Observer's Porter, Junior happy with journalism awards

Observer's Porter, Junior happy with journalism awards

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

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THE Jamaica Observer on Saturday night walked away with two of the most coveted awards presented to journalists at the National Journalism Awards show held at the Courtleigh Auditorium in New Kingston.

Staff reporter Racquel Porter and photographer Naphtali Junior were presented with the Hector Bernard/Theodore Sealy Award for News Journalism (print) and the Aston Rhoden Award for News Photography, respectively.

Porter and Junior also copped Certificates of Merit in recognition of outstanding work in journalism along with reporters Kimberley Hibbert, Kimone Francis, and photographer Garfield Robinson.

Yesterday, Porter shared that it was her second year submitting entries and noted that the first ended in disappointment, which she interpreted as her needing to work harder.

“I love what I do and even if I did not receive an award on Saturday, the fact that I was shortlisted meant a lot to me. I want to say thanks to Brian Bonitto who published my first story in the entertainment section of the paper. I also want to say thank you to my mentor Paul Henry and of course my editors Vernon [Davidson], Anika [Richards] Mr [Pete] Sankey and of course to my peers who continued to encourage and support me,” she said.

Porter was awarded for entries: Trench Town Hero, Cruel Twist of Fate and Machete-wielding Mom — stories she picked up while assigned to the Observer's roving team.

“I love what I do. Roving is not an assignment that you attend; it is not easy. It's not something where the story has been written and left out there for you to pick up. You have to be aggressive when you go looking for stories. I enjoy doing it, but what I love the most about my job is the fact that when I write a story about somebody who is stuck between a rock and a hard place they are assisted. As reporters, we do have challenges. Some days are harder than some, but we go out there and work hard to bring Jamaica the news,” Porter said.

Junior, in the meantime, said that he was “grateful” for the award.

“I'm elated because I have been submitting entries for a long time and I have finally won. I am humbled and grateful for it.”

Below is the full list of winners:


1. Journalist of the Year

Andrea Chisholm, TVJ News


2. President's Award for Investigative Journalism

Winner: Giovanni Dennis, TVJ — Pothole Paradise

Certificate of Merit: Andrea Chisholm, TVJ — FLA Licence Series

3. Young Journalist of the Year

Winner: Carlene Davis — The Gleaner

4. Hugh Croskill/Raymond Sharpe Award for Sports Journalism


Certificate of Merit: Jordan Forte, TVJ (Jamaica's readiness to host international sporting events)


Certificate of Merit: Rachid Parchment, The Gleaner (Bruce uncertain about outlawing heading)

5. Hector Bernard/Theodore Sealy Award for News Journalism

Winner, Print Media: Racquel Porter — Jamaica Observer

(Trench Town Hero, Twist of Fate, Machete-wielding Mom)

Certificate of Merit: Kimberley Hibbert — Jamaica Observer (No Health Coverage, Sleeveless Anger, Dengue Fever Fear)

Winner, Electronic Media: Vashan Brown — TVJ (Hardship to Hope: HIV in Jamaica, Concerns About Heroes' Circle Project, Smoke Nuisance—Riverton City Dump)

Certificate of Merit Giovanni Dennis — TVJ (Terror Taxis, Mandela Road Woes, Walker's Place of Safety Fire)

6. Carlton Alexander Award for Business & Finance Journalism

Certificate of Merit: Kalilah Reynolds — Nationwide News Network (Why are gas prices so high?)

7. Best Breaking News Coverage

Certificate of Merit: Neika Lewis — Nationwide News Network (McCook's Pen Letter)


8. Carl Wint Award for Best Feature

Winner, Print Media: Kareem LaTouche — The Gleaner (Above It All — series on young people overcoming adversities)

Certificate of Merit — Racquel Porter, Jamaica Observer (Series on Outstanding Fathers)

Winner, Electronic Media: 18 Degrees North — Global Reporters (Deported and Desperate)

Certificate of Merit — Giovanni Dennis, TVJ (Terror Taxis)

9. Best Television Feature

Winner: Zahra Burton — 18 Degrees North (Vybez Kartel)

Certificate of Merit: Herman Green — TVJ (Devastation in Dominica)

10. Best Radio Feature

Winner: Giovanni Dennis — RJR 94-FM (High Society)

Certificate of Merit: Marjorie Gordon — Nationwide News Network (Hidden Cultures in the Jamaica Constabulary Force)

11. Ken Dawson Award for Videography

Certificate of Merit: Glenford Campbell — TVJ (Pothole Paradise)

12. Aston Rhoden Award for News Photography

Winner: Naphtali Junior — Jamaica Observer (Home No More)

Certificate of Merit: Garfield Robinson — Jamaica Observer (All Crashed Up)

13. Junior Dowie Award for Sports Photography

Winner: Gladstone Taylor — The Gleaner (Heavyweight Hook)

Certificate of Merit: Ian Allen — The Gleaner (Bowled)

14. Errol Harvey Award for Human Interest Photography

Winner: Gladstone Taylor — The Gleaner (Congrats Constable)

Certificate of Merit: Naphtali Junior — Jamaica Observer (Rain Run)

15. Morris Cargill Award for Opinion Journalism

Certificate of Merit: Mark Ricketts

Certificate of Merit: Zaheer Clarke

16. Best Cover Design (Newspaper)

Certificate of Merit: Tennesia Malcolm — The Gleaner (Murder)

17. Best News, Sports or Current Affairs Blog

Winner: Susan Goffe (Right Steps & Poui Trees)

Certificate of Merit: Zaheer Clarke (Zaheer's Facts Lies & Statistics)


18. Digicel Award for Technology

Winner: Nadine Wilson-Harris — The Gleaner (Distant Diagnoses)

Certificate of Merit: Andrea Chisholm — TVJ (Ten-Digit Dialling)

19. Excellence in Reporting on the Environment

Winner: Kaneal Gayle — Business Access TV (Saving Refuge Cay)

Certificate of Merit: Kimberley Hibbert — Jamaica Observer (Saving the Parrot Fish)

20. Excellence in Reporting on Health & Wellness

Winner: Giovanni Dennis — RJR 94 FM (High Society: Drug Abuse among young people in Jamaican 'high society')

Certificate of Merit: Kimone Francis — Jamaica Observer (Vicious Reality: Vicious attacks by dogs in Jamaica)

21. Excellence in Reporting on Agriculture

Certificate of Merit: Janella Precius — TVJ (Fight for Coffee)

UNICEF Media Award for Excellence in Reporting on Children's Rights

Winner: Nationwide News Network — Tauna Thomas, Tyrone Reid, Sonya Stewart, Stevian Simmonds, Andrew Anderson (A Path of Marginalisation)

Certificate of Merit: Kareem LaTouche — Anastasia Wilmot

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