HITravelTales’ Michael Hodgson wins Excellence in Journalism Award

by Jun 19, 2023Awards

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Michael Hodgson was honored with first place in the IFWTWA Excellence in Journalism Award.

Michael Hodgson, co-founder at the Grass Valley-based travel blog HITravelTales.com, took home first place in the International Food Wine and Travel Writers Association annual Excellence in Journalism Award.

The award winners, which were announced on April 25, 2023, represent the best-in-class in travel journalism and exemplify the highest professional journalistic standards that IFWTWA members consistently strive to meet. IFWTWA is a professional organization for food, wine, and travel writers.

Michael won first place for his story, “Running with the wind – the wild horses of Shackleford Banks” that was published September 28, 2022, on HI Travel Tales. The judges said they recognized not only his storytelling ability, but also the quality of his accompanying photography which they said added compelling visual impact to the article and complemented the written words perfectly.

The cover image for his award-winning story also earned gold in the North American Travel Journalists Association’s 31st annual travel media awards competition for cover photography.

Each year, the association extends an invitation to professional travel journalists to submit their best published work for consideration in its Excellence in Journalism Award. The 2022 entries were reviewed and evaluated by former professional journalists with degrees in communication and were scored based on four elements: mechanics, tone, style, and structure.

Both Michael and his HI Travel Tales business partner and wife, Therese Iknoian, who was a finalist in the Excellence in Journalism Award, have won numerous other writing and photography awards. HITravelTales.com was named one of the top three independent blogs in 2022 by the North American Travel Journalists Association.

Therese and Michael, long-time California residents, have run HITravelTales.com for about eight years, during which time they have traveled to, photographed, and written about Germany, Morocco, Ukraine, Argentina, Antarctica and of course the United States. Together, they have been to all seven continents, 49 countries, and all 50 states, focusing on immersive travel that connects readers with the culture, food, history, people, and natural wonders of a destination.

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