Applications closed for 2020 Excellence in Local News awards

You’ve done some amazing work this year. Help us make sure you’re recognized for it.

Joe Amditis
Dec 3, 2019 · 4 min read

APPLICATIONS ARE NOW CLOSED.

A lot has happened in the world of local journalism this year — and it doesn’t look like that’s about to change any time soon.

We still don’t really know what to do about the spread of misinformation, let alone the general lack of trust between newsrooms and the communities they serve. The fight to protect journalists and press freedom more broadly rages on both at home and abroad. And local news organizations are still searching for solutions to the revenue problem — namely, how to generate enough money to at least pay the bills (and freelancers).

And yet, local journalists are still out here grinding and doing whatever it takes to provide the local news and information that people rely on every single day.

At the Center for Cooperative Media, we believe all that hard work deserves to be recognized.

As such, we’re excited to announce the third annual Excellence in Local News awards for original local journalism produced by NJ News Commons members in 2019.

HOW IT WORKS:

The 2020 ELN awards will honor outstanding achievements in local journalism during 2019 by online, print, broadcast, photo, radio, multimedia and other local journalists based in New Jersey.

Winners will be notified within two weeks of the submissions deadline, and announced publicly thereafter. All award winners and their guests will be honored at a luncheon reception in February.

There are seven award categories this year: the Engage Local award, the Collaborate Local award, the Sustain Local award, the Innovate Local award, the Investigate Local award, the Outstanding Campus Media award, and the Partner of the Year award.

  • The ENGAGE LOCAL AWARD will go to a journalist(s) or news organization that relied heavily on community engagement or similar practices as a major source or aspect of their reporting.
  • The SUSTAIN LOCAL AWARD will go to a journalist(s) or news organization that found innovative and effective new ways to address revenue and sustainability issues.
  • The COLLABORATE LOCAL AWARD will go to a journalist(s) or news organization that leveraged the power of cooperative or strategic partnerships to take their reporting beyond what would have been possible on their own.
  • The INVESTIGATE LOCAL AWARD will go to a journalist(s) or news organization whose investigative reporting efforts had a demonstrable impact on the community they serve.
  • The INNOVATE LOCAL AWARD will go to a journalist(s) or news organization that used new and emerging technologies or strategies to enhance and improve the value and impact of their reporting efforts.
  • The OUTSTANDING CAMPUS MEDIA AWARD will go to a journalist(s) or campus news organization whose investigative reporting efforts had a demonstrable impact on the college or university community they serve.
  • The PARTNER OF THE YEAR AWARD award will go to a journalist or news organization that showed overall excellence in their work in 2019.

Award winners will receive a certificate, a logo that can be placed on the winner’s website and/or print publication and a $100 Visa gift card.

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS:

  1. The contest is open to members of the NJ News Commons. (Click here to learn more about how to become a member.)
  2. All reporting entries must focus on local topics related to New Jersey.
  3. All reporting entries must have been published or broadcast in 2019.
  4. Work published or broadcast while working as a student or intern is eligible, as long as it was published or broadcast by a NJ News Commons or NJ College News Commons member organization.
  5. Unpublished manuscripts, classroom exercises and unaired news broadcasts do not qualify. Any work found to be unpublished, unaired or a classroom exercise will be disqualified. A classroom exercise is defined as work assigned for a grade or fulfillment of a course requirement and is not eligible for a Excellence in Local News award unless it was also published outside of class in the campus/local newspaper, campus/local broadcast stations or website.

GENERAL RULES:

  1. For entries not originally published or broadcast in English, please include an English translation.
  2. Entries that are incomplete will be disqualified. We will not be able to notify entrants of such disqualification.
  3. Material submitted for the contest will not be returned.
  4. Winning entries may be reproduced or posted on the Center for Cooperative Media’s website and other digital properties for publicity, educational or other purposes.
  5. If it is not already apparent, please mark the date of publication or broadcast on all items submitted.
  6. Each contestant may enter as many categories as desired, but please submit no more than two entries per category. There is no limit on the number of entries you can submit.
  7. Be sure the name of each journalist who worked on the entry is listed as a collaborator on the entry form and that their name is spelled correctly.
  8. A maximum of four people can be named on a team entry. Otherwise, the entry should be submitted in the name of the newspaper, magazine, station or online news site.
  9. Scripts for broadcast entries are optional, but recommended.

If you have any additional questions, comments or concerns, please send an email to info@centerforcooperativemedia.org.


Joe Amditis is the associate director of the Center for Cooperative Media at Montclair State University. Contact him at amditisj@montclair.edu or on Twitter at @jsamditis.

About the Center for Cooperative Media: The Center is a grant-funded program of the School of Communication and Media at Montclair State University. Its mission is to grow and strengthen local journalism, and in doing so serve New Jersey residents. The Center is supported with funding from Montclair State University, John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, Democracy Fund, the New Jersey Local News Lab (a partnership of the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, Democracy Fund, and Community Foundation of New Jersey), and the Abrams Foundation. For more information, visit CenterforCooperativeMedia.org.

Center for Cooperative Media

An initiative of the School of Communication at Montclair State University

Joe Amditis

Written by

Joe is the associate director of the Center for Cooperative Media at Montclair State University and the host of the WTF Just Happened Today? podcast.

Center for Cooperative Media

An initiative of the School of Communication at Montclair State University

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