Patch Makes a Splash with 24 Awards at San Diego Press Club Dinner

Image from a Grossmont-Santana swim meet by Patch contributor Chris Stone won first place for sports photography at the San Diego Press Club; Stone won four awards Tuesday night.

Led by La Mesa-Mount Helix Patch with 10 prizes, local Patch sites won 24 awards Tuesday night in the San Diego Press Club’s 39th annual Excellence in Journalism Awards.

Only U-T San Diego, with 27 awards (including 13 firsts and a best of show), won more honors than Patch as a single news organization.

Patch picked up nine first-place plaques at a dinner that also honored retired local TV news veteran Hal Clement, public relations executive Barbara Metz, media lawyer Guylyn Cummins and the staff of the Southwestern College Sun, which fended off a college administration attempt to shut down the student paper.

Some 400 people attended the sold-out dinner with the theme “Strength in Numbers” at the San Diego Hall of Champions in Balboa Park.

Club executive director Terry Williams called hers the third-largest press club in the United States (after the National Press Club in Washington and the Denver Press Club).

Patch editors* and contributors winning awards Tuesday night were:


  • Deanne Goodman* and Ann Zevely, Photography-Video: Feature,Walking with Anthony: Charting a New Path After a Spinal Cord Injury,” Carlsbad Patch
  • Deanne Goodman* and Ann Zevely, Photography-Video: Portrait,Anorexic, Bulimic and Near Death: A Victim Opens Up for the First Time,” Carlsbad Patch
  • Julie Pendray*, Daily Newspapers and Websites: Science and Technology, New Radar Equipment Heralds More Precise Weather Forecasts in County,” Ramona Patch
  • Ken Stone*, Daily Newspapers and Websites: Feature,  Grace Returns to Grossmont: Foothiller Gets Royal Treatment 70 Years Later,” La Mesa-Mount Helix Patch
  • Doug Williams, Daily Newspapers and Websites: Sports,Ex-SEAL Making Impact on a Different Field,” Coronado Patch
  • Daniel Woolfolk*, Integrated Media: Military, “Wuterich Squad Mate Maintains He Was in Charge of Haditha Convoy,” Camp Pendleton Patch
  • Eric Yates*, Daily Newspapers and Websites: Humor, “March Badness: The Official NCAA Mascot Death March Tournament,” La Mesa-Mount Helix Patch
  • Chris Stone, Photography-Still: Portrait,Valley de Oro Little League Opening Day,” La Mesa-Mount Helix Patch
  • Chris Stone, Photography-Still: Sports,Grossmont Doubles Up on Santana in Las Nonleague Opening Day,” La Mesa-Mount Helix Patch


  • Eric Yates*, Daily Newspapers and Websites: Education, “Monte Vista Teacher Decries Racial, Economic Biases as Hurting Attendance,” La Mesa-Mount Helix Patch
  • Eric Yates*, Daily Newspapers and Websites: Profile, “Wilma Groh and Wil-Mat Project Named ‘Greatest Person of the Day’ on Huffington Post,” La Mesa-Mount Helix Patch
  • Pat Launer, Daily Newspapers and Websites: Reviews, Arts & Entertainment, May the Farce Be With You,” Encinitas Patch
  • Daniel Woolfolk*, Integrated Media: Military, “Prosecution Recommends Darren Evans Be Charged with Premeditated Murder,” Camp Pendleton Patch
  • Chris Stone, Photography-Still: Photo Essay, “Poway Rodeo Thrills Sell-Out Crowd,” Poway Patch
  • Ken Stone*, Daily Newspapers and Websites: Headlines, “Headline series,” La Mesa-Mount Helix Patch
  • James Newland, Daily Newspapers and Websites: History, “Proto-Hollywood: 100 Melodramas Were Made in La Mesa 100 Years Ago,” La Mesa-Mount Helix Patch.


  • Shauntel Lowe*, Daily Newspapers and Websites: Breaking News, “SDPD Detective, Daughter Killed in Double Homicide in Rancho Peñasquitos,” Rancho Bernardo-4S Ranch Patch
  • Serge Dedina, Daily Newspapers and Websites: Column, “Southwest Surf,” Imperial Beach Patch
  • Marlena Medford* and Michelle Mowad*, Daily Newspapers and Websites: General News,Dalai Lama Talks Global Warming,” Encinitas Patch
  • Deanne Goodman*, Daily Newspapers and Websites: Health & Medicine, “Nose for Needles: Acupuncture Can Help Dogs, Veterinarian Says,” Carlsbad Patch
  • *Daniel Woolfolk, Daily Newspapers and Websites: Military, “Recovery for Bomb Survivor Involves Family, Helping Others,” Camp Pendleton Patch
  • Ken Stone*, Daily Newspapers and Websites: Political/Government, “East County Congressman Stands Alone: No Reportable Assets or Income,” La Mesa-Mount Helix Patch
  • Chris Stone, Photography-Still: Feature,Hats Off to Donors: La Mesa National Little League Opens 59th Season,” La Mesa-Mount Helix Patch
  • Jeff Rose, Daily Newspapers and Websites: Science/Technology, “What’s in Your Wallet? Soon, Nothing,” Lemon Grove Patch

Patch, operating locally for just over two years, won 18 awards in 2011, and now has 13 sites in San Diego County—part of an AOL-owned national network of 900-plus community news, information and conversation sites.

“The San Diego Press Club’s journalism awards is among the largest regional competitions in the United States,” the club said. “More than 250 awards were presented in 136 categories, with a record number of entries.” Press clubs elsewhere in the country did the judging.

Former U-T San Diego reporter Jamie Reno won a record 12 awards, including a record-tying seven first-place awards for work on behalf of, KPBS, Newsweek Daily Beast, and the North County Times.

Clement, the former KGTV and KFMB news anchor and reporter, won the Harold Keen Award for Outstanding Contribution to Journalism

Metz, of her namesake public relations company, won the Andy Mace Award for Outstanding Contributions to Public Relations.

Cummins—a partner in the entertainment, media and technology practice group of the firm Sheppard, Mullion, Ruchter and Hampton—won a Directors Distinguished Service Award for taking on media cases for barely enough money to cover photocopying and phone bills, the club was told.

And the staff of the Southwestern College Sun—represented by journalism professor Max Branscomb and former student editor Albert Fulcher, a Patch contributor—won a Directors Distinguished Service Award for coverage of the college’s pay-for-play scandal and fending off attempted arrests while enduring death threats and vandalism.

A full list of winners is attached.