Trib earns 26 Keystone Awards, top honor for 'Tragedy at Brighton'

·3 min read

May 9—The Tribune-Review received 26 Keystone Press Awards in the Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association's annual competition, including its most prestigious recognition, the G. Richard Dew Award, for its "Tragedy at Brighton" project.

The Dew Award is presented to a news organization or individual across all circulation categories that has made an outstanding contribution to the community or state through an article or series of articles that "demonstrate improvement in the quality of community life, enhancement of public understanding of the role of the news media and journalistic responsiveness to matters of public interest," according to the association.

"It has been a remarkable year for us at the Trib, and we are so grateful for this recognition," said Susan McFarland, executive editor of Trib Total Media. "In one of the most difficult years of our careers, our staff has risen to the top."

The "Tragedy at Brighton" investigative project took a critical look at the covid-19 pandemic that ravaged the Beaver County nursing home, leading to more than 70 deaths, hundreds of positive cases and intervention by the National Guard in the spring of 2020.

Trib staff members earned recognition in categories ranging from news, sports and feature reporting to page design, still photography and video work.

Earning first-place awards were staff coverage of a deadly bus accident on the Pennsylvania Turnpike in January 2020, photographer Nate Smallwood's coverage of social-justice protests and local soccer, and visuals director Sean Stipp's videos "Tragedy at Brighton" and "Princess Lilli's Surprise Birthday Party."

Designer Melanie Wass won first place in news page design, and designer Marje Horvath won first for her graphic photo illustration titled "Tracing Atrocity" about newly accessible records regarding the Holocaust.

Here is a full list of the Trib's Keystone winners:

—Breaking News Coverage — first place — "Deadly Bus Accident on Pennsylvania Turnpike" — Staff

—Breaking News Photo — first place — "Island in the Protest" — Nate Smallwood

—Sports Feature Photo — first place — "Plum Soccer Championship" — Nate Smallwood

—News Page Design — first place — portfolio of work — Melanie Wass

—Graphic Photo Illustration — first place — "Tracing Atrocity" — Marje Horvath

—Documentary — first place — "Tragedy at Brighton" — Sean Stipp

—Feature Video — first place — "Princess Lilli's Surprise Birthday Party" — Sean Stipp

—Sports Feature Photo — second place — "Butler Overtime Win" — Nate Smallwood

—Sports Action Photo — second place — "Belle Celebrates Goal" — Chris Horner

—Sports/Outdoor Column — second place — portfolio of work — Tim Benz

—Columns — second place — portfolio of work — Lori Falce

—Lifestyle Beat — second place — Everybody Gardens — Second Place — Doug Oster

—Photo Story — second place — "FRZY: A Rapper's Life" — Kristina Serafini

—News Video — second place — In the Shadow of Salk — Sean Stipp

—Feature Video — second place — "ASL for First Responders" — Smallwood

—News Feature — honorable mention — "A Daughter's Promise" — JoAnne Harrop

—Editorials — honorable mention — portfolio of work — Lori Falce

—Lifestyle Beat — honorable mention — collection of wildlife coverage — Mary Ann Thomas

—Breaking News Photo — honorable mention — "Pittsburgh Protest Horses" — Shane Dunlap

—Sports Action Photo — honorable mention — "Swimmers' Start" — Kristina Serafini

—News Page Design — honorable mention — portfolio of work — Melanie Wass

—Feature Page Design — honorable mention — portfolio of work — Melanie Wass

—Sports Page Design — honorable mention — collection of pages — Staff

—Sports Video — honorable mention — "Little Penguins Learn to Play Hockey" — Nate Smallwood

—Special Section — honorable mention — football tab

—Diversity — honorable mention — collection of work — Rob Owen

"Even at the height of the pandemic, when so much uncertainty was swirling around, our journalists remained committed to doing the best job they could to keep our readers informed," McFarland said. "I am so proud of our team."

Patrick Varine is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Patrick at 724-850-2862, or via Twitter .