FOR RELEASE: Wednesday, July 19, 2023 

PRESS CONTACT: Clare Lefebure or 202-588-9888 


WASHINGTON, DC – Today, NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ+ Journalists announced the recipients of its 2023 Excellence in Journalism Awards and recognized exemplary work produced in 2022. The highest individual awards, Journalist of the Year and Sarah Pettit Memorial Award for the LGBTQ+ Journalist of the Year, have been awarded to Ari Shapiro and Victoria A. Brownworth, respectively.

“We are thrilled to recognize the exceptional work of LGBTQ+ journalists through our Excellence in Journalism Awards,” said Adam Pawlus, Executive Director of NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ+ Journalists. “It is truly gratifying to be part of an organization that uplifts and celebrates the best that LGBTQ+ journalism has to offer. Congratulations to all the winners, and thank you for your invaluable contributions to our communities.”

National Board President Ken Miguel expressed his enthusiasm for this year’s award recipients, stating, “On behalf of the association, I offer my congratulations to the winners of the 2023 Excellence in Journalism Awards. Each recipient has demonstrated outstanding skill, integrity, and commitment to reporting stories that are essential for LGBTQ+ visibility and equality. Your dedication to highlighting diverse voices, uncovering important issues, and promoting understanding is an inspiration to us all.”

The NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ+ Journalists Excellence in Journalism Awards were established in 1993 to foster, recognize and reward excellence in journalism on issues related to the LGBTQ+ community.

The 2023 NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ+ Journalists Excellence in Journalism Awards recipients are:

Special Recognition Awards: 

Journalist of the Year Award 

Ari Shapiro


Sarah Pettit Memorial Award for the LGBTQ+ Journalist of the Year Award

Victoria A. Brownworth


The Al Neuharth Award for Innovation in Investigative Journalism Award

Nico Lang for “These States Had Few, If Any, Trans Student Athletes. They Passed Sports Bans Anyway.

Huffington Post


Print/Online Awards:

Excellence in Book Writing Award

Casey Parks for Diary of a Misfit

Penguin Random House


Excellence in Feature Writing Award

Sam Manzella for “The Stonewall Generation fought for equality. Now they are fighting for their lives.

LGBTQ Nation


Excellence in Feature Writing, Non-Daily Award 

Emma Madgic for “Rediscovering a Forgotten Provincetown Artist

Provincetown Independent 


Excellence in Long Form Journalism Award

Ernest Owens for “Jussie Smollett Wanted to Be a Hero. Instead, He Destroyed His Career”, Rolling Stone


Excellence in Newswriting Award

Elizabeth Harris and Alexandra Alter for their series on book bans across the United States

Book Banning in the United States: Targeting LGBTQ Themes and Communities

With Rising Book Bans, Librarians Have Come Under Attack

Book Ban Efforts Spread Across the U.S.

How a Debut Graphic Memoir Became the Most Banned Book in the Country

The New York Times


Excellence in Newswriting, Non-Daily Award 

Bennet Goldstein for “Queering the family farm: Despite obstacles, LGBTQ farmers find fertile ground in Midwest

Wisconsin Watch


Excellence in Photojournalism Award 

Nabil Harb and Ashley Dye for “I’m Trying to Focus on the Joy

The Cut


Excellence in Profile Writing Award

Francisco Vara-Orta for “First gay mayor in U.S. didn’t expect to be LGBTQ rights icon

Los Angeles Times


Excellence in Sports Writing Award 

Nico Lang for “These States Had Few, If Any, Trans Student Athletes. They Passed Sports Bans Anyway.

Huffington Post


Excellence in Student Journalism Award 

Alan Halaly for “Ben Sasse’s anti-LGBTQ past recalls deep-rooted history of campus prejudice“, The Independent Florida Alligator 


Excellence in Travel Writing Award 

Jim Gladstone for “A Postcard From Berlin

Passport Magazine


Digital Awards: 

Excellence in Blogging Award 

Andy Dehnart for “Drag Race’s talent has never been better. The producing has never been worse.

Reality Blurred


Excellence in Digital Video Award

Imaeyen Ibanga for “I’m A Pregnant Man In An Anti-LGBTQ+ State



Excellence in Multimedia Award 

T.M. Brown, Michael Beswetherick, Phaedra Brown, Gabriel Gianordoli,

Susan C. Beachy and Tony Cenicola for “Hidden in a Fire Island House, the Soundtrack of Love and Loss

The New York Times


Excellence in Online Journalism Award 

The Insider team for their series on the murders of trans people across the United States

Deaths in the Family

“Love us in private and kill us in public’: How transphobia turns young men into killers”

They called 911 for assistance. Then police used lethal force.

The unsolved murders of Eastern Avenue

A gender nonconforming teen was killed at a party in small town Alabama. Why haven’t police solved the case?



Editorial Awards:

Excellence in Column Writing Award 

LZ Granderson for his work at the LA Times

The LA Times


Excellence in Opinion/Editorial Writing Award 

Bryn Nelson for “How Stochastic Terrorism Uses Disgust to Incite Violence

Scientific American


Broadcast Awards:

Excellence in Documentary Award 

Alex Liu, Leonardo Neri and Steven Flynn for “A Sexplanation

Herra Productions


Excellence in Local Television Award 

PJ Randhawa, Eric Desrosiers, Roberta Romero and Michael Botsford for “Transgender Hate & Hope

King 5 News


Excellence in Network Television Award 

Soul of a Nation Presents for “PRIDE: To Be Seen

ABC News


Excellence in Podcasts Award 

Victoria Dominguez Peek, Elena Schwartz, Jared Downing, Colton Salaz, Madeline Ducharme, Anna Phillips and Mary Harris for “What Texas’ Attacks on Trans Health Care Did to One Family“, Slate’s What Next


Excellence in Radio Award 

Hayley Sanchez and Kevin Beaty for “For the Colorado Springs LGBTQ community, the Club Q shooting has dredged up memories of the area’s bigoted past — and the huge progress made (and yet to make)

Colorado Public Radio


Coverage Awards:

Excellence in Bisexual Coverage Award

Clare Mulroy for “To disclose or not to disclose: Inside the push for bisexual-affirming medical care

USA Today


Excellence in Business Coverage Award 

Ben Steverman for “New York Gay Bars Are Declining—and Covid Isn’t All to Blame“, Bloomberg


Excellence in Critique Writing Award 

Naveen Kumar for “Fire Island Is a Love Story About Queer Alienation



Excellence in Education Coverage Award 

ABC News Live for “Acceptance High

ABC News Live


Excellence in Food Coverage Award 

H Conley for “I Realized I Was Trans While Making Cheese

Bon Appétit


Excellence in Health or Fitness Coverage Award 

Dan Diamond, Fenit Nirappil and Lena H Sun for “Inside America’s monkeypox crisis — and the mistakes that made it worse“, The Washington Post 


Excellence in HIV/AIDS Coverage Award

Jordan Gonsalves for “A Positive HIV Test Shattered His Dreams of Serving in the U.S. Army. Now He’s Suing

Time Magazine


Excellence in International Coverage Award 

Valerie Hopkins and Valeriya Safronova for “‘I’m Afraid for My Future’: Proposed Laws Threaten Gay Life in Russia

The New York Times


Excellence in Legal Coverage Award 

Nico Lang for “Alabama Is Trying to Raise the Legal Driving Age for Trans People to 19

The Daily Beast


Excellence in Political Coverage Award 

Matt Lavietes for his coverage of the political firestorm in Florida brought on by the passage of the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill

“‘Groomer,’ ‘pro-pedophile’: Old tropes find new life in anti-LGBTQ movement

Here’s what Florida’s ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill would do and what it wouldn’t do

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signs bill limiting LGBTQ classroom instruction

I cannot teach in Florida’: LGBTQ educators fear fallout from new school law

NBC News


Excellence in QPOC Coverage Award 

Maggie Sivit and Ari Mejia for “Traveling parties are part of a queer Chicago culture of partying as resistance

WBEZ Chicago and Vocalo Radio


Excellence in Religion Coverage Award 

ABC News Studios for “Mormon No More

ABC News


Excellence in Theatre Coverage Award 

Tim Teeman for “Inside Beanie Feldstein and Lea Michele’s ‘Funny Girl’ Broadway Meltdown

The Daily Beast


Excellence in Transgender Coverage Award 

Wren Sanders and the Them team for their Trans Futures Week series



Excellence in Nonbinary and Gender Nonconforming Coverage Award 

Minami Funakoshi for “Gender & Language



No nominations were received for the Excellence in Spanish Language Award category.

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About NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ+ Journalists 

NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ+ Journalists is a journalist-led association working within the news media to advance fair and accurate coverage of LGBTQ+ communities and issues. We promote diverse and inclusive workplaces by holding the industry accountable and providing education, professional development and mentoring. For more information, visit