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April 2011

March 2011

2010 Science Newsbrief Award winners announced!

This out from DCSWA this week:

Washington, D.C.—The D.C. Science Writers Association (DCSWA) is pleased to announce the winners of the second annual Science Newsbrief Award. 

Most science writing awards go to complex, multipart stories, but those awards often fail to recognize one of the most challenging -- and most common -- tasks of the science writer: writing short. Done well, short, accessible, accurate pieces make an enormous contribution to the public understanding of science.

The winner of the 2010 award is Sarah Zielinski for her blog post "Rare Earth Elements Not Rare, Just Playing Hard to Get." Judges said Zielinski's well-written post showed the potential of blogs to inform while providing an interesting mix of news and science. 

Zielinski, an assistant editor at Smithsonian magazine, writes the blog Surprising Science. She is a graduate of the New York University Science, Health and Environmental Writing Program and Cornell University. 

The judges also chose to honor two entries with honorable mentions.

Sujata Gupta, a correspondent with New Scientist and freelance science writer, was recognized for "How Mussels Hang On," published in ScienceNOW. According to one of the judges, "in very few words, the writer worked in engaging imagery and great word choice."

Rajendrani Mukhopadhyay, a freelance science writer and editor, got an honorable mention for "Microscale Mimic Of Human Ingestion" in Chemical & Engineering News. One judge said: "From a lede that every reader could connect with, this story smoothly walks you through some complex technology."

An award ceremony will take place during DCSWA's annual Professional Development Day on April 23 at the American Association for the Advancement of Science building in Washington, D.C. Zielinski will be presented with a $500 prize and a crystal trophy. Mukhopadhyay and Gupta will receive framed certificates.

All DCSWA members were eligible to submit entries published or distributed between January 1, 2010 and December 31, 2010. 

A panel of five judges from the DCSWA Board selected the winner and honorable mentions. They are Robert Frederick of Science Magazine, Carolyn Gramling of Earth Magazine, Jennifer Huergo of the National Institute of Standards and Technology, and Warren Leary, a freelancer formerly of the New York Times.

The D.C. Science Writers Association is an organization of about 500 science reporters, editors, authors, and public information officers based in the national capital area. For more information or to join, please visit www.dcswa.org. Details on how to enter the 2011 Newsbrief Award will appear on the website by the end of the year.
I can hardly believe that a year has passed since DCSWA announced the last winners. Unfortunately, it's a much farther trip for me this year, so I won't be around to present the awards at Professional Development Day. Congratulations to all!