Livingston Award finalist and AltWeekly Award winner Sharyn Jackson is an enterprise journalist based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. A staff writer at the Star Tribune, she was previously a news reporter writing for USA Today and the Des Moines Register in Iowa, and an editor at the Village Voice in New York City. Continue Reading…

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ASHA Award and more

The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association named my story on transgender voice modification as a 2015 Media Award winner! The award will be presented at the national organization’s convention later this week in Denver.

The award honors “media coverage that helped promote public awareness and understanding of communication disorders and the professions of audiology and speech-language pathology…”

Here’s what they wrote:

Minneapolis Star Tribune was awarded for its coverage of the growing practice of and need for voice modification services for transgender individuals.”

I am so honored to have this story recognized by this professional organization.

Meanwhile, in recent months, “Harvest of Change” has added a national Murrow award, a SABEW award, and a regional Emmy to its list of accolades!


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Front page

My recent story on the difficult conversations about end-of-life care and wishes landed on the Star Tribune’s Sunday front page, above the fold.

A phone call was all it took.

Bill Hanley’s 92-year-old mother, Carol, had been diagnosed with renal failure and her only hope of survival was dialysis. The doctors recommended it, and Hanley assumed his mother would pursue it.

But at her age, she was not interested in the difficult treatment. Hanley’s parents, siblings and children all joined on a conference call, “and we all at the same time got to hear my mom very unequivocally express her preferences.” He knew, then, that he had to honor her wishes. Carol died a few weeks later.

Talking about one’s own death can be awkward and emotional. But what was once just a suggestion could become routine because of a change in the law.

The Obama administration this summer proposed reimbursing doctors for advance care planning conversations with Medicare patients. Coming seven years after the highly political “death panels” debate, the Medicare decision applies to Americans age 65 and up and is slated to begin in January. 

While advocates laud the change, many say it doesn’t go far enough. They argue that the conversation needs to begin long before a senior or terminally ill patient walks through the doors of a doctor’s office. Read more…

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Livingston Award finalist!

Amazing news to share! I’ve been named a finalist in local reporting for the Livingston Award, which is an incredibly huge honor. The Livingston Awards recognize work from journalists under 35.

The work being recognized is “Harvest of Change,” a series I reported at the Des Moines Register about major shifts in America that are affecting family farming. I spent all of last summer traveling the state of Iowa to go in-depth with four farmers who have seen these shifts impact their lives and livelihoods. It was an amazing project made even more amazing by the addition of virtual reality technology, a first in journalism. The Register teamed with Gannett Digital to tell the story on the Oculus Rift headset using 360-degree video. We presented the experience at the Online News Association conference last September to huge success.

I’m incredibly proud of this project, and now this amazing opportunity to have the work recognized.

Read more about the Livingston Awards:

The Livingston Awards for Young Journalists honor outstanding achievement by professionals under the age of 35 in local, national and international reporting.

The largest all-media, general reporting prize in American journalism, the Livingston Awards judge print, broadcast and online entries against one another, a practice of increasing interest as technology blurs the traditional distinctions between the branches of journalism.

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On the radio

I was interviewed today on Iowa Public Radio’s River to River show to discuss my story on the latest Iowa Poll about gay marriage.

The poll showed that 36 percent of Iowans say same-sex marriage doesn’t matter to them, which could be signalling a change in attitude.

I spoke with River to River host Ben Kieffer about the numbers.

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Sunday’s front page: Air Force Academy’s future rests in Iowan’s steady hands

Very inspired by Lt. Gen. Michelle Johnson, the first female superintendent of the U.S. Air Force Academy, and an Iowan, who is coming into this position at a very challenging time. My story about Johnson is on today’s (Sunday) front page of the Des Moines Register and at USA Today.

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Check out my posts at

For the past few months, I’ve been writing some fun entertainment-related posts on the blog at Check out my author page for all my work, including the latest entries about celebs who get married over and over…and over, an interview with the gorgeous plus-size model Jennie Runk, and my favorite, a Q&A on New Year’s resolutions with none other than workout guru Richard Simmons.

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TV recaps

Sad news – the TV blog at Comcast/Xfinity will no longer publish original content. The timing couldn’t be worse, as “The Voice” finale is tonight and tomorrow. So for all of you who have been following me this season of “The Voice,” I’ll publish my recaps of the finale episodes here on this site. Check back later tonight here for my recap of the Top 3.

‘The Voice’ – Top 3 finale recap: ‘People love to watch famous people walk’

‘The Voice’ – Finale results recap: ‘It’s time to start working’

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Iowa Kids: Juvenile Justice

On Sunday, the Des Moines Register’s 11th installment of its Iowa Kids series ran, and I had the great honor of writing it. The focus was juvenile justice, and the alternatives to the court system that are giving Iowa’s kids a second chance.

This special report consists of several stories, including narratives of young people who were given a way to clear their records, and runs on six pages in the Sunday paper. I also made two of the videos that accompany the section. View the online version here, along with past installments of the Iowa Kids series.

Or download the complete package here.

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‘Undercover’ in ‘Best Alternative Longform Journalism’

My 2011 Santa Fe Reporter story, “Undercover,” about an abortion doctor who has the risky job of flying to understaffed clinics around the country, has been included in an e-book, “Best Alternative Longform Journalism.” The e-book is free and available for download at I’m so honored to be included in this and see how one doctor’s incredible story is still reaching people a year and a half after it was first published.

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Drone controversy coming to Iowa

My latest front-page story talks about the controversy over drones and secret targeted killings of American citizens, the possibility of civilian casualties, and the psychological toll remote warfare takes on soldiers, as a new Air Force drone operation comes to Des Moines.

The story, for the Des Moines Register, also ran in USA Today.

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