Nominations Open for 2019 Madison-Andersen, Bunting Awards.

Nominations Open for Madison-Andersen, Bunting Awards

Nominations are now open for annual awards to recognize individuals or groups who have made outstanding contributions to the cause of open government, presented by the Washington Coalition for Open Government.

Nominations are due by June 10 for the 2019 James Madison, James Andersen and Kenneth Bunting Awards.

The James Madison Award honors an individual or organization whose long-term commitment to the open government has been shown through exemplary words or deeds. Named for one of the primary authors of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, it is among the highest honors WCOG bestows to honor transparency advocates. Last year, WCOG broke with tradition to recognize numerous winners: The people of the state who wrote, called and lobbied Gov. Jay Inslee to veto a flawed bill addressing the state legislature’s obligations for open government

The James Andersen Award honors an individual or organization that has made an outstanding contribution to the work of the Washington Coalition for Open Government. It is named after James Andersen, retired chief justice of the Washington Supreme Court and a founding member of the Coalition. The 2018 winner was Mike Fancher, former Seattle Times editor, educator, and longtime board member and volunteer with WCOG.

The Kenneth F. Bunting Award, named for the former Seattle P-I editor and longtime advocate for open government issues in several states, honors journalistic work. Nominees may have used Washington’s access laws to break stories, informed the public of these resources or exposed violations of the state’s transparency laws. It is designed to honor journalism that promotes transparency and openness at all levels of government. Last year’s winner was Rachel La Corte, Associated Press correspondent in Olympia, who reported numerous articles about legislative attempts to exclude itself from the Public Records Act. One outcome was the Associated Press joining with numerous other Washington media organizations in a lawsuit seeking to establish the state legislature’s compliance under the PRA.

Full criteria, nomination forms, and lists of past recipients are available in the awards section of the WCOG site.

The awards will be presented at WCOG’s annual Madison Andersen Bunting Awards Breakfast on Friday, September 20 at the Washington Athletic Club.