The Los Angeles Business Journal has won three awards – including one for general excellence – from the main professional organization of business news editors.
The other two awards – for best investigative story and best explanatory story – were won by reporter Richard Clough.
The organization is the Society of American Business Editors and Writers, commonly called Sabew. Members are mainly business news sections of daily newspapers, business wire services such as Bloomberg News and business magazines including Fortune. Judging was done by panels of journalists.
The Business Journal, which competes in a category with other business weekly newspapers, also won three Sabew awards last year. Clough, the Business Journal’s banking and finance reporter, has won a total of four Sabew awards; he won last year for best investigative story and the year before for best enterprise story.
The Business Journal’s awards:
• General excellence. The newspaper submitted issues for three dates chosen randomly by Sabew plus one of its choosing. Judging was based on overall quality.
The judges said of the Business Journal: “Good balance of stories, giving comprehensive coverage of a diverse, sprawling community. Emphasizes local coverage without being parochial.”
• Investigative story for Clough’s article headlined “Risky Business.”
The article, published in the Sept. 26 issue, revealed problems at Koreatown’s Wilshire State Bank and centered on a dismissed marketing officer who was accused of profiting from customers’ problems.
The judges lauded Clough for getting out ahead of the difficult story “by obtaining documents and interviewing insiders, competitors, analysts and the people brought in to clean up the mess.”
• Explanatory story for Clough’s article headlined “Money Machine.”
The article, published in the June 20 issue, was about OneWest Bank, which arose from the ashes of IndyMac Bank.
The judges said: “A fascinating explanation of how well-connected buyers of IndyMac Bank are making millions while the FDIC lost billions on the deal. A classic example of how to turn monthly banking reports into blockbuster stories. Exhaustively reported and well written; it’s a complex story told in plain English.”
The business section of the Los Angeles Times also won three awards from the society of business editors – for best explanatory story, best feature story and for general excellence.
Three other publications in Southern California got prizes. The Orange County Register won in the blog category; the Ventura County Star won in the breaking news category; and the business section of U-T San Diego (formerly the San Diego Union-Tribune) won for general excellence.
Winners were announced Feb. 17. The awards were presented March 17 in Indianapolis.