Ellie Awards Honor Mags Exploring Opioid Epidemic, Terrorism, International Crises

The best journalism acts as a mirror to a culture, whether reveals a web of systematic abuse in Hollywood or a drug epidemic resulting in tens of thousands of overdoses a year.

The 2018 Ellie Awards, the nickname given to the National Magazine Awards sponsored by the American Society of Magazine Editors in association with the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, honored the best in writing, design, social media, photography and overall excellence.

Hosted by Don Lemon, anchor of CNN Tonight With Don Lemon, the awards featured first timers and repeat winners alike.

Receiving the awards of General Excellence were four publications: The New Yorker, for News, Sports and Entertainment, its seventh general excellence ASME; T: The New York Times Style Magazine, for Service and Lifestyle, a first for the publication; and second-time winners San Francisco, for Special Interest, and Aperture, for Literature, Science and Politics. 



The New Yorker also won the award for Public Interest for Ronan Farrow’s coverage of Harvey Weinstein and the award for Feature Photography for Philip Montgomery’s photo-essay “Faces of an Epidemic,” which covered the opioid epidemic in Ohio.

“The opioid plague was a central issue,” said New Yorker editor David Remnick, adding that photojournalist Philip Montgomery did what any good journalist does: stays out and keeps his eyes open. Montgomery spent his time meeting with the coroner, riding with cops and attending funerals to capture the epidemic plaguing Montgomery County, Ohio.

Time and Mic were also honored for their coverage of the epidemic, winning the Ellie for Video for “Life After Addiction,” by Aja Harris and Paul Moakley, a first for both publications.

GQ took home the Ellie for Feature Writing for Rachel Kaadzi Ghansah’s “A Most American Terrorist: The Making of Dylann Roof.” Ghansah was also nominated in the Essay and Criticism category for her Elle piece “Her Eyes Were Watching the Stars,” and GQ won its third Ellie for design. 

Exploring issues abroad, The New York Times Magazine took home the Ellie for Reporting for “The Uncounted,” Azmat Khan and Anand Gopal’s on the ground investigation of civilian casualties following coalition airstrikes in Iraq.  

Two new categories featured this year, social media and digital innovation, with Self winning the former and SB Nation the latter.

In her acceptance speech for Self, editor in chief Carolyn Kylstra noted the win felt particularly powerful since the magazine went entirely digital last year. “This was a really huge pivot for us,” she said. “When you no longer have your flagship property, everything becomes a flagship property.”

Other honorees included The AtlanticTexas MonthlyCosmopolitanWNational Geographic and New York magazine.

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