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Bisnow Takes Home 10 Journalism Awards From Annual NAREE Conference


The Bisnow newsroom won 10 awards for real estate news, its most ever, at the National Association of Real Estate Editors' Journalism Awards ceremony Thursday.

The awards demonstrate the impact Bisnow’s coverage had during the early days of the coronavirus pandemic.

“Early in 2020, the pandemic suddenly delivered new harsh realities to society and the global economy. It upended all of our lives, and that includes the lives and families of every person who works in the Bisnow newsroom," Bisnow Editor-in-Chief Mark Bonner said.

"And through the thick and the thin, the team consistently and authoritatively rose to the moment and delivered a world-class news report. That continues to this day, and I could not be prouder of our entire team, especially those who have been honored by NAREE this week," he said. 

The newsroom has won 11 awards for the journalism it produced in 2020, including an award from the Society for Advancing Business Editing and Writing for its work covering race in commercial real estate

That work was also recognized by NAREE, earning Bisnow’s reporters two gold medals and contributing to a silver medal. The newsroom has continued to follow the issue since its award-winning stories first published, including a follow-up last month on whether CRE firms have made good on improving their diversity numbers.

Cameron Sperance, Jon Banister, Ethan Rothstein, Deirdra Funcheon, Mike Phillips, Miriam Hall, Catie Dixon and Mark Bonner at the National Association of Real Estate Editors' Journalism Awards ceremony on Dec. 9.

The awards spread across the newsroom’s products, including e-newsletters, team reports and breaking news coverage. Bisnow New York Reporter Miriam Hall won six awards, including a gold medal in the “Best Online Commercial Real Estate Story” category.

“The real estate industry needs trusted journalism today more than ever before, and Bisnow’s editorial team continues to be at the tip of that spear year after year,” Bisnow CEO Will Friend said.

“We are grateful to NAREE for recognizing our team’s effort via these 10 awards as we continue to work hard to become an even stronger and more dominant journalistic force.”

Bisnow received the following awards and recognition:

Best Online Commercial Real Estate Story

GOLD WINNER: Miriam Hall, 90% Of Major Brokerage Leadership Is White, And That’s ‘Definitely A Problem’

Judges’ comment: Hall’s story, rooted in data, examines commercial real estate brokerage firms that, despite public statements supporting Black Lives Matter last summer, have done little to diversify their ranks. Hall found that none of the 17 largest U.S. firms had more than three people of color at the executive level; a third had none. This well-written story is enhanced by personal anecdotes, such as the Black executive who said he was warned when he got into the business that it was racist, and that he wouldn’t succeed. 

SILVER WINNER: Jarred Schenke, Suburban Cities Are Working To Shut Down Hotels Keeping The Most Vulnerable People Housed

Judges’ comment: With eviction moratoriums slowly ending, Schenke’s timely piece looks at how local governments are increasing regulations and shutting down extended-stay hotels across the country, citing reasons such as increased crime and not fitting into a neighborhood’s “character.” Schenke talks with people living in the hotels to understand their daily lives and struggles, interviews that make the story much more than statistics.


Best Team Report

GOLD WINNER: Mike Phillips, Jon Banister, Miriam Hall, Cameron Sperance and Deirdra Funcheon, Buy Now, Pay Later? Rising Profits Whip Rising Seas For U.S. Real Estate (For Now)

Judges’ comment: Bisnow tackles the impact of climate change on East Coast commercial real estate with deep reporting in four major cities. The stories are all excellent, but the New York City and Miami stories are noteworthy for their detail and fascinating tidbits, like the major investor who made a killing in 2008 and is now betting against Miami real estate, which he says is overvalued by 30%. A stunning interactive map lets readers see what will be under water by 2100; it’s both addictive and a wake-up call.

SILVER WINNER: Kerri Panchuk, Ethan Rothstein, Jarred Schenke, Mike Phillips, Jon Banister, Kelsey Neubauer, Brian Rogal, David Thame, Deirdra Funcheon, Miriam Hall, Dees Stribling and Mark F. Bonner, 'There's No Bailout For Landlords': What To Expect As Anxious April Begins

Judges’ comment: This is a clearly written, thoroughly reported and timely story that provides the Bisnow reader with up-to-the-minute information on how commercial landlords planned to handle the first rent deadline of the COVID-19 lockdown. (One confesses she doesn’t expect any rent payments in the coming months). The team includes helpful perspective and advice from U.K. property owners who were weeks ahead of the U.S. in dealing with tenants. 

HONORABLE MENTION: Miriam Hall and Kelsey Neubauer, 'There Is Blood In The Streets' In Manhattan's Luxury Apartment Market


Best Collection of Work by an Individual Covering Commercial Real Estate 

SILVER WINNER: Miriam Hall, selected works:

Judges’ comment: Hall tackles three different but very pertinent topics in her collection of stories, all of which are well researched and sourced. One story details how, despite New York state being on lockdown last spring, some commercial real estate brokers cited confusion over what was allowed and what wasn’t by law and were giving illegal tours of properties. Hall notes that some of the brokers said they walked around with plenty of masks and hand sanitizer, fearful that a deal wouldn’t close without face-to-face meetings. 


Best E-Newsletter by an Individual

SILVER WINNER: Deirdra Funcheon, Felonious CPA Seeks Millions In Lawsuits Involving Jorge Perez, Stephen Ross

Judges’ comment: Unlike newsletter authors who mainly aggregate, Funcheon breaks news, too. She reports on a lawsuit brought by a “felonious CPA” against “condo king” Jorge Perez. Is the CPA a fall guy for a wealthy developer? She also tackles a legal battle over the financing of a private Florida train and reports on a settlement with an agent who said a big Miami condo developer owed her hundreds of thousands of dollars in unpaid commissions. And she links to a good mix of “in case you missed it” stories by her Bisnow peers. 

HONORABLE MENTION: Mike Phillips. These Nobel Prize Winners Think You’re Selling Your Real Estate Badly


Best International Real Estate Story

SILVER WINNER: Miriam Hall, 'Australia Is On Fire. We Must Do Things Differently.'

Judges’ comment: Hall took a major disaster and spun it forward to explore how property owners were planning to rebuild amid climate change. The owner of a rainforest-surrounded eco-resort -- wiped out by the fires -- says he’s planting 3,000 fire - and drought-resistant shrubs. On-the-ground anecdotes like these (Hall was working from her home country of Australia at the time) draw the reader into this smart story. 


Best Breaking News Story

HONORABLE MENTION: Jarred Schenke, Georgia's Reopening Has Been 'A Disaster' For Some Retailers Desperate For Revenue