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Region 9 Mark of Excellence Awards 2023 winners announced


4/19/2024


CONTACT:
Lou Harry, SPJ Manager of Publications and Awards, lharry@spj.org
Nadia Gordon, SPJ Communications Coordinator, ngordon@hq.spj.org

INDIANAPOLIS — The Society of Professional Journalists recognizes the best collegiate journalism in Region 9 with 2023 Mark of Excellence Awards winners.

SPJ’s Region 9 comprises Colorado, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming. First-place winners will compete at the national level among other MOE winners from the 12 SPJ regions.

National winners will be notified in the late spring.

MOE Awards entries are judged by professionals with at least three years of journalism experience. Judges were directed to choose entries they felt were among the best in student journalism. If no entry rose to the level of excellence, no award was given. Any category not listed has no winner.

School divisions are based on student enrollment, including both graduate and undergraduate: Large schools have at least 10,000 students and small schools have 9,999 or fewer students.

The list below details all Region 9 winners. If you have any questions regarding the MOE Awards, contact SPJ Manager of Publications and Awards Lou Harry by email.

This list reflects the spelling and titles submitted in the award entries.

Print/Online

Breaking News Reporting
Winner: Poudre school district tables vote on Polaris school merger — by Alexandra Seibel, The Rocky Mountain Collegian, Colorado State University
Finalist: University of Utah to pay $5 million settlement to the parents of Zhifan Dong — by Andrew Christiansen, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah
Finalist: Students pack City Council chambers, demonstrate against U+2 — by Grant Coursey, The Rocky Mountain Collegian, Colorado State University

General News Reporting
Winner: BYU students may be impacted by latest DACA update — by Ivette Galvez Laparra, The Daily Universe, Brigham Young University
Finalist: Student government addresses genocide comments from member — by Sara Martin, Travis Brooks, The Metropolitan, Metropolitan State University of Denver
Finalist: Utah's gender-affirming care ban is harmful to transgender youth, professors and trans student say — by Stevie Shaughnessey, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah

In-Depth Reporting
Finalist: U students share experiences navigating the OEO process — by Crystal Rose Fraughton, Rachel Kloepfer, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah
Finalist: Union frustration grows at MSU Denver over faculty workload — by Madeline Terlep, The Metropolitan, Metropolitan State University of Denver
Winner: U origins: A clearer picture of philanthropy at the U and how it has shaped campus — by MJ Jewkes, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah

Feature Writing (Large)
Winner: U professor’s exhibit honors 2006 Immigration Reform March — by Libbey Hanson, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah
Finalist: BYU student fights against racism through cultural dance — by Ivette Galvez Laparra, The Daily Universe, Brigham Young University |
Finalist: Meet the U student running for SLC mayor — by CJ Alexander, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah

Sports Writing
Winner: How a changing media landscape influenced the U's move to the Big 12 — by Austin Eames, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah

General Column Writing
Winner: Madeline Van Wagenen — by Madeline Van Wagenen, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah
Finalist: Columns — by Kayla Lien, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah
Finalist: Columns — by Harper Hargis, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah

Corbin Gwaltney Award for Best All-Around Student Newspaper (Large)
Winner: The Signpost — by Kennedy Camarena, The Signpost, Weber State University
Finalist: The Daily Utah Chronicle — by Staff, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah
Finalist: The Rocky Mountain Collegian — by Staff, The Rocky Mountain Collegian, Colorado State University

Best Ongoing Student Magazine
Winner: College Avenue Magazine — by Staff, College Avenue Magazine, Colorado State University
Finalist: The Daily Universe — by Staff, The Daily Universe, Brigham Young University

Best Independent Online Student Publication
Winner: CU Independent — by Staff, CU Independent, University of Colorado Boulder

Art/Graphics/Multimedia

Breaking News Photography
Winner: Bill banning gender-affirming care for Utah minors passes — by Xiangyao “Axe” Tang, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah

General News Photography
Winner: Candlelight vigil for Israel — by Garrett Mogel, The Rocky Mountain Collegian, Colorado State University
Finalist: BYU Arab Student Association aims to foster unity in times of strife — by Amy Ortiz, The Daily Universe, Brigham Young University
Finalist: A look at drag culture and representation at the U — by Minh Vuong, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah

Feature Photography
Winner: Support first responders and their families’ mental health — by Sarah Karr, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah
Finalist: Lust For life — by Citlali Mares, Talon Magazine, Community College of Denver
Finalist: Locals climb 110 stories at LaVell Edwards Stadium to honor 9/11 heroes — by Anna Hair, The Daily Universe, Brigham Young University

Photo Essay/Slideshow
Winner: Canyoneering class highlight — by Sophie Felici, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah
Finalist: 2023 Utah Pride Parade — A colorful celebration of love and acceptance — by Marco Lozzi, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah
Finalist: Free Palestine protest at Denver Capitol — by Garrett Mogel, Milo Gladstein, The Rocky Mountain Collegian, Colorado State University
Illustration
Winner: Navigating student finances — by Star Neil, The Signpost, Weber State University
Finalist: Support your local SLC bookstores — by Mary Allen, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah
Finalist: College athletes are in danger of systemic dehumanization — by Kristofer Hoon, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah

Photo Illustration
Winner: Navigating student finances — by Star Neil, The Signpost, Weber State University
Finalist: Support your local SLC bookstores — by Mary Allen, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah
Finalist: College athletes are in danger of systemic dehumanization — by Kristofer Hoon, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah

Sports Photography
Winner: Utah Men’s Basketball upsets unbeaten BYU to win the Holy War — by Xiangyao “Axe” Tang, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah
Finalist: Utah Men’s Basketball narrowly escapes upset in win over Southern Utah — by Mary Allen, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah
Finalist: Bucking bronco — by Kennedy Camarena, The Signpost, Weber State University

Best Use of Multimedia
Winner: Humanitarian organization Eagle Condor helps people find their wings — by Lynnette McConkie, BYU Universe, Brigham Young University
Finalist: BYU Special Olympics focus on lifelong friendships — by Ethan Porter, BYU Universe Live, Brigham Young University
Finalist: Angel Flight West brings Christmas to hundreds of Utah children — by Alice Gubler, The Daily Universe, Brigham Young University

News Videography
Winner: University of Denver's paranormal Mary Reed building? — by Elsie Buczkowski, DU Media, University of Denver
Finalist: Denver Mayoral candidates face off at DU — by Cassis Tingley, DU Media, University of Denver
Finalist: Sharing living water: Improving the hydraulic resources in the Dominican Republic — by Liesel Allen, Alyssa Regis, Derek VanBuskirk, BYU Universe Live, Brigham Young University

Feature Videography
Winner: Spreading Stikbuds across Denver — by Eden Bollschweiler, DU Media, University of Denver

Data Visualization
Winner: Lack of suicide resources — by Grace Haglund, The Signpost, Weber State University


Audio

Radio News Reporting
Winner: Dying Great Salt Lake — by Hannah Nelson, Aggie Radio, Utah State University
Finalist: Abdullah's story — by Dakota Makinen, KGNU, University of Colorado Boulder

Radio Feature
Winner: Chernobyl — by Leon Spiess, KVCU, University of Colorado Boulder

Radio In-Depth Reporting
Winner: Boulder Housing Coalition — by Jack Armstrong, KVCU, University of Colorado Boulder

Podcast (Conversational)
Winner: Overwriter — by Juanita Hurtado, KVCU, University of Colorado Boulder
Finalist: Coming into queerness with KCSU & the Pride Resource Center — by Erin Fuller, KCSU, Colorado State University

Podcast (Narrative)
Winner: Teenage PTSD — by Lily Wright, KVCU, University of Colorado Boulder
Finalist: Your favorite place — by Jack Armstrong, KVCU, University of Colorado Boulder


Broadcast

Television Breaking News Reporting
Winner: Utahns rally at the Capitol to support Ukraine one year after Russian invasion — by Trevor Myers, BYU Universe Live, Brigham Young University

Television General News Reporting
Winner: Wild turkey invasion — by Anna Johnson, A-TV News, Utah State University
Finalist: BYU Special Olympics focus on lifelong friendships — by Ethan Porter, Universe Live, Brigham Young University
Finalist: ChatGPT hits campus — by Kainoa Johnson, A-TV News, Utah State University

Television Feature Reporting
Winner: A woman's journey from addict to caregiver — by Bella Zafer; Cassis Tingley, DU Media, University of Denver
Finalist: Hottest gathering in town — by Zahra Nasir, A-TV News, Utah State University

Television In-Depth Reporting
Winner: Losing our lifeblood — by Clayre Scott, Anna Johnson, A-TV News, Utah State University
Finalist: Rumbula remembered: Preserving the memory of the WWII massacre in Riga — by Emma Everett Johnson, Ethan Porter, Universe Live, Brigham Young University
Finalist: Nuclear energy: Deadly disaster or futuristic fuel? — by Tom Isaacson, Collegian TV, Colorado State University

Television Sports Reporting
Winner: Are fans going too far? — by Clayre Scott, A-TV News, Utah State University
Finalist: CSU Softball alumni pave the way for today’s Rams — by Madeline Davis, Collegian TV, Colorado State University

Best All-Around Television Newscast
Winner: A-TV News — by Staff, A-TV News, Utah State University

Best All-Around Television Magazine
Winner: Cache Rendezvous — by Staff, A-TV News, Utah State University
Finalist: BYU Universe — by Staff, BYU Universe, Brigham Young University
Finalist: Universe Live — by Staff, BYU Universe, Brigham Young University


All Platform

Arts/Fashion Journalism
Winner: Funny you mention that: A closer look at the FoCo comedy scene — by Cassidy DuFore Payne, College Avenue, Colorado State University
Finalist: The School of Dance presents Balanchine’s ‘Serenade’ — by Haley Freeman, The Daily Utah Chronicle, University of Utah

Campus Reporting
Winner: Injured students find ways to get around campus — by Annika Ohran, The Daily Universe, Brigham Young University
Finalist: Agar art competition blends science and art while encouraging experiential learning — by Bryan Barba Salazar, The Daily Universe, Brigham Young University

Food/Restaurant Journalism
Winner: Father-daughter BYU alums sweeten up Provo with cheesecake shop — by Andrew Osborn, The Daily Universe, Brigham Young University
Finalist: Backyard Bird Chicken and Donuts flies away with expectations — by Gideon Aigner, Collegian TV, Colorado State University

Regional Political Reporting
Winner: BYU student vies for city council seat with $0 campaign — by Emma Everett Johnson, The Daily Universe, Brigham Young University
Finalist: Domestic violence bill passes in Utah Senate, parents of Gabby Petito attend vote — by Joel Leighton, The Daily Universe, Brigham Young University

Retail/Small Business Journalism
Winner: Small business Madi Stitches thrives on social media — by Emma Everett Johnson, The Daily Universe, Brigham Young University

Science/Environment Reporting
Winner: Historic Utah snowfall a step toward drought control, government officials say — by Josh Rust, The Daily Universe, Brigham Young University

SPJ promotes the free flow of information vital to informing citizens; works to inspire and educate the next generation of journalists; and fights to protect First Amendment guarantees of freedom of speech and press. Support excellent journalism and fight for your right to know. Become a member, give to the Legal Defense Fund or give to the SPJ Foundation.

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