The 2017 Peter Lisagor Awards are now open!

City Bureau took home the 2015 Peter Lisagor Award for Best Start-Up. (Photo courtesy of City Bureau)

The Chicago Headline Club is now accepting nominations for 2017 Peter Lisagor Awards!

Reports must have been published or aired between Jan. 1, 2017, and Dec. 31, 2017. Entries must be the original work of journalists in Illinois or who work for news media based in the state or northwest Indiana.

All nominations must meet standards set forth in the Society of Professional Journalists’ Code of Ethics. Entities that are principally advocacy organizations are not eligible. Entries should include all related corrections, clarifications or retractions.

Please note that through January 12, 2017, each entry will cost $50 for non-members; $30 for Chicago Headline Club members. After that, through January 31, 2017 each entry will cost $70 for non-members; $50 for Chicago Headline Club members. Join now and save.

To enter:

  1. Go to betternewspapercontest.com
  2. Select “contestant”
  3. Click on “open” to be an open contestant.
  4. If you entered previous Lisagor Award contests, your email and password should be the same.
  5. If this is your first time entering the Lisagor Awards, click on “Create your Open Call account” and follow the prompts.

Winners will be announced May 12, 2018 at the Union League Club of Chicago.

Questions? Email awards@headlineclub.org. Good luck!

Download the list of 2017 Lisagor categories here, or scroll down to read them. One correction from the mailed pamphlet: The criteria for best news start-up should say that organizations cannot have existed before Jan. 1, 2017 — not 2016.

Quick Links:

Also: New Categories

Best All Media 

For all media, including print, online, radio, television and short documentary film.

AM1. Best Deadline Reporting
Coverage of a spot news event in its first published/broadcast version

AM2. Best Investigative Reporting
A single story or series of stories on a single subject
Judges will consider impact and the use of Freedom of Information Act and other open-records tools to uncover abuses of power or failures to uphold the public interest

AM3. Best Feature Story
A single story

AM4. Best Feature Series
Series of stories on a single subject

AM5. Best Short Film Documentary
A film documentary on a single subject no longer than 20 minutes

AM6. Best Photography
A single photograph or series of photographs on a single subject by one or more photographers

AM7. Best Multimedia Collaboration
A story or series involving the joint effort of two or more media organizations

AM8. Best Editorial Cartoon
From minimum of 3 to a maximum of 6 examples of the work of a single editorial cartoonist

AM9. Best Graphics
Three examples of work by one or a team of designers (Single-page or multiple-page spreads)

AM10. Best Illustration
A single illustration or series involving one subject

AM11. Best Data Journalism.
Innovative use of data to illustrate a story, including the use of the Freedom of Information Act and other open-records tools

General Interest Daily Newspaper, News Service or Bureau

All wire services compete in the more than 100,000 circulation categories.

D1. Best Deadline Reporting, circulation more than 100,000
D2. Best Deadline Reporting, circulation less than 100,000
Coverage of a news event, in its first published version

D3. Best Investigative Reporting, circulation more than 100,000
D4. Best Investigative Reporting, circulation less than 100,000
Story or series on a single subject
Judges will consider impact and the use of Freedom of Information Act and other open-records tools to uncover abuses of power or failures to uphold the public interest.

D5. Best Political and Government Reporting, circulation more than 100,000
D6. Best Political and Government Reporting, circulation less than 100,000
Story or series on a single subject

D7. Best Education Reporting, circulation more than 100,000
D8. Best Education Reporting, circulation less than 100,000
Story or series on a single subject

D9. Best Science, Health or Environment Reporting, circulation more than 100,000
D10. Best Science, Health or Environment Reporting, circulation less than 100,000
Story or series on a single subject

D11. Best News Column or Commentary, circulation more than 100,000
D12. Best News Column or Commentary, circulation less than 100,000
Three examples or a series on a single topic by the same author(s)

D13. Best Editorial Writing, circulation more than 100,000
D14. Best Editorial Writing, circulation less than 100,000
Three examples or a series on a single topic by the same author(s)

D15. Best Business or Consumer Reporting, circulation more than 100,000
D16. Best Business or Consumer Reporting, circulation less than 100,000
Story or series on a single subject

D17. Best Feature Story or Series, circulation more than 100,000
D18. Best Feature Story or Series, circulation less than 100,000
Single story or series of stories on the same topic

D19. Best Arts Reporting and Criticism, circulation more than 100,000
D20. Best Arts Reporting and Criticism, circulation less than 100,000
Story or series on a single subject

D21. Best Sports Story, circulation more than 100,000
D22. Best Sports Story, circulation less than 100,000
Single story

D23. Best Sports Commentary, circulation more than 100,000
D24. Best Sports Commentary, circulation less than 100,000
Three examples or a series on a single topic by the same author

D25. Best News Photo, circulation more than 100,000
D26. Best News Photo, circulation less than 100,000
A single photograph or a series of photographs on a single subject by one or more photographers

D27. Best Feature Photo, circulation more than 100,000
D28. Best Feature Photo, circulation less than 100,000
A single photograph or a series of photographs on a single subject by one or more photographers

D29. Best Sports Photo, circulation more than 100,000
D30. Best Sports Photo, circulation less than 100,000
A single photograph or a series of photographs on a single subject by one or more photographers

D31. Best Design, circulation more than 100,000
D32. Best Design, circulation less than 100,000
Up to three examples of work by one page designer; can be single pages or multiple-page spreads

D33. Best Technology reporting, circulation more than 100,000
D34. Best Technology reporting circulation less than 100,000
Story or series on a single subject

D35. General Excellence in Print Journalism
Three different issues of a single publication; please mail to P.O. box

Non-Daily Newspaper, Magazine, or Newspaper Magazine Section

N1. Best In-depth Reporting in a General-Interest Publication, Magazine or Magazine Section
Story or series on a single subject

N2. Best In-depth Reporting in a Community Newspaper
Story or series on a single subject

N3. Best In-depth Reporting in a Business Magazine or Newspaper
Story or series on a single subject

N4. Best News Column or Commentary
Three examples or a series on a single topic by the same author(s)

N5. Best Editorial Writing
Three examples or a series on a single topic by the same author(s)

N6. Best Business Reporting
Story or series on a single subject

N7. Best Feature Story
Single story

N8. Best Feature Series
Series of stories on the same topic

N9. Best Non-deadline Reporting in Newspaper or Magazine
Story or series on a single subject

N10. Best Political Reporting in Newspaper or Magazine
Story or series on a single subject

N11. Best Education Reporting in Newspaper or Magazine
Story or series on a single subject

N12. Best Arts Reporting and Criticism
Story or series on a single subject

N13. Best Sports Story
Single story

N14. Best Photography
A single photograph or a series of photographs on a single subject by one or more photographers

N15. Best Design
Three examples of work by one page designer; can be single pages or multiple-page spreads

N16. Best Illustration
Three examples of work by one illustrator

N17. General Excellence in Print Journalism
Three different issues of a single publication; please mail to P.O. box

Broadcast: Television

T1. Best Spot News Story
Coverage of a news event within 24 hours

T2. Best In-depth News Story or Series
Series on a single topic by a reporter or team of reporters

T3. Best Investigative Report
Can be a single story or series by a reporter or reporting team
Judges will consider impact and the use of Freedom of Information Act and other open-records tools to uncover abuses of power or failures to uphold the public interest.

T4. Best On Camera Talent
Three examples of work by the same reporter

T5. Best Newscast
Three examples of the same time-slot program

T6. Best Feature News Report
A single story or series on arts, entertainment or human interest

T7. Best Public Affairs Programming
A single subject examined by a reporter or reporting team

T8. Best Business or Consumer Reporting
Can be a single story or series by a reporter or reporting team

T11. Best Health or Science Reporting
Can be a single story or series by a reporter or reporting team

T12. Best Sports Story/Single News Story or Feature
For excellence in coverage of sports in general, sports related topics or subject matter within a news program

T13. Best News Specialty/Arts/Culture/Entertainment News – Feature or Series
Best coverage of general entertainment variety, visual/ performing arts, cultural and/or ethnic issues or topics

T14. Best News Specialty/Business/Consumer News – Feature or Series
Best coverage of business, finance, consumer affairs or economic topics

T15. Best News Specialty/Crime News
Best coverage in a feature or series of crimes or other violations of the law

T16. Best News Specialty/Education/Schools News
Best coverage of schools, teaching or education

T17. Best News Specialty/Environment News
Best coverage of environmental impact issues, topics or subject matter

T18. Best News Specialty/Health/Science News
Best coverage of health, science, medical topics or subject matter

T19. Best News Specialty/Human interest
Best coverage of stories that appeal to human spirit

T20. Best News Specialty/Politics/Government News
Best coverage of political, civil, government issues or subject matter

T21. Best News Specialty/Religious
Best coverage of religious and/or spiritual subject matters

T22. Best News Specialty/Weather News
Best coverage of weather, weather related topics or subject matter within a news program

T23. Best Video Journalist
For excellence by an individual reporter, serving as producer, reporter and on-camera talent, covering a single or multi-part story or topic

Broadcast: Radio

R1. Best Breaking News Story
Coverage of a news event within 24 hours

R2. Best In-depth News Story or Series
Series on a single topic by a reporter or team of reporters

R3. Best Investigative Reporting
Can be a single story or series by a reporter or reporting team

R4. Best Reporter
Three examples of work by the same reporter

R5. Best Newscast
Three examples of the same time-slot newscast

R6. Best Feature Reporting
A single story or series on arts, entertainment or human interest

R7. Best Public Affairs Programming
A single subject examined by a reporter or reporting team

R8. Best Business or Consumer Reporting
Can be a single story or series by a reporter or reporting team

R9. Best Health or Science Reporting
Can be a single story or series by a reporter or reporting team

R10. Best Sports Story
A single story

Specialty/Trade

This category is open to trade publications, specialty wire services and bureaus.

S1. Best Deadline Report
Coverage of a news event within 24 hours

S2. Best In-depth Report or Series
A single subject examined by a reporter or reporting team

S3. Best Commentary
Three examples or a series on a single topic by the same author(s)

S4. Best Business or Consumer Reporting
Story or series on a single subject

S5. Best Feature Story or Series
Single story or series

S6. Best Design
Up to three examples of work by one page designer; can be single pages or multiple-page spreads.

Online

X1. Best Multimedia Feature Presentation
Excellence in telling a story to an online audience using multimedia techniques, including interactive graphics, Flash, photography, audio and video. In addition to the quality of the journalism, emphasis will be placed on visual design and artful blending of multiple media into a single presentation.

X2. Best News Website
For the best source of news and utility in the Chicago market. Submit URLs, screen shots or PDFs.

X3. Best Individual Blog Post, independent
Blog, original to the web, written by a blogger working independent of an established news organization. The commentary should display freshness of insight and explanation. An entry may consist of up to three examples. (Print syndication after initial web posting does not disqualify an entry.)

X4. Best Individual Blog Post, affilated
Blog, original to the web, written by a blogger working for an established news organization. The commentary should display freshness of insight and explanation. An entry may consist of up to three examples. (Print syndication after initial web posting does not disqualify an entry.)

X5. Best Continuing Blog, independent
Blog, original to the web, written by a blogger working independent of an established news organization. An entry may consist of up to three examples. (Print syndication after initial web posting does not disqualify an entry)

X6. Best Continuing Blog, affiliated
Blog, original to the web, written by a blogger working for an established news organization. An entry may consist of up to three examples. (Print syndication after initial web posting does not disqualify an entry).

X7. Best Deadline Reporting
Online coverage of a news event within its first 24 hours.

X8. Best Non-deadline Reporting
Story or series on a single subject.

X9. Best Series, Non-deadline Reporting
Series of stories on a single subject.

X10. Best Breaking News Story
Coverage of a news event produced for the web throughout a 72-hour period of a breaking-news event or development. Judges will weigh evidence-including screen shots in the first hours after the event-of exceptional reporting under deadline pressure, clear presentation and creative use of the medium, including updating of and additions to main news elements, within the 72-hour period following the original event. An entry will consist of a single piece, series or package on the same event or development.

X11. Best Neighborhood/Community News Website
For the best source of local news in a neighborhood or community.

X12. Best Business or Consumer Reporting
Story or series on a single subject

X13. Best Feature Story or Series
Single story or series, sports or human interest

X14. Best Investigative/Public Service Reporting
Original work with clear presentation and creative use of the medium. A measure of the impact of the work will be considered. A single piece, series or package on the same subject.

X15. Best Use of News Video
Online-originated video journalism crafted specifically for a web audience. Emphasis will be placed on compelling narrative, originality and creative use of the medium. Entries may consist of a single story or up to three examples from a series related to a single topic and may be integrated with other multimedia tools. Slideshows in a video format are not eligible.

X16. Best Use of Features Video
Online-originated video journalism crafted specifically for a web audience. Emphasis will be placed on compelling narrative, originality and creative use of the medium. Entries may consist of a single story or up to three examples from a series related to a single topic and may be integrated with other multimedia tools. Slideshows in a video format are not eligible.

X17. Best Use of Digital Technology
Use of emerging digital techniques to tell a story and serve a community. Emphasis will be placed on creative use of technology and alternative platforms.

X18. Best Start-Up
A venture that employs innovative tools in new ways to inform the public. To be considered, the news organization cannot have existed before Jan. 1, 2017.

X19. General Excellence in Online Journalism
Websites will be judged on excellence of content, interactivity, rich media, design, navigation and community tools. Entries may consist of one main URL. Highlight original online reporting, three examples of design and navigation innovation and three examples of creative technology use.

X20. Best Photo
A single photograph or a series of photographs on a single subject by one or more photographers

X21. Best New Podcast
Recognizing excellence from a podcast started in 2016. Three representative episodes. Open to podcasts that also have radio counterparts.

X22. Best Podcast
This award spotlights an established podcast. Three representative episodes. Open to podcasts that also have radio counterparts.

X23. Best Podcast Single Episode
Recognizes the best individual program in an existing podcast. Open to podcasts that also have radio counterparts.