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2023 Zenger Prize


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David Begoun

Israel Take 3 podcast, October 24, 2023 

For incisive interviewing after the October 7 Hamas invasion of Israel that gives survivors and families an opportunity to make public their terrible testimonies, and gives listeners a good sense of the pain they feel.

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Andrey Kurkov

The Guardian, February 4, 2023, and March 4, 2023

For using his talent as a novelist to show with vivid metaphors how the darkness required in blackouts creates a sense of helplessness, and how defiant Ukrainians have learned to be creative.

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Sam Quinones

The Atlantic, June 1, 2023

For years of vivid reporting regarding illegal drug distribution and use, capped by a 2023 article showing how arrest and jail policies need to change if we are to counter drugs more potent, easier to find, cheaper, and deadlier than they were a decade ago.

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Justin Brierley

The Surprising Rebirth of Belief in God podcast, January 9, 2024

For rugged reporting about atheists and atheists-become-Christians that shows how hearts and minds are restless until they rest in God, and for offering listeners complex theological truths in understandable ways.

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Eric McLaughlin

Christianity Today, October 23, 2023

For a memorable contemporary application of the Good Samaritan parable that underscores the complexity of living it out, shows how risks and costs mount up, and suggests that institutions should also take risks.

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Anat Rubin

ProPublica, November 4, 2023

For stellar investigative reporting about a miscarriage of justice within which Louisiana appeals courts judges for twelve years did not even read the petitions of hundreds of inmates who claimed wrongful conviction but could not afford a lawyer.

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Deirdre Fernandes

The Boston Globe, December 13, 2023

For compassionately depicting in a three-part series the tragedy of infants dying while co-sleeping, pointing out how officials sometimes emphasize (particularly with low-income families) criticism and penalties, and educating readers about child safety.

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Dan Pompei

The Athletic, November 8, 2023

For writing a testimony story that pushes aside cliches to show how suffering is both challenge and blessing.

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Matthew D. Taylor

Charismatic Revival Fury: The New Apostolic Reformation podcast, December 19, 2022

For showing with specific detail the theological and sociological reasons for the development of a dangerous Christian nationalism that can readily be hyped and satirized, but nevertheless represents a challenge to both secularism and evangelicalism.

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Kevin D. Williamson

The Dispatch, May 29, 2023

For trenchant criticism of dictators and would-be dictators, and in particular showing the unexpected successes of Ukrainians fighting for their lives and the life of their country, with both soldiers at the front lines and technological nerds at the rear doing their jobs.

WATCH: This 10-minute video shows the 2024 Zenger Prize winners discussing the state of the journalism industry, why their craft matters, and how Zenger House is making an impact.
Zenger Prizes are the successor to the Amy Writing Awards administered by the Amy Foundation for 31 years through 2015. Prizes honor journalists whose work displayed solid reporting and storytelling.

Zenger Prize Winners' Recent Work

April 8, 2024/ "Dr. Bob, 75, Knows Aging’s Toll. He Wonders if Biden and Trump Do."

Eli Saslow expertly profiles small-town physician Bob Ross, who ponders his own cognitive fitness as he enters advanced age, while also raising questions about whether the similarly aged presidential candidates are "up to the task." 

August 24, 2023/ "Don’t Waste Your Life: How One Family Stopped Being Trashy Christians"

For Christianity Today, Emily Belz shares how one Tennessee family aims to manage their impact on the environment by living a "zero waste" life. 

August 15, 2023/ "All About Jesus: Tim Keller’s Memorial Service"

Sarah Zylstra reports on the service honoring the life of famed Presbyterian minister Tim Keller, who died this year of pancreatic cancer.  Read more at The Gospel Coalition, the publication Keller co-founded.

August 12, 2023/ "What the New Wave of Prison Art Tells Us About Incarceration Today"

Maurice Chammah's latest for The Marshall Project: "From LEGO sculptures to psychedelic quilts, several new exhibits convey the prison experience in ways that transcend words alone."

July 6, 2023/ "Transformation of a Transgender Teen"

Writing for The Gospel Coalition, Sarah Eekhoff Zylstra reports on one family's experience with a child who claimed to be transgender.

July 5, 2023/ "The Young Christian Who Took Johnson & Johnson to Court"

Emily Belz for Christianity Today profiles Hanna Wilt, who "testified to God’s presence in a terminal diagnosis while pursuing a case against [Johnson & Johnson] over its baby powder."

June 25, 2023/ "He Tried to Save a Friend. They Charged Him With Murder."

In The New York Times, Eli Saslow offers a nuanced, narrative look at the complicated work of prosecuting drug deaths.

June 10, 2023/ "A Battle Over First Amendment Rights in Prisons"

Maurice Chammah co-writes an article for The Marshall Project about New York's attempts to limit prisoners' writings and artistic works.

June 2, 2023/ "Inside the Meltdown at CNN"

For a profile in The Atlantic, Tim Alberta gained remarkable access to Chris Licht in what would become his final days as head of CNN.

April 21, 2023/ "The deputy and the disappeared"

In a long-form article for CNN, Thomas Lake explores a deputy sheriff's apparent connection to two missing men of color. 

April 17, 2023/ "Seeking Absolution: Inside The Jesus Movement That Shaped My Childhood"

Yahoo! News Chief National Correspondent Jon Ward, on Religion Unplugged, shares an excerpt from his latest bookTestimony: Inside the Evangelical Movement That Failed a Generation.

March 24, 2023/ "Donald Trump Is on the Wrong Side of the Religious Right"

The Atlantic's Tim Alberta claims, "Evangelical leaders are abandoning the former president, and his Republican rivals are scrambling to win their support." 

March 13, 2023/ "Mike Pence seems to know where he's going"

In a lengthy interview for Yahoo! News, Jon Ward talks to former Vice President—and prospective 2024 presidential candidate—Mike Pence.

February 16, 2023/ "Radical beliefs in 'spiritual warfare' played a major role in Jan. 6, an expert argues"

Jon Ward for Yahoo! News: "Religious scholar Matthew D. Taylor says the rhetoric of Christian nationalist pastors can tip over into actual violence."

February 15, 2023/ "Requiem for the Spartans"

Michigan State graduate Tim Alberta reflects on how the February 13th shooting at his alma mater has already changed the campus. 

February 13, 2023/ "Ministers in Ukraine Are ‘Ready to Meet God at Any Moment’"

After a recent reporting trip to the war-torn country, Sophia Lee reports that "pastors and church leaders who stayed behind serve as if every day might be their last."

February 11, 2023/ "America Has Gone Too Far in Legalizing Vice"

In his debut for The Atlantic, Matthew Loftus considers how lawmakers restrict or permit the entrenchment of vice. 

January 3, 2023/ "A Poet for 'Bruised Evangelicals'"

Kara Bettis offers another engaging profile in Christianity Today, this time of "Anglican priest, poet, academic, and singer-songwriter" Malcolm Guite.

October - December 2022/ The James Brown Podcast

For CNN, Thomas Lake explores the mysterious circumstances around the death of "The Godfather of Soul." 

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