24 July 2007

IAPA announces winners of 2007 Excellence in Journalism Awards


IAPA announces winners of 2007 Excellence in Journalism Awards


MIAMI, Florida (July 24, 2007)—The Inter American Press Association (IAPA) today named Marcel Granier, president of Venezuelan television station Radio Caracas Television (RCTV), and the station’s journalists and collaborators as joint winners of the IAPA Grand Prize for Press Freedom, citing their tenacious struggle on behalf of freedom of expression in the Western Hemisphere in courageously and steadfastly defending their right to keep their broadcast license, withdrawn by the Venezuelan government headed by President Hugo Chávez.


“Despite the shutdown of the station, the RCTV executives and journalists have made enormous efforts to keep broadcasting by cable and satellite, defending the right to work of 3,000 people and free enterprise,” said Gustavo Mohme, editor of the Lima, Peru, newspaper La República, co-chairman of the IAPA Awards Committee. “They have thus prevented the silencing, for strictly political reasons, of an independent and professional voice that for half a century fully exercised freedom of expression in Venezuela.”


The Awards Committee also selected winners in another 11 categories, with the awards to be presented during the IAPA’s 63rd General Assembly to be held in at the Inter-Continental Hotel in Miami, Florida, October 12-16. The awards consist of $2,000 in cash and plaques and diplomas.


“This year the participation exceeded our expectations and the quality of the entries was truly impressive,” declared Committee Co-Chairman José Santiago Healy, of Diario San Diego, California. “As always the contest was hotly fought. The prestige of the awards is arousing increasing enthusiasm among professional journalists throughout the Americas.”


Following are the categories and names of winners and finalists.


IAPA Grand Prize for Press Freedom


Marcel Granier, president of Radio Caracas Television (RCTV), and the journalists and collaborators of that news outlet. The campaign waged by RCTV in defense of the right of people to free speech is a great example for the free press in the Americas and thus deserves to be recognized with the award of the highest prize given by the Inter American Press Association.


1. Inter-American Relations-Pedro Joaquín Chamorro Award. Sponsored by La Prensa, Managua, Nicaragua.


José Rubiel Navia Lame, for his article titled “La Trocha de Arquía: historia de un pueblo” (The Arquía Trail: The Story of a People), published in El Tiempo newspaper, Bogotá, Colombia, which tells a life story to depict the effects of the destruction of an essential link across the Colombian-Panamanian border, the armed conflict that destroyed this link, and the impact this has had on daily life in the indigenous communities in both countries.




María Cristina Vargas Brasil, for her series on weapons and drug trafficking in Brazil and Colombia, published in O Dia newspaper, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.


Rodrigo Guimaraes Lopes, for his series on the 2006 Social Forum, published in Zero Hora newspaper, Porto Alegre, Brazil.


Luis Alberto Miño Rueda, for his series titled “Historias del Amazonas” (Stories from the Amazon Region), published in El Tiempo newspaper, Bogotá, Colombia.


2. Human Rights and Community Service Award. Sponsored by Panamá-América, Panama City, Panama; El Comercio, Lima, Peru; Organización Publicitaria, S.A., San Pedro Sula, Honduras; and La Nación, Buenos Aires, Argentina.


Erika Lourenco de Lima Klingl of Correio Braziliense, Brasília, Brazil, for her series titled “Inocencia Perdida” (Innocence Lost), which depicted the sexual exploitation of Brazilian girls and young women in a social and education system that promotes the violation of their human rights.


Honorable Mention:


To the editorial team of Semana magazine, Bogotá, Colombia, for its story titled “Torturas en el Ejército” (Torture in the Army), which revealed the brutal physical and sexual abuse of 21 soldiers.


José Adán Silva Mendieta of La Prensa newspaper, Managua, Nicaragua, for his story titled “Una tribu en extinción” (A Tribe in Danger of Extinction), about the Rama tribe’s daily struggle to survive in its eight villages.


Francisco Gómez Nadal of La Prensa, Panama City, Panama, for his series titled “La frontera inexistente” (The Non-existent Border), about the authorities’ abandonment of the Darién region, which is inhabited by Panamanians and Colombians.




Luis Fernando Arriola Ayala of La República, Lima, Peru, for his article titled “Lima la inaccesible” (Inaccessible Lima), and Edgardo Litvinoff of La Voz del Interior, Córdoba, Argentina, for his series titled “Inmigrantes bolivianos” (Bolivian Immigrants).


3. Newspaper in Education Award. Sponsored by Diario Hoy, Quito, Ecuador, and Novedades de Quintana Roo, Cancún, Mexico.


Novedades de Quintana Roo, Cancún, Quintana Roo, Mexico, for its “Novedades in Education” program, a comprehensive project that, in addition to publications such as a weekly section and the El Periodiquito supplement, emphasizes its social responsibility by establishing an interactive relationship with schools, social organizations and government agencies related to education, including the state reading program and the eight municipal governments in the state of Quintana Roo.




La Prensa, Panama City, Panama, for its project titled “Enséñales a leer y escribir para siempre” (Teach Them to Read and Write for Always), which uses a multimedia approach to promote a culture of reading among children in schools.


The Tico Times, San José, Costa Rica, for its program titled “Reaching Out,” which seeks cooperation among companies in an effort to use the newspaper to teach English in the schools.


4. Opinion Award. Sponsored by El Mercurio, Santiago, Chile.


Martín Enrique Holguín Alatorre of Expreso, Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico, for his editorials calling attention to the existence of “discretionary budget items” for legislators, which were published in the column “Cuestiones y Enfoques” (Questions and Approaches).




Rodrigo Pardo of Semana magazine, Bogotá, Colombia, for his article titled “¿A qué le teme, presidente?” (What Are You Afraid Of, Mr. President?), which questions the president’s decision to not participate in the televised debates leading up to the elections.


Luis Silva Villar of La Opinión, Los Angeles, California, for his column titled “De estrellas refulgentes, rutilantes e hispanas” (On Bright, Shining, Hispanic Stars).


Roberto Valencia López of La Prensa Gráfica, San Salvador, El Salvador, for his article titled “El olor de la basura” (The Smell of Garbage).


Claudia Paola Lagos Lira of Talión magazine, Santiago, Chile, for her article titled “Hijo Querido” (Dear Child).


Damián Alberto Pertile of Comercio y Justicia newspaper, Córdoba, Argentina, for his article titled “Jurados populares: una mirada desde la comunicación” (Lay Juries: A Communication Perspective).


5. News Coverage Award. Sponsored by El Nacional, Caracas, Venezuela, and O Estado de S. Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil.


To the reporting team of The Gleaner newspaper of Jamaica, for its series of articles on a case involving the abuse and videotaping of a young girl by a group of teenagers under the eyes of a religious leader and the subsequent attempt to cover up the case and prevent it from being reported publicly.


Honorable Mention:


Elaine Gaglianone and Marcelo Torres of O Dia newspaper, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for their series of reports titled “Fique Vivo” (He Is Alive), on the connection between traffic safety and drinking.




Judith Gómez Colley and Diego Martínez Lloreda of El País, Cali, Colombia, for their series of articles on the emergency caused by a landslide on the highway leading to the coast.


6. In-Depth Reporting Award. Sponsored by The Miami Herald, Miami, Florida.


Marina Walker Guevara and Sara Shipley Hiles, for their investigative piece titled “What Happens When an American Company Offshores Pollution?” published in Mother Jones magazine, San Francisco, California. The story combines in-depth reporting, journalistic rigor and a novel approach to describe the environmental problems caused by a U.S.-based lead company running simultaneous operations in the state of Missouri and in La Oroya, Peru.


Honorable Mention:


To the reporting team of Prensa Libre, Guatemala City, Guatemala, for its story titled “La mafia controla Pavón” (The Mafia Controls Pavón), which meticulously and thoroughly provides evidence of the internal corruption racket that controls the Pavón prison.


To the reporting team of La Prensa Gráfica, San Salvador, El Salvador, for its series of articles titled “Nexos de ‘clicas’ con narcos” (Gang Ties with Drug Traffickers), which exposes how youth gangs in El Salvador and Honduras have formed connections with drug cartels in order to operate in the United States.




Nelly Luna Amancio of El Comercio, Lima, Peru, for her series of articles on the Machiguenga indigenous communities in the Urubamba River region and the impact of the Camisea project.


Maia Menezes of O Globo, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for her series titled “Só muda o endereço,” (Just a Change of Address) on how some companies that give contributions to election campaigns are not operating at the addresses where they claim to be.


Wiston Manuel González del Río of El Tiempo, Bogotá, Colombia, for his special report on suspected corruption in the Bogotá transit authority and the siphoning of funds allocated to the scrapping of buses.


Letta Tayler of Newsday, New York, for her series of stories on the social, political and economic situation in Haiti leading up to the presidential elections.


The reporting team of O Povo, Fortaleza, Brazil, for its piece on cases of sexual exploitation of young children and teenagers along federal highways.


7. Features Award. Sponsored by El Comercio, Quito, Ecuador, and McClatchy Newspapers, Sacramento, California.


Magalí Tercero, for her article “Crónica de un domingo en Oaxaca” (Chronicle of a Sunday in Oaxaca), published in Milenio Semanal, Mexico, which gives a raw and impassioned depiction of a dramatic, complex political and social breakdown.


Honorable Mention:


Omar Cevallos Velarde, for his article titled “Hemingway en Perú” (Hemingway in Peru), published in Gatopardo magazine, Bogotá, Colombia, which uses an intimate, appealing tone to recount a historical event of which few people were aware.




Mariana Reyes Angleró, for her article titled “Puedes vivir con el resultado” (You Can Live with the Result), published in the magazine of El Nuevo Día newspaper, San Juan, Puerto Rico.


Adriana Brito Cruz, for her series titled “Cementerio de Mujeres Vivas” (Graveyard of Living Women), published in O Dia, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.


Silvia Cherem Sacal, for her series titled “A cinco años del 11-9, la experiencia de Laura” (Five Years After 9/11, Laura’s Experience), published in Reforma, Mexico City, Mexico.


8. Photography Award. Sponsored by The Washington Post Company, Washington, DC, and ABC Color, Asunción, Paraguay.


Carlos Manuel Mesquita da Silva of O Dia, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for his stunning photographs of an attempted holdup of a bus in the Porto da Pedra neighborhood in San Gonzalo, which provided a dramatic close-up look at the aftermath of this criminal act.


Honorable Mention:


Mike Stocker of the Sun-Sentinel, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, for his outstanding photographic work on AIDS victims in the Dominican Republic and Haiti.


9. Cartoons Award


Eduardo Baptistão of O Estado de S. Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil, for his spectacular illustration of soccer star Ronaldhino a few months before the 2006 World Cup in Germany.


Honorable Mention:


Julián Andrés Rivera Sulez of El Liberal, Popayán, Colombia, for his series of cartoons which display a sharp political wit on the problems facing Colombia.


Cláudio Duarte of O Globo, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for his colorful illustration of the members of the Brazilian soccer team.




José Carlos Santos, O Estado de S. Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil; Osmani Esteban Simanca Tirado, A Tarde, Salvador, Brazil; Virgilio Moro, Portafolio newspaper, Bogotá, Colombia; Alvaro Oortales Fidel, “El Otorongo” supplement, Diario Perú 21, Lima, Peru.


10. Infographics Award. Sponsored by Clarín, Buenos Aires, Argentina.


Oscar Corvera and Jorge Luis Contreras of La Prensa Gráfica, El Salvador, San Salvador, for their complete graphic layout on the robbery of an armored truck on April 8, 2006, including maps, diagrams, photographs and illustrations.


Honorable Mention:


Yelena Rodríguez, Nelson Fernández and Roy Hernández of Panam- América, Panama City, Panama, for their series of graphics on prehistoric animals.




William Mariotto, O Estado de S. Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil; José Ricardo Orellana Salinas, La Prensa Gráfica, San Salvador, El Salvador.


11. Online News Coverage Award. Sponsored by The Wall Street Journal, New York.


To the news team of Semana.com, Bogotá, Colombia, for their thorough reporting piece, posted on the Internet, in which they confirm the death of former paramilitary leader Carlos Castaño, a news item that sparked considerable controversy in several countries in the region.


Honorable Mention:


Aldem Bourscheit Cezarino of Site O Eco, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for his report on an environmental project that could transform a region associated with violence, corruption and a lack of regular services.


Luna Bolívar Manaus, Steffen Leiden and Geraldo Hoffmann of DW-World of Deutsche Welle, Cologne, Germany, for their special coverage on Latin America in which they describe the social, political and economic problems in three Latin American countries, using the most advanced technological tools on the Internet.




Joe Contreras of Newsweek.com, New York, for his series on steroid use by Latino baseball players.


Christina Pino-Marina of Washingtonpost.com, Washington, DC, on election coverage in Mexico.


Getzalette Reyes and Carlos Carrillo of La Prensa, Panama City, Panama, on the accident in which a city bus exploded, killing 18 passengers.


The Excellence in Journalism Awards Committee is made up of:



Gustavo Mohme

La República, Lima, Peru

José Santiago Healy

Diario San Diego, Chula Vista, California


Vice Chairman:

Cristina Aby-Azar

The Wall Street Journal, New York



            Carlos Besanson

            Diario del Viajero, Buenos Aires, Argentina

            Bruce Brugmann

            San Francisco Bay Guardian, San Francisco, California

            Wilfredo Cancio

            El Nuevo Herald, Miami, Florida

            Milton Coleman

            The Washington Post, Washington, DC

            Gerardo García Gamboa

            Novedades de Mérida, Mérida, Mexico

            Gabriel Ibarra

            Ocho Columnas, Guadalajara, Mexico

            André Jungblut

            Gazeta do Sul, Santa Cruz do Sul, Brazil

            Martín Etchevers

            Clarín, Buenos Aires, Argentina

            Francisco Montes

            Diario de Cuyo, San Juan, Argentina

            Jorge Andrés Saieh

            La Tercera, Santiago, Chile

            Carlos Salinas

            El Diario de Coahuila, Saltillo, Mexico

            Juan Luis Sommers

            Revista COSAS, Santiago, Chile

            Gilberto Urdaneta

            El Regional del Zulia, Ciudad Ojeda, Venezuela

            Gabriela Vivanco

            Diario La Hora, Quito, Ecuador

            Johnny A. Yataco

            Washington Hispanic, Washington, DC