PHILADELPHIA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Society of Professional Journalists announced today that longtime Philadelphia Gay News writer-at-large Timothy Cwiek is the recipient of its 2013 Sigma Delta Chi Investigative Reporting Award. Cwiek was given the award for his reporting on the unsolved homicide of Philadelphia transgender woman Nizah Morris.
The prestigious Sigma Delta Chi Awards drew more than 1,800 entries from print, radio, television and digital outlets across the nation. Cwiek was given the award in the Non-Daily category; three other daily-publication writers also received Investigative Reporting awards.
Cwiek has been reporting on the Morris case since its inception in 2002. Morris sustained a head injury Dec. 22, 2002, shortly after receiving a police courtesy ride in Center City Philadelphia. She died days later. For more than 11 years, Cwiek has pressed law-enforcement and city officials for transparency with case records, filing several Right to Know Law requests. His dedication to the case is largely credited with securing a reopened investigation by the city’s civilian-oversight committee, which last year issued a report calling the investigation “appalling” and urging state and federal probes.
Cwiek has been a PGN staffer since the late 1970s. He said the passion of Morris’ family and friends has kept him committed to the case. “Their steadfastness all these years has made my work possible,” Cwiek said.
“Tim is a rare breed in today’s journalism. In this time of instant-news gratification, he takes the time to get the story, no matter how long it takes,” Mark Segal PGN publisher said. “For too long, Nizah and the stories of other trans people have been ignored by our community. Her story is a compelling one and one that needs to be told. To my knowledge, no other LGBT media outlet has spent this long and these resources on one investigation. We at PGN do that due to our respect for Tim and his professionalism. We congratulate him on this incredible honor. All of us at PGN are proud to be his colleagues.”
Since 1976, Philadelphia Gay News, the area’s largest and oldest publication targeted to the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community, has been providing quality journalism that both explores and advocates for issues pertinent to the LGBT community. We are guided by three core principles: Honesty. Integrity. Professionalism.
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