IdahoEdNews.org, Richert earn top awards

Press Club awardsIdaho Education News and reporter Kevin Richert won General Excellence and Reporter of the Year honors from the 2013 Idaho Press Club awards.

In its first year of eligibility, Idaho Education News and its staff stood out among its competition, which included a variety of online news sites, the largest newspapers in the state and veteran Idaho journalists and editors.

IdahoEdNews.org won the first place General Excellence award for online media website division. IdahoEdNews.org also earned the top award for creating a website for a special purpose — the data center, which includes academic and financial information about every public school in Idaho.

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Kevin Richert

Richert was named Idaho’s 2013 Reporter of the Year. He won first place for his profile of former Nampa schools superintendent Thomas Michaelson and took home third place honors in the First Amendment category for work that “advances the cause of freedom of information in Idaho in the public interest” for his series on the state’s WiFi contract. Richert used public documents to shed light on a state-awarded, multiyear contract to hook up WiFi service in high schools and junior high schools.

Idaho Education News reporter Clark Corbin won a third-place award for his report “Lawmakers Revive Elements of the Defeated Props.”

Idaho Education News was launched in January 2013 to cover public education and create a platform to discuss issues that affect Idaho’s children and their future. Three staff members produce independent, comprehensive and thoughtful journalism about public education policy and practice in Idaho. The content is free and available for distribution by anyone as long as proper attribution is included.

IdahoEdNews.org  had about 30,000 page views a month during its first year. Richert is a primary reason for the popularity of this niche product because of his reporting and writing talents. He has produced breaking news, a compelling series, thought-provoking features and his own daily blog.

The Idaho Press Club is a statewide organization of working journalists that is dedicated to promoting excellence in journalism and advancing freedom of information.