Texas Gavel Award winners announced; recipients to be honored at Sept. 12 FOIFT conference

The State Bar of Texas has announced the winners of the 2014 Texas Gavel Awards honoring journalism that deepens the public’s understanding of the legal system. The recipients will receive their awards at a Sept. 12 luncheon as part of the Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas annual conference at the Hilton Austin. For information on registering for the luncheon and conference, click here. The full State Bar press release, distributed July 23, can be viewed here.

The Gavel Award winners are listed below by award category, along with short descriptions of their entries.

Print, Major Metro: Brantley Hargrove, Dallas Observer, is the winner for
“Burning Injustice,” a story about a woman’s fight to clear her name after a
disputed murder conviction and the state’s efforts to deal with arson convictions
involving “junk science.”

Print, Non-Metro: Michelle Villarreal, Corpus Christi Caller-Times, is the
winner for “Death of Innocence,” a story about difficulties surrounding the release
of information to the public and media in crimes involving juveniles and gag
orders.

Broadcast, Major Metro: Lynn Boswell, KLRU-TV and Villita Media, is the
winner for “Admissions on Trial: Seven Decades of Race and Higher Education,”
an in-depth look at how colleges and universities decide which students to admit
and reject and the courts’ role in answering whether race has a place in the
decision.

Broadcast, Non-Metro: Joe Augustine (reporter) and Mario Sandoval
(photographer/editor), KRGV-TV, are winners for “Trapped,” which highlights
delays in immigration courts and the effects of the government’s decision to
reprioritize cases.

Online: Brandi Grissom, The Texas Tribune, is the winner for “Trouble in
Mind,” a six-part series examining the intersections of the Texas mental health
and criminal justice systems and the developing jurisprudence around brain
science.