ASNE Awards 2007

2007 Awards: ASNE recognizes excellence in writing, photography
Posted 2/23/2007 1:07:00 PM

RESTON, Va. -- The American Society of Newspaper Editors has selected the winners of its annual awards for distinguished writing and photography.

Winners of the 2007 ASNE Awards are:

  • Jesse Laventhol Prize for Deadline News Reporting by an Individual: C.J. Chivers, The New York Times. For his detailed accounts of an American medic’s treatment of a member of his platoon in Iraq who was critically wounded by a sniper.
  • Jesse Laventhol Prize for Deadline News Reporting by a Team: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Staff. For coverage of a factory explosion at a complex in Milwaukee’s industrial valley that killed three workers and injured 46.
  • Batten Medal: Anne Hull, The Washington Post. Her five stories eloquently explored the subtle effects of the Iraq War on a range of Americans.
  • Commentary/Column Writing: Ana Menendez, The Miami Herald. For columns about the Miami community, including how a local festival to celebrate Cuban history had grown into a marketing ploy.
  • Community Service Photojournalism Award: Suzanne Kreiter, The Boston Globe. For a collection of photos capturing the colorful fabric of the Boston community.
  • Freedom Forum/ASNE Award for Distinguished Writing on Diversity: Andrea Elliott, The New York Times. For a three-part series, “An Imam in America,” penetrating the inner life of a mosque in Brooklyn and its dynamic imam.
  • Distinguished Writing Award for Editorial Writing: Jane Healy, Orlando (Fla.) Sentinel. For a five-part series of editorials called, “Florida’s Shame,” on how the laws and policies in Florida for managing growth were a sham.
  • Distinguished Writing Award for Local Accountability Reporting, The Seattle Times (Ken Armstrong, Justin Mayo, and Steve Miletich). For a series of stories, “Your Courts, Their Secrets,” that revealed how judges in the state’s largest county had illegally sealed hundreds of civil cases, depriving the public of vital information about public safety, health care, courts and schools.
  • Distinguished Writing Award for Nondeadline Writing: Barbara Brotman, Chicago Tribune. For a series of stories chronicling the final five months of hospice care of a retired insurance executive at a nursing home on Chicago’s North Shore.

The Jesse Laventhol prizes each carry a $10,000 cash award; all of the others will receive $2,500 prizes. The awards will be presented on Thursday, March 29, during ASNE’s convention in Washington, D.C. The winning entries and interviews with the winners and finalists will be published in “Best Newspaper Writing 2007,” by The Poynter Institute, St. Petersburg, Fla.

The ASNE judges also recognized the work of other newspaper journalists as finalists:

Batten Medal

  • Steve Lopez, Los Angeles Times
  • Chris Rose, The Times-Picayune, New Orleans

Distinguished Writing Award for Commentary/Column Writing

  • Edward Achorn, The Providence (R.I.) Journal
  • Mary Sanchez, The Kansas City (Mo.) Star

Community Service Journalism:

  • Renee C. Byer, The Sacramento (Calif.) Bee
  • April Saul, The Philadelphia Inquirer

Jesse Laventhol Prize for Deadline News Reporting by an Individual

  • John E. Mulligan, The Providence (R.I.) Journal
  • Anthony Shadid, The Washington Post

Jesse Laventhol Prize for Deadline News Reporting by a Team

  • Ken Murray, Doug Donovan, Bradley Olson and Rick Maese, The Sun, Baltimore
  • Staff, The Philadelphia Inquirer

Freedom Forum/ASNE Award for Outstanding Writing on Diversity

  • Lisa Kennedy, The Denver Post
  • Beth Macy, The Roanoke (Va.) Times

Distinguished Writing Award for Editorial Writing\

  • David Barham, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, Little Rock
  • Larry Harmon, The Boston Globe

Local Accountability Reporting

  • June Arney, Fred Schulte, The Sun, Baltimore
  • William Glaberson, The New York Times
  • George Pawlaczyk, Beth Hundsdorfer, Belleville (Ill.) News-Democrat

Nondeadline Writing

  • Kevin Cullen, The Boston Globe
  • Mark Emmons, San Jose (Calif.) Mercury News

This year’s contest attracted almost 600 entries from news organizations throughout the United States and Canada.

The Jesse Laventhol Prizes are named in honor of a longtime Philadelphia newspaperman. They are endowed by his son, David A. Laventhol, a former editor and executive for Times Mirror. Laventhol has been a member of ASNE for many years and serves as a member of the ASNE Awards Board. He said he wanted to encourage excellence in a key aspect of newspaper reporting -- “to recognize the best deadline work and to encourage more of it.”

The Freedom Forum, which has partnered with ASNE on many diversity efforts, funds the award for outstanding writing on diversity.

The Batten Medal honors the memory of revered reporter, editor and newspaper executive James K. Batten. The medal is intended to celebrate the journalistic values Jim stood for: compassion, courage, humanity and a deep concern for the underdog.

The ASNE Foundation -- which is supported by gifts from ASNE members, newspaper companies and foundations -- funds the other awards. The Poynter Institute partners with ASNE in administering the competition. Aly Colón of The Poynter Institute will be the editor of “Best Newspaper Writing 2007.”

The awards were given for work completed in 2006. All daily newspapers and wire services in the United States are eligible to enter. Also eligible are other newspapers in the Americas that are headed by an active member of ASNE. All entries must be submitted in English.

Rick Rodriguez, executive editor, The Sacramento (Calif.) Bee, chaired the Awards Board this year. Also judging were: Andrew N. Alexander, Washington bureau chief, Cox Newspapers; Gilbert Bailon, publisher and editor, Al Dia, Dallas; Peter K. Bhatia, executive editor, The Oregonian, Portland; Susan Bischoff, Houston; David Boardman, executive editor, The Seattle Times; Jeffrey C. Bruce, Beavercreek, Ohio; James N. Crutchfield, Akron, Ohio; Gregory Favre, distinguished fellow, The Poynter Institute; Carolina Garcia, executive editor, Monterey (Calif.) County Herald; Karla Garrett Harshaw, vice president for community development, Cox Ohio Newspapers; Pamela J. Johnson, executive director, Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute, Missouri School of Journalism; W. Martin Kaiser, editor, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel; Bill Keller, executive editor, The New York Times; David A. Laventhol, New York; Sharon Rosenhause, managing editor, South Florida Sun-Sentinel, Fort Lauderdale; Mark E. Russell, managing editor, Orlando (Fla.) Sentinel; Melanie A. Sill, executive editor, The News & Observer, Raleigh, N.C.; Mark A. Silverman, editor and vice president/content and audience development, The Tennessean, Nashville; Michael E. Waller, Hilton Head Island, S.C., and David A. Zeeck, executive editor, The News Tribune, Tacoma, Wash.

Carolyn Lee, New York, chaired the photojournalism and award judging. Four photo experts also joined in the judging: Sonya Doctorian, video columnist and projects photo editor, Rocky Mountain News, Denver; Steve Gonzales, director of photography, Houston Chronicle; Kenneth F. Irby, visual journalism group leader and diversity program director, The Poynter Institute; and Julia Schmalz, asst. director of photography, USA Today.

Judges abstain from discussion when there is either a personal or professional conflict of interest.

With about 750 members, ASNE is the principal organization of American newspaper editors. It is active in a number of areas, including open government, freedom of the press, journalism credibility and ethics, newsroom management, diversity and readership.