Dec. 29, 2012
The Dallas Morning News
as the Dallas Morning News 2012 Texans of the Year, culminating an editorial series that began on
. These falsely accused Texans, who served a combined 37 years in prison for murders they did not commit, are now using their freedom and fame to fix the flawed justice system and to help end the state's record of wrongful convictions.
As noted in an editorial in Sunday's newspaper, "Rare is the man who emerges from [wrongful imprisonment] without bitterness and a hunger for revenge against those who wronged him. Then there are the temptations that come with huge compensation checks from the state. … The opportunities for bad choices are too many to count. Some resist all that and choose a higher path."
The full text of the editorial appears in Sunday's paper and is posted at dallasnews.com/toy. Readers can share their thoughts by commenting on the editorial and watch a video on why the newspaper picked Morton and Scott as their Texans of the Year.
Sunday's editorial culminated a 10-part series that named the following finalists:
, the driving force behind
' new Perot Museum of Nature and Science;
, rising political star who led the campaign for a citywide tax for pre-K education; the 2011-2012
Baylor Lady Bears
basketball team, for its undefeated and record-setting season;
public charter school YES Prep, honored with the inaugural Broad Foundation prize for charter schools;
, visionary at
who was key to landing a new federal bio-threat center;
, the rising political force and U.S. senator-elect;
, women's health champion and chief executive of Planned Parenthood;
, founder of the "Better Block" demonstration project who is galvanizing communities nationally to revive their neighborhoods; and
, disgraced cycling champion and cancer-fighting icon.
Now in its tenth year, the Dallas Morning News Texan of the Year series draws from reader nominations to the newspaper's Editorial Board. Criteria call for "a Texan (or Texans) who has had uncommon impact – positive or negative – over the past year." The Editorial Board selected the finalists and winners through an internal vote.