2010 Dart Award Winners

The winners of the 2010 Dart Awards for Excellence in Coverage of Trauma: the St. Petersburg Times and ProPublica in collaboration with The New York Times Magazine.

The Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma, a project of the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, is pleased to announce the selection of winners of the 2010 Dart Awards for Excellence in Coverage of Trauma.

This year’s winners are ProPublica in collaboration with The New York Times Magazine and the St. Petersburg Times. Honorable mentions include the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the Detroit Free Press and the independent documentary “Baker Boys: Inside the Surge.”

The Dart Center invites you to attend a public ceremony recognizing the winners on April 27 at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.


ProPublica and The New York Times Magazine for “The Deadly Choices at Memorial”

  • Sheri Fink, reporter, ProPublica
  • Paolo Pellegrin, photographer, Magnum Photos for The New York Times
  • Stephen Engelberg, managing editor, ProPublica
  • Susan White, senior editor, ProPublica
  • Krista Kjellman Schmidt, web producer and deputy editor of news applications, ProPublica
  • Ilena Silverman, story editor, The New York Times Magazine
  • Aaron Retica, chief of research, The New York Times Magazine
  • David Ferguson, researcher, The New York Times Magazine
  • Charles Wilson, researcher, The New York Times Magazine

Published on the fourth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, this exceptional 13,000-word chronicle reveals what happened when the floodwaters rose, the generators failed, and the main hospital in New Orleans was cut off from the world. The piece depicts the deepening confusion that gripped doctors, nurses and hospital personnel as they waited for help to arrive and reconstructs the decisions that ended with injections of ill patients as helicopters came to rescue them. It also traces the moral and ethical ambiguities of the days that followed.

Judges described “The Deadly Choices at Memorial” as "stunningly haunting" and "both comprehensive and remarkably restrained." Calling the reporting challenges "mindboggling," judges also praised Fink, a medical doctor and journalist, for her depth of knowledge, persistence and commitment to tell the story from all sides and on every level.

The St. Petersburg Times
for “For Their Own Good”

  • Ben Montgomery, reporter
  • Waveney Ann Moore, reporter
  • Edmund D. Fountain, photographer
  • Kelly Benham, enterprise editor

This investigative series takes an individual and systemic look at trauma and its lifelong consequences for survivors, families and communities. It tells the stories of men whose lives are still shaped, fifty years later, by the brutal abuse they suffered as children under the care of the Florida School for Boys. This remarkable special report implicitly demands that society re-examine its assumptions about blame, punishment and incarceration.

Judges called “For Their Own Good” "gripping" and "unflinching" and applauded it for demonstrating the "profoundly deep" and "long-lasting nature of emotional wounds" that result from physical abuse. They praised Montgomery and Moore for their dogged reporting, commitment to telling the stories fully and honest and evocative narrative writing that transported readers to the disturbing scenes of the crimes. They also praised Fountain for his powerful portraits that reveal the complex identities of dignified survivors and haunted souls.

Honorable Mentions

The Detroit Free Press for “Hostages to Justice”

  • Jeff Seidel, reporter
  • Regina H. Boone, photographer
  • Rick Nease, artist
  • David Zeman, assistant managing editor, investigations
  • Kathy Kieliszewski, deputy director for photo and video
  • Susan Hall-Balduf, copy editor
  • Steve Anderson, page designer
  • Jason Karas, page designer

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette for “Wounded Warriors: Wounded Families”

  • Michael Fuoco, reporter
  • Rebecca Droke, photographer

The independent production "Baker Boys: Inside the Surge”

  • Jon Steele, writer and cinematographer
  • Kern Konwiser, director


The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel for “Fatal Care”

The Philadelphia Inquirer for “Mourning After”

New York Magazine for “The Hunted”

Ellis Cose for “Against the Odds”

WHYY for “Impact of War”

WNYC for “Marine Lance Corporal Julian Brennan”

The Christian Science Monitor for “Little Bill Clinton: A year in the life of a new American”

Global Post for “Life, Death and the Taliban”

Reuters for “Surviving the Tsunami”

PBS/Frontline for “Albania: Getting out of Gitmo”

The Dart Awards

The Dart Awards are administered by the Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma, based at Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. Established in 1995, the annual Dart Awards recognize outstanding reporting that portrays traumatic events with accuracy, insight and sensitivity while illustrating the effects of trauma on victims’ lives and the process of recovery from emotional trauma.

The Dart Awards are traditionally a team prize, recognizing that presenting in-depth journalism on these challenging subjects requires a newsroom-wide commitment. Begun as a newspaper-only competition, this year, for the first time, the Dart Awards accepted entries from across the media spectrum.

Read bios of the 2010 Dart Award judges.

Read past Dart Award winners.

See a slideshow of Dart Award-winning photography.