Bennett, Cook win national journalism awards

Editorial cartoonist Clay Bennett

Two Times Free Press journalists were honored Monday with national awards.

Clay Bennett, editorial cartoonist for the Chattanooga Times Free Press, received the Sigma Delta Chi award for editorial cartooning. And columnist David Cook received the Sigma Delta Chi award for sports column writing.

The Sigma Delta Chi awards are awarded by the Society of Professional Journalism and recognize exceptional professional journalism produced in 2017.

An awards reception will take place at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., on June 8.

Bennett was honored for an entry of five cartoons:

photo David Cook

Cook was honored for an entry of five columns about the effort to revive baseball at The Howard School:

Bennett's work is published on the Chattanooga Times editorial page.

The Chattanooga Times Free Press is unique in that the paper has two editorial pages, the liberal Times page and the conservative Free Press page, which honor the legacies of the predecessor papers that merged in 1999 to form the current newspaper.

Last month, Bennett was honored with the 2018 Thomas Nast Award for the best cartoons on international affairs. He also won the Sigma Delta Chi Award in 2002. Over his career, he also has received the Pulitzer Prize, the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award and the National Headliner Award, and he has been named Editorial Cartoonist of the Year by Editor & Publisher magazine.

His work is syndicated internationally in about 100 newspapers through the Washington Post Writers Group.

Cook writes a Sunday column for the Times Free Press. He teaches English at McCallie School. In 2016, he received another national award, the Mike Royko Award for Commentary/Column Writing, from the American Society of News Editors.