Winner, winner, chicken dinner

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The Society of Professional Journalists held its annual awards banquet last weekend, and we're proud to announce the Indy earned two first-place prizes.

Associate Editor Matthew Frank took top honors in the field of Business Reporting for "Green Rush," his story on the state's booming medical marijuana industry.

Staff Writer Alex Sakariassen won the "Sports Reporting" category for "A Call for Help," his in-depth look at search and rescue's challenges with Missoula's growing number of backcountry adventurers.

The northwest regional SPJ awards are open to publications in Montana, Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Alaska. The Indy competes in the "Alternative Weeklies" category against newspapers like Willamette Week, Seattle Weekly and the Pacific Northwest Inlander.

In the daily newspaper competition, the Missoulian took one first-place award for photographer Kurt Wilson's portfolio. Wilson also won a third place for his falling bear photo (you know the one) and sports columnist Bill Speltz won third for Sports Feature Story.

You can view the full list of winners here (PDF).

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