We just got an ebullient email from our publisher, Judy Hodgson, who's currently in Detroit, along with Editor Carrie Peyton Dahlberg, for the annual Association of Alternative Newsweeklies conference. We suspect she may have had a celebratory drink or two. Why?
Carrie won 1st, investigative reporting under 50K circ, for "Vulnerable." (link here, for god sake.) [Yes ma'am! Part 1. Part 2.] Awesome. Results will be posted in an hour on AAN website. She had to wear a cheap medal around her neck, hold a plastic trophy aloft (fake also), slug down some rather expensive scotch (neat) to chase her beer, and pose for a photo. All recorded somewhere for posterity.
Yes, Peyton Dahlberg's compassionately tenacious two-part story from last August earned first place in the investigative reporting category for AAN papers with circulation under 50,000. Her wide-ranging report exposed the corporate sleight-of-hand that allowed Skilled Healthcare Group Inc. to sidestep court-ordered monitoring of local nursing homes after a landmark 2010 ruling against the company.
Ah, another message from Hodgson via iPhone:
P.S. We've learned a lot in this enormously sad American ghost town called Detroit. Last night we were enjoying the warm evening along the river waterfront, gazing across to the bright lights in Canada, when a swarm of cops on bikes came by at exactly 9:45 and told us to leave. I said, "What?" They said, "It's 10 soon and you all have to leave. We're closing the park." I said, "What park?" They said, "The waterfront."
Boy, this isn't Kansas.