WHNPA Eyes of History 2011

The White House News Photographers Association announced that NPR photographer David Gilkey has been named “Photographer of the Year” and Melina Mara of the Washington Post won “Political Photo of the Year” in the 2011 ‘The Eyes of History™’ contest judging at the National Geographic Society in Washington. Gilkey has worked for NPR for just over 3 years. “It’s a huge, huge, huge honor. Not just for me, but for NPR as well. They have been at the forefront of really truly integrating multimedia, and I am happy for all of us.” The Political Photo of the Year was awarded to Melina Mara, of the Washington Post, for a photograph of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi being applauded by congressional staffers after the healthcare bill passed in 2010. When asked how she was able to make such a remarkable photograph, Mara responded “Access, access, access. If you don’t have access, you don’t have a story-telling picture that communicates the news of the day. I kept working it and working it and working it to get the access necessary to tell the story.” In commenting on her win, WHNPA President John Harrington said, “Melina’s work has proven time and time again that when you work a story and put in the time, you are rewarded with accolades. Her dedication to photojournalism and story-telling demonstrates time and time again that she’s at the top of her field.” “The WHNPA ‘Eyes of History™’ contest winners continue to document not only the political machinations of Washington DC, but also the news from hot spots around the world, “ said John Harrington. “Each year, the work gets better, and the world can see through our members’ eyes, history as it unfolds.” The judges for the 2011 ‘The Eyes of History™’ stills competition were Alexandra Avakian, Chick Harrity and William Snyder.