Best of AP — Honorable Mention


AP breaks news on Boy Scouts’ historic name change

Selby Chipman, 20-year-old, speaks at the Boys Scouts of America annual meeting in Orlando, Fla., Tuesday, May 7, 2024. Chipman, a student at the University of Missouri, is an Inaugural Female Eagle Scout and the Assistant Scoutmaster for an all girls troop 8219 in Oak Ridge, N.C. The Boy Scouts of America is changing its name for the first time in its 114-year history and will become Scouting America. AP PHOTO / KEVIN KOLCZYNSKI

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Years of authoritative coverage on the Boy Scouts of America paid off with a scoop on the group’s decision to rebrand to Scouting America. The Boy Scouts of America spent most of its 114-history proudly resistant to change. How Dallas reporter Jamie Stengle, video journalist Kendria LaFleur and photojournalist Tony Gutierrez were first across all formats with a major one — a rebrand to Scouting America —was no accident and put AP far ahead on one of the week’s biggest talkers.

For more than a decade, AP has chronicled the rapid shifts and woes within the Boy Scouts, from revoking a ban on gay youths to bankruptcy. The authoritative coverage paid off when Stengle, who has previously covered the Texas-based organization, received a call from its headquarters: the Boy Scouts would change their name in 2025 in a switch aimed at inclusion.

The news would not be publicly announced until the next week at the Boys Scouts’ national convention in Florida. The Texas team used that head start to own the story, including LaFleur shooting the first on-camera interview with Boy Scouts president Roger Krone about the change. In addition to the mainbar, Stengle also put together a glance of the tumult and shake-ups within the scouts, drawing on years of expert AP reporting.

The  coverage did not stop in Texas. Although the scouts were resistant to allowing press at their national convention in Orlando, Stengle was determined and secured access for a photographer, whose images of a female Eagle Scout’s remarks helped give AP a robust visual package that also included Gutierrez’s photos from Dallas.

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