Newspapers, magazines, Web sites, blogs, writers and photographers win awards in annual Lowell Thomas Travel Journalism Competition
National Geographic Traveler wins two gold awards -- for its magazine and its Web site -- in the 2009 Lowell Thomas Travel Journalism Competition.
Among other winners, sister magazine, National Geographic Adventure, takes top honors in photography and adventure writing. For the third year in a row, the Los Angeles Times earned the gold for the best Newspaper Travel Section among those with circulation above 350,000. The Boston Globe led all publications with the highest total of five awards, three silver and two bronze.
Travel Journalist of the Year is Joe Ray, a globetrotting freelance writer-photographer who is a regular correspondent for the Boston Globe. Judges cited his skill and efficiency in portraying the adventure of travel.
Bob Howells, a freelance writer cited for his focus on nature-oriented travel, wins the silver award as runner up.
The bronze goes to Dave G. Houser, a freelance writer-photographer lauded for exceptional storytelling and reporting. Houser's work appears on TheTravelMavens.com web site.
more than $20,000 to North America's best travel journalists.
The contest, overseen by the Society of American Travel Writers Foundation, awards more than $20,000 annually during a meeting of the Society of American Travel Writers, the professional organization of travel journalists and communicators.
This year marks the 25th anniversary of the competition, recognized as the most prestigious in the field of travel journalism. It is open to all North American writers and photographers. The competition, for work from spring 2008 to spring 2009, drew 1,191 entries. Judging was done by faculty at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill School of Journalism and Mass Communication.
Top winning publications also included Outside magazine and sister publication, Outside’s Go,Departures, Budget Travel, the online Slate magazine, the Seattle Times, Miami Herald, Travel + Leisure and its sister publication Travel + Leisure Golf.
An award for Rick Steves
In Special Packages/Projects, which recognizes in-depth coverage of a topic and emphasizes use of multiple, interactive media, Rick Steves won gold for “Rick Steves’ Iran: Yesterday and Today.” It included a public television special, radio program, interactive Web site, travel blogs and various print components.
In this year’s new Travel Blog category, Amy Ziff took the gold for “The Window Seat” at www.Travelocity.com.
The best travel book gold winner was “Along the Templar Trail, Seven Million Steps for Peace," by Brandon Wilson, published by Pilgrim’s Tales Inc. The top winner for best guidebook was “Pauline Frommer’s London: Spend Less/See More,” by Jason Cochran, from Wiley Publishing.
For the Grand Award, as Travel Journalist of the Year, Ray receives $1,500. l. Howells won $750, Houser $500.
Judges donate their fee to workshop
The SATW Foundation is grateful to the judges from the faculty at University of North Carolina, who donated the nearly $10,000 in their judging fees to a summer journalism workshop for high school seniors.
The awards are named for Lowell Thomas, acclaimed broadcast journalist, prolific author and world explorer during five decades in travel journalism.
For information, visit the Foundation Web site, or contact Foundation administrator, Mary Lu Abbott, at MaryLuA@satwf.com.