Kim Profant, a copy editor on the national/foreign desk at The Chicago Tribune, is the winner of the 2011 Robinson Prize, presented at the American Copy Editors Society’s national conference April 12-14 in New Orleans.
The honor recognizes substantial contributions to the craft of copy editing and excellence in overall copy editing skills.
In nominating Profant, Stu Werner, chief of The Tribune’s national/foreign desk, described her as “a first-rate wordsmith” who makes the reader the first priority while remaining respectful of the writer’s voice, because she knows that “enhancing the reading experience is paramount.”
He said Profant is “exceptionally versatile,” having worked as a rim editor, slot editor, source editor, Breaking News Center reporter/editor and dabbler in design. Werner commented that “having walked at least a mile in so much of the newsroom’s shoes,” Profant is “an editor of few peers here.”
Werner also praised her collaborative nature and generosity as a colleague, as well as her ability to identify processes that don’t work as well as they should and make suggestions to better them.
Profant is “a first-rate journalist” who “loves what we do here,” Werner said.
Valentina Djeljosevic, deputy editor of editing and presentation at The Tribune, said that Profant furthers the role of the editing profession by setting high standards for herself and others, and when slotting, by praising her team in private and to supervisors “to instill confidence and boost morale.”
Michael Roehrman of The Wichita Eagle, who led the judging panel, presented the Robinson Prize to Profant at the annual conference banquet on April 13. The other judges were last year’s Robinson Prize winner, Andy Angelo of The Grand Rapids (Mich.) Press; Paula Devlin of NOLA.com; and Helen I. Rouce of the U.S. Department of State.
The Robinson Prize, which was first awarded in 2006, is named for Pam Robinson, a co-founder of ACES and the society’s first president. The winner receives $3,000 and an engraved glass plaque.
Past winners of the prize, and their publication or company at the time of receiving the award, are:
• Paul Soucy, USA Today
• Tim Lynch, Los Angeles Times
• Adam Smith, The Augusta Chronicle
• Michael Roehrman, The Wichita Eagle
• Beth Blair, Boy Scouts of America
• Andy Angelo, The Grand Rapids (Mich.) Press