Andrew Smiley is the executive director of AHCJ and its Center for Excellence in Health Care Journalism. He is an assistant professor of professional practice at the Missouri School of Journalism. Smiley comes to AHCJ from a sports broadcasting background, including nearly a decade at the Golf Channel/NBC Sports and a decade at ESPN, where he won an Emmy.
COLUMBIA, Mo. – Coverage of the COVID-19 pandemic dominated the Association of Health Care Journalists’ 2020 journalism contest, reflecting how well the profession explained the new coronavirus and how officials responded to it.
Seven of the 12 first-place winners focused on aspects of the pandemic. The contest drew 451 total entries, with strong interest in all divisions.
Lisa Krieger, science and research reporter for the Mercury News in San Jose, won first place in the beat reporting category for a set of compelling pieces about the crisis, including how the virus infects people, why there were so few treatments and why scientists believed vaccines could be successful.
“Lisa Krieger recognized this story earlier than most and explained it clearly, drawing real patients into almost every piece,” the contest judges wrote.
Pia Christensen (@AHCJ_Pia) is the managing editor/online services for AHCJ. She manages the content and development of healthjournalism.org, coordinates AHCJ's social media efforts and edits and manages production of association guides, programs and newsletters.
Jeff Porter is the director of education for AHCJ and plays a lead role in planning conferences, workshops and other training events. He also leads the organization's data collection and data instruction efforts.
The contest deadline is Jan. 26 at 5 p.m. Eastern Time.
Winners of the contest are recognized at the annual awards luncheon at AHCJ’s annual conference. First-place winners earn $500 and a framed certificate. They also receive complimentary lodging for two nights and registration for the annual conference, June 24-27, in Austin.