Former Star intern Daniel Dale best young journalist in Canada
By Roger Gillespie
Dale, 25, won the 25,000-and-over circulation category in the Edward Goff Penny awards run by the Canadian Newspaper Association.
Nicole O’Reilly, a reporter at The Hamilton Spectator, won in the under-25,000 category for work she did at the Guelph Mercury.
The awards are open to Canadian journalists between 20 and 25.
A 2008 graduate of York University’s Schulich School of Business, Dale joined the Star as a summer intern in 2007 and returned as an intern for the summer of 2008. He was hired full time that September.
"I'm tremendously flattered and honoured, especially because I'm an admirer of many of the previous winners, a few of whom have gone on to do great things. Being on a list with them will motivate me to attempt to meet their high standards."Dale won for a package of four stories: Mustafa Ahmed, the 12-year-old spoken word poet from Regent Park; CNIB’s selection of its first sighted chief executive, John Rafferty; a profile of Darcy Allan Sheppard, the cycle courier killed in a collision with a car driven by former Ontario attorney-general Michael Bryant; and a sneaky tour of Maple Leaf Gardens.
"I couldn't overstate how important internships were to my professional development - before I did my first Star internship, I'd never covered a crime or a court case or pitched a human interest feature or talked to a municipal politician; I didn't go to journalism school, and my experience prior to the internships was light on actual news coverage. If I hadn't been thrown to the wolves as an intern, I simply would not have been qualified for a full-time job at a big paper."
The Edward Goff Penny Memorial Prize for Young Canadian Journalists, is open to reporters age 25 or under. There are two categories: reporters at large papers and reporters at small papers.
The Goff Penny award is named for a distinguished editor and publisher of the late 1800s. The award was established in 1991 by the estate of his grandson, Arthur, also a former newspaperman. The entries were judged by three editorial executives selected by the CNA.