2 Times Staffers Win Gerald Loeb Awards

Times staff writers Scot J. Paltrow and Kathryn Harris on Monday were named winners of the 1994 Gerald Loeb Awards for business and financial journalism.

Paltrow was cited for an investigative series on Prudential Securities Inc. and Harris for her coverage of the Paramount Communications Inc. takeover battle.

The awards, established in 1957 by the late Gerald Loeb and administered by UCLA’s John E. Anderson Graduate School of Management, honor journalists for significant contributions to the public’s understanding of business, finance and the economy. Each carries a $1,000 cash prize.


Paltrow’s series, published last June, was the winner in the large-newspaper category. It described how Prudential Insurance Co. of America and its Prudential Securities unit sold $8 billion worth of risky limited partnerships to small investors, falsely portraying the investments as safe for retirees.

Harris, winner in the deadline-beat reporting category, was honored for stories chronicling the takeover battle that culminated in Viacom Inc.'s winning $10-billion bid for Paramount in February.

Other Loeb award winners include James W. Michaels, editor of Forbes magazine, who received the lifetime achievement award.

In the medium-sized-newspaper category, Fred Schulte and Larry Keller of the Ft. Lauderdale (Fla.) Sun-Sentinel were winners for an examination of Medicare’s failings.

In the small-newspaper category, Lance Williams of the San Francisco Examiner won for a series detailing alleged financial improprieties and misconduct by University of California officials.

Bryan Burrough was cited in the magazine category for a story about the Haft family business feud that appeared in Vanity Fair. In the commentary category, Robert J. Samuelson was chosen for selected columns in Newsweek.

John Hays of the Morning Paper, in Ruston, La., won a special award for an investigative series on Towers Financial Corp.