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Exhibition: WHNPA 2015 'Eyes of History'

  • Embassy Row Hotel 2015 Massachussets Ave NW Washington, DC 20036 United States (map)
Photo © Win McNamee

Photo © Win McNamee

The White House News Photographers Association 2015 ‘Eyes of History®’ traveling exhibit features the winning images from the 2015 Annual ‘Eyes of History®’ competition and includes still, video, multimedia and student winners.

In judging at National Geographic earlier this year, the WHNPA announced that Getty Images photographer Win McNamee was named “Photographer of the Year” and Agence France-Presse photographer Brendan Smialowski won the “Political Photo of the Year” award. McNamee won first prize in the Portrait category, second in Political Portfolio and Political story, and first in Portfolio categories. “I feel incredibly honored to be named WHNPA Photographer of the Year and am so fortunate to work with such a talented team at Getty Images, “ McNamee said. “My father, Wally McNamee, won this award four times during his career so I’ve still got some catching up to do.” Smialowski’s image of Secretary of State John Kerry was selected as Political Photo of the Year. Smialowski, a photographer with Agence France-Presse said, "I’m proud that the image got recognized. This is the type of image that I often fail to get so often. It’s one of the most meaningful photos I’ve taken in my career.”
Ben Martin of ITN was awarded the 2015 WHNPA Video Photographer of the Year in the annual ‘Eyes of History®’ video contest. Chris Shlemon also of ITN was named Video Editor of the Year.

The top award for Martin came less than two years after arriving in Washington as a photographer for ITN. His individual category wins in the contest included first place finishes in the Spot News, General News, News Feature, Network, Feature and Audio categories. When told of his win, Martin said, "I am totally overwhelmed. It’s a huge honor. Every piece is a team effort and I couldn’t do it without them.” Martin’s piece titled “The Beast” in the Feature category was a favorite among all of the judges.

Shlemon won the award as Video Editor of the Year for his first place finishes in Spot News, News Feature, Editing Short Form, Editing Long Form and Audio categories. Shlemon said, "We have a great team that I am blessed to work with. I don’t take this lightly. You don’t win these awards alone. I’m really grateful.”

Winners of the Multimedia categories in the annual ‘Eyes of History®’ competition include: The Washington Post who took three first places. Whitney Shefte won a first place in the Documentary category for the story One Family, Two Sacrifices. McKenna Ewen won first in the Sports category for former NFL player battles ALS. The Post also won Best Multimedia Package for The N-Word Project.  National Public Radio (NPR) won two first places. One in the News category for “They Are The Body Collectors: A Perilous Job In The Time Of Ebola” produced by David Gilkey, Nurith Aizenman, Nicole Beemsterboer and Ben de la Cruz. And the second first place in the Feature category for the story The Mystery of the Missing Martins produced by Adam Cole and Maggie Starbard.  National Geographic took first place in the Issue Reporting category for A Sky Full of Cameras produced by Tomas van Houtryve of VII and Janna Dotschkal.

Al Drago of Elon University was named the WHNPA Student Still Photographer of the Year and in the second year of the student video division Ora DeKornfield of University of North Carolina Chapel Hill was named the WHNPA Student Video Photographer of the Year. Video winner DeKornfield won with a short documentary about a struggling teen who learns to overcome her violent past as she reclaims her voice through poetry.
The top winners of the contests were honored at the annual ‘Eyes of History®’ gala in May at the Ritz-Carlton in Washington.  The annual black-tie event celebrates all the winning photojournalists and the President of the United States. Nearly 1,000 guests, including government dignitaries and industry celebrities, attended.

The White House News Photographers Association® is a 95-year-old non-profit organization dedicated to supporting the efforts of Washington’s professional photojournalists. The WHNPA aims to provide professional and educational outreach to its members and the community through scholarships, programming and the annual competition.
The WHNPA supports photographers in their work to chronicle images from the White House, Capitol Hill, embassies, and other governmental organizations. The association negotiates access to governmental events in order to maintain a visual record of history.

Photo © Brendan Smialowski, Political Photo of the Year

Photo © Brendan Smialowski, Political Photo of the Year