2018 California Journalism Awards - Print Division

Feature Story ( Weeklies: 4,300 & under)Back

  • Place Name: First Place
    Contestant Name: St. Helena Star
    Entry Title: St. Helena women have walked together every morning for 31 years
    Entry Credit: Jesse Duarte
    Judge Comment: When you're a longtime resident of a community with a good memory, everything around you has meaning: each rock and tree. Jesse Duarte's story about a local group of women who have walked around town together for decades is an example that anything can make for an interesting, enjoyable read. Beyond the simple subject is a charming story about friendship, aging and community.
  • Place Name: Second Place
    Contestant Name: Lompoc Record
    Entry Title: Battling opioid epidemic: Countywide 'Syringe Exchange Program' raises concerns
    Entry Credit: Willis Jacobson
    Judge Comment: Willis Jacobson tackles a complicated subject (a community syringe exchange program) with a deft, intelligent reporting approach. The story offers perspective from all angles: critics, program administrators, volunteers and participants are all heard at length. The use of subheads helped a lot with story organization.
  • Place Name: Third Place
    Contestant Name: The Ark
    Entry Title: Firefighters take on a new battle: mental health stigma
    Entry Credit: Matthew Hose
    Judge Comment: In a competition with many solid entries about a busy year of firefighting, this story stood out for its attention to an issue not often discussed: the mental health of first responders. A majority of firefighters say they have experienced mental health issues, and most say there are not adequate services to deal with that reality. What I liked most is the story did not just focus on the problem, but gives attention to those trying to fix the issue and make a difference.
  • Place Name: Fourth Place
    Contestant Name: Claremont Courier
    Entry Title: Sally Ride stamp
    Entry Credit: Mick Rhodes
    Judge Comment: This story offered a unique perspective we don't often read about: the parent of an astronaut. Mick Rhodes wrote a detailed story about the mother of astronaut Sally Ride, who was featured on a postage stamp for being the first American woman in space. Joyce Ride is a hoot and Rhodes captured many great quotes throughout the story. An enjoyable read.
  • Place Name: Fifth Place
    Contestant Name: Calistoga Tribune
    Entry Title: DNA test surprise
    Entry Credit: Claudia Aceves
    Judge Comment: The fascinating subject material helped this entry stand out. Claudia Aceves tells the story of a local woman who finds her biological mother with the help of a DNA testing business. Aceves includes the unique perspectives from all sides. We may see more stories like this as DNA testing becomes more common. A fascinating, well-written entry.