First Prize

2021 Beat Reporting (Midsize Newsroom) Winner

Mila Koumpilova, Chalkbeat Chicago

Mila Koumpilova: Beat Reporting

About the Winner

While juggling daily beat reporting, enterprise stories and investigations, Mila Koumpilova consistently obtained exclusive data and wrote stories immersing readers in the experience of students and families in Chicago, such as an in-depth series on the pandemic’s disproportionate impact on Black and Latino boys.

Comments from the Judges:

“A solid package of essential reporting during the pandemic recovery period, expertly told and substantiated with the perfect balance of data and on-the-ground reporting. I felt like I was being parachuted into schools, neighborhoods and the lives of vulnerable students.”

“Three Black and Latino teens, Leonel Gonzalez, Derrick Magee and Nathaniel Martinez, took my breath away, and [I] even got teary-eyed in this extraordinary story by Mila Koumpilova. Wow. The other stories in this group were exemplary as well.”