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Slain RJ reporter to be inducted into Nevada Newspaper Hall of Fame

Slain Las Vegas Review-Journal investigative reporter Jeff German will be inducted this month into the Nevada Newspaper Hall of Fame, the Nevada Press Association announced Friday morning.

German, 69, was killed Sept. 2 outside his Las Vegas home. Police later arrested Clark County Public Administrator Robert Telles — who was a subject of German’s reporting — on a murder charge in the case.

Two other former Review-Journal reporters, Steve Carp and Jane Ann Morrison, also are among the Hall of Fame honorees this year, the Nevada Press Foundation announced last month.

They will be recognized during an annual convention and awards banquet Sept. 24 at the Westgate in Las Vegas.

The other two honorees are Tom Tait, who retired this summer after working as a Las Vegas-based news editor for The Associated Press, and the late Bob Brown, owner and publisher of the now-defunct North Las Vegas Valley Times in the 1970s and ’80s.

Jeff German

German’s career in Las Vegas spanned four decades, and he was known for his investigative work exposing corruption.

After working for more than 20 years as a reporter and columnist at the Las Vegas Sun — where he covered topics such as courts, politics, government and organized crime — he was hired at the Review-Journal in 2010.

He covered topics such as city inspection failures before the 2019 Alpine Motel Apartments fire, extremist activity in Southern Nevada and an FBI investigation into Las Vegas City Councilwoman Michele Fiore’s campaign finances.

German and other members of the investigative team also conducted a lengthy investigation into the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority.

Following the 2017 mass shooting at the Route 91 Harvest festival, German exclusively reported that the shooter had first fired at two jet fuel tanks.

German wrote a 2001 book, “Murder in Sin City: The Death of a Las Vegas Casino Boss.”

Last year, he was the writer and host for Season 2 of the Review-Journal’s podcast, “Mobbed Up: the Fight for Vegas.”

Prosecutors have linked German’s killing to his reporting on Telles’ conduct as an elected official. Chief Deputy District Attorney Richard Scow said German’s reporting “ruined his political career, likely his marriage.”

Earlier this year, German reported a series of investigative stories about Telles’ workplace conduct, including allegations from current and former staffers that Telles fueled a hostile work environment and was involved in an “inappropriate relationship” with an employee. German was working on a potential follow-up story in the weeks before his death.

Jane Ann Morrison

Morrison’s journalism career spanned more than 48 years at four newspapers. The vast majority of that time was in Las Vegas.

She arrived in 1976 in Las Vegas and covered “everything from the mob to gaming and politics,” according to a press foundation announcement.

Morrison said she was delighted to learn that she’ll be inducted into the Nevada Newspaper Hall of Fame. She said her 92-year-old father was even more excited.

“He was so pleased about it,” she said. “Of course, that made me happy.”

Morrison said she gives credit to her editors, noting she was lucky enough to have many excellent ones along the way.

“They have made me a much better writer,” she said.

Morrison was at the Review-Journal for 38 non-consecutive years, beginning as a night cops reporter. She was also the Reno Gazette Journal’s Las Vegas bureau chief for part of the 1980s.

In 2003, she became the Review-Journal’s first female general interest columnist, writing three columns a week. Morrison cut down to one weekly column in 2014 and fully retired in 2018.

Her career began as a copykid in 1971 at The Christian Science Monitor in Boston. In 1973, she took a job at the Southwest Times Record in Fort Smith, Arkansas, the town where she was born.

She was transferred by Donrey Media Group to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, where she covered a variety of beats over the years, including magazine features, federal court, gaming and politics.

Morrison started as a federal court reporter around the time the FBI was cracking down on organized crime.

She said her first big mob story was probably when 83 search warrants were issued related to Anthony Spilotro, reputed Las Vegas enforcer for the Chicago mob, and his associates.

Morrison followed Spilotro during his trial. She said she never referred to him in print as “Tony the Ant” like others did because she didn’t think it was professional.

She said she knew he was a “stone-cold killer,” but Spilotro and his wife, Nancy, were polite to her. Spilotro would hold the door open for her and call her by name.

Morrison also covered mobster Frank Rosenthal during that time. She said he gave her “cold looks” and frightened her more than Spilotro.

After Rosenthal died, Morrison had a major story confirming he was a government informant, and she recalled that she was the first to report that.

“A lot of people thought it, but I was able to get people to say it,” she said.

Morrison said another memorable experience was writing about Clark County Commissioner Dario Herrera’s sweetheart deals with the Las Vegas Housing Authority before it was made public that he was the subject of a federal corruption investigation.

As a columnist, Morrison said, she liked to give readers stories that weren’t already in the newspaper. She said she particularly liked focusing on ethics, such as disciplinary actions taken against doctors and lawyers.

Morrison also said one of her bigger stories was about a Sun City Summerlin hoarder. She said she was praised by the neighbors but received criticism from some people about why she was writing about the man.

Sometimes, her columns took on lighter topics.

“I did silly things as well that got reactions,” she said.

One column was about the first time she colored her hair. Morrison said her boss thought she was crazy for writing about it, but she received a tremendous response from many women and a few men.

She also wrote a column about a Mandalay Bay topless swimming pool.

“I did not go topless, but I talked about everything I saw,” she said.

Morrison was known for her robust Rolodex and sharing phone numbers for sources with her colleagues.

Review-Journal Metro Editor Carri Geer Thevenot and former reporter Natalie Burt nominated Morrison for the Hall of Fame.

“Jane Ann took me under her wing when I arrived at the Review-Journal as a young reporter more than 30 years ago, and soon became a valued colleague and friend,” Geer Thevenot said. “Journalism is in her blood, and I continue to receive story ideas and news tips from her to this day. Jane Ann was a trusted source of news for Nevada residents for more than four decades, covering some of the state’s most important stories. I’m delighted that she’s being recognized for her significant contributions to Nevada journalism.”

Steve Carp

Carp was a sports reporter for more than 30 years in Nevada, about 20 of which were at the Review-Journal.

He said being inducted into the Hall of Fame is a tremendous honor.

“You never go into any profession thinking you’re going to be a Hall of Famer or anything like that,” he said. “You just want to do a good job for the people you work for.”

He also credited his editors, saying he’s grateful they trusted him and allowed him to do this kind of work.

Carp said it’s also “cool” that his friend Morrison, whom he described as a “distinguished writer and columnist,” is being recognized the same year.

“She is so deserving of this honor,” he said.

Carp is already part of the Southern Nevada Sports Hall of Fame and U.S. Basketball Writers Association Hall of Fame.

He spent 11 years at the Las Vegas Sun before joining the Review-Journal in 1999. He said he was brought on to cover UNLV basketball.

Over the years, he covered many other sports, too, including boxing, soccer, golf, baseball and football.

“It was great for me because it gave me a chance not to pigeonhole myself into one thing,” Carp said.

He also covered the Golden Knights — “probably the best part of the RJ experience for me,” he said. “This was really kind of the start for Las Vegas to become a major league city, and I got to cover it.”

Carp left the Review-Journal in 2018 and managed a 32-person staff as senior editor of Gaming Today until February 2021. The publication was sold and the print edition discontinued.

“It was a great experience,” he said about his time at Gaming Today, noting he was grateful for the opportunity to keep his career going for a little longer. “I hadn’t been an editor in such a long time.”

Carp — who grew up in the Brooklyn borough of New York City reading newspapers every day — said it was always his life dream to be a sports writer.

He said he never forgot it’s supposed to be about the readers and “getting it right” the first time.

Carp is also the author of two books: “Vegas Born: The Remarkable Story of The Golden Knights” and “Runnin’: UNLV Rebels – A Basketball Legacy.”

Now, he’s working on his third book, which he hopes will be out next year, about how Las Vegas became a major league sports city.

Ed Graney, a sports columnist for the Review-Journal, nominated Carp for the Hall of Fame.

“Steve has had an incredible impact on sports writing in Nevada,” he said.

Carp’s connections are incomparable, Graney said.

“Steve can get anyone on the phone in a matter of minutes due to his reputation and professionalism in the business,” he said.

Contact Julie Wootton-Greener at jgreener@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-2921. Follow @julieswootton on Twitter.

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