February 2008

Weekly Winner
Oologah Lake Leader

45,000 gallons of gasoline hit 4 Mile Creek
by John M. Wylie II

Word of a major oil spill into a major waterway began spreading in the Oologah area during January. Acting on a tip, marketing director Carolyn Estes photographed the spill and identified the source as a Magellan pipeline. Publisher and Editor John Wylie then took over the story and tracked down the key details including that it had been contained and no contamination had reached the Verdigris River, Oologah Lake or any public water supply. State regulators said Magellan had been a model corporate citizen in the cleanup.

Daily Winner
The Norman Transcript
Coverage of the Kevin Underwood murder trial
Reporters Julianna Parker and Tom Blakey covered the week-long trial of Kevin Ray Underwood, who was accused of killing 10-year-old Jamie Rose Bolin in Purcell. Bolin’s body was found chopped up in a tub in Underwood’s closet in April 2006. While covering the trial, the reporters worked with Web editor Jason Clarke, who updated the newspaper’s Web site four times each day. The trial was moved from McClain County to Cleveland County. Because the trial testimony was somewhat graphic, editors made the decision on several instances to put longer, less-edited versions on the Web and refer readers there. Underwood was convicted on Feb. 29.