Craig Walker Wins 2011 POYi Newspaper Photographer of the Year

by David Walker

©The Denver Post/Craig Walker
Bride-to-be Anya Aiello awaits a ride from her groom after posing for photos in Denver, Colorado.

Craig Walker of The Denver Post has won the Newspaper Photographer of the Year award in the 2011 Pictures of the Year International competition. Judges cited his portfolio for a balance of esthetics and journalistic content, and noted that it included "a stunning project" on a war veteran who suffers from post traumatic stress disorder. (Walker won the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for feature photography for a project about a teenager who joins the Army to fight in Iraq.)

Runners up for POYi's Newspaper Photographer of the Year were Morten Germund and Jacob Ehrbahn of Politiken, a daily newspaper in Copenhagen, Denmark that has a reputation for the strength of its photojournalism.

POYi jurors hand out awards over a three-week period, ending February 28. Awards given during the first week of judging recognized a number of images reflecting social unrest, particularly in the Middle East.

Yuri Kozyrev won two first place awards, including the News Picture Story award in the freelance/agency category for his coverage of the Arab Spring uprisings for Time magazine. He also won in a special category called Impact 2011: Arab Uprisings for his iconic "Ras Lanuf" image showing Libyan rebels scattering as they come under attack last spring from troops loyal to Moammal Gaddafi. The same image won first prize last week in the Spot News/singles category in the World Press Photo competition.

Michael Robinson Chavez won News Picture Story in the newspaper category for his coverage of the uprising in Egypt for the Los Angeles Times.

Reuters photographer Yanni Kolesidis won first place in General News for an image of a bloodied demonstrator being detained by police during an anti-austerity protest in Athens last June. Agence France-Presse photographer Massoud won first place in the Spot News category for a graphic image of people killed and maimed by a bombing at a shrine in Kabul in December.

Donald Weber won first place in the Portrait Series category for his "Interrogations" series. The series also won first prize in the Portraits/stories category at World Press Photo.

The winning entries are posted at

Related stories:
Samuel Aranda Wins 2012 World Press Photo of the Year
Picture Story: A Risky Project Drags On, But Finally Pays Off

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