POY RJI | Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute

Statement of Judging Ethics

Pictures of the Year International selects judges who maintain the highest journalistic and ethical standards. We have confidence that these same values will apply as jurors for POYi. We recognize that our profession is a close network and that the judges are also working journalists. So, we carefully research and consider any potential conflicts and then counsel all the members about their obligations to be fair and impartial. Any judge with entries in a category are asked to recuse themselves. The entire three weeks of judging is an open forum for anyone to quietly observe the process. POYi conducts the annual competition with complete transparency and integrity.


2020 POY judges and moderators

February 10–14

Session includes Daily Life, Spot News, General News, Impact 2019-Immigration Status, Daily Life Picture Story, Portrait, Portrait Series, Local News Picture Story and Photographer of the Year, Local

Michelle Agins

Staff photographer, New York Times

Michelle Agins

Michelle Agins is a staff photographer for the New York Times. Previously she worked for The Charlotte Observer, the city of Chicago and its mayor Harold Washington.

Agins began her career in photography as an intern for The Chicago Daily News in 1971. In less than one year, she became the paper’s high school and college sports photographer. In 1977, Agins left to be the photographer and audio-visual specialist for the City of Chicago's Department of Human Services.

From 1983 to 1987, she was the official photographer for Chicago Mayor Harold Washington. Agins' photographs have been widely exhibited. Her work appeared in “Songs of My People,” a celebrated photographic exhibit of the country’s African-American community.

Agins has received two Pulitzer Prize nominations, the first in 1990 for coverage of the Bensonhurst protests and in 1995 for her work on the Times’ series Another America: Life on 129th Street. In 2001, Agins and her colleagues won a Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting for their series How Race is Lived in America.

Since 2017 Agins has been a faculty member at the Eddie Adams Workshop. In 2019, she received NPPA’s highest honor, the Joseph A. Sprague Memorial Award, the first woman of color to do so. Agins was also awarded a degree of Doctor of Humane Letters from her alma mater, Dominican University.

Enric Marti

Global Enterprise Photo Editor and Deputy Director of Photography, Associated Press

Enric Marti

Enric Martí is the Global Enterprise Photo Editor and Deputy Director of Photography for the Associated Press.

He grew up in Barcelona, Spain, and began his career in photojournalism as a photo assistant with Agence France-Presse in Managua, Nicaragua, in 1989. Later he worked as a local stringer for Reuters. In 1992, he moved to Sarajevo as a freelancer, later joining EPA.

Marti began working for the AP in 1994. He started in the Balkans, moving to Cairo where he worked as AP's senior photographer for the Middle East for six years covering mostly Africa and the Middle East. From 2002 until 2006, he served as chief photo editor/photographer in Jerusalem. From 2007 to 2018, he was in charge of Latin America & the Caribbean while living in Mexico City.

In 2018, Marti moved to AP’s New York headquarters to work as the Global Enterprise Photo Editor and Deputy Director of Photography. Martí's honors include a World Press Photo award, three Fotopress awards, an Ortega y Gasset prize from his native Spain and the 2001 Bayeux award for war photography in France. He has served on the 2008 and 2011 World Press Photo juries.

Regina Boone

Staff photographer, Richmond Free Press

Regina Boone

Regina H. Boone is a staff photographer for the Richmond Free Press, a weekly newspaper founded by her late father. Previously, she was a staff photographer for the Detroit Free Press, where for nearly 14 years she covered a wide range of local, regional and national stories including the Flint water crisis, Rosa Parks’ funeral, and President Barack Obama’s journey to the White House.

During a 2017 Knight-Wallace Fellowship at the University of Michigan, Boone began researching the story of her grandfather, Tsuruju Miyazaki, a Japanese immigrant who was arrested and interned during World War II. In 2019, Boone was the subject of a documentary by the Japanese network NHK, A Vanished Dream: Wartime story of my Japanese Grandfather. The documentary traces Boone’s investigation into the life of her grandfather. She is currently working on a book about him.

She holds a degree in political science from Spelman College and completed coursework in Ohio University’s School of Visual Communication master’s program and is passionate about mentoring young people in photography.

Marcus Yam

Staff photographer, Los Angeles Times

Marcus Yam

Marcus Yam is a Los Angeles Times staff photojournalist. Born and raised in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, he left a career in aerospace engineering to be a photographer.

In 2019, Yam was awarded the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Journalism Award for his unflinching body of work documenting the everyday plight of Gazans during deadly clashes in the Gaza Strip. Yam has been a part of two Pulitzer Prize-winning breaking news awards: the 2015 San Bernardino, Calif., terrorist attacks and the deadly landslide in Oso, Wash., when he worked for the Seattle Times.

Previously, Yam was based in New York and regularly contributed to The New York Times. His most notable work includes The Times's 3-part multimedia series Punched Out: The Life and Death of a Hockey Enforcer and A Year at War, a Times series that included Yam’s film The Home Front, which has won many accolades.

In 2017, Yam was named the Newspaper Photographer of the Year. He has also earned the Scripps Howard Visual Journalism Award, Society of Professional Journalists Sigma Delta Chi Award, an Emmy, a DART award for trauma coverage and an Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Award.

Jenn Poggi

Assistant professor in the School of Photographic Arts and Sciences at Rochester Institute of Technology

Jenn Poggi

Jenn Poggi is an assistant professor in the School of Photographic Arts and Sciences at Rochester Institute of Technology. She joined RIT following nearly five years at the White House, where she served as a picture editor and deputy director of the Photo Office under President Barack Obama.

She began her career as a photo assistant with the Associated Press in New York and later worked as a picture editor covering sports, national, and international news. Jenn later joined U.S. News & World Report as an assistant picture editor and went on to serve as the picture editor of the Nation section and deputy director of photography at the magazine.

Poggi was awarded a John S. and James L. Knight Fellowship at Ohio University’s School of Visual Communication where she taught picture editing and completed her master’s degree in multimedia and newsroom graphics management. She was selected as a member of the 2017 Women’s Executive Leadership Program​ at the Impact Center and has served on the faculty of The Kalish Visual Editing Workshop since 2015. ​

February 17–19

Session includes Sports Action, Sports Life, Sports Portrait, Sports Picture Story, Recreational Sports and Sports Photographer of the Year

Julianne Varacchi

Visuals Director, Connecticut Public Broadcasting

Julianne Varacchi

In January, Julianne Varacchi was hired as a Visuals Director at Connecticut Public Broadcasting. For the past 12 years, she served as a senior photo editor for ESPN and The Undefeated where she commissioned photographers and directed visual approach for editorial, enterprise and investigative stories.

She also supervised teams and coordinated editing and multimedia coverage for events like the Final Fours, Triple Crown Races, College Football Championships and Super Bowls. Varacchi has served on editing teams that have won many honors including the 2018 and 2017 EPPY for Best Photojournalism of a website and the 2017 ELLIES for General Excellence in a magazine.

Varacchi is involved in the photo community in many ways. She has co-led workshops at Photoville, served as a faculty/team producer at the Eddie Adams Workshop and served on the jury for The Fence traveling exhibit and New York Portfolio Review.

Kirthmon Dozier

Staff photographer, Detroit Free Press

Kirthmon Dozier

Kirthmon F. Dozier is a staff photographer at the Detroit Free Press. At the Freep, Kirthmon has been part of sports photo teams that have covered many runs for the Stanley Cup, MLB playoffs, Bowl games and NCAA championship runs by Michigan and Michigan State.

After graduating from Washington State University, Dozier began his career as an intern at the Missoulian newspaper in Montana. In 1981, he joined the Bellingham Herald in Washington as a staff photographer. After four years, he moved to the Detroit News.

At the News, Dozier covered news, daily life and sports, including Nelson Mandela’s release from prison in 1990, and the NBA, NHL, and NCAA football. Dozier also collaborated with Ronald Lazenby and Taylor Publications to publish three photography books on the Detroit Pistons’ championship runs.

In 1993, Dozier moved to Newsday in Long Island where he continued to cover a wide range of assignments including conflict in Somalia. In 1995 he returned to Michigan and joined the Free Press. Over the years, Dozier’s photographs have been recognized by the Society of Professional Journalists, the Associated Press, the Michigan Press Photographers Association and Gannett.

Amy Sancetta

Retired staff photographer, Associated Press

Amy Sancetta

As an Associated Press staff photographer for 30 years, Amy Sancetta traveled the world covering 11 Olympic Games, many Super Bowls, World Series, Masters, Kentucky Derbies, U.S Open Tennis tournaments, NBA and NHL Finals and the FIFA World Cup. She has covered the Academy Awards, the Emmys, the Sundance Film Festival, numerous national political conventions and inaugurations, as well as the 9/11 attacks in New York.

After graduating from Ohio State with a degree in History in 1981, she worked for two years as a staff photographer with the Columbus Dispatch before joining the AP in 1983.

Sancetta won the Pulitzer Prize in feature photography in 1992 and was named the Associated Press top sports photographer worldwide in 1993. She has enjoyed teaching stints at Penn State, West Virginia University, and the Rich Clarkson Workshops.

Since retiring, Sancetta finds fulfillment volunteering for animal welfare organizations. She is married to her partner of 33 years, nationally syndicated cartoonist Jenny Campbell. They live in the house where she grew up with their rescue dogs, Tanner and Grayson, and one cat, Rizz.

Kohjiro Kinno


Kohjiro Kinno

Kohjiro Kinno is a surfer, artist, and a photojournalist. As a photographer covering stories for Sports Illustrated for more than a decade, Kinno has witnessed some of the sporting world’s most memorable moments, including the comeback of Tiger Woods to win his fifth Masters in 2019 (his image made the cover of SI).

While he primarily photographs golf these days, he has covered everything from mixed martial arts to the Olympics. His editorial clients include Sports Illustrated, ESPN Images, The Player’s Tribune, The Golfer’s Journal and commercial clients in the golf industry.

February 21–25

Session includes Science & Natural History-Singles, Science & Natural History—Picture Story, Environmental Vision Award, National/International News Picture Story, Community Awareness Award, Issue Reporting Picture Story, World Understanding Award, Photography Book of the Year and Photographer of the Year

Indira Williams Babic

Director of Photography and the Visual Journalism Curator, Newseum

Indira Williams Babic

Indira Williams Babic is the Director of Photography and the Visual Journalism Curator at the Newseum in Washington, D.C. She oversees research, editorial selection, acquisition, digital processing, rights management, printed image quality control and digital and analog storage of all photography on exhibit and in the collection at the museum. Some of the notable projects include the 75th anniversary exhibit for Pictures of the Year International and the complete collection of Pulitzer Prize-winning photographs.

Babic is a frequent speaker and moderator for important conversations about photojournalism issues such as women covering conflict from the front lines, how photography exhibits are used to talked about new topics like hunger and the portrayal of women in politics.

Originally from Panama, Babic has been working in the photography field for more than 20 years. Before joining the Newseum, she worked as a picture researcher at analogue and online photo licensing agencies in Virginia, as a television host and producer in Spain, and as an editor for a book publishing company in Panama.

Prashant Panjiar

Photographer and Curator

Prashant Panjiar

One of the leading photographers in India, Prashant Panjiar is a self-taught independent photographer and curator. He has worked as a photojournalist and editor at Patriot newspaper (1984-1986), India Today (1986-1995) and the Outlook Group of Publications (1995-2001).

Since 2001, Panjiar has worked independently documenting issues of health, education and livelihood across Asia and Africa for international non-profit organizations such as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, American India Foundation, UNFPA, IPPF & HIV-AIDS Alliance. He has published stories in outlets like Time magazine and The New York Times.

As a curator, Panjiar co-founded and curated all 3 editions of the Delhi Photo Festival. He also served as the Creative Director and curator for Sensorium, a festival of Arts, Literature & Ideas. Panjiar also co-founded the Nazar Foundation, a non-profit trust that supports the photographic community in India through events, education and publishing of photo books and exhibits.

Panjiar has served on the jury of the World Press Photo Awards, the China International Press Photo Competition, Indian Express Press Photo Awards and the National Foundation of India’s annual photography fellowship. He is actively involved in mentoring younger photographers.

Michael Kamber

Founder, the Bronx Documentary Center

Michael Kamber

Michael Kamber has worked as a writer, photographer and videographer for more than 25 years. Between 2002 and 2012, he worked for The New York Times covering conflicts in Iraq, Afghanistan, Liberia, the Sudan, Somalia, the Congo and other countries.

In 2011, Kamber founded the Bronx Documentary Center, an educational and exhibition space dedicated to positive social change through photography and film. Groundbreaking in its approach, the center features the work of emerging visual storytellers as well as internationally renowned photographers and filmmakers who explore the same issues that guide the center: justice, education, and social progress.

Kamber’s photos have been published in nearly every major newspapers and magazine in the United States and Europe and have received many honors, including The World Press Photo award, the Mike Berger Award, the Society of Professional Journalists Deadline Club Award, American Photo Images of the Year and the Overseas Press Club award.

Tay Kay Chin

Photographer and Curator

Tay Kay Chin

Kay Chin Tay (aka Kay-Chin TAY to most of his American friends) is a Singaporean documentary photographer. A 1992 graduate of the Missouri School of Journalism, he worked for more than a decade in newspapers in Singapore and the United States, working his way up from photographer to presentation editor.

After turning to independent photography, Kay Chin worked with the photography and film group Objectifs to co-found Shooting Home, one of Southeast Asia’s first photography workshops. In that year he was also named one of 12 Hasselblad Masters of the world.

In 2010, he co-founded PLATFORM, a photography collective to promote photojournalism and documentary work in Singapore. Leading up to the 50th anniversary of Singapore attaining political independence, Kay Chin and the PLATFORM team launched an initiative to publish 20 books by 20 Singaporean photographers. In 2015, an exhibit featuring all 20 books was held at Jendala (Visual Arts Space) at Esplanade–Theatres by the Bay.

Kay Chin has exhibited in the USA, Australia, China, South Korea, Bangladesh and Singapore. His photographs are collected by institutional and private collectors around the world. In 2018, he was invited by Pera Museum in Istanbul, Turkey, to curate the exhibit, Singapore Unseen. Most recently, World Press Photo invited him to be a nominator for its Joop Swart Masterclass for 2019 to 2021.

Amy Toensing


Amy Toensing

Amy Toensing is an independent photojournalist and filmmaker. She is known for telling stories about ordinary people with sensitivity and depth.

A regular contributor to National Geographic magazine for nearly two decades, Toensing has photographed cultures around the world including the last cave dwelling tribe of Papua New Guinea, the Aboriginal in remote Australia, the Maori of New Zealand, and the Kingdom of Tonga. She has also reported on food insecurity in the United States, the devastation of Hurricane Katrina and Muslim women living in Western culture.

In 1994, Toensing began her career as a staff photographer at her hometown paper, The Valley News, in New Hampshire, Connecticut. She later worked for The New York Times in their Washington, D.C., bureau covering the White House and Capitol Hill during the Clinton administration.

Toensing also teaches photography in underserved communities. Her students include Burmese refugees in Baltimore, student photojournalists in Islamabad, Pakistan, and Syrian refugee children in Jordan.

Currently, Toensing is an Assistant Professor of Visual Storytelling at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University and a 2020 National Geographic Explorer.

February 28–March 3

Session includes Documentary Daily Life, Documentary News Reporting, Online Storytelling: Daily Life, Online Storytelling: News Reporting, Newspaper Picture Editor, Magazine Picture Editing, Visual Editor of the Year, Online Storytelling Project of the Year, Angus McDougall Excellence in Editing Award, Documentary Storyteller of the Year and Documentary Journalism

Mark Hinojosa

Associate Professional Practice Professor, Missouri School of Journalism

Mark Hinojosa

Mark Hinojosa is an Associate Professional Practice Professor at the Missouri School of Journalism. He specializes in teaching multimedia storytelling through audio, still photography and video.

Before coming to Missouri, He worked for nearly seven years as the Director of Interactive Media for The Detroit News where he led efforts to enhance the digital delivery of news, integrate the print and online news teams, and develop the news operation’s social media strategy.

Previously, Hinojosa worked at the Chicago Tribune as a photo editor and as Associate Managing Editor for Photography. Responsible for a department of 65 staffers, Hinojosa also served as the A.M.E. for Multimedia. He is the first person to have held both A.M.E. positions. During his 17-year tenure in Chicago, Hinojosa and his staff received many honors, including an NAA Edgie Award for Most Innovative Multimedia Storytelling, the ONA Service Journalism award, regional Emmy awards and a national Emmy nomination.

Hinojosa is a two-time Pulitzer Prize judge and has lectured nationally and internationally on multimedia, newsroom convergence and audience engagement.

Mito Habe-Evans

Supervising Video Producer, National Public Radio

Mito Habe-Evans

Mito Habe-Evans is the supervising Video Producer at National Public Radio. She co-manages NPR’s video team and is responsible for its creative direction and sensibility. She leads the team in its pursuit of projects that are “smart with heart,” from the comedic economics explainer series Planet Money Shorts to the short film Senior Spring, a national portrait of teens and guns. She developed NPR's signature documentary style with What Democracy Looks Like and One Nation Under The Sun.

Habe-Evans splits her time between acting as Supervising Producer for various ongoing series and working in the field as Director/Producer/Editor on format-breaking enterprise projects. She created the Front Rows series, developing NPR’s style and technical capacity for multi-camera live concert video. She also created the Field Recordings series, where she established a cinematic style for intimate performances in unusual locations. This approach was applied to NPR's interviews with President Obama and Philip Glass, and to the Noteworthy series that profiles musicians such as Miguel and Dua Lipa.

Some of her stranger productions have involved stitching together 223 takes of OK Go performing in a flatbed truck, filming a 350-person performance on the steps of the Brooklyn Public Library, and wrangling 3 hedgehogs on a miniature apartment set.

Jenni Pinkley

Senior Multimedia Editor, Minneapolis Star Tribune

Jenni Pinkley

As the Senior Multimedia Editor for the Star Tribune in Minneapolis, Jenni Pinkley oversees all video production, from spot news to longform documentary video. Pinkley collaborates with the staff visual journalists and reporters to find the strongest multimedia subject and strategizes with them to find the best storytelling approach.

Pinkley has served as a multimedia coach and speaker at many workshops including the Poynter Institute and NPPA’s Multimedia Immersion workshop. The Star Tribune video department’s efforts have been recognized by groups such as the national Edward R. Murrow Awards, regional Emmy Awards, ONA, BOP and POYi.

Nancy Andrews

Independent journalist and Acting Creative Director at the Population Reference Bureau

Nancy Andrews

Nancy Andrews is an independent journalist and Acting Creative Director at the Population Reference Bureau. She started her career at the Fredericksburg Freelance-Star in 1986. She moved to The Washington Post in 1990, working there for a decade. In 1994, Andrews published the groundbreaking book, “Family: A Portrait of Gay and Lesbian America.”

As the Director of Photography at the Detroit Free Press, Andrews launched their video storytelling program in 2005. Within the next year, the staff earned three nominations and won its first of four national Emmy Awards. Andrews ran the Free Press digital and multimedia operations for nearly 10 years. She led data projects, explanatory work such as the SABEW-award-winning project How Detroit Went Broke and launched the social media presence of freep.com. Her staffs have earned two national Edward R. Murrow Awards.

Andrews is a frequent judge and lecturer, having previously judged POYi, Best of Photography and the Pulitzer Prizes. A teacher and coach, she’s served on the board and led teams for the Eddie Adams Workshop, directed video training for more than 3,000 journalists across Gannett, and taught 3D immersive storytelling and 360 video at West Virginia University.

Jarrad Henderson

Senior Multimedia Producer, Investigative and Enterprise Video Team at USA Today

Jarrad Henderson

Jarrad Henderson is the moderator for the Team Division of Pictures of the Year International. He is a photographer, producer, teacher and leader. He currently works as a Senior Multimedia Producer in the Investigative and Enterprise Video Team at USA Today.

In this role, he reported on the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, the 2016 Presidential Election and the Met Gala. He also produced and edited a 3-part series on the barrier facing recently released people entitled Re-entry Back to Society, or Back to Prison, which earned an Emmy. He was also a Livingston Award finalist in 2017 for his part in the National reporting on PTSD and Veteran suicide.

Previously, Henderson worked as a staff photographer at the Detroit Free Press from 2011 to 2014, during which time he was named the 2014 Multimedia Photographer of the Year by the Michigan Press Photographer Association.

Jarrad is a 2018 Fellow with the Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute, an Adjunct Professor at Georgetown University's School of Continuing Studies, serves as the Chair of the National Association of Black Journalists — Visual Task Force and has lectured at SXSW Edu, ONA and SRCCON.


Lynden Steele

Director of photojournalism, Reynolds Journalism Institute

Lynden Steele

As director of photojournalism at RJI, Lynden Steele oversees the Pictures of the Year International competition, coordinates worldwide exhibitions and manages the POYI archive. He also teaches at the Missouri School of Journalism.

Before coming to RJI, Steele worked at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch since 2008, most recently as assistant managing editor of photography. The work of his staff has been widely recognized. Notable awards include the 2017 Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award for Domestic Photography, the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News Photography and the POYI Director’s Choice in 2015.

In 2014, his staff, along with the Post-Dispatch’s graphics and metro team, won an EPPY Award from Editor & Publisher for Best Use of Photography on a Website and the Scripps Howard Foundation Award for Breaking News for staff coverage of Ferguson.

Prior to his work in St. Louis, Steele was a picture editor at the White House and edited the photography book “Portraits of a Leader: George W. Bush.”

Steele began his career as a staff photographer at the Monroe (Michigan) Evening News, and also worked as a staff photographer for Copley newspapers.

He received his bachelor’s degree in photojournalism from the Missouri School of Journalism.

Steele and his wife, Jody Mitori, who is also a Missouri School of Journalism graduate, have three children, 8-year-old twins and a 12-year-old son.