or adjutant section in most units. The Army newspaper was born.
The establishment of the Bureau of Public Relations in February, 1941, triggered the development of the Office of the Chief of Information, Department of the Army. Under this new department, the Command Information Division and its mission to prepare and define policies for Army Command Information was developed.
Maj. Joseph Burlas established the Maj. Gen. Keith L. Ware award.
The Print Journalist of the Year program was created by Lt. Col. Billy Spangler and Sgt. Maj. Gary G. Beylickjian. The namesake for this military award was Staff Sgt. Paul D. Savanuck, a Stars & Stripes reporter killed in Cam Lo, Vietnam in 1969.
The Broadcast Journalist of the Year program was created by Mr. Clark Taylor.
Mr. Clark Taylor, director of SRTV, and Retired Master Sgt. Gary D. Thompson recommended Master Sgt. John T. Anderson as the namesake for the Military Broadcast Journalist of the Year award. Anderson was captured by enemy forces at Hue (Way), Vietnam in 1968. He was a POW for five years before his release as part of Operation Homecoming.
The Acting Secretary of the Army, the Honorable Robert M. Walker, approved Mr. John Moss and Ms. Peggy Holland as the namesakes for the Civilian Print Journalist of the Year award. They were killed in the bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma City, April 19, 1995.
Both Moss and Holland were public affairs specialists in the Oklahoma City Recruiting Battalion.
The Office of the Chief of Public Affairs created the Kathy Canham Ross Award of Distinction to recognize extraordinary Community Relations contributions.
Then-Secretary of the Army Pete Geren authorized the Kathy Canham Ross Award to officially become part of the Maj. Gen. Keith L. Ware Awards program.
The award for Outstanding New Writer was renamed in honor of Staff Sgt. James P. Hunter, who died as he covered a combat patrol while serving with the 502nd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division in southern Afghanistan in 2010. This award recognizes excellence in Army journalism among enlisted Soldiers with 24 months or fewer in CMF 46. Only Soldiers in the rank of staff sergeant and below are eligible for this award.
The award for Civilian Broadcast Journalist of the Year was renamed in honor of legendary military broadcaster, Mr. Clark Taylor. A Vietnam veteran with a Purple Heart and Bronze Star with 'V' device, Taylor revolutionized Army broadcasting, retiring from civil service as director of Soldiers Radio and Television in 2006, after a career which spanned 40 years of dedicated service to the United States Army. Taylor was inducted into the Public Affairs Hall of Fame in 2008.