Roger Runningen, of Springfield, Va., will be recognized by Winona State University with the Distinguished Alumni Award Friday, Sept. 25, as a part of the university’s Homecoming celebration.
Roger Runningen graduated from Winona State College in 1972 with a bachelor’s degree in social science and a minor in speech. Runningen, who grew up in Houston, Minn., served as editor of The Winonan and was a member of the WSU debate team and student senate. In 1971, he was selected for a three-month internship in the Washington, D.C. office of Rep. Al Quie, which led to a full-time job in Quie’s office as a legislative assistant and press secretary from 1973-1978. Runningen then worked as Washington Bureau Chief for a group of newspapers in California and the Midwest from 1979-1991, and press secretary for the U.S. Department of Agriculture from 1991-1993. From 1994-2014, Runningen worked for Bloomberg News, first as a financial markets and agriculture commodities reporter, and starting in 2003 as White House correspondent responsible for daily coverage of Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama. Runningen was honored by Obama and White House correspondents when he retired on Dec. 1, 2014, and received numerous recognitions and awards for public service reporting.