CJ Chivers ‘87, senior reporter for The New York Times, was awarded the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for a piece that details the story of a Marine Corps veteran diagnosed with PTSD.
Chivers’ feature, “The Fighter,” received the award “for showing, through an artful accumulation of fact and detail, that a Marine’s postwar descent into violence reflected neither the actions of a simple criminal nor a stereotypical case of PTSD,” according to the Pulitzer website.
Chivers’ story depicts the life of Sam Siatta, from the time of the death of his father at a young age to his time in prison resulting from a violent break-in at the house of a fellow Marine. The story provides a personal look into the underrepresented realities of a PTSD-diagnosed veteran.
Chivers graduated with an English major from Cornell. He was a four-year player for Cornell’s sprint football team and a member of the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity. He later served as an infantry officer and Ranger in the Marine Corps until 1994, then went to graduate school at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. After graduating from Columbia in 1995, he wrote for The Providence Journal until he began working for The New York Times in 1999.
From 1999 until 2001, Chivers was a Metro reporter covering crime and law enforcement in New York City, where he covered the attacks on the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001. Among his many international assignments include serving as The New York Times Moscow bureau chief in 2007 and 2008. A distinguished international reporter, Chivers previously received a Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting in 2009 as part of a group reporting from Pakistan and Afghanistan. His book, “The Gun,” was published in 2010 and traces the invention of the assault rifle.