By Jonathan Sperling
Ruschell Boone, a reporter for New York 1, has earned the annual William Tucker Garvin Public Service Award, an honor presented by Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown each year as part of his office’s Black History Month celebration.
Brown presented Boone with the award on Thursday in recognition of her 21 years of work in the field of journalism, as well as her ability to “convey news in a lighthearted, factual and informative way,” Brown said.
The Tucker Garvin Award was first established by Brown in 2001 to honor the life and legacy of the late Assistant District Attorney William Tucker Garvin, the first black ADA to serve in Queens. Recipients of the award produce work that upholds Garvin’s legacy and sets a shining example of public service.
“Black history is American history. The contributions of African Americans is intricately woven into the fabric of American society. Each year we honor the accomplishments and acknowledge the many achievements of African-Americans with this award — in addition to recognizing the barriers broken by individuals such as Bill Garvin,” Brown said. “Each year we present the Garvin Award to an individual whose dedication and outstanding achievements in public service set the standard for excellence in their respective line of work.”
Spanning more than two decades, Boone’s career began shortly after she graduated from CUNY Baruch College with a degree in accounting. She worked as a news associate for CNBC and then as an associate producer and assignment editor for CNN before joining NY1 in 2002. During her time at NY1, Boone covered an array of breaking news stories, from the 2016 presidential election and the 2016 bombing in Manhattan to the New Year’s Eve celebration in Times Square.
Boone, a native of Kingston, Jamaica, has earned several other honors prior to receiving the Tucker Garvin Award, including the New York Press Club Award for Best Feature Reporting in 2013 and the New York Association of Black Journalists award for Best Spot News Reporting in 2014. Last week, Boone was nominated for three Emmy Awards for her general assignment reporting and for her work on NY1's talk shows, “Spotlight New York” and “Live at Ten.”
In addition to her journalism career, Boone has served the borough in several capacities through the Queens DA’s office. She has volunteered with the office’s STAR Track Program — which mentors at-risk youth in Far Rockaway — and was a keynote speaker during the office’s “Say No To Violence Week.”
Garvin, the award’s namesake, was born in South Carolina in 1898. After graduating from college, he moved to New York City and became one of the first African-Americans to graduate from St. John’s University Law School in 1931. Garvin eventually established a civil law practice in Harlem and later moved to Queens, before being appointed as the first African-American to serve on local School Board 50 in 1943. Garvin was appointed to the ADA position in 1952 and retired a month prior to his death in 1966.
Past recipients of the Garvin Award include former New York City Mayor David M. Dinkins, U.S. Rep. Gregory W. Meeks, former Queens Administrative Judge Leslie G. Leach and United States Attorney General Eric H. Holder, among other distinguished individuals.