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Newsday's 'Long Island Divided' wins top Press Club of Long Island award

"Long Island Divided" earned three two first-place awards.

"Long Island Divided" earned three two first-place awards. Credit: Newsday

The "Long Island Divided" series, a three-year Newsday investigation that showed evidence of widespread disparate treatment of minority home-hunters on Long Island, has been honored with the heralded Bob Greene Public Service Award by the Press Club of Long Island, capping a slate of 2020 contest winners that saw Newsday finish first in about 30 categories, including sweeps in 11.

Newsday.com took first place for Best Website.

The annual contest, hosted by the Long Island chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, honors the best daily and weekly print journalism, as well as online media, TV, radio and photojournalism. It also honors the best college and high school journalism and broadcasts on Long Island.

Newsday's "Long Island Divided" series not only won the Bob Greene Public Service Award in the large media division, it also took first place for In-Depth Report/Series, Neighborhood/Community coverage, Real Estate reporting and Business reporting. It also topped Best Use of Social Media by an Organization, Best Social Media Campaign - All Platforms, Interactive Presentation and Best Use of Twitter.

The series was the work of lead reporters Ann Choi, Keith Herbert, Olivia Winslow and Bill Dedman and edited by Arthur Browne. Cited by the Press Club for the online efforts were Anahita Pardiwalla, Elaine Piniat and Alexa Coveney, as well as the Newsday staff.

Newsday also took first place for Best Use of Facebook, Best Use of Instagram and Best Use of Newsletters — the latter for Feed Me, Newsday's multiplatform coverage of Long Island's dining scene.

Additionally, Newsday reporter Thomas Maier took first place in the Crime & Justice category for "An Innocent Man?" chronicling the 44-year battle by supporters of Keith Bush to overturn his conviction in a 1975 Suffolk County sex-related murder — a conviction vacated following the May 20, 2019, publication of the story in Newsday.

Reporter Paul LaRocco took first place in Environment for "Dumping Ground," a look at how New York City's building boom led to illegal dumping on Long Island.

Other honorees include reporter Beth Whitehouse, who took first place for Lifestyle Feature; food critic Scott Vogel, who took first for Travel; reporter David Reich-Hale, who was awarded first and third as Newsday swept the Health reporting category; multimedia journalist Randee Daddona, who took first place the Video category for a health story titled “Robert Aliano’s Second Chance”; and photographer Alejandra Villa Loarca, who was named Best Photojournalist and took first place in multiple categories.

“This recognition of vibrant local journalism from our colleagues on Long Island, across a range of subject categories and platforms, is especially gratifying,” said Deborah Henley, editor of Newsday.

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