Local News

Monday, May 05 2014 06:46 PM

The Californian scores five awards from CNPA

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    Californian columnist Lois Henry

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    Robert Price is The Californian's executive editor. Email him at rprice@bakersfield.com.

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    Californian reporter John Cox talks on "First Look with Scott Cox."

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    Simulcast host Scott Cox, Californian Lifestyles Editor Jennifer Self and Stefani Dias, Californian assistant lifestyles editor, talk about Eye Street.

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BY STEVEN MAYER Californian staff writer smayer@bakersfield.com

The Californian brought home five journalism awards from the California Newspaper Publishers Association's annual awards event in San Jose last weekend.

Competing in the 35,000- to 150,000-circulation category against the likes of the Oakland Tribune, Los Angeles Daily News, Fresno Bee and Riverside Press Enterprise, Kern County's largest daily newspaper swept the columnist category, with Lois Henry nailing a first-place win and Robert Price capturing second.

Staff writer John Cox earned a first-place award in the business writing category, while Eye Street, TBC's features section, collected a second-place award for its entertainment coverage.

And The Californian's Sports department scored a second-place nod in the special section category for its coverage of high school football.

"I'm so proud of the work being done here at The Californian," said Publisher Ginger Moorhouse. "These awards from CNPA represent just a small part of the great journalism being practiced every day by our talented group of writers, photographers, editors and support staff."

One of the two columns submitted by Henry included the disturbing story of Glenda Crosley, a 69-year-old Bakersfield woman who died last year of pancreatic cancer while serving 15 years to life in prison for killing her husband in 1986.

Henry's column raised pointed questions about how society deals with battered and abused women -- and how the state correctional system treats terminally ill inmates.

Her second column, a funny yet informative look at Valentine's Day and being single in Kern County, exhibited yet more proof of Henry's versatility.

One of Price's columns explored America's declining stature in the international science community and tied the phenomenon, at least in part, to Americans' lack of respect for peer-reviewed scientific research and the discipline of science itself.

His second piece took to task a city councilman for siding with a homeowner who decided to block a pedestrian path between two adjoining cul-de-sacs that had existed for years.

Cox's stories examined the impact and influence investors have had in the single-family home market in Bakersfield. The story showed how aspiring homeowners were being "squeezed out" by local and outside groups able to pay cash for homes for the purpose of renting out properties at a profit.

The two Eye Street sections submitted to the contest included Feature Editor Jennifer Self's interview with Vince Gill -- who released "Bakersfield," a tribute to Buck Owens and Merle Haggard -- before Gill's concert in Bakersfield.

Also featured were Scott Cox's column on a fundraiser for the couple who own the Branding Iron Saloon who were involved in a motorcycle accident -- and Stefani Dias' First Friday and Dia de los Muertos previews.

Judges recognized TBC's Sports department for its creation of a 40-page special section previewing the 2013 high school football season.

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