Tri-City Herald photographer wins top AP photo award

September 19, 2013 

A Tri-City Herald photographer won a top photo award and placed in four other categories in the 2013 Associated Press Northwest photo contest announced Thursday.

Kai-Huei Yau, who’s been with the Herald since 2008, won the Cowles trophy, awarded each year since 1952, for his series of campaign-themed football portraits featured in the 2012 prep football special section.

He wrote about the behind-the-scenes work that went into the “Football Campaign” series in his Behind the Fold blog, saying he “wanted to tie our football preview to the presidential election year.”

“It was a rewarding experience and the creative drive and realization of a four-year project kept me going through a busy and trying time, and wrapping it up makes all the added stress of taking on this task feel justified. I hope our readers enjoy viewing the series as much I did putting it together,” Yau wrote in his blog last year.

The last time the Herald won the award was in 1996 when Wes Pope of the Herald won for his photograph of a father shielding his two daughters from a sudden storm, titled "Shelter From The Storm." The Herald also won the award in 1954 for a photo by Ralph Smith.

The award is named for William Hutchison Cowles, former publisher of The Spokesman-Review.

Also, in the nonmetro division, Yau placed second and third in the sports category and first in the portrait category. He also won first in the Multiple/Photo Story category for “Football Campaign.”

Also winning awards for the Herald were Photo Editor Bob Brawdy, who placed second in the news category for “Dog Escapes House Fire,” and photographer Rich Dickin, who took second place in the feature category for “Raft Dogs.”

The winners were announced at the annual meeting of the Pacific Northwest Newspaper Association in Seattle.

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