Denver Post’s ‘Stepping Toward Hope’ wins Investigative/Enterprise DFMie

This photo by Craig F. Walker was part of the Denver Post's winning enterprise nomination. A crawling exercise in Craig Hospital's PEAK workout gym is his toughest task.
This photo by Craig F. Walker was part of the Denver Post's winning enterprise nomination. A crawling exercise in Craig Hospital's PEAK workout gym is his toughest task.

The Denver Post won the 2014 Investigative/Enterprise DFMie for large newsrooms for its project Stepping Toward Hope.

Under DFMie rules, nominations for work by more than four journalists are regarded as staff entries. Stepping Toward Hope was a project that included stories by Michael Booth, photos by Craig F. Walker and RJ Sangosti, video by AAron Ontiveroz and graphics by Severiano Galvan.

The editors’ nomination:

“Stepping Toward Hope” chronicled in four parts the efforts of patients suffering spinal-cord injuries to take advantage of new science and locomotor therapy that may allow them to walk again. Intense struggles, aching despair and remarkable effort are all part of their grueling stories.

In addition to winning a monthly DFMie, the Mary and Charles A. Parkhill Foundation awarded a grant to Mackenzie Gorden, who was featured on Day 3 of the series, to fund her therapy at Craig Hospital.

Judges’ comments:

Among many strong entries in this category, the Post’s stood out. This series was beautifully written and exhaustively researched. Through powerful images, text, video and graphics, the reporters told a rich and complicated story through the eyes of those who wonder daily, ‘Will I ever walk again?’ Also notable was The Post’s creative use of short, Vine-style video snippets, which helped illustrate the story without slowing the narrative.

This is one of four DFMies won by the Denver Post and six won by the Colorado newsrooms. Charlie Brennan of the Daily Camera in Boulder won the Investigative/Enterprise DFMie for small newsrooms. The Camera and Post swept both the large-newsroom and small-newsroom DFMies for breaking news and investigative/enterprise journalism.

Other investigative/enterprise finalists

Other large-newsroom finalists for the Investigative or Enterprise Journalism DFMie were:

The investigative or enterprise category was not divided by newsroom size in 2013, when MaryJo Webster, Mara Gottfried, Christopher Magan and C.J. Sinner of the St. Paul Pioneer Press won the DFMie.

Steve Buttry

By Steve Buttry

Steve Buttry is Digital Transformation Editor for Digital First Media. He oversees our efforts to transform newsroom operations and culture to more effectively pursue our digital goals. His duties include responsibility for social media and community engagement. He has visited most DFM newsrooms personally, leading workshops and coaching editors and other journalists in following the Digital First approach.

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