Official site of the Illinois Journalism Education Association, Eastern Illinois University, Charleston

Illinois JEA

IJEA Illinois Journalist of the Year

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ILLINOIS JOURNALIST OF THE YEAR
APPLICATION INFORMATION

CLICK HERE TO ACCESS THE ONLINE APPLICATION FORM
FOR ILLINOIS JOURNALIST OF THE YEAR


ANNUAL DEADLINE: FEB. 15

We are pleased to announce Abigail “Abbe” Murphy of Downers Grove North High School as our 2017 Illinois Journalist of the Year, with Marissa Martinez of University of Chicago Laboratory Schools as runner-up.

Advisers, do you have a student who’s ready to be the next IJOY? Students, do you aspire to win IJEA’s top award for high school journalists? If you would like to learn more about the requirements for entering next year’s contest, we encourage you to read the information that follows.

The deadline for entering our next IJOY competition will be Feb. 15, 2018. Advisers must be IJEA members for their students to be eligible for the competition. Information about joining IJEA is available here.

The contest is limited to high school seniors. The winner receives a $300 prize and becomes the Illinois representative in JEA‘s national-level Journalist of the Year contest.

Competitors will be judged according to a standardized rubric after they digitally submit their application materials. Complete details, winning portfolio samples and tutorials for creating a digital portfolio can be found here:

JOY Overview, Tutorials and Rubric

Please note that the next Illinois submission deadline is Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018, at 11:59 p.m. All entries MUST be uploaded by that time. Competitors should upload all of their application material here:

Illinois Journalist of the Year application form

If you have any questions, please contact JEA state director Brenda Field at [email protected].


ILLINOIS JOURNALISTS OF THE YEAR SINCE 1989

2017
Abigail “Abbe” Murphy
Editor-in-chief, DGN Omega newspaper
Downers Grove North High School
4436 Main St.
Downers Grove, IL  60515
Adviser: Elizabeth Levin

2016
Hannah Boufford
Editor-in-chief, Drops of Ink newsmagazine
Libertyville High School
708 W. Park Ave.
Libertyville, IL 60048
Adviser: Michael Gluskin

2015
Ashley Yong
Editor-in-chief, Vespa yearbook
Web and ads editor, Stinger newspaper
Executive producer, HSTV Internet television station
Hinsdale South High School
7401 Clarendon Hills Road
Darien, IL 60561
Adviser: Jim Kelly
College: University of Missouri at Columbia

2014
Walker Post
Editor-in-chief, The Warrior newspaper
Lane Technical College Prep High School
2501 W. Addison St.
Chicago, IL 60618
Adviser: Seth Johnson
College: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, broadcast journalism
July 2015 update: New Life Volunteering Society, Urbana-Champaign area.

2013
Marek Makowski
Sports editor, The Voice newspaper
Huntley High School
13719 Harmony Road
Huntley, IL 60142
Adviser: Dennis Brown
College: University of Missouri at Columbia, English
July 2015 update: Interned at the Missouri Review for a year and helped edit “Words Matter,” an anthology of literary journalism to be published in April 2016. Worked as a peer adviser for a journalism community and taught them in an intro class. Going through a creative writing sequence and working on his own manuscripts and writing.

2012
Sydney Scarlata
Editor-in-chief, U-High Midway newspaper
University of Chicago Laboratory High School
1362 E. 59th St.
Chicago, IL 60637
Adviser: Wayne Brasler
College: Reed College, Portland, Ore., B.A. International and Comparative Policy Studies – Political Science, expected 2016
July 2015 update: Research assistant at Reed College. Previously: Sustainable development intern, Sustainable Organic Integrated Livelihoods, Chicago.

2011
Alexandria M. Johnson
Also runner-up nationally
Editor-in-chief, The Pacer newspaper
Rolling Meadows High School
2901 Central Road
Rolling Meadows, IL 60008
Adviser: Stan Zoller
College: Northwestern University Medill School of Journalism

2010
Jimmy Hibsch
Editor-in-chief, The Pacer newspaper
Rolling Meadows High School
2901 Central Road
Rolling Meadows, IL 60008
Adviser: Stan Zoller
College: University of Missouri at Columbia, journalism and strategic communication
July 2015 update: Marketing Services Coordinator at AMS Automotive, Columbia, Mo., jimhibsch.com.

2009
Tom Stanley-Becker
Editor-in-chief, U-High Midway newspaper
University of Chicago Laboratory High School
1362 E. 59th St.
Chicago, IL 60637
Adviser: Wayne Brasler
College: Yale University, B.A., political science and American studies
July 2015 update: Litigation assistant, U.S. Department of Justice, Criminal Division.

2008
Jared Goltz
Deerfield High School
1959 N. Waukegan Road
Deerfield, IL 60015
Adviser: Charlotte Titcomb
College: New York University
July 2015 update: Realtor, Shai Town Realty Group, Chicago.

2007
Kristina Hauptmann
Sports editor, Statesman newspaper
Adlai E. Stevenson High School
One Stevenson Drive
Lincolnshire, IL 60069
Adviser: Barb Thill
College: Ohio University

2006
Tanya Sneddon
Editor-in-chief, The Correspondent newspaper
John Hersey High School
1900 E. Thomas St.
Arlington Heights, IL 60004
Adviser: Janet Levin
College: University of Missouri at Columbia
July 2015 update: Tanya Sneddon Boyer, indirect account manager for Cricket Communications, Denver, Colo.

2005
Erin Wood
Editor, The Shield newspaper
Richwoods High School
6301 N. University
Peoria, IL 61614
Adviser: Dan Kerns
College: Bradley University
July 2015 update: Erin Wood Miller, Bradley University, alumni relations and publications.
Previously: Peoria Journal Star

2004
Kathleen Reutter
Co-editor-in-chief, Gargoyle newspaper
University of Illinois Laboratory High School
1212 W. Springfield Ave.
Urbana, IL 61801
Adviser: Dave Porreca
2004-05: Teacher’s aide in Mississippi
College: Smith College, American studies major
August 2014 update: Graduated from Smith 2009; interned in summer 2008 with Washington Post online.

2003
Noah Isserman
Also one of five finalists for JEA’s national Journalist of the Year Award
Co-editor-in-chief, Gargoyle newspaper
University of Illinois Laboratory High School
1212 W. Springfield Ave.
Urbana, IL 61801
Adviser: Dave Porreca
College: Amherst College and University of Cambridge
July 2015 update: Entrepreneur and CEO; visiting assistant professor of business administration and social work, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; consultant with Common Ground Consulting, LLC.
Website: http://www.noahisserman.com/

2002
Joe Ciolli
Co-editor-in-chief, Gargoyle newspaper
University of Illinois Laboratory High School
1212 W. Springfield Ave.
Urbana, IL 61801
Adviser: Dave Porreca
College: Washington University in St. Louis
2006 grad with degrees in finance and international business; sports editor of Student Life, Wash U student newspaper
August 2014 update: Stocks reporter for Bloomberg in New York City. Previously: Investment banker in New York City.

2001
Kathryn Hedlin
Lyons Township High School
100 S. Brainard Ave.
LaGrange, IL 60525
Adviser: Barb Thill
College: University of Wisconsin-Madison
2008 update: Associated Press sports reporter

2000
Hannah Kenser
Editor, Tiger Tales newspaper
Editor, yearbook
Joliet West High School
401 N. Larkin Ave.
Joliet, IL 60435
Adviser: Barbara Markelz (Barbara died in 2003)
College: Harvard University (B.A., 2004) and Emory University School of Law (2012)
July 2015 update: Hannah Kenser Heck, Alston & Bird LLP, Atlanta, Ga.

1999
Nathan Charlan
Editor-in-chief, Johnsburg Weekly News
Johnsburg High School
2002 W. Ringwood Road
Johnsburg, IL 60050
Adviser: Randy Swikle
College: University of Colorado at Boulder
August 2014 update: Co-executive producer and director of development for Warm Springs Productions and Exceptional Family TV. Previously: Television producer. Worked in television production on numerous shows — most notably Food Network’s “Unwrapped.” Moved on to be lead series producer on five Versus Network series, two one-hour specials and a documentary.

1998
None

1997
Nick Mathews
Editor, Pekinois newspaper
Pekin High School
1903 Court St.
Pekin, IL 61554
Adviser: Diana Peckham (Diana died in 2010)
College: University of Missouri at Columbia
August 2014 update: Sports editor at Houston Chronicle. Previously: Sports editor at the Daily Press in Newport News, Va., sports writer in Decatur, Ill., sports deputy editor in Ohio and sports editor in Athens, Ga.

1996
Patrizia Pensa
Lyons Township High School
100 S. Brainard Ave.
LaGrange, IL 60525
Adviser: Barb Thill
College: Northwestern University
2008 update: Medical beat reporter at the Ft. Lauderdale Sun Sentinel, where she’s been since graduation from Northwestern

1995
Jill Eckert
Buffalo Grove High School
1100 W. Dundee Road
Buffalo Grove, IL 60089
Adviser: Sue Tedell
College: Ohio University, DePaul University College of Law and Kellstadt School of Business
August 2014 update: Jill Eckert McCall, director, Center for Professional Development, American Bar Association

1994
Lauren Lawley
Editor, X-Ray newspaper
St. Charles High School (now St. Charles East)
1020 Dunham Road
St. Charles, IL 60174
Adviser: Candace Perkins Bowen
College: University of Missouri at Columbia
August 2014 update: Lauren Lawley Head, editor, Dallas Business Journal

1993
Tareta Lewis
Editor, U-High Midway newspaper
University of Chicago Laboratory High School
1362 E. 59th St.
Chicago, IL 60637
Adviser: Wayne Brasler
College: Northwestern University, bachelor’s and master’s in journalism
2008 update: Tareta Lewis Adams, director of public affairs, Hospira, Inc., a global specialty pharmaceutical and medication delivery company located in Lake Forest, Ill.

1992
Timothy Pan Yu
Also a finalist for JEA’s national Journalist of the Year Award
Editor, New Trier News newspaper
New Trier High School
385 Winnetka Ave.
Winnetka, IL 60093
Adviser: Charlotte Huggins
College: Harvard University, social studies and English and American literature and language, A.B., 1996; Stanford University, English and American literature, Ph.D., 2005
August 2014 update: Associate professor of English and Asian American studies and director of the Asian American Studies Program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison (http://www.timpanyu.com/)

1991
Lori Michelle Wiechman
Editor, The Central Times newspaper
Naperville Central High School
440 W. Aurora Ave.
Naperville, IL 60540
Adviser: Linda Kane

1990
Nicci Millington
Editor, X-Ray newspaper
St. Charles High School (now St. Charles East)
1020 Dunham Road
St. Charles, IL 60174
Adviser: Candace Perkins Bowen
College: Marquette University
2015 update: Nicci Millington Hyatt, listing project coordinator at Your Castle Real Estate, Denver, Colo.; previously Coldwell Banker Enterprise Foundation, Center on Policy Attitudes

1989
Tracy Pitts
Streamwood High School
701 W. Schaumburg Road
Streamwood, IL 60107

Official site of the Illinois Journalism Education Association, Eastern Illinois University, Charleston
IJEA Illinois Journalist of the Year