BATU, Indonesia. Photo by Jes Aznar

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Dateline Tokyo

I am happy to share that I won the first runner-up prize in the Developing Asia Journalism Awards 2013 organized by the Asian Development Bank Institute in Tokyo, Japan last week. It was an honor and privilege to have made it this far in the awards. Twenty finalists from all over Asia and the Pacific competed for the top prize. 

It was my first time to be part of the DAJA and was lucky to be part of such a group of passionate and brilliant journalists from countries like Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Thailand and many others. 

The main prize of Development Journalist of the Year was awarded to Indika Shamindra of Sri Lanka for his story Trade Negotiations: Sidelining the Bigots while the second runner-up prize went to Thi Kim Le of Vietnam.

Other finalists from the Philippines, my friend Joyce Pangco Panares of Manila Standard and Bernie Cahiles-Magkilat of Manila Bulletin both received honorable mention while David Lozada of Rappler was named Young Development Journalist of the Year, a recognition given to journalists under age 30. 

Thank you ADBI for this. Thank you to my Philippine Star family, my editors Marianne Go and Roman Floresca, for the support and thank you to Deutsche Welle for having me in the ten-day regional integration workshop in Myanmar where I met Aye Aye Khaing, a garments factory worker I interviewed for my article. I thank her most especially for sharing her story.

Thanks, too to very supportive friends and family for their greetings and wishes of good luck. My adventurer friend for instance must have wished me luck a hundred times the night before I left for Tokyo. Thanks especially to the dear bf who despite being in the disaster area managed to find time to cut and post yesterday's digital edition.