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'60 Minutes' correspondent Bill Whitaker gets Distinguished Journalist Award from DePaul University

DePaul honors '60 Minutes' correspondent Bill Whitaker 02:50

CHICAGO (CBS) -- DePaul University honored "60 Minutes" correspondent Bill Whitaker on Thursday with their Distinguished Journalist Award.

Whitaker accepted the award from Carol Marin, a former CBS 2 anchor, and co-director of DePaul's Center for Journalism Integrity and Excellence.

His long and distinguished career includes winning a Peabody Award for his "60 Minutes" piece on the opioid crisis.

Whitaker talked about integrity and excellence, and protecting the truth in journalism.

Before his speech, he sat down with CBS 2's Jim Williams to discuss several topics, including the incredible longevity of "60 Minutes," and how much longer he plans to travel the globe.

How does he explain the enduring popularity of "60 Minutes"?

"Good, old-fashioned story-telling. You find good characters, you find good stories, and you tell it well. And it's a formula that has worked for 53 years," he said.

"The one thing I've seen – I've been there now for, this is my 8th year – since the pandemic, and the war in Ukraine, things have speeded up," he added. "It's like there is a lot going on; and it's a weekly, daily,"

WILLIAMS: "I was going to say that 60 Minutes often now responds to the news of the day. Longer pieces, but the news of the day, and you spent the bulk of career doing that; doing day-of-air pieces. That's your training."

WHITAKER: "That is, but doing day-of-air pieces that are 13 minutes and a half minutes long, that's a different animal. … I do tell the people work with, 'If you see me hobbling in, and I'm looking like I just can't make it through one more day, I want you to tell me, Bill, it's time to stop.'"

WILLIAMS: "That day's not here."

WHITAKER: "I haven't gotten there yet."

It likely won't be here for a long time, with Whitaker still going strong.

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