Hyde Post, who helped found the Georgia First Amendment Foundation in 1994, was inducted into the National Freedom of Information Coalition’s Open Government Hall of Fame April 13 at the organization’s annual FOI Summit in Dallas.
The honor reflects Post’s long and steady effort to preserve and protect the free flow of public information that is vital to democracy.
“This is well-deserved recognition for one of Georgia’s strongest champions of government transparency,” said Georgia First Amendment Foundation President Richard T. Griffiths. “It honors Hyde’s commitment to robust open meetings and open records laws.”
Post established GFAF’s pattern of collaborating with public officials to publish guides to open government and transparency in law enforcement. He also led the organization’s efforts to educate lawmakers about the importance of preserving and strengthening public access to government meetings, proceedings and records.
Post’s passion for public access to government emerged through his work as a journalist. Projects he directly oversaw for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution won two Pulitzer prizes. He used his platform at the AJC to advocate for openness and transparency in the halls of government and in the courts. His résumé gave credibility to the Georgia First Amendment Foundation in its early days, and his leadership ensured the organization’s influence for more than two decades.
Post also furthered the open government cause nationally, serving as president of NFOIC from 2009 to 2012. He was instrumental in bringing together state open government organizations to strengthen their collective impact.
Post is now retired from journalism and has stepped down from leadership roles at GFAF and NFOIC, but he continues to support government transparency as a member of GFAF’s board of directors.
The NFOIC State Open Government Hall of Fame began in 2003. Inductees from 14 states have been honored for their dedication to protecting citizens’ rights. Post is one of four inductees in the 2019 Hall of Fame class. Joining him are South Dakota journalist Brian Hunhoff, Texas attorney and legislative advocate Laura Lee Prather and California open records advocate Richard P. McKee.
The recognition highlights Post’s government transparency legacy, Griffiths said.
“The generally positive climate in Georgia toward open and transparent government reflects Hyde’s tireless work,” he said. “Georgia’s public officials simply would not have the same respect for open government if it had not been for Hyde’s thoughtful advocacy.”