The winning season

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Sunday, December 8, 2013


"EVERYONE in our culture wants to win a prize," American author Gerald Early once said.

Fortunately, Sun.Star Davao columnist and feature writer Henrylito D. Tacio bagged two journalism awards this year in a matter of two weeks.

On Thursday, last November 21, leading telecommunications company Globe Telecom bestowed him the Reporter of the Year in Print for his article, "A Season of Floods," defeating four other nominees.

Published in Sun.Star Davao, the article discussed the importance on what to do when there is a flood, especially during typhoons. The article was based on a seminar-workshop that was convened by the Department of Science and Technology and the country's weather bureau, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa).

Also named during the awarding ceremonies held at the Marco Polo Hotel was Sun.Star Davao editor-in-chief Stella Estremera for writing the article, "Watershed: Our Treasures," which was chosen as Feature Story of the Year for Print.

"The Second Davao Media Excellence Awards is all about making a difference and creating opportunities to move forward and to change for the better. The print, broadcast, digital, and social media journalists of Davao should be commended for their sheer determination and unwavering passion for delivering stories that matter and for continuing to do more than just their jobs for a far more fulfilling purpose," Yoly Crisanto, senior vice president for Globe Corporate Communications, pointed out during the awarding ceremonies.

Exactly a week after, also on a Thursday, on November 28, the Joe Burgos Pen Inc. named Tacio as winner in news category in its annual search for Jose E. Burgos Jr. Awards for Biotechnology Journalism.

Tacio was cited for his article, "Golden rice: The answer to malnutrition problem," which appeared in the March 17, 2013 issue of Sun.Star Davao. He was cited "for his outstanding contribution to biotechnology journalism in the Philippines through his article."

In the features category, Sun Star Baguio's Robert L. Domoguen's won over three other nominees for his article, "Who is afraid of biotechnology?" It came out in the paper's November 13, 2012 issue.

The awarding ceremony was held at the Century Ballroom of the Century Park Hotel in Manila.

Formerly known as the Gawad Galing for Biotechnology Journalism, the award was renamed to its present name in honor of the late Jose G. Burgos, Jr., who conceptualized the award.

"The Jose G. Burgos Jr. Awards for Biotechnology Journalism was designed to encourage media to be active partners in the promotion of biotechnology," it said. "It also recognizes media's outstanding contribution in pushing the frontiers of scientific inquiry through journalism."

The two journalism recognitions Tacio received were his 14th and 15th awards, respectively.

In 1999, he was elevated to the Hall of Fame in science reporting by the Philippine Press Institute for winning the award five times. That very same year, he was named Journalist of the Year by the Rotary Club of Manila (defeating ABS-CBN's Ces Drillon, Philippine Daily Inquirer's Conrado de Quiros, and dwIZ's Siyasat Team).

The Philippine Agricultural Journalists Inc. also named Tacio twice as Countryside Agricultural/Environmental Journalist of the Year. He also received two journalism awards from Earthsavers Movement and UN Environment Program for his environmental stories.

The Aids Society of the Philippines declared him winner (features category) in its first Aids Media Contest. Part of his prize was a trip to Kuala Lumpur. He also covered Aids Conference in Melbourne, Australia, and Durban, South Africa.

As awards season is soon to over, the words of American actress Mary-Louise Parker comes to mind: "I'll take any trophy. I don't care what it says on it."

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on December 09, 2013.

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