A Style Weekly cover story on illegal immigrants in Richmond and a portrait of a self-described hobo (pictured) earned Best-in-Shows for writing and photography at the Virginia Press Association's annual competition.
The awards, recognizing the best in writing, photography, artwork and news presentation across the state, were handed out March 24 in Norfolk. Best-in-shows are selected from all first-place winners in a newspaper's division.
Of "Alienated," Scott Bass' April 26 story, judges wrote: "This is a captivating work of first-rate journalism. The prose and reporting bring the human aspects of illegal immigration alive in a colorful and compelling way. By personifying the immigration debate, Bass allows readers to enter the hopes and dreams of ordinary human beings who are struggling to achieve the American dream. ... Excellent storytelling!"
Scott Elmquist's photo of a homeless man appeared in "Hidden Richmond," a photo essay published as a cover story in May. The judges wrote: "We were struck by the humanity of it. The lines of the railroad tracks lead to the core of the photo. The detail in the face doesn't get in the way. The viewer looks straight into this man's soul."
For his photos of a vigil for a Richmond homicide victim, Elmquist was also honored in a separate competition sponsored by the Virginia News Photographers Association. He received a first-place award in the General News category, competing against photojournalists from across Virginia.
In all, Style received 10 first-place VPA awards among all specialty publications competing, including a first for overall design and news presentation. Its fashion quarterly, Cue, was also honored as a special section. S