Michigan Capitol Confidential staff won three awards in the 2014 Michigan Press Association’s “Better Newspaper Contest” in October.
Former Managing Editor Manny Lopez won second place and an honorable mention in the headline writing category, while Jarrett Skorup, digital engagement manager, and Tom Gantert, senior capitol correspondent, took third place in enterprise reporting for their work on Michigan’s film subsidy program.
The judges remarked that the reporting by Skorup and Gantert was a “Solid outlining of various aspects of wasted government money.”
The second place headline winner was for “Reuben Sandwich with a Side of 500k Lost Jobs,” which dissected how local media covering an April visit by President Barack Obama to an Ann Arbor deli to campaign for a higher mandated minimum wage went into great detail about what the president ordered while ignoring a report that the increase could result in 500,000 lost jobs.
Judges said, “This headline did an excellent job of characterizing the media’s reaction to the subject matter. Well played.”
The honorable mention headline was for “Barber Bill Barely Takes Anything off the Top,” a column regarding Michigan’s licensing regime — including a proposed decrease in the number of hours it takes to get a barber’s license.
Judges said it was a “Great use of pun to describe the situation at hand.”
Capitol Confidential won two MPA awards in 2013 and four awards earlier this year from the Detroit Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.