Skip to Content
Skip to Navigation

Sidney Awards

For more than fifty years, the Sidney Hillman Foundation has awarded the Hillman prizes, which are among the most prestigious honors in journalism. In 2009, the foundation inaugurated the Sidney, a monthly award for an outstanding piece of socially-conscious journalism. We are looking for investigative work that fosters social and economic justice. Make a nomination.

December, 2014
Greg Palast wins December Sidney for Exposing a Defective Database that Endangers the Votes of Millions of People of Color
Al Jazeera America

Greg Palast wins the December Sidney for “Jim Crow Returns,” and “Challenging Crosscheck,” a two-part Al Jazeera America exposé that shows how millions of innocent people were flagged as suspected vote fraudsters just because they have the same first and last name as a voter in another state.

On the eve of the 2014 elections, officials had begun to purge voters based on Crosscheck, with over 40,000 voters being dropped from the rolls in Virginia alone.

November, 2014
Adrian Chen wins November Sidney for spotlighting the workers who keep ‘dick pics’ and beheadings out of your Facebook feed
Wired

Adrian Chen wins the November Sidney Award for “Unseen,” a Wired feature about content moderators, the invisible army of contractors who spend their days sifting through all the porn, gore and hate speech that users try to upload to social networks.

October, 2014
McClatchy & ProPublica Win October Sidney for Exposing Multi-Billion-Dollar Tax Fraud by Worker Misclassification

McClatchy and ProPublica win the October Sidney Award for “Contract to Cheat,” a year-long investigation showing that roughly 10 million construction workers are being misclassified as independent contractors. The scam harms workers and cheats taxpayers out of billions of dollars, but regulators have done nearly nothing about it.

September, 2014
Post and Courier Wins September Sidney for Investigation of South Carolina’s Domestic Homicide Crisis
Post and Courier

The Post and Courier wins the September Sidney Award for “Till Death Do Us Part,” an investigative multimedia series probing South Carolina’s domestic homicide crisis.

August, 2014
Jay Root Wins August Sidney for Exposé of Texas’ Threadbare Workers’ Compensation System
The Texas Tribune

Jay Root wins the August Sidney Award for “Hurting for Work,” a Texas Tribune series, which illustrates how laissez-faire policies created the “Texas Miracle” on the backs of workers.

July, 2014
Esther Kaplan Wins July Sidney for “Losing Sparta: The Bitter Truth About the Gospel Of Productivity”
Virginia Quarterly Review

Esther Kaplan wins the July Sidney Award for “Losing Sparta: The Bitter Truth About the Gospel Of Productivity” a feature in The Virginia Quarterly Review which describes how a Philips lighting plant in Sparta, Tennessee got off-shored to Mexico, despite being the most productive plant in the country.

June, 2014
Beth Schwartzapfel Wins June Sidney for “The Great American Chain Gang”
The American Prospect

Beth Schwartzapfel wins the June Sidney Award for “The Great American Chain Gang” a feature in The American Prospect that explores a vast but little-known workforce inside the U.S. prison system, where 870,000 inmates work full time with practically no rights at work.

May, 2014
Chris Hayes Wins May Sidney Award for “The New Abolitionism”
The Nation

Chris Hayes wins the May Sidney Award for “The New Abolitionism,” a provocative feature in The Nation in which he argues that fossil fuel companies must forfeit $10 trillion in wealth in order to save human civilization, a demand he says is no less urgent, and no less radical than the abolitionist ultimatum that slaveholders give up the vast wealth they held in human bondage.

April, 2014
The Miami Herald Wins April Sidney Award for “Innocents Lost”
The Miami Herald

Carol Marbin Miller and Audra D.S. Burch of the Miami Herald win the April Sidney Award for "Innocents Lost", an investigative multi-media package profiling some 477 Florida children who died after the state’s child protection authorities investigated their families for abuse or neglect but failed to take them into care.

March, 2014
Moshe Marvit Wins March Sidney Award for Profiling the Most Exploited Workforce You’ve Never Heard Of
The Nation

Moshe Marvit wins the March Sidney Award for his Nation magazine feature “How Crowdworkers Became Ghosts in the Digital Machine,” which shines a spotlight on a hidden workforce in which millions of digital pieceworkers toil online at home for less than minimum wage, executing repetitive “microtasks” for brokers like Amazon’s Mechanical Turk.

Certificate designed by Edward Sorel

The Sidney is awarded monthly to a piece published in an American magazine, newspaper, on a news site, or a blog. Television and radio broadcasts by an American news outlet are also eligible, as are published photography series.

Deadlines are the last day of each month. The piece must have been published in the month preceding the deadline. In the case of magazines, please nominate according to the issue date on the publication, not when it first appeared.

Nominations are accepted for one's own work, or for someone else's.

The Foundation will announce a winner on the second Wednesday of each month. Recipients will be awarded $500, a bottle of union-made wine, and a certificate designed especially for the Sidney by New Yorker cartoonist, Edward Sorel.

If you wish to nominate yourself or a piece by anyone else, please click here for our nomination form.If you have any further questions about the nomination process, please send your inquiry to alex@hillmanfoundation.org