Dayton Daily News staff earns Associated Press awards

Four Dayton Daily News staff members earned awards Sunday in the Ohio Associated Press Media Editors’ 2015 newspaper contest.

Reporter Josh Sweigart earned second-place finishes in two categories, Best News Writer and Best Investigative Reporting. After four top administrators were suspended, including the number two-ranking official at the school, Sweigart's reporting revealed that Wright State had sponsored 19 foreign workers who came to the United States not to attend college, but to work at IT firms that paid the workers less than what they would typically pay others for the same work. He kept digging and later revealed that Wright State had quietly paid nearly $2 million to a consulting company, even though the university could not produce a copy of a contract for a year in which the consultant received nearly $1 million.

Amelia Robinson was named second place in the Best Columnist category for her column Smart Mouth, which explores serious and even tragic events with insight, wisdom and humor. In one of the columns submitted to the judges, Robinson wrote about the non-cancerous tumors of various sizes and depths in her uterus. "The next time someone asks when I am having children or why I don't have any," she wrote, "I may just whip out my multiples."

Reporter Chris Stewart earned second place in the Best Explanatory Reporting category following his continued reporting about a decades-long battle for Ohio to unseal birth records for about 400,000 adoptees. His reporting brought readers stories of the joy and heartbreak as adoptees experienced seeing what was inside their records for the first time.

Sports columnist Tom Archdeacon earned third place in Best Sports Columnist. His entries featured columns on: legendary coach Jim Place rebuilding the Ponitz High School football program; the firefighter's union and harness racing drivers teaming up to provide gifts for needy families; a profile of Wright State student Alan Hieber, who competed in the Air Force Marathon 5K despite battling Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy; and how the Dayton football team chased the KKK off campus in the 1920s.

The Dayton Daily News award winners:

Best Columnist: Amelia Robinson, second place

Best Sports Columnist: Tom Archdeacon, third place

Best News Writer: Josh Sweigart, second place

Best Explanatory Reporting: Chris Stewart, adoption coverage, third place

Best Investigative Reporting: Josh Sweigart, second place

Best Digital Presence: Dayton Daily News, third place