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We won! A bunch of! Awards!

The 2019 Nevada Press Association awards took place Sept. 21 in Ely, and Desert Companion walked away with a hearty share of honors — five total. So, all together now: Explosive outburst of earnest enthusiasm! [confetti emoji]. Seriously, the awards represent not just the range of DC's journalistic mojo, but the award-winning stories themselves reflect what a complex, multifaceted region we live in. Here are links to the winning pieces, with the judges’ comments.

Rescue + Reunion by Heidi Kyser: 3rd place, feature writing. Judge: “We’ve all read a lot of stories about that horrible night. Heidi found a new one — about not only how bystanders became first responders, but also how they processed that night. A good idea, done well.”

‘A Presidentess Among Us’ by Sally Denton: 3rd place, non-staff story. Judge: "Excellent story about the life of an amazing woman. It makes you wonder how much more she could have accomplished if she hadn’t been constrained by the societal rules of her time."

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Mike Weatherford: 1st place, entertainment writing. Judge: “Thorough, engaging, behind-the-scenes reporting that took a lot of legwork. Completely different from anything else submitted for this category.”

You Are the Cure by Erin Ryan: 1st place, explanatory journalism. Judge: “Put a very technical subject into easy-to-understand form, and introduced human voices that made the data come to life. It somehow was moving even though it was also highly scientific.”

Christopher Smith: 1st place, page one design. Judge: “It is obvious that there is much time and effort put into each and every cover of this magazine. The cover lines are designed to fit the theme or featured article of each issue, changing dramatically from one to the next. Each cover is enticing and energetic, making you want to pick it up.”


As a longtime journalist in Southern Nevada, native Las Vegan Andrew Kiraly has served as a reporter covering topics as diverse as health, sports, politics, the gaming industry and conservation. He joined Desert Companion in 2010, where he has helped steward the magazine to become a vibrant monthly publication that has won numerous honors for its journalism, photography and design, including several Maggie Awards.