DULUTH, Minn. – Duluth (Minn.) News Tribune Investigations Editor Brandon Stahl took a first-place prize in the prestigious Frank Premack Awards presented at the University of Minnesota’s Minneapolis campus Thursday night — but another award kept him from being able to accept it in person.
Stahl is attending the Association of Health Care Journalists convention in Atlanta, where he’s slated to accept a first-place investigative journalism honor on Saturday for the series “The Case of Dr. Konasiewicz,” co-authored with reporter Mark Stodghill.
Another DNT reporter, John Lundy, was also at the Atlanta conference as part of a year-long AHCJ fellowship he was awarded last year.
Stahl’s Premack honor was for his series “Minnesota Sex Offender Program,” which looked at how a multimillion-dollar, state-run treatment program for sex offenders had never released a client — all ex-cons who had completed their prison time but were in effect serving life sentences at the center. After the series ran, Minnesota released its first program participant.
“This series examined the hard question of what do you do with people who society wants to keep locked up and who in fact may never be cured, yet who have also served all the time demanded of them,” said News Tribune Editor Robin Washington, who accepted the award for Stahl. “That a participant was finally released is both progress, yet to many, scary as hell, and Brandon’s portrait of their lives and condition illustrated that.”
Stahl’s award was in the “Public Affairs Reporting — Print/Online, Small Organization category.”
In their 35th year, the Premack Awards honor the best of public affairs reporting among Minnesota media and are named after legendary Minneapolis Tribune reporter and editor Frank Premack.
Here are links to Stahl’s award-winning articles:
MSOP: Millions spent on sex offender rehabilitation, but no one has been rehabilitated
MSOP: Should sex offenders ever be released?
MSOP: Is Minnesota sex offender program illegal?
MSOP: No way out of the system?
MSOP: Ordered to be deported, but confined at MSOP
The case of Dr. Konasiewicz: As Duluth hospital reaped millions, surgeon racked up complaints
The case of Dr. Konasiewicz: Ailing patients speak out about former Duluth doctor