If you bump into Express reporters Will Harper or Kara Platoni, buy them a beer, because they just beat out reporters from The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, and the San Francisco Chronicle, among others, to win top honors in the Missouri Lifestyle Journalism Awards. Let's hear what the judges of this national journalism contest had to say.
Fashion & Design Winner: "What a Steal" by Kara Platoni "The handbag - part fashion statement, part status symbol - is the topic of this crime story with international intrigue, suburban homes and disgruntled luxury designers. The writer gets inside a house party selling fake Burberry, Gucci, Prada and Louis Vuitton. She explains the dealers as house party hosts who apply the Tupperware business model. With appropriate humor and savviness, after all this is not child-trafficking, Platoni helps readers understand why this is important to the fraud group of the Bay Area's Immigration and Customs Enforcement Office and legitimate designers. The details in the story help consumers identify fakes, which account for 11 percent of all counterfeit goods seized by U.S. Customs. This is a fun read with lots of important information."
Finalists: "Red Carpet Revenue" by Booth Moore of The Los Angeles Times
Food & Nutrition Winner: "The O Word" by Will Harper "The Knolls were the first farmers to be certified organic farmers two decades ago in the Bay Area, and they are some of the loudest critics of the federal regulations that now set policies on what is organic. Using these pioneers the writer helps readers understand the critical issues of the organic regulations and why consumers should care. The reader is taken into the complicated system of growing crops and vegetables in the rich area and how the community is responding to the new policies. The Knolls give the story a personal thread that keeps the reader caring about the story; it is written with authoritative knowledge of the many sides of the issue. This topical story is well conceived and well executed."
Finalists: "Going Blog Wild," by Amanda Berne of the San Francisco Chronicle "Make It and Take It" by Candy Sagon of The Washington Post
"100 dishes to eat in Alabama before you die" by John Kessler of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
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