School of Journalism Senior Wins Award in Religion Reporting Competition

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Heather Adams

Heather Adams

Heather Adams Received a Plaque and $300 Prize Check During Annual Awards Banquet in Atlanta

Columbia, Mo. (Oct. 16, 2014) — Missouri School of Journalism senior Heather Adams placed second in the Religion Newswriters Association‘s 2014 student contest, the Chandler Award for Student Religion Reporter of the Year. She attended RNA’s annual awards banquet on Sept. 20 in Atlanta to accept her award and received a plaque along with a $300 prize check.

Heather Adams Accepts RNA Chandler Award

From left, Russell Chandler, former religion reporter for the Los Angeles Times, and his wife M.L. Chandler present the Chandler Award for Student Religion Reporter of the Year to Heather Adams during the RNA convention.

Adams was one of 10 finalists, with more than 85 entries from across the U.S., Canada and Europe in the competition. ColumbiaFAVS, a hyperlocal online religion site that’s a project of the Center on Religion & the Professions and Religion Newswriters, published two of Adams’ winning stories. The third was distributed by Religion News Service, a Washington, D.C., wire service with subscribers including the Washington Post and Huffington Post.

Contest entries were judged on each student’s ability to cover a variety of religion topics and report them with balance, accuracy and insight. The contest judge commended Adams for her work: “This entry showcased stories about faith on the fringe, from special needs children to the Oak Scouts alternative to Boy Scouts to a university’s Baha’i collection. Well-written and researched with good use of quotes and narrative, the entries gave a focused look at varied aspects of faith too often ignored.”

Adams serves as student chapter president of Mizzou RNA. The organization is headquartered at the University of Missouri and directed by Professor Debra Mason.

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