Huynh Cong Ut was born in Long An, Vietnam (then part of French Indochina) on March 29, 1951. Soon after his beloved brother Huynh Thanh My was killed covering the Vietnam War for Associated Press (AP) in 1965, Ut jointed the prestigious news gathering agency. Known professionally as Nick Ut, he covered the war in Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam. He won both the Pulitzer Prize for Spot News Photography and the World Press Photo of the Year for his June 8, 1972 photo “The Terror of War,„ depicting children fleeing from a napalm bombing on their village of Trang Bang. Kim Phuc, the naked 9-year-old girl in the photograph became the face of all that was wrong with the war. Ut took her and several other wounded children to a hospital. If not for his actions, Kim would have died. They remain friends to this day. Ut himself was wounded three times during the war. In 1975 as Saigon was about to fall to North Vietnamese and Viet Cong troops, Ut left Vietnam, eventually being relocated in Japan for Associated Press.
Two years later he was transferred to Los Angeles where he continued to work for AP. During that time, he covered wild fires, riots, earthquakes, the O.J. Simpson case, Hollywood celebrities, the Olympics and the Pope’s visit to the City of Angels. In 2012, on the 40th anniversary of his Pulitzer Prize-winning photo, Ut became the third person inducted into the Leica Hall of Fame for his contributions to photojournalism.
On March 29, 2017, he retired from AP after 51 years with the company, allowing himself to refocus his energies on his love of documenting cultures and the natural world, creating his own assignments and distributing his work through Getty Images. Nick continues to teach workshops, do speaking engagements and have his work featured in exhibitions.