First Annual KobreGuide Award Winners

First Annual KobreGuide Awards Prizewinners:

Best Videojournalism Stories of 2009

Celebrating excellence in video, journalism and storytelling



First Annual Kobre Guide Awards









Erik Olsen
(New York Times)

Molly's Run Molly’s Run
(Las Vegas Review-Journal)
A 52-year-old woman takes on the 131-mile Badwater Ultramarathon through Death Valley in 125-degree heat — “the world’s toughest footrace.”
Video by Justin Yurkanin
Fallout: The Legacy of Brookhaven Lab Fallout: Brookhaven(Newsday)
Survivors from an H-bomb test are sent back to radioactive Rondelap island to be used as guinea pigs for research. A 9-part investigative series.
Produced by Thomas Maier and John Paraskevas
Battle of the Blonds Battle of the Blonds
(Los Angeles Times)
Two Marilyn Monroe impersonators compete for attention on Hollywood Boulevard.
Photography and Audio by Mel Melcon
Neverland Neverland
Heartwrenching stories of Appalachian women who are struggling to escape from tragic lives of poverty, domestic violence and substance abuse.
Video by Yanina Manolova
Living Galapagos Living Galapagos
(UNC-Chapel Hill)
Student-produced collection of multimedia stories explores the balance between man and nature in the Galapagos Islands.
Executive Producer: Pat Davison
Multimedia Project by UNC-Chapel Hill’s School of Journalism & Mass Communication
The Letter from Iwo Jima Letters from Iwo Jima
(New York Times)
WWII vet Frank Hobbs seized an envelope from a fallen Japanese soldier and returned its contents to the man’s daughters … 65 years later.
By Erik Olsen & Lizette Alvarez

Nicholas D. Kristof
(New York Times)

Joel Stein


Surviving the Death Race Surviving the Death Race
(New York Times)
Who will win the surreal 24-hour endurance marathon that’s described as a cross between ‘Survivor’ and ‘Jackass’?
By Erik Olsen, Jacob Templin and Michael Brick
Saving Sea Turtles, One Nest at a Time Saving Sea Turtles, One Nest at a Time
(New York Times)
Global warming and coastal development are decimating Pacific leatherback populations. In Costa Rica, former poachers are giving them a chance at survival.
By Elisabeth Rosenthal & Shayla HarrisView
Happy 50th, Motown! Motown at 50
(Detroit Free Press)
50-video series celebrates the iconic record label’s musical stars and untold stories. Smokey, Stevie, the Supremes — they’re all here, and more.
Project leader and executive producer: Kathy Kieliszewski
Lead writer and producer: Brian McCollum
Lead videographer and producer: Romain Blanquart, Marcin Szczepanski
Project leader and editor: Steve Byrne
Videographers and producers: Brian Kaufman, Eric SealsView
Rising From the Wreckage Rising From the Wreckage
(Detroit Free Press)
Pulled back from disaster, the determined U.S. auto industry enters a new age. Multimedia series looks in the rear-view mirror … and at the rough road ahead.
Photo and video project editor: Kathy Kieliszewski
Videography by Romain Blanquart and Brian Kaufman
Editing by Brian Kaufman
Additional Videography and Photography by William Archie, Alexandra Bahou, Patricia Beck, Romain Blanquart, Regina H. Boone, Andre Jackson, Brian Kaufman, Rashaun Rucker, Eric Seals, Marcin Szczepanski, Susan Tusa, Mandi Wright
Photo and video project editor: Kathy KieliszewskiView
The Determined Divas The Determined Divas
(Rochester Democrat & Chronicle)
Eight troubled and often violent girls, struggling to better themselves through a city program, share their hopes and experiences.
Produced by Will Yurman
Reporting by by Jim MemmottView
Leveling Appalachia Leveling Appalachia
(Yale Environment 360 / MediaStorm)
An investigation into the devastating environmental and social impacts of mountaintop-removal coal mining during the last two decades.
Cinematography and producer: Chad A. Stevens
Photography: Brett Marshall, Daniel Shea, Chad A. Stevens, Vivian StockmanView
Tainted Meat Tainted Meat
(New York Times)
The regulatory system that’s supposed to protect us from potentially lethal E.Coli in burgers failed Stephanie Smith … and is not as safe as we think.
By Gabe Johnson & Michael MossView
Human Trafficking in America Human Trafficking in America
(Kansas City Star)
Five-part multimedia series investigates the exploitation of U.S. immigrants, legal and illegal, from Tijuana, Guatemala and beyond.
Video and photography:  Keith Myers
Reporters:  Mike McGraw, Laura Bauer,  Mark MorrisView
My Kidney, His Life My Kidney, His Life
(Washington Post)
A videojournalist documents his experience of being a donor in an eight-person kidney exchange so his ailing father can receive a transplant.
Video by Pierre Kattar and Alexandra GarciaView
For Their Own Good For Their Own Good
(St. Petersburg Times)
Men sentenced to the Florida School for Boys in the 1950s and 1960s are coming forward with haunting stories of torture and abuse.
Photography and Videography: Edmund D. Fountain
Video Editors: Edmund D. Fountain and Catriona Stuart
Story: Ben Montgomery and Waveney Ann MooreView
A Concrete Love Story A Concrete Love Story
(Dokument 09)
Eija-Riitta Berliner-Mauer explains why she’s sexually attracted to inanimate objects… and why she married the Berlin Wall.
Produced by Kyrrie Lien, Markus Aarstad and Brian Cliff OlguinView
Silverton Saves Its Paper Silverton Saves Its Paper
A local Colorado historical society rescues a small town’s beloved century-old weekly publication on the brink of closure.
Video and Editing by Sonya Doctorian
Produced by Sonya Doctorian and Nicole SheaView
 U.S. Citizens Born by Midwife Denied Passports U.S. Citizens Born by Midwife Denied Passports
Some Texans are not allowed to cross the Mexican border because their birth certificates were ruled invalid due to an insurmountable technicality.
Video Journalist: Silas Tyler
Associate Producer: Natasha Del Toro
Supervising Producer: Craig DuffView
A Place for Jani A Place for Jani
(Los Angeles Times)
A family struggles with the extreme challenges of raising a spirited 6-year-old daughter with severe schizophrenia.
Video by Don Kelsen & Tim FrenchView
Agent Orange: A Lethal Legacy Agent Orange: A Lethal Legacy
(Chicago Tribune)
Video series confronts the nightmarish consequences of exposure to the toxic chemical defoliant sprayed by the U.S. during the Vietnam War.
Video by Chris WalkerView
Part of the Family Part of the Family
(Reading Eagle)
A deaf high school student learns to wrestle and teaches his teammates about communication, tolerance and understanding.
Video and Photos by Susan L. Angstadt & Ben HastyView
 Pogue’s Posts
(New York Times)
By David Pogue
The Classy Bikini Bicyclist The Classy Bikini Bicyclist
(St. Petersburg Times)
Scantily clad Richard Irby, wearing only a headband and Speedo, wins fans in Florida’s state capital city of Tallahassee.
Video by Maurice Rivenbark
Story by Jeff Klinkenberg
Video Editing by Jack RowlandView
Journey Along the Border Journey Along the Border
(Washington Post)
At the intersection of the U.S. and Mexico, a travelog of two countries embroiled in ever-escalating issues of migration and drug violence.
By Travis Fox and William BoothView
Shockwaves Through My Soul Shockwaves Through My Soul
(New York Times)
Sgt. Jacob Blaylock tried to resume his life back home after serving in Iraq, but the memory of his fallen comrades haunted him.
By Erica Goode & Rob HarrisView