ONA announces winners in the 2021 Online Journalism Awards

Saturday, 16. October 2021 00:34

PHILADELPHIA, Oct. 15, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Inspiring journalism projects covering climate change, Himalaya’s ghost cats, political crisis in Hong Kong and the U.S. public health system were among the finalists and winners honored Oct. 15 in the 2021 Online Journalism Awards—the annual global showcase of digital innovation administered by the Online News Association (ONA).

Winners were announced online and during a ceremony in Philadelphia, where ONA reconnected the journalism community at the association’s first in-person conference in two years. The Lenfest Institute for Journalism provided support to host the 2021 OJAs reception and ceremony.

Special guests included Gina Chua, Executive Editor of Reuters, who was honored as the inaugural recipient of the Impact Award for her dedication to innovation in visual storytelling and steadfast commitment to mentor journalists and address structural issues in the industry. Selected by the ONA Board of Directors, the Impact Award recognizes trailblazing individuals who have made a substantial impact on the industry, regardless of their tenure in journalism or involvement with ONA.

Five honors in the 2021 OJAs come with a total of $40,000 in prize money. PublicSource, Grist, ProPublica and The New York Times each received a $5,000 prize for the General Excellence in Online Journalism award, supported by SmartNews. The Topical Reporting: Climate Change award went to Grist, with a $5,000 prize courtesy of McKinsey Publishing.

The 2021 Knight Award for Public Service—with a $5,000 prize supported by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation—honored THE CITY for their project “Missing Them,” a local accountability project to track down and memorialize people who died due to Covid-19 in New York City.

The Gather Award in Engaged Journalism comes with $2,500 prizes for each of the two subcategories, thanks to the University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communications. El Tímpano earned recognition in the Micro/Small Newsrooms subcategory for their community-powered coverage of the Covid-19 pandemic, and Anchorage Daily News in collaboration with ProPublica are the winners in the Overall Excellence subcategory for their project “Unheard,” bringing to light the stories of survivors of sexual violence in Alaska.

ONA expanded this year’s competition with two new awards: Topical Reporting: Pandemic Coverage and Excellence in Social Justice Reporting. Winners in these categories included The Washington Post, USA Today, News & Observer and ProPublica.

The 2021 OJAs also reimagined recognition for student work, with two subcategories in the revamped Student Journalism Award. Brett Marsh of the University of California, Berkeley, Graduate School of Journalism received the award in the Student Portfolio subcategory. Two winners were recognized for the Student Team Portfolio Award—the Arizona State University Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and the Newhouse School at Syracuse University.

As part of the 2021 awards showcase, ONA also previously announced the 2021 recipients of three awards bestowed by special committees on individuals or small groups. Honorees included the community managers of the ICFJ Global Health Crisis Reporting Forum (Paul Adepoju, Kossi Balao, Desiree Esquivel, Fadwa Kamal, Alexandre Orrico, Stella Roque) for the ONA Community Award; Palestinian freelance photojournalist Samar Abu Elouf for James Foley Award for Conflict Reporting; and Meredith Artley, Senior Vice President and Editor-in-Chief of CNN Digital Worldwide, for the Rich Jaroslovsky Founder Award.

Here is the full list of the 2021 Online Journalism Awards winners in 21 categories that were open for submissions:

Gather Award in Engaged Journalism, Micro/Small Newsroom
El Tímpano

Gather Award in Engaged Journalism, Overall Excellence
Anchorage Daily News, ProPublica

Knight Award for Public Service
THE CITY

Excellence in Social Justice Reporting, Single Story
News & Observer, ProPublica

Excellence in Social Justice Reporting, Portfolio
The Washington Post

Topical Reporting: Climate Change
Grist

General Excellence in Online Journalism, Micro Newsroom
PublicSource

General Excellence in Online Journalism, Small Newsroom
Grist

General Excellence in Online Journalism, Medium Newsroom
ProPublica

General Excellence in Online Journalism, Large Newsroom
The New York Times

Breaking, Small/Medium Newsroom
San Francisco Chronicle

Breaking News, Large Newsroom
The New York Times

Digital Video Storytelling, Short Form
FRONTLINE, The New Yorker

Digital Video Storytelling, Medium Form
Pulitzer Center, The New Yorker

Digital Video Storytelling, Long Form
Vice

Digital Video Storytelling, Series
South China Morning Post

Excellence and Innovation in Visual Digital Storytelling, Small Newsroom
À Punt Mèdia, Barret Cooperativa, Lab RTVE

Excellence and Innovation in Visual Digital Storytelling, Medium Newsroom
The New Yorker

Excellence and Innovation in Visual Digital Storytelling, Large Newsroom
The Globe and Mail

Excellence in Audio Digital Storytelling, Limited Series
The Washington Post

Excellence in Audio Digital Storytelling, Ongoing Series
Al Jazeera Digital, Al Jazeera English Online

Excellence in Audio Digital Storytelling, Use of Audio Storytelling
The Washington Post

Excellence in Collaboration and Partnerships
AL.com, IndyStar, Invisible Institute, The Baton Rouge Advocate, The Marshall Project

Excellence in Immersive Storytelling
The New Yorker

Excellence in Newsletters, Portfolio
The Wall Street Journal

Excellence in Newsletters, Single Newsletter
THE CITY

Explanatory Reporting, Small Newsroom
Center for Public Integrity

Explanatory Reporting, Medium Newsroom
Honolulu Star-Advertiser, ProPublica

Explanatory Reporting, Large Newsroom
Star Tribune

Feature, Small Newsroom
歪脑 | WHYNOT by Radio Free Asia

Feature, Medium Newsroom
Univision News Digital

Feature, Large Newsroom
The New York Times

Online Commentary
The Washington Post

Sports, Small/Medium Newsroom
MARCA

Sports, Large Newsroom
The New York Times

Student Journalism Award, Student Portfolio
Brett Marsh: University of California, Berkeley, Graduate School of Journalism

Student Journalism Award, Student Team Portfolio
Arizona State University Walter Cronkite School of Journalism, Carnegie-Knight News21

Student Journalism Award, Student Team Portfolio
Newhouse School at Syracuse University

The Al Neuharth Innovation in Investigative Journalism Award, Small Newsroom
Spotlight PA

The Al Neuharth Innovation in Investigative Journalism Award, Medium Newsroom
Tampa Bay Times

The Al Neuharth Innovation in Investigative Journalism Award, Large Newsroom
The Globe and Mail

Topical Reporting: Pandemic Coverage, Portfolio
The Washington Post

Topical Reporting: Pandemic Coverage, Single Story
USA Today

University of Florida Award in Investigative Data Journalism, Small/Medium Newsroom
Grist, The Texas Observer

University of Florida Award in Investigative Data Journalism, Large Newsroom
Associated Press, KHN (Kaiser Health News)

Launched in 2000, the Online Journalism Awards are the only comprehensive set of journalism prizes honoring excellence in digital journalism, focusing on independent, community, nonprofit, major media and international news sites. Find more highlights from the 2021 Online Journalism Awards using #OJA21 on social media and watch the ceremony at awards.journalists.org/live.


Contact: Karolle Rabarison, Director of Communications, karolle@journalists.org

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