Deadline looms for Kennedy Awards

This is not my usual blog format, just a special one-off notice for journalists who are interested in entering the inaugural Kennedy Awards for Excellence in NSW Journalism.

The awards will celebrate the quality of news breaking, storytelling and creativity in the metropolitan and regional media, and the entries are coming in thick and fast. This is just as well since the deadline is this coming Monday, July 2 at 6pm.

Any work from June 30 2011 until June 30 2012 is eligible for submission. All funds, including the $20 entry fee, donations and portion of the Award’s ticket price, will be raised for the Charlie Perkins Trust.

The awards formed a partnership with the Trust to fund the sponsorship of scholarships for high-achieving indigenous students, including aspiring journalists.

They will be held at The Four Seasons Hotel on August 10, 2012 – the first anniversary of the death of Sydney journalist Les Kennedy. The awards, across 30 categories, will provide an enduring  reminder of the standards Les upheld as a leading news journalist and mentor to many. They will also pay tribute to other journalistic legends, the late Cliff Neville, Sean Flannery, Paul Lockyer, Peter Ruehl and Gary Ticehurst, with categories named in their honour.

The P&O Cruises Kennedy Award for NSW Journalist of the Year will be presented by NSW Premier, The Hon. Barry O’Farrell.

Kennedy Awards Categories

1. P & O CRUISES NSW Journalist of the Year – based on a body of outstanding work

2. Scoop of the Year

3. Most Outstanding Investigative Journalism

4. Most Outstanding Crime Story

5. NRMA Award for Most Outstanding Political Reporting

6. Splash of the Year

7. Most Outstanding Illustration

8. Sean Flannery Award for Best Radio News Report

9. Most Outstanding TV News Report, sponsored by Network Ten

10. Most Outstanding Newspaper Feature

11. Most Outstanding Sport Reporting

12. Peter Ruehl Award for Most Outstanding Columnist

13. Most Outstanding TV Current Affairs Report

14. Most Outstanding Radio Commentator

15. Most Outstanding Radio Current Affairs Story

16. Most Outstanding Online News Breaking

17. Most Outstanding News Photo

18. Paul Lockyer Award for NSW Regional Reporting of the Year

19. Most Outstanding Online Photographic Essay

20. Most Outstanding Online Video Story

21. Most Outstanding Blog

22. Gary Ticehurst Award for Most Outstanding TV News Camera Coverage

23. Most Outstanding Court reporting.

24. COLES Award Most Outstanding Coverage of Indigenous Affairs

26. Cliff Neville Award for Most Outstanding Team Player

27. Most Outstanding Finance Journalism in any media

28. Kennedy Award for Mentoring

29. Australian Turf Club Racing Writer of the Year

30. Kennedy Award for Most Outstanding Portrait


Each entry should be an exceptional example of ground breaking, gutsy and creative journalism, demonstrating a profound and enduring impact in Sydney and the NSW regional areas.

Judges will also take into account resources, research, preproduction, preparation, logistical challenges, public interest and community benefit.

Entries for the Cliff Neville Award for Most Outstanding Team Player and the Kennedy Award for Mentoring must be entered on behalf of the entrant, include a photo and explain the reasons for their candidacy in a maximum 400 words. The winner will be selected by the judging committee.

All the information you need and entry forms are on the website:

The Kennedy Awards are aimed at honouring those journalists who normally don’t get recognition on award nights, so if you think your work deserves one, please enter now, and get it to the organisers before 6pm on Monday, July 2.

Good luck!

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