Daily Herald staff members win Lisagor awards

A series of stories on the pension crisis in Illinois was one of nine Daily Herald projects singled out for honors Friday by the Chicago Headline Club.

In the Investigative Reporting category at the annual Peter Lisagor Awards for Exemplary Journalism competition, Senior Writers Matt Arado, Bob McCoppin and John Patterson and Deputy Managing Editor Diane Dungey won for their series of stories “Public pension time bomb,” which detailed the crisis in the state budget caused by abuses and mismanagement of the public pensions system.

Movie Critic Dann Gire won the award for Best Arts Reporting and Criticism for a package of three movie reviews from throughout the year.

Staff Photographer George LeClaire won in the Best News Photo category for an image of Gov. Rod Blagojevich outside the courtroom for his first trial on corruption charges.

Projects and Transportation Writer Marni Pyke won the award in the Best Science, Health, Technology or Environmental Reporting category for “Haste makes toxic waste,” a report on problems at the Land and Lakes Landfill in Buffalo Grove.

Columnist Barry Rozner won the award in the Best Sports Commentary category for a package of columns from throughout the year.

Staff Writers Ashok Selvam and Russell Lissau and Assistant City Editor Chuck Keeshan won the award in the Best Sports Story category for “Unanswered Questions,” a follow-up report on the investigation into the death of Declan Sullivan at Notre Dame University.

Assistant Managing Editor Jim Slusher and the Daily Herald editorial board won in the Best Editorial Writing category.

Staff Photographer John Starks won in the Best Feature Photo category for his picture of a student adjusting one of 1,700 American flags at a Memorial Day ceremony in Carpentersville.

Staff Photographer Rick West won in the Best Sports Photo category for his series of images capturing a Marmion outfielder's catch of a would-be home run, saving the sectional semifinal game for Marmion.

The awards were presented at a dinner at the Hotel Allegro in downtown Chicago.

Robert McCoppin
John Patterson
Diane Dungey
Dann Gire
George LeClaire
Marni Pyke
Barry Rozner
Ashok Selvam
Russell Lissau
Chuck Keeshan
Jim Slusher
John Starks
Rick West