Three journalists were honoured with the inaugural New Journalist Award at the 2019 Ma Murray Awards. From left: Coast Capital Savings presenter Sarah Goldvine, Agassiz-Harrison Observer editor Grace Kennedy, Gulf Islands Driftwood’s Marc Kitteringham and Oak Bay News’ Keri Coles. (BCYCNA / Submitted)

‘Observer’ editor honoured at community newspaper awards

Editor Grace Kennedy named New Journalist of the Year, wins bronze in feature series

The editor of the Agassiz-Harrison Observer was honoured at the BC & Yukon Community News Media Association’s annual Ma Murray Awards gala on Saturday night.

Grace Kennedy was acknowledged as one of the most promising new journalists in B.C. and the Yukon, and recognized for a feature series she wrote while a reporter for the North Delta Reporter.

She was awarded New Journalist of the Year alongside Marc Kitteringham (Gulf Islands Driftwood) and Keri Coles (Oak Bay News). The new category was introduced this year to acknowledge excellence in reporters with less than two years of experience in the business.

Kennedy was nominated by her former editors for being a talented young journalist who consistently elevates the print and digital publications of her newsroom with compelling storytelling, detailed original research, and interactive online content.

Kennedy was hired as a reporter for the Cloverdale Reporter and the North Delta Reporter in February of 2017, and quickly demonstrated her strength as a writer. In the first year she was eligible to submit her work, she received a silver and bronze Ma Murray award in feature series.

The judges wrote that Kennedy is “the perfect example of what a reporter in 2019 needs to be. [She] is persistent, consistently demonstrates initiative and innovation, and always works to find new ways to tell stories that are important to the communities she serves.”

At the end of December 2018, Kennedy accepted a position as an Editor/Reporter at the Agassiz-Harrison Observer, where she continues to raise the bar.

On Saturday night, she won bronze again in feature series, for articles she wrote while a reporter for the North Delta Reporter. In “Finding Success,” she discussed the different rates of academic success for Delta’s Indigenous and non-Indigenous students, examining efforts to change and improve the system.



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