Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Yes, I helped win a Pulitzer Prize . . . No, really! I did!

The real medal is solid gold. Mine's bronze, but it's golden to me. "Underfoot, out of reach" was the name of the series about rich deposits of natural gas right underfoot in Southwest Va., and how millions of dollars in profits have been locked in a state-run escrow, out of reach of rightful recipients.

At least that's the publisher's opinion, so from now on I'm going to take a little more ownership of that prize. I did, after all, design a lot of those pages over the run of the series. Reread the already heavily edited stories. Tweaked the preconceived headlines. Proofed the pages. Asked a few cogent questions. Ran many a followup as new laws took shape in the Virginia General Assembly.

But now I have prize-winning proof! Just as Tin Man has a heart on a chain, and Scarecrow has a diploma, I now have my very own 2010 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service Journalism medal.

The soon-to-depart publisher visited folks in the newsroom today one by one to say thanks and to give each a little bronze replica Pulitzer medal of a paperweight size, mounted on a little slab of polished marble. Classy memento, very classy guy. Makes me proud. And I will most certainly miss Carl Esposito as he and I both move on.

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