Edna Machirori, the first black female editor in the Zimbabwean media, earned her journalism degree at the New York Institute of Technology in the 1970s. Last night, the 69-year-old trailblazer was back in Manhattan to accept a Lifetime Achievement honor at the International Women’s Media Foundation (IWMF) 2013 Courage in Journalism awards.

She called the prize the “climax of her career” and said that the training she received in NYC helped her deal with the “personal attacks, threats, put-downs, discrimination and disparagement” that followed. Sometimes even within her own professional ranks.

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