2012 awards


Hall of Fame

What readers want

Guy Richardson

Guy Richardson knew the business from the back shop up. He started his career in 1963 as a linotype operator for the Nevada State Journal and the Reno Evening Gazette in the days when Reno had two daily newspapers.

He later became a wire editor and in 1975 the entertainment editor.

During his nearly 30 years in the business, Guy became close friends with Sammy Davis Jr., Joan Rivers and other famous people, but he was never in awe of the stars. He was in awe of life and respectful to everyone with whom he came in contact.

Guy retired in 2000 and died in 2003 at the age of 65.

A bantamweight in size but a heavyweight in heart and talent, Guy's columns and stories ranged from humorous to heartbreaking. They  included one infamous piece he wrote in which he noted he was not a  particularly a big  fan of Frank Sinatra. That angered the crooner to the point he refused to perform at Harrah's Tahoe until Guy and every Reno Gazette-Journal big-wig and employee in the audience left the showroom. (Some of the big-wigs crouched down in their seats and stayed for the show, hiding behind their anonymity.)

He was a helluva newspaperman.

— Lenita Powers

Guy Richardson was one of the best newspaper writers I've been privileged to know, edit and read.  When the hot metal backshops went the way of sometimes inglorious newspaper history, able and skilled printers replaced by lower paid quickly trained clerical paste up folks, I gave Guy the option of moving from Lino-type operator--he was a pro--to the news room to write about the Reno nightlife he prowled so beautifully.  He grabbed the opportunity and turned the entertainment column business upside down with his talent.

— Warren LeRude

At his joyful/tearful memorial service, I was surprised by the number of major entertainers who had lived in awe of Guy's power as an entertainment critic. It was clout that the gentle pixy never abused. He not only wrote for the RGJ but his work went to other publications. I remember often encountering him late at night lobbying workers at the Reno main post office to expedite a piece to the San Jose Mercury. (This was not only pre-Internet, it was pre-fax machine and only slightly post-Pony Express.)

I will always owe Guy a personal debt, as there never would have been a Barbwire by Barbano if not for a referral from Guy more than 25 years ago.

— from the nomination by Andrew Barbano

 Ed Vogel

Ed Vogel got his start in journalism as a teen in Michigan where a weekly newspaper paid him $1.50 a story to cover high school basketball and football. After graduating from the University of Michigan, he pursued his love of newspapers at jobs in New Mexico and Texas before joining the Review-Journal in 1977. 

At the Review-Journal, he first covered police and suburban governments and later was assigned the environmental beat, which in Las Vegas involved coverage not only of air and water quality, but also of the environmental effects of nuclear testing and nuclear waste storage. He became Nevada’s expert journalist on Yucca Mountain. He was at the Nevada Test Site the day the Department of Energy conducted an underground test with the press on hand. 

Ed covered his first session of the Nevada Legislature in 1979 and was assigned as a fulltime reporter and chief of the combined Review-Journal/Nevada Appeal Capital Bureau in 1985. He has covered 17 regular and 12 special sessions of the Legislature. Few reporters in Nevada history can equal his knowledge of state government. 

He has covered five governors, their first ladies and their administrations, including Richard Bryan, Bob Miller, Kenny Guinn, Jim Gibbons and his tumultuous rein, and Brian Sandoval, and each of the gubernatorial races 

He routinely breaks important news stories, beating the competition on some of the biggest stories of the day, including developments in the murder of state Controller Kathy Augustine. 

Ed approaches his job as he approaches life: with great courage, conviction and joy. Throughout his long career as a journalist in Nevada, Ed has brought great enthusiasm and skill to the craft, despite battling serious illness. This seasoned veteran gets as giddy about a scoop as a kid right out of J-school. It is a refreshing and rare thing to see. To say that Ed is a workhorse would not be doing justice to his efforts at reporting the news and issues of the day. Even after more than four decades as a journalist, including 35 years at the RJ, Ed somehow manages to out hustle most of the reporters on our own staff, to say nothing of how he handles the competition. 

Back in the early ’80s before heading to Carson City, Ed’s features about life around Nevada were very popular with RJ readers. He continued writing such features, focusing on rural Nevada, after he started the bureau as bureau chief, and those pieces appeared in both newspapers and sometimes other publications in what is now Stephens Media. His features on rural life were lively and usually fascinating stories about all kinds of Nevadans, not just public officials and newsmakers. He searched every nook and cranny for these stories. 

His commitment to getting the job done right is unflinching; he doesn't give up, he doesn't give in. Every day, he displays great heart. 

He quite simply can't be replaced.

— from the nomination by Michael Hengel


See the full lists, with judges’ comments:

  1. Urban daily

  2. Intermediate

  3. Community

  4. Urban weekly

  5. Magazines

Sweepstakes winners

Story of the Year

Paul Takahashi, Dave Berns, Leila Navidi, Staff, Las Vegas Sun

The Turnaround: Inside Clark County Schools

This kind of project is what newspapers were meant to do. The Las Vegas Sun has taken their public stewardship a step further, by taking the longform narrative and applying it to a digital format, with video and graphical information, not just giving a quick and easy snapshot, but a longterm overview of complex matters that are at the core of the public interest. If more newspapers emulated the Sun, our republic would be well served.

Editorial of the Year

Dennis Noone, Nevada Appeal

Our view: Let voters decide fate of City Center Project

Outstanding Journalists

Lawrence Mower, Las Vegas Review-Journal

Although there were several fine journalists in this category, Mower stood out for the work he did on the significant, detailed series ‘Deadly Force.’ True investigative work, thorough and well-written.

Steve Ranson, Lahontan Valley News

The category is journalist of the year, not reporter of the year, and the first-place nod goes to a community journalist who filled both roles with excellence this year. The response to the train wreck, especially, showed first-rate reporting as well as first-rate newsroom leadership. Great job.

Freedom of the Press


  1. 1.Staff, Las Vegas Review-Journal

Deadly Force

Powerful piece. Tremendous dedication to the story, great investigative work

  1. 2.Staff, Reno Gazette-Journal


Great investigative piece

  1. 3.Dennis Myers, Reno News & Review

Open and shut


  1. 1.Steve Green, Vegas Inc.

Copyright Conundrum

Great coverage of a very important topic, provides good information in a way that allows readers to easily follow the complexities of the issue. Great job.

  1. 2.Staff, The Record-Courier

Open Meeting Law entry

I really enjoyed reading the newspaper's ongoing coverage of this issue and the way it broke down the subject.

  1. 3.Elko Daily Free Press

DA forwards undersheriff records to state, etc.

Good job.

Outstanding Visual Journalist

Ryan Olbrysh, Las Vegas Weekly

Wonderful visuals incorporating photography and design elements. Nice work.

Photo of the Year (see front cover)

Jessica Ebelhar, Las Vegas Review-Journal

Indycar crash

Remarkable composure during a terrifying moment helped capture the memorable fiery scene. Congratulations!

Best Editorial Cartoon (below)
  1. 1.Mike Miller, View Neighborhood

New Home Prices Ready to Change

Best in the class. Tells the whole story.

  1. 2.Mike Smith, Las Vegas Sun


Nuf sed. Tells the story right on target.

  1. 3.Mike Smith, Las Vegas Sun

Are you an airline?


Ad of the Year

Mario Aguirre, View Neighborhood

Walk The Sky

Good use of photos and text arrangement.

Silver Star Award

Ann Galli (assistant to the publisher), Joyce Smith (business manager), RANGE magazine

Extraordinary women.

Best Headline Writing


  1. 1.Craig Peterson, Las Vegas Sun

Wordless ... Muffled... Inaudible ... Silent Night. Lord of the zings; Angle fights back at hobbit insult. The commute dispute; Here’s something to discuss...

  1. 2.George Riggle, Las Vegas Review-Journal

Not an organ donor? Consider a change of heart, Sultan of smack Harper simply being 18-year-old, County's fiscal plan: taxing the pour

  1. 3.Matthew Crowley, Las Vegas Review-Journal

Tick, tick, tick, tick … tax: Filing deadline is close, but thousands of Nevadans will seek extensions,  Sole Searchers: Sneakerheads rush remodeled Forum Shops Nike store to pursue exclusive,  Bags packed, engines hum, ready turkeys here we come


  1. 1.Karen Woodmansee, Virginia City News

No spit — camels are back. Brothels come together. Going nuts for fries.

  1. 2.John Kelly, Nevada Appeal

Rock on, Fireball!


Past years’ winners:

  1. 2011

  2. 2010

  3. 2009

  4. 2008

(see more years below)

Download a copy of winners from prior years:

  1. 2007

  2. 2006

  3. 2005

  4. 2004

  5. 2003

  6. 2002

  7. 2001

Watch highlights from the talk by Tony Casale, CEO of American Opinion Research, on opinions of newspaper readers.

Rick Farrell, president of Tangent Knowledge Systems, describes a new approach to selling.

A new approach

A few photos from the convention and Mob Museum.

Get a souvenir ebook

(for iPad only)

Download the file by clicking the image at left. Drag the downloaded file to iTunes, then sync your iPad. It will be in your iBooks app.