The Jewish Exponent recently received a trio of honors from the Society of Professional Journalists, Philadelphia chapter, as part of the institution's 46th annual competition.
Senior editor Robert Leiter won first prize in the criticism division for his weekly book reviews, including "No Squares on the Square," for a book about the history of Rittenhouse Square; "Losing Trust in the World," for a book about torture of terrorist suspects; and "Why Dreyfus Matters," a re-examination of the Dreyfus affair in France.
SPJ judges noted Leiter's "intelligent writing," specifically citing the historical perspectives that often accompany his pieces.
Executive editor Lisa Hostein took second place in the editorial category. SPJ judges commented that Hostein educates while giving her opinion, effectively writing "about the Jewish community's responsibility to society and society's responsibility to the Jewish community."
The Exponent staff also garnered a third-place prize in the category of non-deadline writing for its ongoing series "Tough Times Hit Home," which has been examining the effects of the recession throughout Jewish life in the Philadelphia region.
SPJ judges cited "fantastic topic selection," and praised the series for reflecting "the challenges and humiliations felt by subjects as a result of the economic crisis."
The Exponent was also recently awarded an honorable mention by the Philadelphia Press Association in the category of Overall Weekly Coverage.
The 123-year-old paper has already been honored with 10 statewide awards this year, including having been named the "Best Overall Weekly Newspaper" in Pennsylvania by the Keystone Pro chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.