Touchstone Awards

The Press Club of Toledo’s annual Touchstone Awards recognizes the achievements of local journalists and community leaders in northwest Ohio. This signature event also is our sole fundraiser for the club’s scholarship fund. Each year, we award two scholarships to college students at The University of Toledo and Bowling Green State University pursuing degrees in journalism-related studies.

2021 Winners
Lifetime Achievement Award: The Lavalley Family and Billie Johnson
Contributor Award: Meg Ressner & Richard Hylant
Golden Touchstone Award: Rhonda Sewell and Fletcher Ward
Norm Cartwright Award: Ron Royhab
Print Daily – Hard News: Sarah Elms, Brooks Sutherland and Danielle Gamble, The Blade
Print Daily – Feature: Mary Bilyeu, The Blade
Photojournalism – Videography: JD Pooley
Photojournalism – Print: Jeremy Wadsworth, The Blade
Television – Hard News: WTVG 13 ABC
Television – Feature: Eric Oblander
Radio – Show/Series: Deepa Bhujbal
Podcast: Kaitlin Durbin and Phillip Kaplan, The Blade
Social Media: BCAN Pulse
Student – Television: Spring 2021 UT:10 Crew, The University of Toledo
Student – Print: Riley Runnells, Ohio University
Scholarships Awarded: Caleb Gill, The University of Toledo, and Ryan Dick, Bowling Green State University


2020 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award: Bob Savage, Sr.
Golden Touchstone Award: Dick Berry and Mary Alice Powell
Contributor Award: Dr. Romules Durant and Wendi Huntley
Print Daily Hard News: Blade Coronavirus Coverage
Print Daily Feature: Precious Fondren, The Blade
Print Daily Sports: Dave Briggs, The Blade
Print Non-Daily Hard News: The Press Newspaper
Print Non-Daily Feature: Jason Webber: Dooley Noted, Toledo City Paper
Photojournalism Videography: Todd Gaertner, WTVG 13 ABC
Photojournalism Print: Kurt Steiss, The Blade
Television Hard News: Brian Duggar, WTOL 11
Television Feature: Alexandra Kruger BCAN
Television Sports: Claire Dau, BCSN
Radio, Single Report: Brad Creswell WGTE
Radio Show/Series: Brad Creswell WGTE
Podcast: Haley Taylor, WGTE
Social Media: In the Loop WTOL
Digital Media: WTOL Instagram
Student Television: Chase Bachman, Bowling Green State University
Student Print: Riley Runnels, Ohio University
Public Relations Campaign: Thread Marketing Group


2019 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award: Paul Toth and Gary Shores
Contributor Award: Dave Zenk
Golden Touchstone: Jan McLaughlin
Television-Hard News: Brian Dugger, Tyler Paley and Eric Rerucha, WTOL 11
Television-Feature: Brigette Burnett, BCSN
Television-Sports: Jordan Strack, WTOL 11
Podcast: First Alert Weather Team, WTOL 11
Photojournalism-Videography: Joe Cromer, The Blade
Social Media: Emily Cohen, Tim Mannor, Alex Babich, Erin Sifuentes and Victoria Dugger, WTOL 11
Print Non-Daily Feature: Erin Holden, Athena Cocoves, Jeff McGinnis, and Courtney Probert, Toledo City Paper
Student-Television: Chase Bachman, Bowling Green State University
Radio-Single Report: Brad Creswell, WGTE
Radio-Show/Series: Brad Creswell, WGTE
Print Daily-Hard News: Lauren Lindstrom and Nicki Gorny, The Blade
Print Daily-Sports: David Briggs, The Blade
Print Daily-Feature: Allison Dunn, The Blade
Student Print: Stepha Poulin, Bowling Green State University


2018 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award: Jon Hendricks and Mike Gibbons
Contributor Award: George Kral
Golden Touchstone: Sharon Lange
Print Non-Daily: Athena Cocoves, Adams Street Publishing
Print Daily: Nolan Rosenkrans, The Blade
Television: Tim Miller, WTOL 11
Radio: Brad Creswell, WGTE
Digital: The Blade, NewsSlide
Student Print: Stepha Poulin
Scholarship Awarded: Stepha Poulin, Bowing Green State University, and Anthony Garcia, The University of Toledo


2015 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award: David Waterman, Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick LLP
Touchstone Contributor Award: Judy Seibernick, Hospice of Northwest Ohio
Golden Touchstone: Joseph H. Zerbey, The Blade
Excellence in journalism for daily print category: The Blade, coverage of Toledo’s water crisis
Excellence in Journalism in broadcast: WTVG 13 ABC Action News Team, coverage of Toledo’s water crisis
Excellence in Journalism in radio: Duston Sopher,WBGU, project chronicling the Post Ditch Music Festival held in 1975
Excellence in Journalism for the non-daily print publication: Millbury-based Press Newspapers, coverage that reflects multiple points of view in the community
Excellence in Journalism for digital: Hasan Dudar and Katie Rausch, The Blade, ‘The Last of Little Syria’ online documentary
Excellence in student print journalism: William Channel, BG News, Bowling Green State University
Excellence in student broadcast journalism: Angelique Baird, UT10 News, The University of toledo
Scholarships Awarded: JoAnn Rawski and Samantha Rhodes, The University of Toledo, and Annie Furia, Bowling Green State University


2014 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award: Denny Johnson, Brooks Insurance
Touchstone Contributor Award: Catholic Charities
Golden Touchstone: Chrys Peterson, former WTOL 11 anchor
Excellence in journalism for daily print category: Janet Romaker, The Blade, for The Ugly Truth about Toledo
Excellence in Journalism in broadcast: WTVG 13 ABC Action News Team
Excellence in Journalism for non-daily print publication: Kelly Kaczala, Melissa Burden, Millbury-based Press Newspapers
Excellence in student journalism: Gina Todd, The University of Toledo
Scholarships Awarded: Gina Todd and Samantha Rhodes, The University of Toledo, and Linda Nelson, Bowling Green State University


2013 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award: Clyde Scoles, director of the Toledo-Lucas County Public Library
Touchstone Contributor Award: Mark Rodriguez, chief executive of Hickory Farms Inc., and to the Falzone family and the Mary Ellen Falzone Diabetes Center
Golden Touchstone: Lou Hebert for his WGTE documentary about the Maumee River and for his lifetime achievement in journalism in northwest Ohio
Excellence in journalism for daily print category:Taylor Dungjen and Amy E. Voigt, The Blade for Battle Lines: Gangs of Toledo
Excellence in Journalism Award in the new media category: Federico Martinez for his blog at toledoblade.com, “Pulso Latino”
Excellence in Journalism in the non-daily print publication: Alia Orra, Toledo City Paper
Excellence in student journalism: Danielle Gamble, Tge University of Toledo student and is editor-in-chief of the Independent Collegian, the student newspaper
Scholarships Awarded: Andrew Kurtz, The University of Toledo, and Abby Welsh, Bowling Green State University


2012 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award: Baldemar Velasquez, founder and president of the Farm Labor Organizing Committee
Touchstone Contributor Award: ProMedica
Golden Touchstone: The late Frank Venner, a longtime Toledo broadcaster known as an anchor of evening newscasts on WSPD-TV — which became WTVG — for his “Weather-in-the-Weather” segments broadcast live from the Commodore Perry Hotel and as longtime moderator of the high school quiz program
Excellence in journalism for daily print category: Claudia Boyd-Barrett and Tony Cook, The Blade, for their series on favoritism in housing rehabilitation contracts in Toledo’s Department of Neighborhoods
Excellence in Journalism Award in the new media category: Taylor Dungjen,The Blade, for her Ride Along blog
Excellence in Journalism in the non-daily print publication: Jason Weber, Toledo City Paper
Excellence in Journalism in broadcast: Bill Hormann, WTVG 13 ABC
Excellence in student journalism: Danielle Gamble, The University of Toledo student and editor-in-chief of the Independent Collegian, the student newspaper
Scholarships Awarded: McKenzie Kuehnlein, The University of Toledo and Shirley O’Nan, Bowling Green State University


2011 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award: John F. Hayward, a longtime lawyer who now serves as president of Mercy College of Ohio, and Dr. S. Amjad Hussain, a retired surgeon and current member of The University of Toledo Board of Trustees
Touchstone Contributor Award: Toledo Symphony Orchestra
Golden Touchstone: Ron Royhab, former vice president and executive editor of The Blade
Excellence in journalism for daily print category: Nolan Rosenkrans, The Blade, for the three-part series “Education Matters” project, which examined how public education could be in Toledo
Excellence in Journalism Award in the new media category: The Blade/toledoblade.com for  eBlade, the replicate edition of the newspaper
Excellence in Journalism in the non-daily print publication: Melissa Burden and Kelly Kaczala, The Press Newspapers, for a story about a Northwood man who died two days after waiting 28 minutes for emergency personnel to arrive following his wife’s call to report he was having breathing problems
Excellence in Journalism in broadcast: Bill Hormann, WTVG 13 ABC, for his coverage of the 2010 elections
Excellence in student journalism: Danielle Gamble, The University of Toledo student and editor-in-chief of the Independent Collegian, the student newspaper
Scholarships Awarded: Carina Cornieles, The University of Toledo


2010 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award: Martha Vetter
Touchstone Contributor Award: Gary Yoder
Golden Touchstone: Bob Bortel, Bowling Green State University
Special Hometown Hero Award: Crystal Bowersox
Excellence in journalism for daily print category: The Blade
Excellence in Journalism in the non-daily print publication: Christina Schmitz, Toledo City Paper
Excellence in Journalism in broadcast: WTVG 13 ABC


2009 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award:Richard Anderson, retired chairman of The Andersons Inc.
Touchstone Contributor Award: Billie Johnson, executive director of the Area Office on Aging of Northwestern Ohio
Golden Touchstone: Homer Brickey, retired Blade senior business writer
Norm Cartwright Award, named for a founding member of the Press Club: Jan Skunda, a former president of the Press Club and retired executive from Funk Luetke Skunda Marketing
Special Hometown Hero Award: Jamie Farr
Excellence in journalism for daily print category: The Blade for its series, State of Distress – The Mounting Toll of Ohio’s Economic Woes
Excellence in Journalism in the non-daily print publication: Kevin Milliken, El Tiempo, for a series that examined minority inclusion goals of Toledo government
Excellence in Journalism in broadcast: WTVG 13 ABC and Bill Hormann, for a feature on the federal bailout bill.


2008 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award: Bob Bell, Toledo Symphony Orchestra
Touchstone Contributor Award: Chris Kozak, Columbia Gas, and Bob LaClair, Fifth Third Bank
Golden Touchstone: Chrys Peterson, WTOL 11
Excellence in journalism for daily print category: Steve Eder and James Drew, The Blade
Excellence in journalism for non-daily print publication: Jessica Luther, Toledo City Paper
Excellence in journalism for broadcast: Fox Toledo Hardcore Sports and toledoblade.com


2007 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award: Jan Skunda
Touchstone Contributor Award: Labib Hajjar
Golden Touchstone: Tom Walton, The Blade and Jerry Anderson, WTOL 11
Excellence in journalism for daily print category: Jim Tankersley and Joshua Boak, The Blade
Excellence in journalism for daily print category: Jan Larson, J.D. Pooley and Aaron Carpenter, Sentinel Tribune
Excellence in journalism for non-daily print publication: Rick Claypool, Toledo City Paper
Excellence in journalism for broadcast: Bill Hormann, WTVG 13 ABC


2006 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award: Elizabeth Ruppert, M.D.
Touchstone Contributor Award: Marna Ramnath
Golden Touchstone: Don Edwards, retired, and Frank Seely, WTOL 11
Excellence in journalism for daily print category: Roberta de Boer, Robin Erb and Amy Voigt, The Blade
Excellence in Journalism for broadcast: Bill Hormann, WTVG 13 ABC and Fox Toledo News Team


2005 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award: Richard Ransom
Touchstone Contributor Contributor: Tim Yenrick
Golden Touchstone: Richard Knecht, University of Toledo, and Diane Larson, WTVG 13 ABC
Excellence in Journalism for student publication: Matt Zapotosky, Toledo Free Press, and Bara Hull, The BG News
Excellence in journalism for daily print category: Mike Wilkinson, James Drew, Christopher Kirkpatrick and Steve Eder, The Blade, “Crisis at the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation”
Excellence in journalism for non-daily print publication: Michael Brooks, Toledo City Paper
Excellence in journalism for broadcast: Sarah Oehler, WTVG 13 ABC and Fox Toledo News Team


2004 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award: William Block, Jr.
Touchstone Contributor Award: Jim Jackson
Newsie Awards
Michael Sallah, Mitch Weiss and Joe Mahr, The Blade
Michael Brooks, Toledo City Paper
Bill Hormann, WTVG 13 ABC
Honorable Mention: Bill Frogameni,Toledo City Paper


2003 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award: Don Saunders
Touchstone Contributor Award: Dennis Johnson
Newsie Awards
Michael Sallah and David Yonke, The Blade
WTVG 13 ABC


2002 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award: J. Patrick Nicholson
Touchstone Contributor Award: Board of Lucas County Commissioners, Mud Hens Baseball Club, Inc. and Fifth Third Bank
Newsie Awards
Michael Sallah, The Blade
Tom Bosco and Bill Price, WNWO 24

2001 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award: James F. White, Jr.
Touchstone Contributor Award: Chrys Peterson, WTOL-TV, Channel 11
Newsie Awards
Tom Troy, Mike Wilkinson and Kelly Lecker, The Blade
Bob Jones, WTOL 11


2000 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award: Mildred Benson, The Blade
Touchstone Contributor Award: Clyde Scoles, Toledo-Lucas County Public Library
Newsie Awards
Sam Roe and Joshua Benton, The Blade


1999 Winners

Lifetime Achievement Award: The McMasters
Touchstone Contributor Award: Carolyn Smithers, City of Toledo
Newsie Awards
Sam Roe, The Blade