The Independent captured 20 awards in the 2017 Society of Professional Journalists' Top of the Rockies contest at the Denver Press Club. The contest covered Colorado, Utah, Wyoming and New Mexico. The Indy, competing in the 30,000-to-75,000 circulation category, claimed eight first place awards, seven seconds and five thirds.
First place winners included Editorial Art Director Dustin Glatz for "Releaf — By the Numbers" and "The Things They Carry"; News Editor J. Adrian Stanley for "Out & Up," the story of Shari Zabel, and "Psychedelic Miracle," about a drug that helps addicts recover; reporter Nat Stein for "Toxic Trudge," a story about residents dealing with contaminated ground water; and reporter Pam Zubeck for "Betrayal of Trust," which recounted the crimes of a disbarred lawyer; "Shooting Star," a story about Darryl Glenn's political path; and "Power of One," which is about Philip Anschutz's influence.
Awards also went to Executive Editor Ralph Routon, John Hazlehurst, and Griffin Swartzell.
The Indy's sister newspaper, the Colorado Springs Business Journal, drew 22 awards, eight of them first places.