2020 NRMA Kennedy Awards Entry & Criteria



1.  Names of all journalists on the entry .

2. Date of publication or broadcast

3.  Place, publication and outlet

4.  A maximum 400 word statement supporting your entry

5.  Subject line: ‘award entry’ &  the category name.

6. A Current Portrait

Entry is a $50 tax deductible donation for every unrelated piece of work

Entry for a series of (maximum five) related items also a $50 donation to The Kennedy Foundation.

All entries are to be submitted electronically via email to  kennedyawardsjudging@gmail.com– as PDF files, AV and Audio files or links and  JPEGS.

Please note: all queries regarding entries should only be addressed to Steve Warnock at kennedyawards@gmail.com 

The kennedyawardsjudging@gmail.com account is for entry submissions only.

The NRMA Kennedy Awards recognises and celebrates the past and present greats of Australian journalism while raising funds and awareness for Australia’s media charity – The Kennedy Foundation, supporting colleagues in hardship, with compassion in confidence.
Since 2012 our gala presentation ceremony and black tie ball has been staged on or around the anniversary of Les Kennedy’s passing in August 2011.
Following registration here, entries and all relevant links, files and supporting statements must be submitted to kennedyawardsjudging@gmail.com by 6pm July 1st, 2020. Finalists will be announced at 7pm on July 22th.
All entries must have been published in the current financial year, from July 1st 2019 until midnight June 30th, 2020.
Please note: The same story can be entered in multiple categories – but must be submitted as a separate $50 registration each time.
Multiple unrelated stories can also be entered in the same category (to effectively compete against one’s self) as long as the stories are submitted as separate $50 registrations.
A series of up to five related stories (eg the original story and follow-ups) can be submitted as a single $50 registration.
Young Journalist of the Year entrants qualifiy if yet to turn 27 by June 30, 2020.

PLEASE NOTE: All submissions must include a current photograph of the entrant.

Award Categories and Criteria

1. Outstanding Crime Reporting

Les Kennedy was an exceptional  “shoe leather” – contacts driven journalist who broke many stories. The judges will be looking for highly original, exclusive work with enduring impact.

2. Regional Broadcast Reporting

Named after the legendary broadcast journalist Paul Lockyer,  the Regional Broadcasting Award will recognise those journalists who succeed in reporting original stories impacting on the 10 million Australians living outside the state and territory capital cities

3. Regional Newspaper Reporting

This award is named after the Newcastle Herald veteran Chris Watson, and the judges will be looking for exclusive stories that make a difference.

4. Racing Writer Of The Year

The racing judges will consider the quality and originality of news and feature stories emerging from the “sport of kings.”

5. Outstanding Radio Journalism

In the spirit of Sean Flannery, after whom this award is named, the judges will consider originality, presentation, exclusivity and broad impact in selecting the finalists from radio news and current affairs.

6. Outstanding Podcast

Podcasts can attract audiences in their millions, and those who are mastering this increasingly popular genre of investigative reporting and storytelling will be judged for the substance of the entry’s content and its presentation.

7. Outstanding News Photography 

8.Outstanding Portrait  

9. Outstanding Sports Photography

All the photographic judges will assess the entries on their attention to technical detail, newsworthiness and the ingenuity in framing a sensational picture.

10. Outstanding Online Video

The judges will place a heavy emphasis on originality, production values and impact.

11. People’s Choice from Power of The Lens Exhibition – judged by popular online vote.

12. Outstanding Illustration or Cartoon

Judges will consider wit, technical skill and a sharp eye for irony in depicting the major issues of any given day.

13. Team Player And Mentor Peer selected nominees.

14. Outstanding Sport Reporting

In an era when many sport stories move from the back to “the front of the book” the judges will place a high value on the exclusivity of hard news content and the quality of feature writing when covering Australia’s most newsworthy sports.

15. Outstanding Travel Writing

Eloquence and originality will make for a powerful mix in the eyes of our seasoned travel judges.

16. Young Journalist of The Year (if yet to turn 27 by June 30)

Judges will reward high achievement in terms of news cycle dominance in identifying the brightest of our rising stars.

17. Lifetime Achievement (Selected by Kennedy Foundation Board)

18. Indigenous Affairs Reporting

The judging committee in this award, named after the trail-blazing John Newfong, will assess the impact of each entry in revealing the most important issues impacting on Australia’s first nation peoples.

19. Outstanding News Camera Coverage

A combination of bravery under duress, newsworthiness and technical skill will dominate the thinking of the seasoned judges in this category

20. Outstanding Television News Reporting

The judges will select finalists for exclusivity, persistence and profound impact in the TV News Reporting award, named after the late, great Harry Potter.

21. Outstanding Television Current Affairs Reporting Long Form

Profound impact, newsworthiness, presentation and production values will be given major consideration by the judges.

22. Outstanding Nightly Television Current Affairs Reporting

The judges will be looking for relevance to a broad audience, exclusivity and the slickness of presentation.

23. Outstanding Columnist

Faithful to the memory of the inimitable Peter Ruehl – the judges will examine columns for their wit, incisiveness, pure entertainment, relevance and unique take of the affairs of the day

24.Outstanding Finance Reporting

Newsworthiness and exclusivity will be paramount in the consideration of the judges.

25. Outstanding Court Reporting

Judges will be looking for the best angle, exclusivity and the quality of writing in reporting courts and legal affairs.

26. Outstanding Consumer Affairs Reporting

The judges will favour exclusive stories with a broad impact.

27. Outstanding Online News Breaking

In a new era of minute-by-minute deadlines the judges will reward those who have broken the biggest stories on the fly by maximising their use of multiple digital platforms.

28. Outstanding Reporting on the Environment

As debate over global warming dominates the international news agenda, judges will consider the most relevant and accurate stories to emerge from coverage of the planet’s present and future, including the impact of bushfires, droughts and floods on the battered Australian landscape.

29. Scoop of The Year

The judges will recognise the hardest hitting exclusive news story of the current financial year – in the true tradition of the late Rebecca Wilson, after whom this award is named.

30. Outstanding Investigative Reporting

While the media unites to fight for press freedom and expose secrets entries in the investigative journalism award will be judged for the depth and impact of their excavations.

31. Outstanding Feature Writing

The judges will be rewarding the most original story tellers at the height of their powers.

32. Outstanding Foreign Correspondent

As record numbers of Australians explore the wider world interest in the affairs of other nations has rarely been more heightened. The judges in this category will reward those hard-hitting stories from other countries that still manage to have profound relevance to readers and viewers at home. The judges will place a high value on exclusivity and endeavour.

33. Outstanding Political Reporting

The judges will recognise those exclusive stories with the greatest impact and follow-up in the day-to-day coverage of state and federal politics.

34. Journalist of the Year

Our panel of senior news executives will rate the story they’d be most likely to select as their splash or lead story in a prime time bulletin.


Judging Process 

Three finalists in each category will be selected and the judging committee will choose the winner – recognising exceptional examples of ground breaking, gutsy and creative journalism demonstrating a profound and enduring impact.
Judges will also take into account resources, research, preproduction, preparation, logistical challenges, public interest and community benefit.

Entrants are required to disclose any formal corrections, claims of plagiarism or legal proceedings related to the entry after its publication. By registering, the entrant attests to the originality of work and its compliance with copyright rules.

Dealing with Conflict of Interest in Judging

The Kennedy Awards strives to avoid real or perceived conflicts of interest in the judging process. The judging committee comprises a selection of respected leaders in Australian journalism.
The Kennedy Awards Committee will monitor any potential for a personal or professional relationship to undermine the independence, fairness and objectivity of the judging process.
Judging the work of entrants from their own media organisation will not necessarily disqualify a judge.
Before the judging process begins each judge will be required to identify any potential conflict of interest and notify the organising committee, and the appropriate changes will be made if necessary.
Finalists will be posted on the Kennedy Awards website at the completion of a function to announce the finalists at The Owners Pavilion, Royal Randwick, on the evening of Wednesday, July 22, 2020.
For details on individual awards category sponsorship opportunities & 2020 Kennedy Sponsorship Packages contact: STEVE WARNOCK at kennedyawards@gmail.com or on 0424 407 717.