SPJ Detroit honors Excellence in Journalism

The Detroit Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) named two “Journalists of the Year” and awarded 259 Excellence in Journalism honors to metro area journalists at its annual banquet Wednesday, April 15 in Troy. 


Jennifer Dixon, who led a Detroit Free Press team investigation of Michigan’s charter school system, won SPJ Detroit’s “Journalist of the Year” honor. Nathan Bomey, who led Detroit Free Press coverage of the city’s bankruptcy, was named “Young Journalist of the Year.”

The chapter also presented lifetime achievement awards to Diana Lewis, retired 35-year veteran of broadcast news at WXYZ-TV, and Tom Gage, who has covered the Detroit Tigers for The Detroit News since 1979.

Scholarships were awarded to four journalism students. Oona Goodin-Smith, junior at Oakland University, won the chapter’s $2,500 Lawrence Laurain Scholarship. Other scholarships went to Nora Naughton, Eastern Michigan University, Ricky Lindsay, University of Michigan-Dearborn, and Kaylee Kean, Oakland University.

SPJ Detroit’s Excellence in Media awards were presented for outstanding journalism in Detroit metro publications, broadcast and internet media during 2014.

Other finalists for Journalist of the Year were Paul Egan and Keith Matheny, both of the Detroit Free Press.