Winners' info with judges' comments and info on SCPA's top honors -- our journalists of the year and Montgomery FOI winners!
- 1.2011 SCPA News Contest Winners 12011 News ContestAward Winners RECOGNIZING THE BEST IN S.C. NEWSPAPER JOURNALISMFirst Place and Best of the Best Spot News Photo: George Salsberry, The Press & Standard, Church FireFirst Place Feature Photo: Gwinn Davis, Tribune-Times, Fun in SnowHonorable Mention Feature Photo: GraceSecond Place General News Photo: Tim Dominick, The State, Difficult DeploymentBeahm, The Post and Courier, Street Surfer
2. 2 2011 SCPA News Contest WinnersJOURNALIST REID MONTGOMERY FREEDOM OF INFORMATION AWARD OF THEYEAR AWARDState story, which ended with state legislators calling for anDaily Divisioninvestigation. Her work was also supplemented witheditorials hammering away for reform.Renee DudleyThe Post and Courier Daily Division Renee Dudley joined The Post and Courier in 2010 as a health reporter. Before First Place Daily Divisionthat, she was a reporter for The Boston Herald and The (Hilton Head) IslandPacket. Dudley has won honors from the The Post and CourierSecond PlaceNew England and South Carolina PressAssociations for public service and in-This years FOI Award winner The Post and Courier The Itemdepth, enterprise, health and government stood out in what was one of the strongest pool ofreporting. In 2010, she received the entries ever entered. The Item inEugene S. Pulliam Award from the Society The Charleston daily was unanimously chosen because Sumter is recognizedof Professional Journalists for her work of its long battle all the way to the S.C. Supreme Court to as second place winner for its outstanding job reporting ondefending the First Amendment. She keep a Lowcountry school board from evading the FOIAan officer-related shooting, where police secrecy kept thegraduated from Boston University, whereby having their lawyer handle a superintendent evaluation public in the dark about the details, and even who wasshe studied international relations, and then refusing to release the results claiming attorney- involved, in the fatal shooting of a 25-year-old man. Itjournalism and French. client privilege. This case had enormous statewide started as police blocked off a large section of the roadJudges comments: Renee Dudleys ramifications and the newspaper stepped up to the where the shooting happened to keep the public and pressreporting exposes wrongdoing, challenges challenge to force public accountability. Their courtroom at a distance. They then withheld the names of the officers,powerful people and changes lives. She efforts bolstered their outstanding coverage of the case.citing an unspecified threat. The abuse of the FOIAtook on the governor, a large insuranceThe newspaper also used the FOI successfully in stories continued for months as police refused to say how manycompany and the areas largest hospitals.about financial issues at S.C. State University , and in othertimes the man was shot and where he was struck. NamesDudleyThe results of her work led to accountability stories involving the office of the governor,were omitted from incident reports. To top it off, theinvestigations, changed policies, better care of taxpayer money and better care forSLED, The Citadel and the town of Summerville .coroner refused to release the autopsy report, claiming itill patients. By any standard, she had an extraordinary year as a journalist. AndReporter Diane Knich did an outstanding job in the S.C. was a health care record. The Item has filed suit in the case.all South Carolinians benefitted from her work. Fairfield Countys Newspaper Since 1844 Cincotta undertook extensiveWeekly DivisionWeekly Division First PlaceThe Herald Independentresearch into the companysCorey Hutchins www.heraldindependent.comorigins, obtaining records fromvarious state agencies showing thatFree Times The Herald-Independent the board is a public body.Corey Hutchins is a staff writer at the Columbia Free Times covering South Nevertheless, the Board maintains its position that it isCarolina politics and was a 2008 recipient of the S.C. Press Associations award for Jill Cincottanot a public body so The Herald-Independent has filesin-depth reporting. His work in 2011This was a fine example of dogged reporting, smartcriminal charges against the board members. The board hasappeared on the cover of The Nation, in Thetactics and persistence to overcome stonewalling and tellsrequested a jury trial and the date of trial is still pending.Huffington Post, The Daily Caller and in readers what they needed to know about this public The Herald-Independent hopes to set a precedent inThe Texas Observer. Hutchins helped coverbodies efforts to circumvent the FOIA.South Carolina and send a message to those who seek tothe 2012 GOP presidential primary inCincotta worked tirelessly, and in the face ofcircumnavigate the law and conduct public business inSouth Carolina as part of the CBS News tremendous resistance, to provide the public with valuablesecret the message is simple: The public is watching, andNational Decision Desk. He is the Palmetto insight into the day-to-day operations of the Jenkinsvillethe public will not tolerate backroom politics.States lead researcher on the State Integrity Water Company and its board.Investigation at the Center for PublicIntegrity in Washington, D.C. His graphicJUDSON CHAPMAN AWARD FOR PUBLIC SERVICEnovel about Alvin Greene, The AccidentalCandidate, comes out this spring. Hutchins First Secondearned a journalism degree in 2002 fromThe State The Post and Courierthe State University of New York atMorrisville and a degree in literature in Cindi Ross Scoppe Doug Pardue2006 from the University of South Carolina. Hutchins Secessionists Were ClearThe Price of Living Judges comments: The breadth, depth, Judges comments: There were many really excellent entriesand remarkable impact statewide of Corey Hutchins investigative journalism for this award. But, the wow! factor of this one is unsur-makes him the compelling choice for this honor. His investigative reporting on Lt. passed. Editor Mark Lett described the entry as Simple,ThirdGov. Ken Ard broke the story of improper campaign spending, leading to a Straight forward, Factual, Powerfully truthful. To these weThe Post and Couriercriminal investigation. He also was the first to break the story of the firing ofwould add: Yes! and courageous.University of South Carolina board member Darla Moore. He has been a bulldog Gene Sapakoffreporter whose work has had an impact. As a weekly journalist, he excelled inDaddy Lessonscovering both state and local issues. His work is something to emulate. 3. 2011 SCPA News Contest Winners 3 PHOTOJOURNALIST OF THE YEAR AWARDDaily Division Weekly DivisionNathan GrayTanya AckermanINDEPENDENT-MAIL COASTAL OBSERVERJudges comments: Great eye for detail in composition. Judges comments: This photographer has a very good way ofExcellent use of unique camera angles grabs readers showing emotion. We love the feeling you get from looking atattention. Good focus on emotional impact of subject her photos -- each tells its own story. Timing and color use arematter. Assignments show a wide range of image types exceptional. Clean composition focuses readers eyes on pointwell presented.of interest. A great year of work! GrayAckermanCREDITSThe South Carolina Press Association and its members would like to thank the Index-Journal in Greenwood for printing this special publication. Thanks to the members of the KentuckyPress Association who judged the 2011 News Contest. 4. 4 2011 SCPA News Contest Winners Illustration FIRST: Myrtle Beach Herald, Chris Mowder, Festive Fall Judges Comments: Very creative, colorful collage of images that immediately grabs the readers attention. Well done! SECOND: The Times and Democrat, Kristin Leigh Coker, 10 Years of Community Service THIRD: Free Times, Wilbert T. Fields, Love Stinks Informational Graphics Portfolio FIRST: The Post and Courier, Chad Dunbar Judges comments: These informational graphics are all very colorful, creative, informative, and just fun to look at. Very clean and easy to understand. Nicely done! SECOND: The Greenville News, Suzie Riddle THIRD: Myrtle Beach Herald, Chris Mowder Single Online Photo FIRST: The Greenville News, Heidi Heilbrunn, Shattered GlassJudges comments: Cool photo! Unique moment caught.Love your perspective.First Place Single Online Photo: Heidi Heilbrunn, The Greenville News, Shattered Glass.SECOND: The Summerville Journal Scene, Paul Zoeller, 2011 Ultimate Challenge USMC Mud Run THIRD: The Post and Courier, Grace Beahm, Confederate Memorial DayOpen DivisionOnline Column Writing HONORABLE MENTION: The Summerville Journal Scene, Paul Zoeller, Family Circle CupFIRST: The Sun News, Sunny FryEditorial or Column in SupportJudges comments: Truly an enjoyable read. This columnwas entertaining and insightful, well-written and Innovative Conceptthought-provoking. FIRST: The Summerville Journal Scene, The Turtle Timesof FOI/Government IssuesSECOND: Carolina Gateway, Reece MurphyTHIRD: Lake Wylie Pilot, John Marks Judges comments: Awesome idea -- The staying power of the newspaper industry is in the hands of our children. FIRST: The Herald-Independent, James Denton, ThereGetting them involved early will keep us in their minds. Oughtta Be a LawSECOND: The Post and Courier, Experience Charleston Judges comments: Denton provides a plain-english explanation of the FOIA as well as a local example of how Cartoon THIRD: The Beaufort Gazette, Currently Playing taxpayers were hurt by being excluded from discussions FIRST: Herald-Journal, Robert Ariail about attempts to fix up a historic school building. We allJudges comments: Very Nice! Affiliated or Niche Website need watchdogs like Mr. Denton. Job well done. SECOND: Index-Journal, Mike Beckom SECOND: The State, Cindi Ross Scoppe, A Little SunshineTHIRD: The Dillon Herald, Betsy FinkleaFIRST: The Beaufort Gazette, David Feld, Jeff Kidd and Staff, THIRD: The Gaffney Ledger, Cody Sossamon, Its Not What beaufort300.com