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LAT’s Staffers Win Society of American Business Editors and Writers Awards

The following is an LAT memo in full:

Colleagues:

Recognition for the outstanding work of our staff continues to roll in.

“Shedding Risk,” a three-part series by business reporters Lisa Girion, Michael Hiltzik and Dan Costello that ran last October, won a Best in Business award in the Projects category from the Society of American Business Editors and Writers.

Here’s what the judges said: “A highly informative, well written series on a subject that matters to everyone: health insurance. Excellent reporting shows how insurance companies are weeding out the policy holders who need help most in favor of helping the companies’ bottom line, understandable in a free enterprise system but harmful, even devastating to the folks excluded. Very timely in light of the current public debate about universal health care. Impact reported on public opinion and public policy.”

The series was enhanced by infographics prepared by Lorena Iniguez with the help of Wil Ramirez, and was edited by Bill Rempel and Marc Duvoisin.

“Genes of Evidence,” a year-long series by California staff writers Jason Felch and Maura Dolan, was awarded third place in the News Series category of the National Headliner Awards.

In carefully reported and compellingly written stories, Jason and Maura not only explained the many flaws of using DNA evidence in criminal trials, but showed readers how law enforcement agencies, including the FBI, had worked to limit public knowledge and understanding of the problems.

They stories showed how prosecutors, both nationally and locally, have pushed both to expand the use of DNA in new, and potentially unreliable, ways and to control how the evidence is evaluated and presented in court. Jason and Maura found easily understandable ways to help readers through the often complex statistical arguments behind how DNA is used. And they provided compelling looks at individual cases to bring alive the abstract science.

Please join me in congratulating our colleagues for their fine work.

Russ Stanton

Editor

Los Angeles Times

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