A Belleville News-Democrat documentary titled “Then I Knew” won the top award in the audio/visual category in the second annual Excellence in Poverty Journalism Awards sponsored by St. Louis-based ArchCity Defenders.
The award recognizes journalists for in-depth reporting on poverty, race and class. It beat out entries in that category from other St. Louis media.
“Then I Knew” was produced by BND reporter Cara Anthony and former BND photo journalist Julian Lim.
The online series tackles the issues of race and identity by asking African-Americans about the first time they realized that the color of their skin could affect the way they are treated by others.
“‘Then I Knew’ was born out of the need for a long-form story about the state of black America,” Anthony said. “Daily stories about tragedy and triumph in my community only share a very small part of the big picture. ‘Then I Knew’ explores the silence between joy and pain. It’s about everyday life as a black American.”
The awards ceremony was Thursday night at Anew Rooftop in St. Louis.
Dr. Donald Suggs, publisher and executive editor of the St. Louis American, received the Lifetime Achievement Award in Poverty Journalism Excellence.