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2008 Sigma Delta Chi Award Honorees

The Society of Professional Journalists is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2008 Sigma Delta Chi Awards for excellence in journalism.

Judges chose the winners from over 900 entries in 53 categories including print, radio, television and online. The awards recognize outstanding work published or broadcasted in 2008.

Dating back to 1932, the awards originally honored six individuals for contributions to journalism. The current program began in 1939, when the Society granted the first Distinguished Service Awards. The honors later became the Sigma Delta Chi Awards.

Founded in 1909 as Sigma Delta Chi, SPJ promotes the free flow of information vital to a well- informed citizenry; works to inspire and educate the next generation of journalists; and protects First Amendment guarantees of freedom of speech and press.

Newspaper/Wire Services

Deadline Reporting (circulation of 100,000 or greater)
“The Spitzer Scandal,” Staff, The New York Times

Deadline Reporting (circulation of less than 100,000)
“Great Flood of 2008,” Staff, The Gazette, Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Non-Deadline Reporting (circulation of 100,000 or greater)
“Double Dipping,” Lucy Morgan, St. Petersburg Times

Non-Deadline Reporting (circulation of less than 100,000)
Child Prostitution series, Kamika Dunlap, Barbara Grady & Tammerlin Drummond, Oakland Tribune/ Bay Area Media News group

Investigative Reporting (circulation of 100,000 or greater)
“The Battle Within,” David Olinger & Erin Emery, The Denver Post

Investigative Reporting (circulation of less than 100,000)
“Casino Kings,” Jonathan Ellis, Argus Leader, Sioux Falls, S.D.

Feature Writing (circulation of 100,000 or greater)
“The Accidental Artist,” Amy Ellis Nutt, The Star-Ledger

Feature Writing (circulation of less than 100,000)
“The Man who Stood on the Bridge,” Rosette Royale, Real Change, Seattle, Wash.

Editorial Writing
“The Illinois culture of political sleaze,” John P. McCormick, Marie Dillon & Bruce Dold, Chicago Tribune

Washington Correspondence
“Message Machine,” David Barstow, The New York Times

Foreign Correspondence
“Kremlin Rules,” Clifford J. Levy, The New York Times

General Column Writing
“Column Collection,” Joseph Galloway, McClatchy Newspapers

Sports Column Writing
“Sports Columns,” Sally Jenkins, The Washington Post

Public Service (circulation of 100,000 or greater)
“Test of Convictions,” Staff, The Columbus Dispatch

Public Service (circulation of less than 100,000)
“Disposable Heroes,” Staff, The Washington Times


Magazine Writing
“Our Battles Joined,” Christian Parenti, Playboy Magazine

Public Service in Magazine Journalism
“The Green Light,” Staff, Vanity Fair

Magazine Investigative Reporting
“The Lie We Love,” E.J. Graff, Foreign Policy, Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism


Photography Spot News
“A People in Despair: Haiti's Year Without Mercy,” Patrick Farrell, The Miami Herald

Photography Features
“Girl in the Window,” Melissa Lyttle, St. Petersburg Times

Photography Sports
“0.01,” Heinz Kluetmeier & Jeff Kavanaugh, Sports Illustrated

Editorial Cartooning
“2008 Cartoons,” Chris Britt, The State Journal-Register

Informational Graphics
“Big Burn,” Staff, Los Angeles Times


Breaking News Reporting
Chengdu, China Earthquake coverage, Melissa Block & Andrea Hsu, National Public Radio

Investigative Reporting
“Dirty Money,” John Burnett, Marisa Penaloza, Quinn O'Toole & Tanya Ballard Brown, National Public Radio

Feature Reporting
“Working,” Staff, Homelands Productions, Ithaca, N.Y.

“Stories from Third Med,” Bob Edwards & Ariana Pekary, Sirius XM Radio

Public Service in Radio Journalism
“Impact of War on Children,” Staff, KPLU Public Radio, Seattle, Wash.


Breaking News Coverage (Network/SS/Program Service)
“Tip of the Spear,” Alexandra Wallace, Mary Laurence Flynn, Richard Engel & Madeleine Haeringer, NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams

Breaking News Coverage (Large Market Station 1-50)
“Overturned Tanker,” Staff, Bay News 9, St. Petersburg, Fla.

Breaking News Coverage (Small Market Station 51+)
“TVA Ash Spill,” Alison Morrow, Gerry Owens & John Martin, WBIR TV 10, Knoxville, Tenn.

Investigative Reporting (Network/SS/Program Service)
“The Wasteland,” Staff, CBS News 60 Minutes

Investigative Reporting (Large Market Station 1-50)
“Charity or Con?” Keli Rabon & Jim O’Donnell, WREG-TV Memphis, Tenn.

Investigative Reporting (Small Market Station 51+)
“Yonkers Raceway Casino Probe,” Brian Conybeare & Eric Leeds, News 12 Westchester, Yonkers, N.Y.

Feature Reporting (Network/SS/Program Service)
“The War at Home,” Rick Kaplan, Kimberly Dozier & Ashley Velie, CBS News

Feature Reporting (Large Market Station 1-50)
“The Land of 10,000 Stories,” Boyd Huppert & Jonathan Malat, KARE-TV, Minneapolis, Minn.

Feature Reporting (Small Market Station 51+)
“Shawn’s Long Wait,” Jason Moore & Scott Jensen, KTUU, Anchorage, Alaska

Documentaries (Network/SS/Program Service)
“Dear Zachary: a letter to a son about his father,” Kurt Kuenne, MSNBC

Documentaries (Large Market Station 1-50)
“Love Child,” Clay Johnson, Jay Jennings, Gerald Owens & Laura Riddle, WRAL-TV, Raleigh, N.C.

Documentaries (Small Market Station 51+)
No Award

Public Service in Television Journalism (Network/SS/Program Service)
“AIDS in the African American Community,” Staff, CBS Evening News: Weekend Edition

Public Service in Television Journalism (Large Market Station 1-50)
No Award

Public Service in Television Journalism (Small Market Station 51+)
“Ted Stevens’ Criminal Trial,” Staff, KTUU, Anchorage, Alaska


Public Service in Newsletter Journalism
“EPA rollback on drinking water protections,” Staff, Inside Washington Publishers


Research about Journalism
“The African Press, Civic Cynicism, and Democracy,” Minabere Ibelema, Dept. of Communication Studies, University of Alabama at Birmingham

Online Reporting

Deadline Reporting (affiliated)
“Kirkwood City Hall Shootings,” Staff, St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Read online story

Deadline Reporting (independent)
“Vaccine Ruling Ignites Autism Debate,” Staff, WebMD
Read online story part 1
Read online story part 2
Read online story part 3
Read WebMD blog coverage

Non-Deadline Reporting (affiliated)
“Mexico Under Siege,” Staff, Los Angeles Times
Read interactive online story

Non-Deadline Reporting (independent)
“Autism: Searching for Answers,” Staff, WebMD
Read online stories

Investigative Reporting (affiliated)
“I Didn’t Do That Murder,” Christine Young, John Pertel, Christopher Mele & Patrick Mullen, Times Herald-Record, Middletown, N.Y.
Read interactive online story

Investigative Reporting (independent)
“Off the Record and Out of Order,” Erica Christoffer, Becky Schlikerman & Suzanne McBride, The Beachwood Reporter
Read online story part 1
Read online story part 2

Public Service in Online Journalism (affiliated)
“Your Right to Know/Know It series,” Staff, The Oklahoman
Read online story

Public Service in Online Journalism (independent)
“Perils of the New Pesticides,” Staff, The Center for Public Integrity
Read online story