Manchester, NH -- Souhegan High School senior Siera Biddle is the first-place winner of the 2022 Brodsky Prize, recognizing journalistic excellence by high school students.
"I vividly remember more than 30 years ago, when my son Jeffrey was co-editor of his school newspaper, and the innovative mind-set and action he showed as top editor of the publication. I look back fondly on the impact the newspaper had on his life at the time. I’m proud that The Brodsky Prize continues Jeff’s passion for journalism,” said Howard Brodsky, Prize cofounder and a member of the judging committee.
Judging criteria for The Brodsky Prize includes a student's journalistic initiative and enterprise, as well as what Jeffrey Brodsky calls "a contrarian nature and out-of-the-box thinking." The Brodsky Prize was created four years ago by Jeffrey Brodsky, who was co-editor of his high school newspaper, The Little Green, at Manchester Central High School during the early 1990s. He hopes to encourage “boldness and innovation” by a new generation of student journalists.
Jeffrey Brodsky started The Brodsky Prize in 2018 to honor, encourage and reward high school journalists around the state. In 2015, Columbia University also established the Jeffrey H. Brodsky Oral History Award to honor future generations of journalists and historians in conducting innovative and outstanding research. With this year’s announcement, “We have awarded more than $50,000 to truly outstanding high school and collegiate journalists,” Brodsky said.
First place winner Biddle will use her $5,000 award to attend college to study English, with a focus on both creative writing and journalism. In her submission essay, Biddle wrote about the impact of Covid on high school students’ mental health and submitted examples of her school journalism, both reporting opinion on topics as varied as women in sports, popular entertainment, and interviews with fellow students. Her work has appeared in Souhegan High School’s Literary Magazine, The Claw, and her local newspaper, The Monadnock Ledger-Transcript. “I am so honored to have received this award, as journalism has been a huge part of my life throughout high school, and it feels amazing to be recognized for something I am so passionate about,” added Biddle.
Including Biddle, there were seven 2022 Brodsky Prize recipients. Second-place winner Emily Bisson of Manchester Central High was awarded $1,000. Third-place winner Samantha Autumn of Pinkerton Academy was awarded $500. Four finalists received $100 each: Matthew Blair, Manchester Central High; Kathryn Craig, Manchester Central High; Rachel Phinney, Pembroke High School and Emily Polsin, Pembroke High School.
Jeffrey Brodsky, now 48, received his BA in Political Science from Washington University in St. Louis, and his MA in Oral History from Columbia University in New York. He became a historian and documentary producer before illness forced his retirement and return to his hometown of Manchester, NH.
The Brodsky prize is open to all New Hampshire public and parochial high school students. Longtime judges are Howard Brodsky, Jeffrey's father, and Chairman and CEO of CCA Global Partners; Misbah Tahir, the former Little Green co-editor, now a biotechnology finance executive; former Union Leader and NH Sunday News president and publisher Joseph McQuaid, and Leah Todd Lin, New England regional manager of the Solutions Journalism Network. The Nackey S. Loeb School of Communications helps oversee the award program and provides one of the judges, Executive Director Laura Simoes.
More information on The Brodsky Prize, including past winners, is available at brodskyprize.org. More information about the Loeb School and the NH Solutions Journalism Lab can be found at loebschool.org.
A photo of the winner is attached to this email. Caption: Co-founder of The Brodsky Prize Howard Brodsky congratulates 2022 winner Siera Biddle, senior at Souhegan High School (photo by Allegra Boverman).