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Las Vegas Review-Journal named Nevada’s best in press awards

Updated September 29, 2018 - 10:38 pm

The Las Vegas Review-Journal’s coverage of the horror, heroism and healing of the Oct. 1 mass shooting took top honors at the annual Nevada Press Association’s Better Newspaper Contest banquet in Las Vegas on Saturday.

The Review-Journal received first-place awards for best digital breaking news story, best photo coverage, photo of the year and story of the year for its work documenting the first 24 hours after the event. Review-Journal reporters Rachel Crosby and Nicole Raz were recognized as journalist of the year and journalist of merit, respectively, for their individual work covering the story in the months that followed.

In total, the Review-Journal and its sister publications received 128 awards, including three general excellence awards. The Review-Journal, the Pahrump Valley Times and the Boulder City Review were recognized as the best newspapers in the state in their respective circulation categories.

“We’re proud the Review-Journal and its affiliated publications received so many honors. Our work really makes a difference in the lives of our readers,” Review-Journal Publisher and Editor Keith Moyer said. “We’ve built an incredible team and assembled the most talented and dedicated newsrooms in Nevada.”

The Review-Journal brought home 68 first-, second-, and third-place NPA awards this year, by far the most in the urban daily division. First-place awards resulting from coverage following the Las Vegas shooting included best feature writing, best explanatory journalism, best business feature, best news feature and best sports column writing.

“No journalist ever wishes to cover a story like this,” Review-Journal Executive Editor Glenn Cook said. “But the Review-Journal had a solemn obligation to tell the world everything we could about the Oct. 1 shooting. We told the stories of victims, heroes and survivors. We examined the emergency response and fundraising like no one else did. We’re proud to be honored for our work.”

The entire Review-Journal staff received story of the year honors for the newspaper’s immediate coverage of the Oct. 1 attack.

“This story should and will likely be referenced for generations as the definitive coverage of the nation’s worst mass shooting,” the judge’s comments said. “For quality of reporting, I can’t think of how the reporters possibly could have turned over another stone or made this better.”

Crosby, who last year took home a journalist of merit award, received the outstanding journalist award. A general assignment reporter focusing on criminal justice, she led much of the Review-Journal’s reporting following the Oct. 1 shooting.

Crosby also won a first-place award for best news feature story and a second-place award for best local column for her Vegas Vice column.

“Ms. Crosby is clearly an outstanding journalist that stands above the rest,” the judges wrote. “The shooting and corruption among Vegas officials are pretty obvious areas one has to cover, but when it comes to the shooting especially, Ms. Crosby found intriguing ways to keep covering the story.”

The journalist of merit award, recognizing journalists with less than five years of experience, went to Raz, the Review-Journal’s business editor and former economic development reporter. Raz also won a first-place award with Review-Journal reporter Brian Joseph for best explanatory journalism for their reporting on fundraising for Oct. 1 shooting victims.

“This shows a deeper analysis of her coverage area and was surely of huge service to her readers,” said the judges’ comments regarding her stories.

Richard Brian, Chase Stevens, Chitose Suzuki and Benjamin Hager won the first-place award for best photo coverage.

The Review-Journal staff received the digital innovation award for its video studio and the variety of content produced there. The Review-Journal also received the coveted Freedom of the Press award for winning so many fights for public records that Nevada governments tried to keep away from public scrutiny.

“The Review-Journal has chronicled an impressive record over the course of the year in holding government agencies accountable, particularly during a time of great strife in Las Vegas,” one judge commented regarding the Freedom of the Press award.

The Review-Journal’s design staff swept in the awards for best graphic designer. Mark Antonuccio won first place, Severiano del Castillo Galvan and Wesley Rand took second place and Jose Antonio Morales earned third place. The Review-Journal also was recognized for best overall design.

Review-Journal education reporters Meghin Delaney and Amelia Pak-Harvey won the first-place award for best investigative story for their “Broken Trust” series, which looked at employee sexual misconduct against students in the Clark County School District.

In the sports division, columnist Ed Graney took top honors for best sports column, in part for his column titled “Tragedy hits home, Golden Knights unite LV,” which looked at how the hockey team helped Las Vegas residents following the Oct. 1 attack.

Review-Journal contributor John M. Glionna earned a first-place award for best non-staff story for his article on an activist who brought light to the inhabitants of Las Vegas’ tunnels. Glionna also took second- and third-place awards in the category.

Other categories swept by the Review-Journal included best headline writing, best feature writing and best news feature. Hager swept the best illustrated photo category by himself.

The newspaper’s advertising department also earned several awards, including first, second and third place for best online advertising and best in-house campaign. The Review-Journal also took first place for best print ad and best niche magazine. The Review-Journal’s Angela Johnson and David Sly won four first-place awards each, and Jorge Betancourt, Katie Short and Sal Serrano also won first-place awards.

The paper’s sister publications, which include the Boulder City Review, Luxury Las Vegas, the Las Vegas Business Press, the Pahrump Valley Times and the Tonopah Times-Bonanza, received 60 awards Saturday night.

The contest was judged by members of the North Dakota Newspaper Association.

Contact Katelyn Newberg at knewberg@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0240. Follow @k_newberg on Twitter.

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