Top reporter’s reward

Anne Gartner
Anne Gartner

Gartner, now the editor at Canning Times’ sister paper, Guardian Express, won high praise from judges for her versatile series of reports, ranging from Canning council’s inquiry coverage to the extraordinary case of a pre-primary schoolgirl being disciplined for kissing another student.

‘She showed that a close relationship with her community and a nose for a story are the enduring hallmarks of the best in suburban journalism,’ the judges wrote.

Her front-page Guardian Express story, about the rise in the incidence of HIV, captured the personal and the social dimensions of the issue.

WA Media Awards judges reserved special comment for the high quality of submissions for this year’s suburban award, saying it proved the vibrancy of suburban journalism in WA.

Community Newspaper Group editor-in-chief Greg Thomson said Gartner had displayed excellent journalistic intuition and integrity in uncovering and reporting the issues that led to the Canning council being suspended and an ongoing Department of Local Government inquiry.

‘It was such an important issue and without Anne’s quality coverage, ratepayers in the City of Canning would not have known or understood the depth of Canning’s disfunction,’ Thomson said.

Her story about a four-year-old being put in time out for kissing another child at an East Cannington primary school became national news, while the HIV story reignited public debate about the issue and was picked up by other Perth media outlets.