Katie May (BJH ’09), a digital copy editor with the Winnipeg Free Press, is the winner of this year’s Greg Clark Award for early career journalists. She has also been named the winner–for the second year in a row–of the 2013 Goff Penny Memorial Prize for Young Canadian Journalists in the under 25,000 circulation category.
The Greg Clark award gives working journalists the opportunity to spend a week gathering information and gaining insight about a specific issue or beat. Katie will spend a week at a birthing centre in Rankin Inlet, Nunavut, to see how its particular approach could help First Nation women in remote northern Manitoba.
“Delivering quality health care–and in many cases, receiving it–is no small task in Canada’s remote, northern communities,” says Katie, “places where birth rates and infant mortality rates are are often much higher than the national average. I’m grateful for the chance to explore what that means for expectant mothers trying to access pre- and neonatal care and for birthing centre staff trying to provide it. I hope that this experience will help me become a better journalist by more fully understanding health needs far beyond the country’s urban centres.”
“Katie May’s proposal fits perfectly with the objectives of the Greg Clark Award,” says broadcast journalist Tom Clark, chair of the jury and Greg Clark’s great-nephew. “Her project is intended to shed light in an area that typically receives little of it. What she will discover on this journey will have impliactions for all. It’s putting resources to work in the interest of good journalism.”
The Goff Penny Awards honour work published in daily newspapers by young Canadian journalists between the ages of 20 and 25. Katie submitted a portfolio of work that she produced while working as a crime reporter and photographer at The Lethbridge Herald, prior to joining the Winnipeg Free Press. Included were an investigation into illegal suites in the Lethbridge area, an interview with the parents of a young man who was shot and killed by a local police officer, a story on the difficulties temporary foreign workers face when brought to Canada under a federal government program, and a special report on high school bullying. To be considered for the award, worth $1,500, Katie was required to submit four editorial articles published during 2013.