Will and Bella Doolittle’s series of podcasts, The Alzheimer’s Chronicles, has been honored with a second-place for Journalistic Innovation in the 85th National Headliner Awards.

Bella Doolittle was diagnosed with younger onset Alzheimer’s two years ago and the couple began a series of monthly podcasts where they chatted about the impact the disease was having on their daily lives. Will Doolittle is The Post-Star’s project editor.

Adam Colver, online editor at The Post-Star, shared in the honors for providing technical assistance with the project.

“This is so much more than just a story,” Post-Star Editor Ken Tingley said. “Will and Bella are living with the realities of this condition every day. This is their lives and they have chosen to share it with our readers in hopes that it might help others. The journalism doesn’t get any better than that.”

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The National Headliner Awards is one of the oldest and largest annual contests recognizing journalistic merit. Founded in 1934 by the Press Club of Atlantic City, more than 2,600 Headliner medallions have been presented over the years to outstanding writers, photographers and daily newspapers.

The Post-Star had previously won National Headliner Awards in 2009, 2010 and 2011 for editorial writing, as well as 2002 for its spot news coverage of the 9/11 attacks.

First place in journalistic innovation went to the Seattle Times staff for their story, “Hostile Waters: Orcas in Peril” for a staff-wide effort on the fate of Orca whales. The South Florida Sun Sentinel took third place for its project, “Parkland: Voices of Change.”

“What is especially gratifying about this honor is that there are no circulation categories,” Tingley said. “This entry was judged against the biggest and best newspapers in the country.”

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