IBEW Wins Communications Awards

Writers and video producers from the IBEW Media Department won 18 International Labor Communications Awards including the Steinbock Award, the single highest honor for journalistic excellence.ibew-mediacenter

Len Shindel won the Steinbock award for “La. Prison Program Offers Skills, Redemption” about the electrician training program in the state’s infamous Angola Prison.

“It is an honor being recognized by my brothers and sisters in the labor movement, and I share the honor with my IBEW colleagues who were so supportive of my writing over the years,” Shindel said. “The success of the La. State Penitentiary re-entry program is a testament to the value of the partnership between the IBEW, its signatory employers and administrators of the criminal justice system. Access to training and good jobs is a critical element in offering prisoners a second chance.”

The ILCA Awards is North America’s largest annual competition for labor communicators and journalists. The IBEW made the best showing in this year’s competition with four first place, seven second place, two third place, and three honorable mentions in addition to the Steinbock Award, all for work completed in 2015.

“These awards recognize something every member of the IBEW already knows, we have the best Media Department in the labor movement,” said International President Lonnie R. Stephenson. “No one else is going to tell our story, so it is up to us to do it. The ILCA awards are one more way we know we’re doing it well.”

Shindel, now retired, also won a first prize award for his article about the rise of pre-fabricated construction technology.

The IBEW won awards for journalism, writing analysis, editorials, graphic design and the redesigned IBEW website, and several for multimedia productions created by the IBEW Media Department’s team of producers and editors who are members of Washington, D.C., Local 1200.

Honored projects included a first place award for best news video for “Building Hope in Haiti” about IBEW members rebuilding a trade school destroyed in the 2010 Port-au-Prince earthquake.

One surprising result came in the competition for best photograph. The second place winner was not a member of the Media Department, it was an entry in the annual IBEW photo contest taken by Vacaville, Calif., Local 1245 member Shawn Murphy.

“It is fulfilling to be recognized by our colleagues for the work that we do, and the real honor is telling the stories of the members of the IBEW,” said Media Department Director Mark Brueggenjohann.