SPJ San Diego is proud to announce the 2015 San Diego Journalist of the Year:
Jeff McDonald, a staff writer at U-T San Diego.
We honor McDonald for covering a story so complex and bureaucratic that many journalists wouldn’t even know where to start: how state regulators handled the shutdown of the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station.
McDonald thought a $4.7 billion settlement to pay for the shutdown seemed “somewhat lopsided” since customers would foot 70 percent of the cost, so he began asking questions. He discovered the deal was hatched in secret at a luxury hotel in Poland. His reporting prompted state politicians and California’s Office of Ratepayer Advocates, one of the parties to the agreement, to criticize and take a closer look at it.
McDonald has been a member of the U-T watchdog team since its formation in 2010. Here is a recent Q&A with him about his reporting.
SPJ San Diego will honor McDonald at our annual awards banquet this summer. Details will be announced soon.