Watchdog.org’s Virginia bureau takes home 7 statewide awards

Monday, April 20th, 2015

Date: April 20, 2015
Contact: Breyana Franklin
[email protected]
571-385-2926

ALEXANDRIA, Va.—Watchdog.org’s Virginia bureau built upon last year’s successes to take home four first-place awards and three second-place awards in the Virginia Press Association’s 2014 News/Editorial and Advertising Contest.

Investigative reporter Kathryn Watson earned four first-place awards in the categories of in-depth or investigative reporting; education writing; health, science and environmental writing; and public safety writing. She also took home a second-place award for government writing.

Virginia bureau chief and national correspondent Kenric Ward earned two second-place awards in the categories of health, science and environmental writing; and in-depth or investigative reporting.

“It’s an honor to receive this recognition, but it’s even more of an honor to get to tell stories that matter,” said Watson. “Whether it’s the Navy veteran dad who can work again because of a story I wrote, or watching Congress end federal funding for automatic license plate readers after many stories like mine were published, it’s a privilege to tell meaningful stories that make a difference in people’s lives.”

Watson’s winter 2014 investigative series revealed serious flaws in accountability and auditing capabilities for welfare dollars in Virginia, and her stories on local police use of automatic license plate readers gained attention from coast to coast.

Ward’s reporting on a new gas pipeline coming to Virginia raised important questions about eminent domain and property rights, and his stories on duplicate voters in Virginia spurred other stories and editorials across the commonwealth.

“Watchdog’s in-depth and investigative reporting is flipping the narrative in Virginia. ‘News’ isn’t about propping up the political and bureaucratic status-quo, it’s about exposing the waste of tax dollars and the abuse of taxpayers,” said bureau chief Kenric Ward. “We’re pleased that the judges honored this distinction in bestowing these awards.”

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2 Responses to “Watchdog.org’s Virginia bureau takes home 7 statewide awards”

  1. John Chinn says:

    Congratulations to Ms. Watson. I used some information she sent me and am grateful for her reply to my e mail request. Now.

    I have a story that has been going on for Thirteen years involving the lack of if not best described as a down right refusal to enforce ABC Laws by the Commonwealth. And the refusal to respond to numerous Citizens complaints concerning an establishment in Fredericksburg , Va., issued a license under most peculiar circumstances., by Local Authorities and that Political Body.

    A Grand Jury filing and indictment that was heard by a Judge in a different Jurisdiction, than the City of Fredericksburg and dismissed. The Judge as I understand that the filing was improper. The filing was done by the Commonwealth Attorney.

    Said filing described damage to Residential property by Patrons of the establishment. Urination in their yards, obscene writings on their vehicles. Sex in their yards. Syringes found in their yards. Even landscaping ripped out of the ground. An auto repair facility forced to place security cameras on the lot to help prevent Patrons from damaging vehicles left by customers for repair.

    If you want the other side of the ABC story, I can get anyone interested in touch with those eleven who filed the Grand Jury Complaint.

  2. Bill West says:

    I can attest to what Mr Chinn points out and more. Felonies being over looked, video tapes being lost , beer bottles thrown through screens, evidence being lost and most odd all done with the blessing of the ABC Board , police and city council.

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