Report for America corps members are producing award-winning journalism in newsrooms across the country. These are just a few examples of awards received in 2021.
Report for America presented awards to journalists in a dozen categories at its inaugural Local News Awards program, held virtually, June 25.
Among the evening’s top winners was The Columbus Dispatch’s Ceili Doyle, who took home Dispatch of the Year honors for her piece “Against the tide: A small town in Appalachia engineers its revival.” Doyle also earned second place in the Black Lives Matter/Protest category for “What’s it like to grow up Black in rural Ohio?”
DCist’s Dee Dwyer took home first- and second-place awards, earning top honors in the Feature Photo category for “Elvera Patrick” and second place in the Spot News Photo category for “Breonna Taylor Protest”
Other first-place winners were Raymon Troncoso, Capitol News Illinois; Becky Dernbach, Sahan Journal; Arielle Dreher, Spokesman-Review; Brandon Lingle, San Antonio Express-News; Leah Willingham, Associated Press; Lauren Peace, Mountain State Spotlight; Alejandra Martinez, KERA; Samantha Max, WPLN; Madeleine Cook, Columbus Ledger-Enquirer; and Jaida Grey Eagle, Sahan Journal. Read more
Carrington J. Tatum, MLK50, contributed to his newsroom’s Breaking Barriers Award for his stories about Southwest Memphis residents’ fight against the Byhalia Connection Pipeline.
“To me, this award is a bigger recognition of a new era of journalism that puts marginalized people and communities before anything else,” Tatum said.
Chris Jones, 100 Days in Appalachia, won a National Edward R. Murrow Award in the Small Digital News Organization—Hard News category, for his reporting on domestic extremism: “National Media Want You to Believe Antifa and Boogaloo Are ‘Two Sides of the Same Coin.’ Here’s Why They’re Not.”
Jessi Dodge, Buffalo Bulletin, won first place in several categories at the National Newspaper Association Better Newspaper Contest, including in best online photo album for “A Final Fair-well.”
Brandon Pho, Voice of OC, won first place in multiple categories at the Orange County Press Club Awards, including news feature story, for “In South OC’s Wealthy, Mostly White School District, Students of Color Tell Stories of Racism, Harassment and Inaction.” He also won first place environmental news story for “Annual High Tide Spurs Concerns About Future Safety of San Onofre Nuclear Waste Stock Near South OC.”
Isabelle Taft, Sun Herald, won the Bill Minor Prize for Investigative Journalism as well as first place for in-depth or investigative coverage from the Mississippi Press Association for “As a Black family searched for a loved one, white Picayune groups spread rumors of fear.”
Sarah Y. Kim, WYPR, won Best in Show – Radio, as well as first place in outstanding specialty reporting, from the Chesapeake Associated Press Broadcasters Association (CAPBA) for “New Study Shows Exclusions of Blacks in Genomic Research.”
Brandon Lingle, San Antonio Express-News, won first place in business reporting from the Texas Associated Press Managing Editors for “A Grunt Style Reckoning: A look inside San Antonio apparel maker’s rowdy past, near-death experience and current leadership battle.”
Mark Rosenberg, The Victoria Advocate, won first place in feature writing from the Texas Associated Press Managing Editors for “Something you could fight with: For rural hospitals, new COVID-19 drug offers promise, uncertainty.”
Samantha Hogan, The Maine Monitor, is a 2021 Livingston Award finalist for excellence in local reporting for “Defenseless: Investigating the Only State Without Public Defenders.”
Michelle Liu, Associated Press, won the Shorenstein Center’s Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting for her contribution to Mississippi Today’s investigation into the state’s penal system, “Think debtors prisons are a thing of the past? Not in Mississippi.”
Amelia Ferrell Knisely, Mountain State Spotlight, won the National Press Foundation’s Poverty and Inequality award for best reporting from a small newsroom for her story, “School’s back, but hunger persists. West Virginia still struggles to feed its neediest kids, especially remote learners.”
Kim Bojórquez, Sacramento Bee, won the Sacramento Press Club Award for best Spanish-language reporting for her stories “Latinos de la Generación Z votan en California” (Gen Z Latinos vote in California) and “Estos Latinos de California quieren votar por Trump en 2020” (These Latinos from California want to vote for Trump in 2020).
Maria Sestito, The Desert Sun, won first place for best feature from the California News Publishers Association for “A Palm Springs man was separated from his sister in 1946. Here’s how they finally reconnected in 2020.”
Conor Morris, Northeast Ohio Solutions Journalism Collaborative, won for best minority issues reporting from the Greater Cincinnati Society of Professional Journalists for “Grounded by the pandemic, community groups work to save Cleveland’s census.”
Jackie Botts, CalMatters, was honored by the Society of Professional Journalists Northern California for explanatory journalism for her contributions to “Close Quarters: California’s overcrowded homes fuel spread of coronavirus among workers.”
Dominic Walsh, Texas Public Radio, won a Regional Edward R. Murrow Award for excellence in innovation for his contribution to “There Are Millions of Latino Voters — But No Latino Vote.”
Mallory Falk, Texas News Hub, based in KERA, won a Regional Edward R. Murrow Award for her news series, “The Asylum Trap: Stories From Migrants Forced To Wait In Mexico While Seeking Asylum.”
Alaska Press Club Awards
Erin McKinstry, KCAW, won first place for best reporting on government or politics from the Alaska Press Club for “Tongass ‘Roadless Rule’ exemption leaves subsistence users feeling left behind.”
Becky Dernbach, Sahan Journal, was a finalist for the Education Writers Association’s National Awards for Education Reporting for her beat coverage of “Education in Minnesota’s Immigrant and Refugee Communities.”
Amanda Ulrich, The Desert Sun, won first place for in-depth reporting from the California News Publishers Association for her contributions to a series on a “Tribe’s plans to build one of the largest prisons in the US.”
Lucia Starbuck, KUNR Public Radio, won a Regional Edward R. Murrow Award in the hard news category for her contribution to ” Trump Energizes Base, Attacks Democrats During Nevada Campaign Stop.”
Rachel Cohen, Boise State Public Radio, won a Regional Edward R. Murrow Award for breaking news with “Health District Abruptly Cancels Meeting After Protesters Show Up To Board Members’ Homes.”
Jaida Grey Eagle, Sahan Journal, was honored by Minnesota Monthly as one of 22 Champions of Change for her photojournalism, including documenting the perspectives of immigrant businesspeople.
ChrisAnna Mink, The Modesto Bee, won first place for best health reporting coverage of the COVID-19 pandemic from the California News Publishers Association for “Los Banos woman survived COVID-19 thanks to doctors she never met in person.”
Keren Carrión, KERA and The Texas Newsroom, won a Regional Edward R. Murrow Award for excellence in video for her piece, “A Quinceañera Shares How The Pandemic Changed Her Big Day.”
Chris Jones, 100 Days in Appalachia, was named among 2020’s top ten veterans in journalism by Military Veterans in Journalism for “Who watches the polls? WV election officials dismiss federal concerns over threat of domestic extremism.”
Eve Zuckoff, CAI, won a Regional Edward R. Murrow Award for excellence in diversity, equity and inclusion for her contributions to the station’s reporting, “Covering Race and Systemic Racism on Cape Cod, the Islands, and the South Coast.”
Laurence Du Sault, Mercury News, was honored by the Society of Professional Journalists Northern California for investigative reporting for her contribution to “California’s Criminal Cops” series, “This Central Valley police chief forced an officer to remodel his home; now he’s California’s latest criminal cop.”