April 9, 2012

Center wins four Milwaukee Press Club awards

The Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism received four awards from the Milwaukee Press Club’s annual Awards for Excellence in Wisconsin Journalism, which were announced today.

We will learn whether each award is gold, silver or bronze at the awards dinner on May 18.

University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Journalism and Mass Communication students, working as interns or in some cases as volunteers with WCIJ staff, played critical roles in the projects. The awards were earned in competition with professional news organizations across Wisconsin.

The details:

Best coverage of a single news topic or event: Center reporter and multimedia producer Kate Golden, Center reporter and public engagement director Lauren Hasler, former intern Julie Strupp, student volunteers Cailly Morris and Andrew Averill, and statistics expert and UW-Madison graduate student Wesley Brooks, for our analysis of about 50,000 emails sent to Gov. Scott Walker’s office in the wake of his controversial bill that sharply limited the collective bargaining powers of public employee unions.

Analysis: Emails favored Walker 2-1
Email to Walker suggested faking violence (original story)
Indiana prosecutor resigns over Walker email

Best background, analytical or interpretive story: Former Center intern Jason Smathers, Center intern Sarah Karon, Kate Golden, Center executive director Andy Hall and volunteer intern coordinator Dee J. Hall for Security After 9/11: 10 Years Later, a collaborative project with Gannett Wisconsin Media.

Part One: A decade after 9/11 attacks, Wisconsin’s homeland security funding falls short
Part Two: From ports to power plants, millions spent to avert terrorism attacks
Part Three: Emergency response often uncoordinated in post-9/11 era

Best innovative feature: Kate Golden, for her interactive graphic,
Visualization: Emissions data for seven coal-fired power plants.

Best local news or feature website: Kate Golden and Andy Hall for WisconsinWatch.org.

The Center also was recently named a finalist in the student category of the Investigative Reporters and Editors national awards competition.

In 2011, the Center received five Milwaukee Press Club awards and a citation from the Dane County chapter of NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness.