Weekly receives top journalism prize -- third year in a row

Out-of-state panel of journalists recognizes Palo Alto Weekly's work in California competition

It's a three-peat for the Palo Alto Weekly: On Saturday, the news organization was selected for the third consecutive year as the best large weekly newspaper in the state through the California Newspaper Publishers Association's Better Newspapers Contest.

The paper's online news website,, also snagged first place, the fifth year out of the past six that the website has won.

A panel of journalists from states outside of California selected the winners from among journalists with daily, weekly and school newspapers. The work reviewed was published between Nov. 1, 2013, and Oct. 31, 2014.

"Strong government coverage and politics," the judges wrote about the Weekly. "This is an example of high-quality community weekly publishing."

Taken together, the Weekly's reporters and editors took home 10 first- and second-place awards out of a field of thousands of entries in the annual competition. The Weekly, which employs a newsroom staff of 11 journalists, competed against other weekly newspapers with circulations of more than 25,000.

The first-place awards were for

• General Excellence: Weekly staff

• Website:, by Weekly staff

• Editorial comment: "The school board's nadir" by Bill Johnson

• Investigative: "Teen dating hell" by Terri Lobdell

• News photo: "University sidewalk accident" by Veronica Weber

• Feature photo: "In Mom's new arms" by Veronica Weber

The Weekly's second-place awards were for:

• Arts & Entertainment coverage (Oct. 24 and Oct. 31) by Elizabeth Schwyzer

• Education: "The entrepreneurial educator" by Elena Kadvany

• Business: "Immigrant Valley" by Elena Kadvany

• Artistic photo: "Menlowe Ballet legend" by Michelle Le

Weekly journalists Keith Peters, Bill Johnson, Sue Dremann, Veronica Weber, and the staff as a whole also received six "blue ribbon" honorable mentions for sports coverage, editorial comment, environmental reporting, photography and breaking news.

The Weekly's sister papers on the Peninsula also took top honors in their circulation categories. The Mountain View Voice in Mountain View received three awards: first place for news photo and second for coverage of education and feature photo.

The Almanac in Menlo Park garnered first place for a photo essay and second place for business news.

Founded in 1979 by Publisher and CEO Bill Johnson, the Palo Alto Weekly produces a Friday print edition; a daily e-edition, Express; and the news and community website, which hosts Town Square, the online discussion forum, among other features. can also be accessed through the iPhone and Android apps, "Palo Alto." The Weekly's social-media sites include and

The California Newspaper Publishers Association is a nonprofit trade association for more than 800 publications. Founded in 1888, it represents daily and weekly newspapers and news websites throughout California.

— Palo Alto Weekly staff

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27 people like this
Posted by parent2
a resident of College Terrace
on May 9, 2015 at 6:33 pm

parent2 is a registered user.

Congratulations to the Weekly and to Terri Lobdell. The Palo Alto Weekly is a local treasure. We are so lucky to be able to live in a community with a serious investigative paper doing real journalism. The contributions made by the Weekly to civic discourse, to transparency, to keeping our elected officials honest, and as a good citizen (the Moonlight Run, for example) are really quite incredible.

Thank you Bill and Terri for your contributions to this community. We are so fortunate to have a paper of this caliber run by people of your caliber.

9 people like this
Posted by Marc Vincenti
a resident of Barron Park
on May 10, 2015 at 8:35 pm

Marc Vincenti is a registered user.

Dear wonderful Weekly workers,

Way to go!

We're blessed in Palo Alto to have a newspaper with plenty of best virtues of journalism: thoroughness; fairness; a rejection of sensationalism and melodrama; in-depth reporting; a wide range of topics; vigorous writing; civic awareness and commitment.

What would we do without you?!

Marc Vincenti

Like this comment
Posted by spike
a resident of Esther Clark Park
on May 11, 2015 at 12:33 pm

spike is a registered user.

Wow! I don't recognize the paper described here. Of course I haven't read the Weekly in years. It used to be just a shill for the school board, city council, and ARB. But apparently it has changed. I will have to give it another look...

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