To Whom It May Concern:
I am very proud to have worked at the Chicago Tribune at the same time as Paul Salopek, who is easily one of the world’s finest, most ethical and most talented journalists.
Paul has my profound appreciation and respect for his efforts to make the world more aware of the problems that have plagued Africa in recent years. When so many other news organizations ignored the continent’s AIDS epidemic, civil wars, genocide and various other troubles stemming from government corruption, Paul was there. He has worked tirelessly – relentlessly – for years to spread word of Africa’s ills, demonstrating a profound respect for the continent and its people in the process. Through Paul’s amazing work, I also have learned about Africa’s natural beauty, its strong people and its ancient culture.
I have no doubt this two-time Pulitzer Prize winner’s work has garnered international attention that has resulted in much good for Africa.
The Society of Professional Journalists, one of the United States’ largest and oldest journalism advocacy organizations, respectfully asks that you please free Paul so that he may return to his writing. The world needs him and his outstanding journalism.
Thank you very much for your careful consideration.