Gazette reporter Dave Philipps was named the Palmer Hoyt Journalist of the Year on Friday by the Colorado chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.
The award was given at the annual Top of the Rockies Awards event in Denver, in which The Gazette received 46 awards for work in 2013. Palmer Hoyt worked in newspapers for nearly 55 years, and was named editor and publisher of The Denver Post in 1946. He was known for a series of editorials denouncing Sen. Joseph McCarthy.
The Gazette recently won the Pulitzer Prize in National Reporting for Philipps' three-day "Other than Honorable" series on how soldiers injured during war were being discharged for misconduct and stripped of benefits.
The series took four first-place awards in the Top of the Rockies contest. They went to: Philipps for investigative/enterprise reporting; staff for multimedia story; Stephanie Swearngin for front page design; and Michael Ciaglo for news photography.
Philipps, 36, also took second place in the investigative/enterprise category for his "Honor and Deception" story on a secret cadet informant program at the Air Force Academy. He was part of a team that took a first place award for their health enterprise reporting on medical marijuana treatment for children with epilepsy and other conditions.
Overall, The Gazette took 23 first place awards, 12 second place awards and 11 third place awards in its category, 30,000 to 75,000 circulation.
Other first place awards went to: Jennifer Mulson, arts and entertainment enterprise; Gazette staff, breaking news coverage of Black Forest fire; Wayne Heilman, general business reporting; Bill Radford, humorous column; Debbie Kelley and Carol McGraw, education enterprise reporting; Nichole Montanez, feature design; Ciaglo, feature photography; Gazette staff, general website excellence; Montanez, headline writing; Philipps, Barbara Cotter, Ned Hunter and Montanez, health enterprise reporting; Ryan Maye Handy, legal enterprise reporting; Lance Benzel, general legal reporting and news reporting/single story; Bill Vogrin, news column; Gazette staff, special section for the Waldo Canyon fire anniversary section; Christian Murdock, sports photography; David Ramsey, sports column; Brent Briggeman, general sports reporting, and Gazette photo staff, spot news photography for the Black Forest fire.
Other second place awards went to: McGraw, general agricultural reporting and general education reporting; Rich Laden, Monica Mendoza, Philipps and John Schroyer, business enterprise reporting; Garrison Wells, humorous column; Mark Reis, feature photography; Swearngin, front page design; Cotter, general health reporting; Benzel, general legal reporting; Cary Vogrin, news reporting/single story; Gazette staff, public service for series on community preparation for natural disasters, and Ciaglo, spot news photography.
Third place awards went to: Tracy Mobley-Martinez, arts and entertainment/single story; McGraw, agricultural reporting; Stephanie Earls, blog and general health reporting; Montanez, feature page design; Ciaglo, feature photography; Megan Schrader, politics enterprise reporting; Schrader and Wells, public service for coverage of gun debate and recall election; Jakob Rodgers, Erin Prater and Tom Roeder, special section on a Medal of Honor winner; Paul Klee, sport column, and Reis, spot news photography.