Overseas Press Club

Overseas Press Club Foundation
Encouraging the next generation of foreign correspondents

40 West 45 Street, New York NY 10036 USA| 201.493.9087 | foundation@opcofamerica.org

Seymour and Audrey Topping Scholarship
Overseas Press Club Foundation

The Seymour and Audrey Topping Scholarship is launching in 2023 and recognizes the couple’s global legacy as pioneering journalists. This annual award will support the careers of graduate and undergraduate university students wishing to become foreign correspondents, following the path that the Toppings helped trailblaze.

Seymour Topping, the distinguished foreign correspondent and author wTop and Audreyho impacted the lives of so many people and institutions involved in coverage of China and international affairs, died in November of 2020.   His coverage of the Chinese Civil War, when he crossed enemy lines during the decisive Battle of Huai Hai, China’s Waterloo, to interview Communist leaders, is legendary.  He then went on to scoop the world press on the Communist Chinese victory as they marched into China’s capitol.

The Toppings fell in love in 1946 in Nanjing, China where Top, after two years in the Pacific Zone as a World War ll Army Officer, was covering the Chinese Civil War as a stringer for the International News Service.  Audrey, daughter of a Canadian diplomat, was studying at Nanking University and broadcasting for the American Armed Forces Radio Station.

They worked together as team on many different, often dangerous assignments in China, Southeast Asia and Europe, including Russia. Top was a foreign correspondent and ultimately Managing Editor of The New York Times, Administrator of the Pulitzer Prizes, President of the International Advisory Board of Tsinghua University’s School of Journalism, and other titles. Audrey is a photojournalist with cover photographs and stories in National Geographic, The New York Times, Newsweek, Life and other major publications.  Top and Audrey were married for 71 years. They raised five daughters, born in four different countries.

They have authored eleven books. Top’s book, On the Front Lines of the Cold War, is a must-read at schools of journalism around the world.  Audrey’s book, China Mission: A Personal History from Imperial China to the People’s Republic, was awarded The Prose Prize from American Publishing.  

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