Voice of OC Publisher, Norberto Santana, Jr was honored Thursday night by the professors of the Communications Department of Cal State University Fullerton with the Distinguished Communicator of the Year award at their annual graduation banquet.

Santana is being  honored for his over 20 years of journalism experience covering county and local government in Southern California, as well as his work over the last 12 years since Voice of OC was founded in 2009. The nominating committee considers Voice of OC to be “a national model of nonprofit digital news.”

“All of us together are building a vibrant media environment in Orange County that can hold local government accountable,” said Santana at the CSUF Stars in Excellence event. He also noted the effective partnership between local colleges like CSUF and the Voice of OC.

Past recipients of the Distinguished Communicator Award include Ingrid Otero-Smart, president and CEO of Casanova//McCann; Walt Baranger, senior news editor of the New York Times; Alex Nogales, president and CEO of the National Hispanic Media Coalition; John Nicoletti, vice president of internal communications at Walt Disney Parks & Resorts Worldwide; Mike Wiseman, founder and chief executive officer of the advertising and marketing agency DGWB; Al Jerome, president and CEO of KCET; and Ken Brusic, editor of the Orange County Register.

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