Jefferson City News Tribune reporter Bob Watson was recognized for his many contributions to legal journalism in Missouri by the Missouri Bar during its Spring Committee Meetings luncheon Friday in Jefferson City.
Watson, a 30-year veteran of journalism in Mid-Missouri, has become a Jefferson City institution for his thorough and insightful coverage of the Missouri Capitol and state government. He also has covered Lincoln University, community and school news, the courts and high-profile criminal cases since beginning work with the News Tribune in 1989.
Missouri Bar President Ray Williams presented Watson a resolution recognizing his career of work, which has “contributed significantly to public understanding of the law and legal system, including the role of lawyers and judges within that system.”
Watson is a three-time recipient of the Missouri Bar’s Excellence in Legal Journalism Award. The organization has recognized him for extensive, multi-year coverage of the effort to revise Missouri’s criminal code, as well as a series of articles on the Alyssa Bustamante case and its implications for media coverage of sensational court proceedings, juveniles in the court system and the impact of mental health issues within the criminal system.
He also has been a long-serving media coordinator for the Cole County Circuit Court (19th Judicial Circuit) under the state’s “cameras in the courtroom” rule.