Two Bay of Plenty Times staff members have taken out top awards in this year's Voyager Media Awards.

Communities editor Carmen Hall was named the Regional Journalist of the Year for her work across the Bay of Plenty Times and Rotorua Daily Post and chief photographer John Borren won the Best Photography - general category.

Jaden McLeod, of Local Focus, scooped the award for the Best videographer - junior.

The winners were announced at a gala awards evening in Auckland tonight.


The Voyager Media Awards, formerly known as the Canon Media Awards, event is prestigious and highly regarded on the New Zealand media calendar.

Other NZME newspapers, websites and journalists swept many of the major prizes up for grabs.

The Weekend Herald was crowned overall Newspaper of the Year and best weekly newspaper, while scored the title of best news website.

Investigative reporter Matt Nippert was named business journalist of the year, Audrey Young was named political journalist of the year, Dana Johannsen the sports journalist of the year, Steve Braunias the opinion writer of the year, and Mike Scott and Alexander Robertson (Local Focus) the videographers of the year.

Herald editor Murray Kirkness was named editorial executive of the year.

Best investigation was won by Olivia Carville for What Becomes of the Broken Hearted, part of the Break the Silence campaign. Best team video-feature was won by the Herald's Under the Bridge documentary, focusing on the students and principal of Papakura High School.

​​The Herald's sister paper Hawke's Bay Today won best front-page.

Other Herald and NZME category winners were Greg Bruce (two feature-writing categories), Jared Savage (reporting) and Kirsty Johnston (feature-writing. Herald senior writer Simon Wilson won a feature-writing category for work while he was at The Spinoff.


Melanie Reid, from the online website Newsroom, won the Reporter of the Year award. She also took the award for Best News Story, for her work on the Todd Barclay affair.