WCOG President Toby Nixon, right, presented the Key Award to former Mirror editor Carrie Rodriguez in 2014.

WCOG President Toby Nixon, right, presented the Key Award to former Mirror editor Carrie Rodriguez in 2014.

From watchdog to community service, Mirror has a history of excellence | Mirror’s 20th anniversary

The Mirror has received multiple awards over the past 20 years for its journalism and advertising.

The Federal Way Mirror has received multiple awards over the past 20 years for its journalism and advertising.

One banner year was in 2016, when the Mirror won its first General Excellence award, which is the top honor from the Washington Newspaper Publishers Association. The Mirror staff won 23 total awards that year, including Feature Writer of the Year for reporter Raechel Dawson. The Mirror’s advertising and creative staff, meanwhile, earned five first-place awards among their 12 total. Creative Artist Marcie Shannon produced all 12 of the ads with input from advertisers and staff sales consultants Cindy Ducich and Kay Miller.

In 2014, former Mirror editor Carrie Rodriguez earned the Washington Coalition for Open Government’s (WCOG) Key Award for winning disclosure of public information that Federal Way city officials had wrongly withheld. When the Federal Way City Council was considering applications from 20 candidates to fill a council vacancy, the city initially released only their names.

The city declined to release the application packets, contending that council members are city employees and such “employment” applications are exempt from disclosure. Rodriguez consulted attorneys, including the state attorney general’s ombudsman for open government, and confirmed that council members are not legally city employees and such application materials are public records that must be disclosed.

She published a column challenging the city to release the information. A week later, the council held a special meeting and voted to release the application packets.

The Key Award recognizes individuals or organizations that have made a notable contribution to the cause of open government. The coalition is a statewide nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that advocates for the people’s right to access government information.

WCOG President Toby Nixon presented the award to Rodriguez on April 24, 2014.

“Carrie Rodriguez served the community well by insisting on disclosure of information that should be routinely provided to any citizen who asks for it,” Nixon said. “Citizens need this kind of information to evaluate candidates for public office.”

Another past honor includes the 2011 WNPA Community Service award for the Mirror’s series titled “Quality of Life.” Quality of life relates to the satisfaction people derive from social, cultural and intellectual opportunities in the place they call home. The series showed Federal Way residents more reasons to appreciate and invest in their city.

In 2012, the Mirror won the WNPA’s Best in Advertising award for its “Reasons to Play for Father’s Day” promotion. The whimsical ad depicted former publisher Rudi Alcott on a rock-climbing wall, surrounded by Father’s Day deals from local businesses. Mirror Photoshop whiz, Marcie Shannon, designed the ad and gave Alcott several colorful tattoos. Multimedia sales reps Cindy Ducich and Mary Lou Goss also contributed.

In 2009, the Mirror’s editorial page received first-place honors from Suburban Newspapers of America, which is the largest suburban and community newspaper trade association in North America, representing over 2,000 newspapers with more than 22 million in circulation. Mainstays of the editorial page at that time included political cartoons by Frank Shiers, Bob Roegner’s weekly “Inside Politics” column, and the late Walter Backstrom’s column, “No Excuses.”


Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@federalwaymirror.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.federalwaymirror.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

First edition of the Federal Way Mirror, Feb. 4, 1998.

First edition of the Federal Way Mirror, Feb. 4, 1998.

More in Business

Best of Federal Way 2021
More Best of Federal Way winners/finalists share insights into success

“We focused on meeting our clients where they are.”

Marcus Wright.
Federal Way man’s dog training business thrives during pandemic

What started as man’s best friend has turned into a thriving business… Continue reading

T
Best of Federal Way 2021 winners/finalists share insights into success

The Mirror recently announced our Best of Federal Way 2021 winners and… Continue reading

Owners of Manic Meatballs, Carrie Stalder (left) and Chad Stalder. (Photo by Cameron Sheppard)
Federal Way family owns Swedish meatball drive-thru restaurant near JBLM

A Federal Way family owns what has to be the only Swedish… Continue reading

Photo courtesy of Fastsigns Federal Way (32610 Pacific Highway S. Suite b-4 in Federal Way).
Shop Local campaign supports FW business community

A local business campaign has now grown into a go-to site for… Continue reading

T
Tantalize your taste buds with these winning restaurants in Federal Way

Yes, it is possible to eat your way through Federal Way. While… Continue reading

Most of the Brickyard Pub staff members pictured at the bar's Christmas party in 2017. Photo courtesy of Celeste Locke
Brickyard Pub is here for a good time and a long time

Neighborhood pub voted Best Bar/Nightclub in Federal Way.

Northshore Automotive and RV Repair staff pictured (L-R): JR Moergeli, Jason Frank, Derek Carter, and front, Art Rood. Photo courtesy of Ryan Hoover
Northshore Automotive and RV Repair wins first Best of Federal Way award

The local repair shop is dedicated to serving their neighbors, owner says.

Five years of winning (and counting) for some Federal Way businesses.
Five years of winning (and counting) for these Federal Way businesses

Five is the new lucky number for several Federal Way businesses. The… Continue reading

Whole Foods grocery store entrance (Shutterstock)
King County considers grocery store worker hazard pay for those in unincorporated areas

The King County Metropolitan Council will vote during its next meeting on… Continue reading

Olivia Sullivan/the Mirror
Two businesses celebrate grand openings in Federal Way

Old Navy, Azteca Mexican Restaurant now open.