SFR landed three first-place awards in the most recent contest of the New Mexico Press Association. Staff writer Nathan Dinsdale was recognized for news writing and feature writing, while staff writer Dan Frosch placed first in investigative reporting.
The latest in a series of investigative articles by the Santa Fe Reporter reveals that a state corrections committee has requested an independent audit of health care in New Mexico's state's prisons. The audit will focus on Wexford Health Sources, the private contractor that an Aug. 9 SFR article reported cut costs by cutting care. The paper later reported that deplorable conditions in the state's prisons had caused health care providers there to fall under the scrutiny of legislators and the American Civil Liberties Union. State Rep. Peter Wirth, D-Santa Fe, cited another SFR story in which one of Wexford's own employees decried treatment of inmates as inhumane. “That’s pretty darn scary to me,” Wirth said of the allegation.
When syndicated Advice Goddess Amy Alkon used "polyamory" in a headline for a column on a cheating boyfriend that appeared in the Ventura County Reporter, Poynter contributor Amy Gahran took issue, pointing out the word's true meaning described consensually open relationships. Gahran's reproof precipitated a war of words between the semanticistas that MediaBistro's FishbowlLA blog is calling the "the on-line equivalent of a cat fight."
Instead of counting its gray hairs, the Reporter staff takes a look back at the music, arts and politics that have shaped its community over the past 30 years. "What we're most proud of, believe it or not, is when we've riled up our readership enough (positively or negatively) that we start receiving letters," writes Editor Stephanie Kinnear. "Because this is a dialogue." In one of the anniversary issue's features, staff writer Saundra Sorenson hunts down the oldest existing paper copy of the Reporter -- which, it turns out, is from 1997.
Robert Wilder, who writes the column "Daddy Needs a Drink" for the Reporter, is the guest columnist for the "My Turn" feature in the current issue of Newsweek. Wilder's subject is his own father, whom he contacts each Mother's Day to "let him know how much I appreciate all the ways he tried to be both the hand that rocked the cradle and the one that held a hammer."
Robert Wilder pens a regular column titled "Daddy Needs a Drink" for the Reporter; now he's published a book by the same name that is "a funny look at Wilder’s life with his wife, artist Lala Carroll, and their two children, Poppy and London," according to the weekly. The TV rights have already been sold for adaption into a potential sitcom. The Reporter promoted its own last week with a cover story and a two-chapter excerpt from the book.
Staff Reporter Nathan Dinsdale is a finalist in the Religion Newswriters Association contest for his profile of Fred Phelps, leader of the controversial Westboro Baptist Church. Dinsdale is one of 10 finalists in the Templeton Story division, which "honors the best single story or serialized story about religion, religious movements or religious figures and their effect on American life," according to the RNA Web site. Winners will be announced Sept. 9 at the RNA's annual conference.