The Lowell Thomas awards, recognized as the most prestigious in travel journalism, were announced Oct. 4 during the 2021 Annual Convention of SATW, the premier professional organization of travel journalists and communicators.
The 1,278 entries in the annual contest, overseen by the Society of American Travel Writers Foundation, were noteworthy for their style, scope and service to readers who struggled to make sense of a travelscape turned upside down by the pandemic. The University of Missouri School of Journalism oversaw the judging, which involved 27 judges this year.
|SATW Foundation Lowell Thomas Travel Journalism Competition winners attending the SATW awards ceremony in Milwaukee for the 2021 SATW Conference.
Katherine LaGrave, digital features editor for Afar Media, was honored as the Lowell Thomas Travel Journalist of the Year. Judges praised her storytelling and reporting as well as her focus on what readers needed to know to navigate today’s travel challenges.
BBC Travel brought home nine awards; The New York Times earned eight awards; and Travel + Leisure won seven awards.
Jacqueline Gifford, Editor-in-Chief of Travel + Leisure, earned the Gold Award for Travel Magazines; Outside Magazine got the Gold Award for Travel Coverage in General Magazines while The Plain Dealer gained the top spot for Newspaper Travel Coverage. Judges cited editor Susan Glaser’s “laser focus on readers” who sought closer-to-home destinations in the wake of the pandemic.
Matt Crossman earned the Gold for the Robert Haru Fisher Award for Travel Health/Safety Coverage, the first time this award has been given. A generous bequest from Robert Haru Fisher, a journalist and guidebook editor, funds the award. Fisher helped start the SATW Foundation and the Lowell Thomas Travel Journalism Competition.
Click here for all the details about this year’s award winners.
The sustainability of the annual SATW Foundation Lowell Thomas Travel Journalism Competition is made possible by a generous contribution from Gold Supporter CARNIVAL CORP., the world's largest cruise company with a portfolio of brands in North America, Europe, Australia and Asia, including Carnival Cruise Line, Holland America Line and Princess Cruises. Its contribution helps make the prizes possible and supports the future of quality travel media. The SATW Foundation thanks all donors, including the 30 Partners for 30 Years and other contributors for their support in recognizing and rewarding excellence in travel journalism.