New Times' Staff Writers and Designers Receive Top Honors from Arizona Press Club, Including for Investigative Reporting, Immigration Coverage, and Cover Illustrations

Phoenix New Times won 30 journalism awards, including first-place awards for investigative reporting, immigration coverage, news and opinion blogging and design, from the Arizona Press Club on Saturday night.

Staff writer Paul Rubin received a first place Don Bolles Award for Investigative Reporting for "Hell Hole," (September 1, 2011), described by judges as "a deeply disturbing picture, meticulously and thoroughly reported, written with clarity and purpose."

Columnist Stephen Lemons' "Feathered Bastard" took a first place in the News Blog category. Judges wrote that Lemons' blog was "fueled by a strong sense of outrage, buttressed by firsthand reporting and presented in an easily digestible, straightforward style."

New Times' art director Peter Storch and his design staff piled on the awards, including sweeping the Cover design and Illustration categories, and taking first place in multi-page design for the 2011 edition of "Best of Phoenix."

Covers that were selected for top honors include "Scarecation" (created by Jamie Peachey, Peter Storch and John Walters), "Serving Tucson" (created by Jamie Peachey, Peter Storch and John Walters) and "Love Connection" (created by Peter Storch, Patrick Faricy and John Walters).

Staff writer Ray Stern got a second place John Kolbe Politics and Government Reporting Award for "Love Connection" (April 14, 2011).

And New Times' food blog "Chow Bella" -- which judges said is "funny, it's got voice, it's unpredictable" -- placed first in the Opinion Blog category.

Staff writer Monica Alonzo received a second-runner up award as Virg Hill Journalist of the Year. Of her work in 2011, judges said: "Alonzo's writing is clean, lively and focused, and she demonstrates solid, shoe-leather reporting. Her stories are wide-ranging and often provocative, and she always grabs readers from the start and doesn't let go."

Other New Times' awards:

Metro multimedia package
First place
Jonathan McNamara, Claire Lawton and David Quan: "Best of Phoenix: The underground map"
It was described by the category judge as "a great example of integrating the often very different worlds of the illustrator and the interactive developer. The project shows thorough planning and great execution."

Metro social issues reporting
First place
Martin Cizmar: "Hobocation"
The judge said it was a "fascinating, offbeat story examining the perennial migration of the homeless to Flagstaff and the societal and cultural pressures this creates."

Metro immigration reporting
First place
Gregory Pratt: "Huddled masses"
The judge wrote that it was "thoroughly reported and engagingly written."

Metro illustration, photo-based 
Third place:
John Walters, Peter M. Storch, Laila Derakshanian, and Jamie Peachey: "Marked man"

Second place
Jamie Peachey and Laila Derakshanian: "Knocked out"

First place
Alvaro Diaz-Rubio: "Good neighbor"
"Often, blending micro and macro imagery can lead to a great concept, but fail with poor execution. This was as smartly done from a technical point of view as it was well conceived."

Metro project, explanatory reporting or public service journalism
Third place
Paul Rubin and Amy Silverman: "Hindsight"

Metro environmental/science reporting
Second place
Paul Rubin: "Lyme-ites"

Metro public safety reporting
Third place
Ray Stern: "Joe knew"

Metro business reporting
Second place
Gregory Pratt: "Undocumented Inc."

Metro health reporting
Second place
Paul Rubin: "Lost & Found"

Metro human interest writing
Second place
Ray Stern: "The Amityville kid"

Metro illustration, drawn
Third place
Lalo Cota: "Borderline Expression"

Metro features blog
Third place
"Chow bella"

Second place
New Times staff: "Up on the sun"

Metro short-form writing
Third place
Benjamin Leatherman: "Daniel Funkhouser's gender-bending 'Cacophrodisiac' opens tonight"

Metro arts criticism
Third place: Robrt L. Pela

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Monica Alonzo
Contact: Monica Alonzo