Thanks to the tireless efforts of senior editor Michael Finger, our liaison with the awards committees of various journalistic associations — the City and Regional Magazine Association (CRMA), the Association of
Alternative Newsmedia (AAN), the Society for Professional Journalists (SPJ), et al. — we at Contemporary Media, Inc., the mother ship of the Memphis Flyer, Memphis magazine, Memphis Parent, and MBQ, do a pretty good job winning citations for excellence for one thing or another.
This space is normally devoted to blowing our horn for or against this or that premise, principle, or principal, but this week we're going to do a little horn-tooting for our own benefit. Last week, the SPJ announced its Green Eyeshades award winners for entries in the Southeastern United States during 2012, and we are grateful that several of our contributors and contributions have passed muster again.
In the order that we received them: General News Reporting, Non-Dailies: Third Place: Chris Davis, "Just Busted" (Memphis Flyer); Feature Writing, Non-Dailies: Third Place: Bianca Phillips, "Stonewalling the Students" (Memphis Flyer); Politics Reporting, Non-Dailies: First Place: Jackson Baker, "Super Tuesday in Tennessee," "Imperfect Storm," "Conventional Thinking," "4 More Years!," "Annals of the Photo ID Law," "No Rest for the Weary," and "Local and National Election Preview" (Memphis Flyer); Criticism, Non-Dailies: First Place: Chris Davis, "The Temple," "It's Hattiloo Time," and "Into the Woods" (Memphis Flyer); Second Place: Chris Davis, "The Village," "Haunted Houses," and "Race & Skates" (Memphis Flyer); Editorial Writing, Non-Dailies: First Place: Jackson Baker, "Mark Norris: Orwellian," "A Two-Party System," and "The Gun Issue, Again" (Memphis Flyer).
General News Reporting, Magazines: Third Place: Greg Akers, Anna Cox, John Branston, and Lindsay Jones, "Redeveloping Memphis" (MBQ); Feature Writing, Magazines: Third Place: Michael Finger, "Lady of the Lake" (Memphis); Best Cover, Magazines: First Place: Brian Groppe and Jack Kenner, "A Place Apart: Horseshoe Lake" (Memphis); Second Place: Brian Groppe and Tyler Hildebrand, "A Killing in Cordova" (Memphis); Third Place: Brian Groppe and Justin Fox Burks: "Green Acres: The Stars Line Up for Chefs Andrew Adams and Wally Joe" (Memphis).
We are grateful to these colleagues and to the SPJ for recognizing their work and the work of other representatives of the journalistic profession from our area.
We also want to say thanks posthumously to yet another of the eminent Memphians who have left us in these last several weeks.
John Willingham died last week at the age of 80, on the very eve of the annual World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest, which he did so much to support and expand and which extended to his winning its highest awards, including that of Grand Champion. Willingham was known to one set of people as a barbecue maven; to another group, he was a political mover and shaker who served a term on the Shelby County Commission, was a candidate for local office on numerous occasions, and was a force and influence on both sides of the political aisle. Willingham was also an inventor who owned several patents and an idea man par excellence. He will be missed.