Aaron Orlando, editor of the Revelstoke Times Review, has been nominated as a top-three finalist for two 2012 Ma Murray Community Newspaper Awards.
Orlando, the editor of the newspaper since August 2008, was nominated for the John Collinson Memorial Award for Investigate Journalism and the Neville Shanks Memorial Award for Historical Writing.
“It’s great that all of his hard work is paying off and he’s getting recognized for it,” said Times Review publisher Mavis Cann. “I feel we have one of the best newsrooms in the chain and it’s wonderful that all their dedication and hard work is being recognized provincially.”
The Ma Murray awards honour the best in community newspapers throughout British Columbia and the Yukon. They will handed out on April 14 in Richmond, B.C.
For the investigative journalism award, Orlando was nominated for a series of articles that appeared in 2011, starting with a story that appeared in the July 20, 2011, issue of the Times Review headlined, Forests ministry knew of conditions in squalid camps; workers not yet paid.
The articles revealed that a group of silviculture workers who lived in horrible conditions at bush camps near Revelstoke had still not been paid nearly a year after the abuses were discovered. He also reported the government knew of the conditions in the camps but had not acted effectively on the reports until the story broke in the media.
“This story’s not over,” he said. “We continue to follow criminal court proceedings here in Revelstoke. The BC Coroners Service tells me the coroners’ report into the death of Khaira Enterprises employee Santokh Kooner is due in weeks.”
Orlando was nominated in the historical writing category for his article about a meteorite that crashed near Revelstoke in 1965. When a report was published last March that the meteorite might contain signs of extra-terrestrial life, he went into the archives to explore the little-known history of the meteorite.
“I had fun with this story,” Orlando said. “I’d heard of the Revelstoke meteorite before, but not much was known. Suddenly, a scientist is saying it is an extremely rare type of meteorite linked to evidence that alien life had been proven? It’s the biggest story there is – I had to bite.”
A full list of nominees can be found at the B.C. and Yukon Community Newspapers Associations website at www.bccommunitynews.com/files/awards.