We learned today that the JFP editorial staff will be receiving awards in four different categories this summer in the 60th Annual Green Eyeshade Awards. This was our first year to enter the awards, which are administered by the Society for Professional Journalists, covering the 11 states of the Southeast. The awards include categories for daily papers, non-daily publications, radio, TV and online -- the Jackson Free Press was the only winner in any media from the state of Mississippi!
Categories where JFP staffers placed (random order; 1st, 2nd and 3rd place will be announced this summer):
- "Jobs, Jobs, Jobs" Melanie Stawicki Azam, Anjali Fluker, Richard Bilbao, and
Bill Orben, Orlando Business Journal (Orlando)
- "Preventing Violence Against Women" Ronni Mott, Jackson Free Press (Jackson,
- "Buying into Boots" Tripp Mickle, Tom Stinson, Street and Smith's
SportsBusiness Journal (Charlotte)
- "Collection" Donna Ladd, Jackson Free Press (Jackson), MS
- "Columns" Frank Murtaugh, Memphis Magazine (Memphis)
- "Viewpoint" Michael Lewis, Miami Today (Miami)
Public Service in Non-Daily Reporting
- "Two Lakes" Adam Lynch, Donna Ladd, Todd Stauffer, and Ward Schaefer,
Jackson Free Press (Jackson, MS)
- "Left Behind" Mary Cashiola, Memphis Flyer (Memphis)
- "TennCut" Rebekah Hearn, The Memphis News (Memphis)
Courts and the Law Reporting
- "The curious case of Frank Melton" Donna Ladd , Ward Schaefer and Adam
Lynch, Jackson Free Press (Jackson, MS)
- "Guantanamo's Final Days" Tim Elfrink and Jesse Hyde, Miami New Times
- "Warrant in Question" Jamie Satterfield, News Sentinel (Knoxville)
The first three are in "Non-Daily Print" categories, while the fourth is in the "Print - All Divisions" category. Congrats to the whole staff for their regional honors and for representing Mississippi so well!
This was super news and unexpected. Two things really thrill me about this news: that Ronni Mott is going to be recognized for her work on domestic abuse (especially considering that a local women's group and The Clarion-Ledger gave credit for her work to an out-of-state journalist recently). Ronni is remarkable. She came to us as an intern who wanted to change careers and has grown into a kick-ass managing editor who takes time to write about serious topics like domestic abuse and innocence work in such an impressive, passionate way.
The other thing is that Ward Schaefer is being honored twice in this line-up. He also started as an intern when he was a teacher; he came after school determined to be a journalist, and has worked so hard to get where he has. Last year was a banner year for his reporting, and this spotlights it.
Adam, of course, is a powerhouse reporter, and his work on Two Lakes and Melton -- both of which came under intense fire from people who didn't want to hear the truth at first -- deserves all the praise it can get.
And I'm glad that Todd is part of the Two Lakes honor. It is unusual to have a publisher who is such a good writer and cares about social and environmental justice right alongside business and economic development. He's spoken a lot of truth to power in his Two Lakes/Pearl columns, and I'm proud of him for being willing to do that in his position.
Cheers to our staff, readers and advertisers. We are truly, truly blessed at the JFP to live and work in such an amazing community that supports our efforts.