Celebrating Queensland media excellence: All the Clarion Award winners

Clarion Awards

Award winners include Mark Willacy, Nancy Bates and Tim Arvier

The winners of the 2020 Queensland Clarion Awards were announced on Saturday September 19 at a cocktail event.

The Queensland Clarion Awards are the pre-eminent state-based awards promoting excellence in the media. The annual awards celebrate quality journalism, and reward a media professional whose commitment to excellence in media coverage best informs and entertains Queenslanders.

2020 Queensland Clarion Awards Winners

All Media categories
Rural Journalism supported by Rural Press Club
Sarah Elks, The Australian, “The Grosvenor investigation”

Health Reporting supported by MEAA
ABC News Story Lab, ABC News Digital, “ABC News Story Lab COVID-19 coverage”

Business Journalism supported by O’Brien Accountants
Liam Walsh and Jonathan Shapiro, The Australian Financial Review, “Dunked: Behind Mayfair 101”

Commentary, Analysis, Opinion and Critique supported by MEAA
Mike O’Connor, The Courier-Mail, “Body of Work”

Sports Journalism supported by QSport
Eliza Reilly, Gold Coast Bulletin, “Line in the sand”

Multicultural Reporting supported by MEAA
Stefan Armbruster, SBS News Online, SBS World News 1830 Bulletin, “Untold stories from multicultural Australia”

Social Issues Reporting supported by Independent Education Union
Josh Bavas, ABC TV News and ABC News Online, “Angelo vs Bupa – A student’s fight for life”

Indigenous Issues Reporting supported by Queensland Council of Unions
Amy McQuire, Griffith Review 65: Crimes and Punishments, “White Justice, Black Suffering: Extracting False Confessions”

Broadcast Interview supported by QLD Police Union
Tim Arvier, The Today Show and Nine News – National daytime coverage, “Live Reporting in Minneapolis”

Artwork, Cartoon, Illustration or Graphic supported by MEAA
Tony Bela, The Sydney Morning Herald, “Apollo 11 – 50 year anniversary”

Innovation supported by Telstra
Tim Leslie, Ben Spraggon, Joshua Byrd, Nathan Hoad and Cristen Tilley, ABC News Digital, “How climate change has impacted the world since your childhood”

Three Headings supported by 10 News First
Baz McAlister, The Courier-Mail, “Apoocalypse Now”, “The Windsor of Our Discontent” and “You Shook ‘Em All Night, Elon”

Most Outstanding Final Year Journalism Student – Graduating 2020 supported by MEAA
Nibir Khan, ABC News Online and JACDigital via Adobe Spark, “Coverage of the Rohingya and Muslim Communities in Queensland”

New Journalist of the Year supported by MEAA
Marian Faa, ABC News Online and PM, “Ethical concerns over military’s COVID-19 drug trials”

Print/Text News Report supported by Nine Queensland
Kelmeny Fraser, The Courier-Mail, “Blow the Whistle – Hospitality Investigation”

Print/Text Feature Article supported by Local Government Association of Queensland
Kate Kyriacou and Thomas Chamberlin, QWeekend, The Courier-Mail and The Sunday Mail, “Childers – the 20th anniversary”

Radio News Current Affairs supported by MEAA
Mark Willacy, Alexandra Blucher and Rory Callinan, ABC AM, “The Village Idiot Killing”

Radio, Documentary and Podcast supported by MEAA
David Murray, Chris Bosley and Eric George, The Australian, “The Lighthouse podcast”

Best Metropolitan News Photograph supported by MEAA
Dan Peled, The Sydney Morning Herald, The Guardian, Financial Times, AAP and EPA, “Baptism of Fire”

Photographic Essay supported by MEAA
Lachie Millard, The Courier-Mail, “Sunshine Coast Fires”

TV News Report supported by QUT
Tim Arvier, Nine News and The Today Show, “Minneapolis Burning”

TV Current Affairs, Feature, Documentary or Special Broadcast supported by QLD Police Union
Mark Willacy, Four Corners, “Killing Field”

The John Bean Memorial Award for Television Camerawork supported by ABC
Luke Dorrington, Channel Seven News, “Country QLD COVID Comeback”

Regional and Community Feature Article or Opinion Piece – Print/Text supported by MEAA
Paul Weston, Gold Coast Bulletin, “Michael Yarwood – the last six months”

Regional and Community News Report – Print/Text supported by MEAA
Madura McCormack, Townsville Bulletin, “Clive’s Cash”

Regional and Community – Broadcast Report supported by MEAA
Douglas Smith, The Point NITV, “The Power of Repatriation: Returning stolen Indigenous remains and artefacts to where they rightfully belong”

Regional and Community News Photograph supported by Seven Network (Brisbane)
Alistair Brightman, Fraser Coast Chronicle, “Covid Couples”

Major Awards

Investigative Journalism supported by MEAA
Mark Willacy, Four Corners, “Killing Field”
Judges’ comments:
Mark Willacy’s investigation into Australia’s elite special forces was compelling viewing. The never before seen footage, damning interview with Braden Chapman backed up by local villagers truly revealed the extent of the “Killing Field”. The ramifications of this Four Corners report for our soldiers and the military as a whole will be far reaching. “Killing Field” encompasses the attributes of a fine investigative report. The extensive research and ability to cultivate contacts to take part in the story, combined with the strong vision, good scripting and interviewing makes it compelling viewing. The bravery of the whistleblower and the reporting team in pursuing this impactful story is evident.

Most Outstanding Contribution to Journalism supported by The University of QLD
Nancy Bates

Judges’ comments:
Nancy Bates is a legend of Queensland journalism – the state’s first-ever woman editor of a daily newspaper, a ferocious advocate for her regional community and an invaluable mentor for a generation of journalists.

She wrote an estimated 5.500 editorials for the Fraser Coast Chronicle during her 20 years in the editor’s chair – some of the campaigns she successfully fought for included changes to the law which had allowed men to rape their estranged wives, and convincing local schools to teach the language of the region’s traditional owners, the Butchulla. That campaign won the newspaper a United National Media Peace Award in 2008. This year the Premier named Nancy as one of nine Queensland Greats, describing her as a trailblazer in the truest sense.

Nancy began her career in 1966 as a cadet for New Zealand’s Bay of Plenty Times – and joined the Chronicle four years later.

When she retired in 2009, the then Premier Anna Bligh paid tribute to her 43 year career, telling parliament Nancy was known for her colourful turn of phrase and fiery words about all politicians.

In her retirement, Nancy continues to make a weekly contribution to the publication. The Chronicle’s present editor Jessica Grewal says Nancy often sends through breaking news and well-told local profiles, helping a community still grieving the loss of the local print newspaper.

The Fraser Coast Chronicle first published in 1860 as the Maryborough Chronicle, is one of more than 20 mastheads throughout Queensland that ceased printing a newspaper this year and moved to a digital only service.

It is fitting that at the end of this era, we pay tribute to one of the regional Queensland’s champions of journalism.

Journalist of the Year 2020 supported by MEAA
Tim Arvier
, The Today Show and Nine News – National daytime coverage, “Live Reporting in Minneapolis” and “Minneapolis Burning

Judges’ comments:

The judges complimented Tim on his courageous cross from the heart of the riots in Minneapolis – a compelling 17 minutes of live television that brought to the lounge rooms of Australia the chaos that was unfolding on the streets of America – as it happened, in real time.

Tim and his camera operator Adam Bovino worked seamlessly as a team as bricks were thrown and tear gas fired all around them. Tim kept a cool head and his professional composure, delivering colourful but precise commentary to the pictures being captured; at one point even remembering to apologise for the language when protestors yelled out the F word! But the cross itself was just 17 minutes of the days Tim spent on the front line of the riots, negotiating roadblocks, risking arrest – and worse – to produce top-quality television journalism that would captivate audiences anywhere in the world. At one point he was even detained at gun point by police.

If great journalism involves having courage and engaging your audience through compelling storytelling, Tim Arvier has proven a worthy recipient of the 2020 Queensland Journalist of the Year.

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