01/05/2016 6:13PM

Rees, Sullivan earn media Eclipse Awards for Louisville newspaper


Jennie Rees, the longtime horse racing reporter for the Louisville Courier-Journal, has been named the 2015 Eclipse Award winner for feature/commentary writing, and her colleague, columnist Tim Sullivan, has been named the Eclipse winner for news/enterprise writing, the award administrators announced on Tuesday.

Rees, who accepted a buyout from the Courier-Journal late last year after 34 years at the paper in order to pursue other opportunities in racing, won her award for a profile of trainer Dale Romans and his struggles with dyslexia. It was the fourth individual Eclipse for Rees; she also was part of a team that was named the Eclipse Award winner in the multimedia category in 2008.

Sullivan, who typically writes day-of columns for the Courier-Journal, won for an extensive examination of the 2014 suicide of Hub Johnson, a former foreman for the stable of Steve Asmussen who killed himself 10 days after People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals accused Asmussen and his stable staff of cruelty to animals. The charges were dismissed last year after investigations by racing regulators in Kentucky and New York.
It was the first Eclipse for Sullivan, who has worked for the Courier-Journal since 2012. Prior to that, he worked for the Cincinnati Enquirer for 25 years.

In addition, Scott Serio, a founder of the photojournalism site Eclipse Sportswire, was named the Eclipse Award winner for photography for a photograph of 2015 Triple Crown winner American Pharoah galloping over the Keeneland training track several days prior to the colt’s win in the Breeders’ Cup Classic. The aesthetic shot captures the colt among falling leaves, an aging barn in the background.

The shot appeared in the Cecil Guardian, a small Maryland newspaper published near the Fair Hill training center. However, the shot went viral soon after the Breeders’ Cup when Serio posted it to his social-media page.