Scene and herd: Former staffer Joel Warner's January 2011 cover story "Black and Blue," which told how then-nineteen-year-old Alex Landau was beaten by Denver cops after making a wrong turn, has been awarded first place in News — Best Single Story for newspapers under 150,000 circulation by the National Association of Black Journalists. Warner, who won two first-place prizes in last year's NABJ contest, is currently writing a book.
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Veteran Westword writer Alan Prendergast just got a shout-out from Pro Publica, a nonprofit dedicated to "journalism in the public interest," for his February 2011 cover story "Devil's Playground," which made the list of "Land of the Free: the Best Investigative Reporting on U.S. Prisons." And even though Sam Levin, Westword's new fellow, has been on the job for less than a month, he's already earned a laurel from the Columbia Journalism Review for his work digging into the "public inspection files" at local TV stations to determine how much money has been spent on political ad buys — and why, exactly, Joe Coors seems to be targeting viewers of The Big Bang Theory.