Credit: Illustration by Chris Allen, VOICE

S. E. Williams |

The California News Publishers Association (CNPA) has completed presentation of the 2021 California Journalism Awards. 

This year once again the competition was intense as CNPA received and assessed no less than 2,800 entries from print, digital and campus publications.

Winners were announced via Twitter throughout the week beginning Monday May 23, and by Friday, May 27, the Black Voice News editorial team had received a total of “six” awards as follows:

Black Voice News reporter and Report for America corps member Breanna Reeves received two awards for her well written and researched report,  “The Barren Mile: Food Apartheid and San Bernardino Residents’ Quest for Fresh, Healthy Food as COVID-19 Persists”. It tells the story of the struggle for fresh, healthy food in San Bernardino County not only during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, but also of those residing in food deserts who live this reality on an ongoing basis both before and since the worst days of the coronavirus. 

Reeves’ recognition in relation to this story included a “First Place” award for “In-Depth” reporting, and equally as exciting, a “Second Place” honor in the “Open, In-Depth” reporting category where her article was measured not only against submissions from weekly publications but also against publications in larger distribution categories including dailies with distributions over 50,000.

Reeves was also awarded “Second Place” for “Writing Excellence” for her penetrating report, Black and Missing: Shining a Light. The report brings attention to  the tens of thousands of missing Black people across the country typically overlooked by mainstream media.

In the category of “Front Page Layout and Design Cover Illustration” Black Voice News Creative Director  Chris Allen was awarded “Second Place” for a print cover he created to highlight another report by Reeves, “Civil Rights Institute of Inland Southern California to Provide Inclusive Community Space, Affordable Housing.” Judges described the cover  as striking and engaging for a subject that is “challenging to visualize”.Black Voice News rounded out the awards with two “Third Place” nods from CNPA beginning with a 3rd Place award for Investigative Reporting for the article, Trapped at the Crossroads Between Domestic Violence and Homelessness by Executive Editor S. E. Williams which highlights the issues faced by domestic violence survivors who also become homeless as a result–a situation that worsened during the COVID-19 pandemic. Williams was also awarded “Third Place” for her weekly column Keeping it Real on, Mental Illness Runs in My Family which describes the ongoing challenges faced by families who deal with mental illness across generations.

Stephanie Williams is executive editor of the IE Voice and Black Voice News. A longtime champion for civil rights and social justice in all its forms, she is also an advocate for government transparency and committed to ferreting out and exposing government corruption. Over the years Stephanie has reported for other publications in the inland region and Los Angeles and received awards from the California News Publishers Association for her investigative reporting and Ethnic Media Services for her weekly column, Keeping it Real. She also served as a Health Journalism Fellow with the USC Annenberg Center for Health Journalism. Contact Stephanie with tips, comments. or concerns at