2008 First Place Photojournalism Winner


In their own words…

“I arrived at the Hearst competition during one of my lowest points in the last few years. As a recent graduate from Western Kentucky University, I had been struggling with the shock and harsh reality of the freelance world and the daunting prospects of being able to find steady work. I felt as if I was being beaten over the head with a stick and was losing the joy I felt in shooting. I was scared and a bit depressed. My first day of shooting I woke up and walked straight to City Lights Book Store strictly for myself, took a couple pictures, had a cup of coffee at Triste Café, and talked to locals about my ideas for shooting “San Francisco going green.” But in the meantime, over the next day all my story ideas kept falling through. Even though I was having a ball running around the city shooting features I would stumble across, my story idea hadn’t even made it out of its first trimester.

The last day, I lucked out and took the advice of my friend at the Triste Café and met a wonderful community- Sherman Elementary School. In the spirit of their gracious nature they welcomed me into their lives for a couple hours. And we all played. They explored Mother Earth while I forgot about the competition and my fears, and got down into the dirt with them and had fun. I want to thank them all for being so open and warm. Without the trust and good will of so many people I wouldn’t have the pictures I do. Thanks again Sherman Elementary School. You made a difference in my life by giving me the gift of yourselves. I hope you enjoy the pictures.”