Submissions are now being accepted for the 15TH annual John Jay College of Criminal Justice/Harry Frank Guggenheim Awards for Excellence in Criminal Justice Reporting.

The prizes have been awarded annually since 2005 in two categories (Best Single Story and Best Series) for work published or posted in U.S. print, magazine and online media that has had a significant impact on criminal justice debate and policy.

The prestigious $1,500 awards, unofficially called the “Pulitzers” of crime and justice journalism, are the only national journalism awards of their type, and are formally  presented at a special dinner during the John Jay/Harry Frank Guggenheim Symposium on Crime in America.

The annual awards, sponsored by the nation’s pre-eminent academic institution on criminal justice, honor investigative, feature, analytical, and enterprise journalism on criminal justice and related issues.

Past Prizewinners

Justice Trailblazer Awards

The 2020 awards are presented in conjunction with the John Jay/Harry F. Guggenheim Annual Symposium on Crime in America scheduled February 20-21, 2020. The awards are administered by the Center on Media, Crime and Justice at John Jay, and judged by a panel of leading journalists and educators.

You can submit entries here. But please first read information about the prize below.

ELIGIBILITY: To be eligible for the prize, work must be published in a newspaper, magazine or online news outlet in the U.S. (broadcast work is eligible if it contains a significant online dimension) between November 1, 2018 and October 31, 2019.

CRITERIA: The awards honor enterprise, analytical and investigative reporting work that has had a demonstrated impact on public understanding or public policy (local or national) in any area related to criminal justice.  Spot news stories may qualify if they advance the above criteria. Each submission can only be entered in one category, but multiple submissions from the same news outlets are accepted. All submissions must include a nominating letter from a supervising editor providing details that can help the judges assess the impact and significance of the work.

DEADLINE: November 12, 2019 11:59 pm EST

COST OF ENTRY:  $75 per submission.

The annual prizes are supported by a grant from the Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation.

For questions about the prize, please contact Prize Administrator Wren Longno at, or Ricardo Martinez  at: , 646.557.4690; or Stephen Handelman at:   


2019 Winners:   Type Investigations and Pro Publica

2018 Winners:    Miami Herald  and Chicago Reader

View photos of the 2018 Trailblazer and Prize dinner here

2017 Winners    ProPublica and Mother Jones

2016 Winners   The Marshall Project and the Belleville News-Democrat

2015 Winners   The New Yorker and the Post and Courier (Charleston)

2014 Winners  The (Sarasota) Herald Tribune and the South Florida Sun Sentinel

2013 Winners   The Times-Picayune and Mother Jones

2012 Winners  The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel and Mother Jones

2011 Winners   New York Magazine and The Philadelphia Inquirer

2010 Winners  The Belleville News Democrat and the Austin Chronicle

2009 Winners  The Seattle Post-Intelligencer and The Times Herald-Record

2008 Winners      The Denver Post and The Wall Street Journal

2007 Winners        The San Jose Mercury and The Sacramento Bee

2006 Winners      The Rocky Mountain News and the Boston Phoenix




Since 2013, The Crime Report  in collaboration with the Center on Media, Crime and Justice at John Jay College has honored individuals from the media and related fields who have expanded public awareness about the challenges and complexities of criminal justice.

The 2019 Trailblazers were Sarah Koenig and Brittany Packnett.

The 2018 Trailblazer was Bill Moyers.

Past winners have included  David Simon, creator of “The Wire” (2013); Piper Kerman, author of Orange is the New Black (2014);  Maria Hinojosa, PBS host and founder of Futuro Media (2015); and Jelani Cobb (2016), New Yorker writer and director of the Institute for African American Studies at the University of Connecticut;  Van Jones. of CNN (2017).