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Sentinel's Paul Ingram named Community Journalist of the Year; Sentinel sweeps breaking news awards

TucsonSentinel.com's senior reporter Paul Ingram was named the Community Journalist of the Year by the Arizona Press Club, with the Sentinel also sweeping the awards for Breaking News in its division: Editor and Publisher Dylan Smith won first place and Ingram second place.

Ingram, who covers border and immigration issues and local politics, was named the top reporter for 2018 among the journalists working for small/mid-sized and online news organizations in Arizona.

"Paul's work on border issues rivals a lot of work that is produced for national publications," one of the "Journalist of the Year" judges said. "I was impressed by his depth and understanding of the immigration crisis, particularly in his area."

"It's great to be recognized for my work and I'm thankful for the opportunity to tell complex stories about one of the most important issues of our time," Ingram said.

Smith was named the winner of the Community Breaking News award, for his reporting on the outcome of the U.S. Senate election pitting Kyrsten Sinema against Martha McSally: Sinema wins U.S. Senate seat; McSally concedes, trailing by 38k votes.

"Smith did a very good job giving context and color on a national-interest election story. And he, and the Tucson Sentinel, had it first — two hours before the Associated Press," said judge Sally Stapleton of the Pittsburgh Post Gazette.

Ingram earned a second-place in the Breaking News category, for one of his many stories in comprehensive coverage of the trials of a Border Patrol agent for a 2012 cross-border shooting death: Update: Swartz found not guilty of involuntary manslaughter in Border Patrol shooting case.

Ingram also won a second-place award for Non-Metro News photojournalism, as judged by the Associated Press photo staff.

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His photograph "Night Scene" shows people attending a vigil in Nogales, Sonora, in April 2018, the day after the Border Patrol agent accused of shooting and killed 16-year-old Jose Antonio Elena Rodriguez was acquitted of second-degree murder by a federal jury.

The Community Journalist of the Year award was judged by Maria Perez of the Naples Daily News, who won a George Polk Award and an Al Neuharth Award for Investigative Journalism for her reporting on how high-risk industries hire undocumented workers but avoid paying workers’ compensation when they are injured on the job; Amy Wilson, storytelling coach at the Cincinnati Enquirer, who was part of the team that won a 2018 Pulitzer Prize for Local Reporting for coverage of the opioid epidemic; and Erin Alberty, the lead reporter on the Salt Lake Tribune’s Pulitzer-winning coverage of campus sexual assault.

The Arizona Press Club is the state's association for print and online journalists, and each year recognizes the best reporting, photojournalism and design work. See all of the 2018 awards at AzPressClub.org.

Smith is a vice president of the Press Club. The awards are judged by experienced journalists from outside Arizona who have no connection to the entrants.

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