This photo by Newsday's Thomas A. Ferrara of a vintage...

This photo by Newsday's Thomas A. Ferrara of a vintage "base ball" game in Smithtown last year helped him capture two awards this week. Credit: Newsday / Thomas A. Ferrara

Newsday took home top honors in both the 2024 Deadline Club Awards and the 2024 New York Press Club Awards this week, including first-place spots for photos and for coverage of the Gilgo Beach serial killings and teacher misconduct on Long Island.

Gilgo Beach Killings Arrest,” which profiled defendant Rex A. Heuermann and his arrest in the long-unsolved murders, won the Deadline Club Award for Newspaper or Digital Spot News Reporting.

“The paper deftly depicted the evidence against the suspect, captured the reactions of stunned neighbors and designed a compelling interactive map showing the victims and their locations,” said the judges. “Newsday’s work stands out on a story that attracted national coverage, and its staff produced detailed and insightful work that topped the extensive competition.”

Monica Quintanilla, an assistant managing editor who oversaw coverage of the Gilgo case, said: “Newsday has been responsibly and diligently covering the Gilgo Beach serial killings for 13 years. So, when the big break in the case came in July, we drew on the dedication and solid knowledge of our reporters who knew the story the best to provide the most compelling, comprehensive and fair reporting of a story that has local, national and global interest.”

Deadline's awards took place Thursday evening at the Harvard Club in Manhattan.

Thomas A. Ferrara, with his “The Throwbacks, Vintage ‘Base Ball’ on Long Island,” was Newsday’s most decorated photographer, scoring wins for Deadline’s Sports Photo and New York Press Club’s Feature Photo.

Ferrara's images not only captured men playing baseball as it was played in 1864 with historically correct gear and following rules of that era, but used a camera and development method of the late 1800s to make tintype portraits of the athletes.

Judges said the "quality, clarity, and framing" of this work transport the viewer right to these competitions, capturing the emotion and intensity on the participants' own “field of dreams.”

They added: “The photos tell a story all by themselves of a different style of baseball that’s played in these games and as one judge put it — made me wish I could have been there to watch.”

John Keating, Newsday's director of multimedia newsgathering and photography, said: “It’s great to see Tom recognized for his work on the vintage baseball story. He spent days covering games where players recreate baseball as it was played in the 1800s. His pictures transport readers back to the 19th century to see the origins of what would become America’s national pastime.” 

Newsday was also a finalist in several other Deadline awards categories, such as: “Feeling the Squeeze: The high cost of living crisis on LI,” by Newsday staff, for Newspaper or Digital Local News Reporting; “Newsday Investigations: Buried Secrets,” by Paul LaRocco, for Science, Technology, Medical or Environmental Reporting; “Rainbow Blaze,” by James Carbone, for Spot News Photo; “Hey Big Mouth,” by Randee Daddona, for Feature Photo; and “For the Fans,” by J. Conrad Williams Jr., for Sports Photo.

“I’m proud to see the Newsday team honored for its deep coverage on the Gilgo case, its strong and emotional photography and on several other important topics that affect Long Islanders every single day,” Newsday publisher Debby Krenek said Friday.

Newsday won six New York Press Club Awards, as the organization recently announced its 2024 winners. The awards will be presented at its Installation Dinner at The Cornucopia Majesty: Pier 81 on June 3.

Newsday’s “Teacher Misconduct on Long Island,” by Jim Baumbach, Joie Tyrrell, Dandan Zou and Grant Parpan, won Continuing Coverage — NYC Metro.

The five-year investigation uncovered how districts kept teachers on the payroll long after receiving reports of misconduct and concealed their reasons for exits, and paid nearly $30 million to settle lawsuits by former students who said they were sexually abused by faculty.

Other awards went to Rafer Guzmán’s “Strong Island’s in the House: When hip-hop ruled Long Island” who scored a Golden Keyboard Award for Entertainment News — NYC Metro, and “Pride Pioneer: LI’s Sue Wicks Was First Player in a Team Sport to Come Out Over 20 Years Ago” by Barbara Barker, which won Feature Reporting-Sports — NYC Metro.

James T. Madore’s “Wind Farm Windfall” won the Business Reporting — NYC Metro category, and in the Documentary — NYC Metro Online category, Alejandra Villa Loarca and Gary Licker won for their piece “Unbreakable: The Bond Between Fighter and Trainer” about how athlete Kenny Garcia turned to boxing during a rough patch, with the help of a trainer at Westbury Boxing Gym.

USMMA sexual assaults … Man dies in Baldwin fire … What's up on LI Credit: Newsday

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USMMA sexual assaults … Man dies in Baldwin fire … What's up on LI Credit: Newsday

Shortage of HS refs ... USMMA sexual assaults ... Dementia spikes among WTC first responders ... 

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