Malcolm Gladwell will receive On Air Fest’s 2024 Audio Vanguard Award, TheWrap can exclusively reveal.
The journalist, bestselling author and podcast host will be presented with the honor on March 1 and will participate in a career-spanning interview moderated by Pushkin Industries CEO Gretta Cohn. Gladwell is the cofounder of Pushkin Industries.
Previous recipients of the award include CNN’s Audie Cornish, Ira Glass of “This American Life,” Terry Gross from “Fresh Air” and Jad Abumrad of “Radiolab.”
Celebrating a digital media thought leader whose work has advanced audio storytelling and created a longstanding legacy, the On Air Fest has presented the Vanguard Award since 2020.
Presented on the final day of On Air Fest, which takes place Feb. 28–March 1 at Brooklyn’s Wythe Hotel, the Audio Vanguard Award will recognize Gladwell’s contributions to audio media through his role as host of hit podcast “Revisionist History” and cofounder of Pushkin Industries, an audio production company.
“We’re honored to give this year’s Audio Vanguard Award to a true renaissance man in Malcolm Gladwell,” founder and creative director of On Air Fest Scott Newman said in a statement. “His deeply attentive ways of exploring and explaining the world — first as a journalist and author, and now in audio — makes his work so distinct.”
Newman continued, saying Gladwell’s shows like “Revisionist History” and “Broken Record” have “expanded the field and have attracted countless new listeners to the art form of podcasts.”
Gladwell is the author of several New York Times bestsellers including “The Tipping Point,” “Outliers,” “David and Goliath,” “Talking to Strangers” and “The Bomber Mafia.” The journalist has been a staff writer for the New Yorker since 1996 and currently serves on the board of the RAND Corporation.
Produced by creative agency Work x Work, On Air Fest unites emerging and established voices to advance the culture of audio, this year spotlighting live events featuring “Design Matters” with Debbie Millman, “Sing for Science” with Sid Sriram, “The Allusionist” with Helen Zaltzman and the “Talkhouse Podcast.”