Sonoma Independent Wins Top Journalism Award for Political Column on Clinton’s Risky VP Choice

Greater Bay Journalism Awards Also Gives This Website Prizes for General Excellence, Leonard Cohen Profile and Sonoma County 2016 Election Coverage

The San Francisco Peninsula Press Club recently announced the winners of its 40th Annual Greater Bay Area Journalism Awards. The Sonoma Independent won four awards, including its first “Digital Media Overall Excellence Award.

The Sonoma Independent’s editor Jonathan Greenberg won First Place in the political columnist category for the July 24, 2016 column,  “In Bypassing Warren As VP, Clinton Raises Risk Of Losing To Trump.”

The column, which also appeared as a post on Greenberg’s Huffington Post political blog,  was published on the eve of the Democratic National Convention. It warned that “Bernie Sanders’ young and independent supporters are the last voters in the world who should be taken for granted.” 

The First Place political column predicted thatIf a significant percentage of Bernie-backing voters reject a Clinton-Kaine ticket by not showing up to vote, or by voting for other candidates, then Hillary would lose in November. Donald Trump would become the next President of the United States of America.  That would be a tragedy of historic proportions. A tragedy, in part, of Hillary Clinton’s making.”

The Sonoma Independent also won three second place awards. One was for Digital Media Overall Excellence. Another was also in the Digital Media, Columns-News/Political category for this reporter’s post-November, 2017 election, titled, Five 2016 Election Victories that Prove Sonoma County is ALREADY Great! The column noted that  local citizens rejected the national conservative trend by voting in the first women majority of Sonoma County’s Board of Supervisors in history, as well as a GMO farm moratorium, a tax to restore library hours after six years of Monday closings,  a Palm Drive Hospital Board majority committed to keeping West County’s hospital open and a county-wide 70 to 23% electoral landslide for Hillary Clinton.

Jonathan Greenberg also won a Second Place Award in the category of  “Digital Media, Feature Story / Light Nature, for the feature story “What I Learned from My Wise Uncle Leonard Cohen,

This is the second consecutive year that the Sonoma Independent’s Jonathan Greenberg has won First Place for awards in Columns-News/Political digital category the Greater Bay Area Journalism competition.  Last year, the winner was Greenberg’s May, 2015 column  titled, “Despite Record Budget Surplus, Supervisors Refuse to Restore Library Hours.”

The story, accompanies by this MoveOn civic engagement petition signed by nearly 1,300 citizens, noted that despite a record projected budget surplus of $13 million, and an enormous $28 million four year increase in spending on prison and probation, the Supervisors refused to use the surplus funds to assist the library.   “While many other County funding cutbacks that impact far fewer than 100,000 library users have been restored” the article noted, “inflation adjusted funding for libraries has actually fallen by 3% since the unprecedented hour cutback in 2011.  County Library Director Brett Lear believes it would cost just $1.2 million to restore Monday hours.”

The library series in the Sonoma Independent followed two years after this reporter won also won a First Place award for “Analysis” from the  Greater Bay Journalism Awards  or this cover story in the The North Bay Bohemian about the library finding crisis titled, “Epic Local Government Failure Results in Closed Libraries.”

 

 

Jonathan Greenberg

The founder and Editor of the Sonoma County Independent, Greenberg is an investigative financial journalist with 40 years of experience with national publications. Greenberg also serves as founder and Executive Director of Informing to Empower, the parent non-profit of both the Sonoma Independent and the Maui Independent. Greenberg has won awards from the Greater Bay Journalism Awards for the past four years on behalf of the Sonoma Independent, starting with his coverage of the closing of County library cutbacks, and then the struggle to reopen Palm Drive Hospital. Jonathan Greenberg recently wrote three of the most widely-read exposes about Trump’s career ever published on the Washington Post. Jonathan was the notorious Forbes 400 reporter who taped two long Trump calls in 1984 in which he pretended to be the fictitious John Baron. His Post expose about this, with audio here, has been the subject of monologues on Colbert, the Daily Show and Seth Meyer’s A Closer Look. Jonathan has appeared live on a dozen top news shows, including Chris Cuomo’s CNN Good Day and most recently on CNN’s prime time Upfront with Erin Burnett to expose Trump’s latest lies. Jonathan was a Web 1.0 pioneer, founding Gist Communications in 1996, an Internet company that competed successfully with TV Guide Online. In 1997, Gist was one of just 14 websites in the world to be named a winner of the First Annual Webby Awards in San Francisco. Jonathan’s professional career began as a fact checker at Forbes Magazine, where he advanced to the role of the lead reporter in creating the first Forbes 400 listing of wealthy Americans, as recounted in this recent article for Forbes’ 100th anniversary issue and more extensively in this biography of Malcolm Forbes. Jonathan has been an investigative financial and political journalist for such national publications as The Washington Post, The New York Times, New York Magazine, Mother Jones, Forbes, Town & Country, Money, GQ, Manhattan,Inc., The New Republic, and Alternet. From 2011 through 2017, Jonathan was a blogger for the Huffington Post, where his narrative-transforming reporting and analysis about subjects like Bernie Sanders, Monsanto and Native Hawaiian water protectors achieved some of the widest readership of any HuffPost writer on these subjects. Jonathan’s nearly 40 years of professional media and reporting experience has been enhanced by a Yale Law School Masters Degree fellowship program, from which he graduated with honors in First Amendment Law from internationally renowned attorney Floyd Abrams and then Yale University President Benno Schmidt. Jonathan is the author of the critically acclaimed biography Staking A Claim: Jake Simmons and the Making of an African-American Oil Dynasty, which a Washington Post Book World front page review called, “a rare biography that challenges the readers senses in the same the way science fiction does.” In 1992, he edited Buying America Back: Economic Choices for the 1990′s, an anthology of 45 progressive solution-oriented essays called by Publisher’s Weekly, “An immensely important resource for policymakers, community activists, and everyone concerned with building a more humane future.”
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    Laura Ice
    9 December 2017 at 5:17 pm

    Good job Jonathan! BUT, I have to say this (which appeared on your Huffington Post Blog) didn’t include me. : It warned that “Bernie Sanders’ young and independent supporters are the last voters in the world who should be taken for granted.” I am OLD, and the Dems lost me!

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