Score 24: Hook snares many journo prizes
The Hook solidified its position as Charlottesville's most award-winning weekly newspaper, as it was honored by its peers in the newspaper industry by winning 24 prizes from the Virginia Press Association–- including two entries named "Best in Show."
The awards were bestowed Saturday, March 20 at a banquet at the Association's annual conference in Roanoke. There, the announcer lauded as "riveting" the Hook's account ill-fated Piedmont Flight #349, a commercial airliner which crashed near Crozet in 1959. Bestowing the top statewide writing prize among specialty publications, the judge wrote, "I felt like I was on that plane."
The Hook's other Best in Show award went to Allison Sommers for her design. "It’s a pleasure to look at," the judge commented, "and a pleasure to read.”
The awards, for content created in 2009, marked a personal best of sorts for the Hook, which has now garnered 95 awards since 2003. The prizes cover writing, photography, and design–- everything except advertising (which is judged later in the year). The winners include long-time Hook journalists such as Courteney Stuart, Dave McNair, Lisa Provence, Jen Fariello, and editor Hawes Spencer. Others recognized include Stephanie Marie Garcia, Laura Parsons, Anne Metz, Clay Caricofe, Janis Jaquith, Skip Degan, Jay Kuhlmann, William Walker, Mitchell Jarrett, and former staffer Lindsay Barnes.
Notable wins include Lisa Provence's first place for "No option?" a story about a couple's mysterious death near Gordonsville, a prize for "Off the Face of the Earth ," one of the Hook's many Morgan Harrington stories, and an award for Dave McNair's stories about the government lawsuit against recycler Peter Van der Linde.
The Daily Progress, judged among dailies, also garnered a trove of awards, winning 21 including such familiar names as Jerry Ratcliffe and editor McGregor McCance.
In other action at the weekend event at the Hotel Roanoke, retiring University of Virginia president John Casteen accepted the Virginian of the Year Award, and Miller Center director Gerald Baliles–- one year after announcing his quest–- presented his findings on the threats to democracy from the shrinkage of the media industry.
2004 - 9 awards
2005 - 15 awards
2006 - 22 awards including top prize
2007 - 16 awards
2008 - 9 awards including top prize
2009 - 24 awards
–last updated 1:43pm Monday, March 22
–year denotes year the work was published