The reporting should be investigative in nature, and judges will give preference to work that made a demonstrable difference in the news organization's community. The work needs to be anchored in a community that is the primary audience of the publication, and this local reporting is the focus of this reward. However, national or international reporting that springs from that local core may also be included in the entry.
Sponsored by The Seattle Times, this award is named in honor of Frank A. Blethen who has been Times publisher and CEO since 1985. Under his leadership, The Times has won six Pulitzer Prizes, including the 2015 Pulitzer Prize in Breaking News Reporting. The Frank A. Blethen Award comes with a $2,500 cash prize.