Phoenix New Times Wins 18 Arizona Press Club Awards, Including Nine FirstsEXPAND
Eric Torres for Phoenix New Times

Phoenix New Times Wins 18 Arizona Press Club Awards, Including Nine Firsts

Phoenix New Times took home nine top Arizona Press Club awards this year plus a runner-up for the contest's highest journalism honor.

The Press Club revealed the list of winners for its annual writing and photography contest on Monday, showing that New Times won a total of 18 awards for work published in 2017.

Antonia Noori Farzan was second runner-up for the Virg Hill Journalist of the Year Award for a body of work including her stories about Motel 6 providing lists of guest names to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Bureau.

"The Motel 6 stories brought to light a deeply concerning practice that one imagines might have gone on for much longer without this journalist’s careful and determined attention," wrote the judges from the New York Times, Boston Globe, and The Post and Courier of South Carolina.

Farzan's partner in the Motel 6 coverage, Joseph Flaherty, was named Arizona Community Journalist of the Year for his body of work submitted in the community division for smaller news organizations. New Times was eligible to compete in both divisions.

"Joseph writes with a rich detail made possible only through deft, thorough reporting," the judges stated about the award. "His stories expose wrongs without coming off as heavy-handed. Strong narratives intertwined with contextual explainers and solid organization set Joseph’s storytelling apart."

Stephanie Innes of the Arizona Daily Star won the Virg Hill Award for her three-part series, "The Good Samaritan."

Farzan and Flaherty together won the second-most prestigious award in the statewide competition, the Don Bolles Award for Investigative Reporting, for their Motel 6 coverage.

The top awards didn't stop there:

Flaherty won first place in Statewide Education Reporting for his story on Grand Canyon University, "Getting Educated or Getting Schooled? Divergent Views of Grand Canyon University."

Becky Bartkowski won first place for Statewide Arts Criticism with "Chance the Rapper Closed Out Day One of Lost Lake Festival."

Freelancer Valeria Fernandez won first place in Statewide Immigration Reporting for "Lost and Found," a story about a teen from El Salvador who arrived at the United States border seeking help for her mental illness.

Food Editor Chris Malloy won first place in Statewide Arts Reporting for "Smoke Rings: Jalapeño Bucks Crafts Arizona Barbecue in a Century-Old Orange Grove," a story on what Malloy calls the area's "most underrated barbecue joint."

News Editor Ray Stern won first place in Business Reporting with the story "The CBD Oil Boom: Making Money on Medical Marijuana for the Masses."

The entire staff won first place for Statewide Personality Profile with the compilation "Those Arizona Lost in 2017: They Made Us Better. And Now They Will Be Missed."

The paper placed on several other statewide awards:

Patricia Escarcega, second place in Arts Criticism for "Cinco de Mayo is Kind of a Bullshit Holiday, But Does It Even Matter?" and third place in Food and Beverage Reporting for "50 Ways to Love Your Taco in Metro Phoenix."

Malloy, third place in Arts Reporting for "Smoke Rings: Silvana Salcido Esparza Dreams of Barbecue."

Amy Silverman, second place in Health Reporting for "HIV Transmission Rates Are Up in Arizona; Blame the 'No Promo Homo' Law."

Tom Zoellner, second place in Food and Beverage Reporting for "10 Iconic Arizona Restaurants Worth Traveling For."

Lindsay Moore, third place in Health Reporting for "A New Shade of Pink: Other Arizona Nonprofits Coloring in Fundraising Gap Left by Komen."

Robrt L. Pela, third place in Social Issues Reporting for "For Seniors and Their Caregivers Navigating Arizona's Health-Care System, There's No Place Like Home."

In addition, the Press Club awarded New Times two other Community-division places:

Lindsay Moore won first place in Health Reporting for "A New Shade of Pink: Other Arizona Nonprofits Coloring in Fundraising Gap Left by Komen."

Molly Longman won second place for "Healing the Wounds of Transgender Wars at the VA Hospital in Tucson."

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