Daily staffer wins first place in Hearst Awards competition for personality profile

George Stoia

George Stoia placed first in the nation Tuesday in the Hearst Awards’ personality profile category for his piece on the courage of Maggie Nichols in her career as an elite gymnast at OU and beyond.

The contest honors the top 20 college profiles in the nation of an individual on or off campus.

This marks The Daily’s fifth placement of the 2020-21 Hearst cycle, which staggers its category deadlines throughout the academic year. It also marks the second consecutive year a Daily student has placed first in the nation in a Hearst category, following Jordan Miller doing so in the breaking news category in the 2019-20 competition.

Stoia, who graduated in May, now covers the Denver Broncos for the Colorado Springs and Denver Gazette. It is his second placement this cycle, following placing ninth in feature writing. In the previous contest cycle, Stoia placed 10th in personality profile, second in sports writing and third in the national championships.

Last year, staffers from The Daily placed nine times in Hearst categories. Since 2014-15, The Daily now has placed 22 times in the contest, which honors the best in collegiate journalism.