The Seattle Times is the winner of the fourth annual APME Innovator of the Year award. Attendees at the Associated Press Managing Editors conference selected The Times from three finalists in the award competition at The Poynter Institute for Media Studies in St. Petersburg, Fla.
The Times was recognized for its use of digital and social-media tools in covering the shooting deaths of four police officers last November, and for partnering with neighborhood blogs in its Networked Journalism Project.
The other finalists were the Democrat and Chronicle of Rochester, N.Y., for its Picture the Impossible alternate-reality game, developed with the Rochester Institute of Technology, and the Statesman Journal of Salem, Ore., for its extensive use of social networking in all types of reporting.
"In an age when there is so much innovation going on in our business, to be recognized for helping lead the way is especially gratifying for us," said David Boardman, executive editor of The Times "We at The Seattle Times are fortunate to work for a company that encourages us to try new things in the service of our community."
The Seattle Times received $2,000 from sponsors of the award, GateHouse Media and the Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute at the University of Missouri.
"This contest is growing in scope every year, and we thank our sponsors for adding a monetary award this year," said Bob Heisse, APME Innovation Committee chairman and executive editor of the Centre Daily Times in State College, Pa. "It's unique in that the conference attendees decide the winner, but there are no losers in this showcase for innovation."