Mercury reporter wins health journalism award

Virginia Mercury
Katie O'Connor
Katie O’Connor, the Mercury’s health care reporter.

The Association of Health Care Journalists, a leading professional organization dedicated to better reporting on health and health care, awarded our Katie O’Connor second place in its 2018 Awards for Excellence in Health Care Journalism.

O’Connor was recognized in the organization’s investigative, small publication category for her series of articles about a Richmond-based assisted living facility and the cycle of housing instability in which many people with mental illness find themselves trapped.

The three articles were published in the Virginia Mercury and the Richmond Times-Dispatch, where O’Connor was formerly a staff reporter.

Read the first, second and third installments of the series.

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Robert Zullo
Robert has been winning and losing awards as a reporter and editor for 13 years at weekly and daily newspapers, beginning at Worrall Community Newspapers in Union, N.J., where he was a staff writer and managing editor. He spent five years in south Louisiana covering hurricanes, oil spills and Good Friday crawfish boils as a reporter and city editor for the The Courier and the Daily Comet newspapers in Houma and Thibodaux. He covered Richmond city hall for the Richmond Times-Dispatch from 2012 to 2013 and worked as a general assignment and city hall reporter for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette from 2013 to 2016. He returned to Richmond in 2016 to cover energy, environment and transportation for the Richmond Times-Dispatch. He grew up in Miami, Fla., and central New Jersey. A former waiter, armored car guard and appliance deliveryman, he is a graduate of the College of William and Mary.