At ONA, we’re in the business of honoring great work. We’ve recognized hundreds of people, projects and organizations through our annual awards, scholarship and fellowship programs. Our programs are the driving force in our mission to inspire innovation and excellence among digital journalists.
This month, one of our very own programs, the Challenge Fund for Innovation in Journalism Education, received its own honor, the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) Power of A Silver Star Awards. ASAE’s Power of A (association) Awards, the association industry’s highest honor, recognize the association community’s valuable contributions on the local, national and global level.
When we announced the $1M in Challenge Fund grants last year, we already knew we were hitting a rich vein just waiting to be mined. In the first year, our winners, each of whom received a $35K microgrant, used new tools, relationships and processes.
As just a small sampling, our winners have:
- successfully covered issues emerging from sea level rise in South Florida
- written investigative stories on the New York City Housing Authority and mold in tenements
- launched a student-run digital news portal in New Mexico
Our newest winners are already uncovering equally innovative and challenging topics this year.
“Congratulations to ONA for helping make the world a better place,” said Hugh “Mac” Cannon, MPA, CAE, Executive Director of ACEC of Metropolitan Washington, and chair of Judging Committee. “Their story exemplifies how associations make a difference every day – not just to the industry or profession they represent, but to society at large.”
This award is shared with our invaluable funding partners, The Excellence and Ethics in Journalism Foundation, the Robert R. McCormick Foundation, the Knight Foundation, the Democracy Fund and the Rita Allen Foundation. As we’ve said from the beginning, this program has truly been a collaboration from the outset, and we thank them for their commitment.
Our experiments will continue this year as we uncover the research behind our first year’s projects and as the second year’s projects begin. We’ll continue to learn and share these findings with our digital journalism community.
On behalf of ONA, we thank our funders, and the educators, media partners and awe-inspiring students who are part of this program for this honor.