The Western Carolinian’s editor-in-chief is continuing to make name for himself in the journalism industry before he graduates next year. Justin Caudell, who got an early start as a part-time reporter for his hometown newspaper the Crossroads Chronicle in 2003, received two N.C. Press Association awards on Thursday, March 18 at the association’s annual News, Editorial and Photojournalism awards contest held at the Dean Dome on the campus of UNC-Chapel Hill.
Caudell was recognized in the Sports News Reporting and Sports Photography categories for work completed from October 2008–October 2009 at the Crossroads Chronicle. This year’s awards brought the 22-year-old to a career total of six, which is believed to be a N.C. Press Association award record for his age. Caudell, who first received recognition at the age of 15 for a series of stories he wrote on Hurricane Ivan, is already the youngest journalist to receive a state General News Reporting award.
“The N.C. Press Association recognizing me year after year is extremely rewarding,” said Caudell. “I’m truly blessed for the talents in life that God has given me, I could have never imagined that I would be where I am today. The staff of the Crossroads Chronicle saw something in me long before I did and has helped to shape the journalist I have become.”
Caudell is also making strides at the collegiate journalism level. He was appointed to Global Newswire’s U.S. national editorial board last fall, which provides student publications with international news content designed to examine topics important to and reported from the perspective of college students.
Under Caudell’s watch at the Western Carolinian, the newspaper has been a finalist for three awards at the National College Media Convention and is awaiting word on two awards for the southern region of the College Newspaper Association.
Caudell, majoring in Journalism and Political Science and part of the Honors College, is the son of Richard and Rebecca Caudell.