American Society of Magazine Editors

National Geographic Named Magazine of the Year at 2011 National Magazine Awards Dinner

May 9, 2011

Katie Couric Hosts Awards; Tom Wolfe Honored.

NEW YORK, NY (May 9, 2011)—The winners of the 2011 National Magazine Awards were announced tonight at the annual awards presentation at 583 Park Avenue in New York City. National Geographic won two awards, including the award for Magazine of the Year. Los Angeles, New York and The New York Times Magazine also won two awards each, including General Excellence awards for Los Angeles and New York.

“The 2011 National Magazine Awards dinner was a true celebration of magazine media,” said Sid Holt, chief executive of the American Society of Magazine Editors. “Writers, editors and publishers gathered tonight to honor not just the winners but all the nominees. The finalists this year ranged from literary and political magazines like Poetry and Mother Jones to mass-market publications like Good Housekeeping and People, but all of them have one thing in common: passionate readers who look to magazines for entertainment and enlightenment.”

Known as the Ellies, for the Alexander Calder stabile “Elephant” given to each winner, the awards were hosted by Katie Couric, anchor and managing editor of the CBS Evening News, and were attended by more than 700 magazine editors and publishers. The sold-out event was highlighted by the presentation of the Creative Excellence Award to Tom Wolfe by Jann S. Wenner, editor and publisher of Rolling Stone and member of the Magazine Editors’ Hall of Fame.

Among the awards presenters were two other members of the Magazine Editors’ Hall of Fame: Richard B. Stolley, the founding editor of People, and Ellen Levine, the editorial director of Hearst Magazines. Ms. Levine presented one of the six General Excellence awards with Michael Clinton, President, Marketing and Publishing Director, Hearst Magazines, and chairman of MPA—The Association of Magazine Media. The presenters also included:

  • James Bennet, editor-in-chief of The Atlantic, with the photojournalist Lynsey Addario
  • Betty Wong, editor-in-chief of Fitness, with Rocco DiSpirito
  • Mark Jannot, editor-in-chief of Popular Science, and James Oseland, editor-in-chief of Saveur
  • Terry McDonell, editor of Sports Illustrated Group, with the rugby star Gareth Thomas
  • Jonathan Dorn, editor-in-chief of Backpacker, and Kaitlin Quistgaard, editor-in-chief of Yoga Journal
  • Michael Hastings, Rolling Stone contributing editor, and Gary Smith, Sports Illustrated senior writer  and four-time National Magazine Award winner
  • Nicholas Lemann, Dean and Henry R. Professor at the Columbia Journalism School, and Anna Jakubek, Osborn Elliott-National Magazine Awards Scholar at Columbia
  • David Willey, editor-in-chief of Runner’s World, with the champion triathlete Sarah Reinertsen
  • Richard David Story, editor-in-chief of Departures, with David Copperfield
  • Rosemary Ellis,editor-in-chief of Good Housekeeping, with Dr. Mehmet Oz
  • Lucy Danziger, editor-in-chief of SELF, with Jillian Michaels

The evening began with the announcement by Larry Hackett, managing editor of People and president of the American Society of Magazine Editors, that May 9 had been proclaimed Magazine Day in New York City by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg. The presentation of the awards was also preceded by a tribute by Graydon Carter, editor of Vanity Fair, to photojournalists Tim Hetherington and Chris Hondros, who were slain while covering the war in Libya. Hetherington was a contributing photographer at Vanity Fair, and Hondros was a longtime contributor to Virginia Quarterly Review whose work was nominated for a National Magazine Award in 2008.

The exclusive sponsor of the 2011 National Magazine Awards is Mirasol, Displays by Qualcomm.

18 Magazines Receive 2011 National Magazine Awards


The winners of the 2011 National Magazine Awards were:


News, Sports and Entertainment Magazines
Honors large-circulation weeklies, biweeklies and general-interest monthlies

New York
Adam Moss, Editor-in-Chief
For April 19, July 12, August 9-16 Issues

Literary, Political and Professional Magazines
Honors academic and scholarly publications as well as smaller-circulation general-interest magazines

Christian Wiman, Editor
Don Share, Senior Editor
For April, September, October Issues

Fashion, Service and Lifestyle Magazines
Honors women's magazines, including health and fitness magazines and family-centric publications

Women’s Health
Michele Promaulayko, Editor-in-Chief
David Zinczenko, Editorial Director
For January-February, July-August, October Issues

Food, Travel and Design Magazines
Honors lifestyle magazines as well as shelter titles

Garden & Gun
Sid Evans, Editor-in-Chief
For April-May, June-July, December 2010-January 2011 Issues

Finance, Technology and Lifestyle Magazines
Honors men's magazines as well as business, science and active-interest publications

Scientific American
Mariette DiChristina, Editor-in-Chief
For September, November, December Issues

Special-Interest Magazines
Honors magazines serving targeted audiences, including city and regional magazines

Los Angeles
Mary Melton, Editor
For February, September, November Issues


Honors overall excellence in magazine design, including the use of illustrations and photographs

Jim Nelson, Editor-in-Chief
Fred Woodward, Design Director
For June, August, December Issues


Honors overall excellence in magazine photography

Stefano Tonchi, Editor-in-Chief
For September, October, November Issues


Honors photojournalism and photography that documents news, sports and entertainment events and news-related subjects

The New York Times Magazine
Gerald Marzorati, Editor-in-Chief
For “The Shrine Down the Hall,” photographs by Ashley Gilbertson; essay by Dexter Filkins
March 21


Honors portraiture; fashion, travel and nature photography; and food, shelter and other still-life photography conceptual photography; and photo-illustration

ESPN The Magazine
Gary Belsky, Editor-in-Chief
For “Bodies We Want,” reporting by Morty Ain
October 18


Honors magazines that have devoted an issue to the comprehensive examination of one subject or topic

National Geographic
Chris Johns, Editor-in-Chief
For “Water: Our Thirsty World”


Honors a regularly published, clearly branded front- or back-of-the-book department or section

New York
Adam Moss, Editor-in-Chief
For “Strategist”
May 24, October 25, December 20-27 Issues


Honors the superior and consistent use of print to serve readers’ needs and aspirations

Men’s Health
David Zinczenko, Editor-in-Chief
Peter Moore, Editor
For “I Want My Prostate Back,” by Laurence Roy Stains; photographs by Nigel Cox


Honors the superior and consistent use of print to provide information about recreational activities and special interests

Men’s Journal
Jann S. Wenner, Editor-in-Chief
Will Dana, Editorial Director
Brad Wieners, Editor
For “Five Meals Every Man Should Master,” by Daniel Duane; photographs by Marcus Nilsson


Honors magazine journalism that illuminates issues of local or national importance

The New Yorker
David Remnick, Editor
For “Letting Go,” by Atul Gawande
August 2


Honors reporting excellence as exemplified by one article or a series of articles

Harper’s Magazine
Roger D. Hodge, Editor
For “The Guantanamo 'Suicides',’” by Scott Horton


Honors original, stylish storytelling

Los Angeles
Mary Melton, Editor
For “The End,” by Ben Ehrenreich


Honors news or feature stories focused on individuals or groups of closely linked individuals

The New York Times Magazine
Gerald Marzorati, Editor-in-Chief
For “The Man the White House Wakes Up To,” by Mark Leibovich
April 25


Honors long-form journalism that presents the opinions of the writer on topics ranging from the personal to the political

The Paris Review
Lorin Stein, Editor
For “Mister Lytle: An Essay,” by John Jeremiah Sullivan


Honors short-form journalism that presents the views of the writer or publication

Vanity Fair
Graydon Carter, Editor
For three columns by Christopher Hitchens: “Topic of Cancer,” September; “Unanswerable Prayers,” October; “Miss Manners and the Big C,” December


Honors the best short stories published in magazines

Virginia Quarterly Review
Ted Genoways, Editor
For “Minor Watt,” by Paul Theroux


Honors the best magazines published both in print and on digital platforms

National Geographic
Chris Johns, Editor-in-Chief
Rob Covey, Digital Media Editor,
For February, April, December Issues

One Cubic Foot

Burden of Thirst

Gaudi's Masterpiece

Water: A Special Issue:

Being Jane Goodall:

Great Migrations:

Tut’s Family Secrets:

Curious Chimps:

The National Geographic Photo Contest:

Your Shot:

Time for a Sea Change:

The Spill:

To order a special compilation of National Magazine Award-winning entries produced by HP MagCloud, click here and order ASME Issue 1: National Magazine Awards 2011.

11 Magazines Receive 2011 National Magazine Awards for Digital Media


The National Magazine Awards for Digital Media were presented earlier this year, at a lunch on March 16 held in conjunction with the MPA Digital: E-Reading conference. The 2011 Digital Ellie winners were:

General Excellence, Digital Media
Service & Lifestyle

Tanya Steel, Editor-in-Chief
Jamie Pallot, Editorial Director


Tablet Magazine
Alana Newhouse, Editor-in-Chief
Marc Tracy, Staff Writer
For “The Scroll”


Photography, Digital Media
Bill Shapiro, Editor
Simon Barnett, Director of Photography


Design, Digital Media

The New York Times Magazine
Hugo Lindgren, Editor-in-Chief


Multimedia Package

Virginia Quarterly Review
Elliott D. Woods, Reporter and Multimedia Production
Jesse Dukes, Multimedia and Audio Production
Bluecadet Interactive, Web Design and Product Coordination
Ted Genoways, Editor
For “Assignment Afghanistan”


Online Department

Fast Company
Noah Robischon, Executive Editor
Cliff Kuang, Editor
For “Co. Design”


Interactive Tool

For “Epicurious Recipes & Shopping List” iPad App


News Reporting

Foreign Policy
Susan Glasser, Editor-in-Chief
Colum Lynch, Reporter
For Reporting on the United Nations



Christian Wiman, Editor
Don Share, Senior Editor
For “Poetry Magazine Podcast”



The Oxford American
Warwick Sabin, Publisher
Dave Anderson, Videographer
For “SoLost”


Mobile Edition

David Granger, Editor-in-Chief


General Excellence, Digital Media
News & Opinion

David Plotz, Editor


77 Publications Nominated for 2011 National Magazine Awards

Seventy-seven magazines were nominated for National Magazine Awards this year. Thirty-four magazines received multiple nominations, and six publications were nominated for the first time. Nine online-only publications were also nominated.

Magazines receiving multiple nominations this year were The Atlantic (6 nominations), Backpacker (2), The Chronicle of Higher Education (2), The Daily Beast (3), Epicurious (2), Esquire (4), Fast Company (3), Foreign Policy (4), GQ (5), Harper’s Magazine (2), Los Angeles (3), Marie Claire (2), Martha Stewart Living (2), Men’s Journal (2), National Geographic (9), New York (9), The New York Times Magazine  (9), The New Yorker (11), The Paris Review (2), Poetry (2), Popular Mechanics (2), Real Simple (4), Runner’s World (2), Scientific American (2), Slate (4), Sports Illustrated (3), Tablet (2), Texas Monthly (2), TIME (3), Vanity Fair (2), Virginia Quarterly Review (7), Vogue (2), W (3) and Wired (5).

The six never-before-nominated titles were Cooking Light, House Beautiful, Lapham’s Quarterly, OnEarth, Poetry, The Sun and Women’s Health. The nine online-only finalists were Chow, CNET, The Daily Beast, Epicurious,, Salon, Slate, Tablet and Yale Environment 360.

The 2011 finalists also included AARP The Magazine; The American Scholar; The Antioch Review; Audubon; Bloomberg Businessweek; Bloomberg Markets; Conde Nast Traveler; Discover Magazine; Entertainment Weekly; ESPN The Magazine; Essence; Field & Stream; Fortune; Garden and Gun; Golf Digest; Good Housekeeping; Harvard Business Review; IEEE Spectrum; InStyle; Men’s Health; Mother Jones; O, the Oprah Magazine; The Oxford American; People; POZ; and Reason.TV; Rolling Stone; San Francisco; Saveur; SELF; Sunset; and Time Out New York.

About the National Magazine Awards

The preeminent awards for magazine journalism in the United States, the National Magazine Awards were established in 1966 and are sponsored by the American Society of Magazine Editors in association with the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. Each winner receives a reproduction of Alexander Calder’s stabile “Elephant,” the symbol of the National Magazine Awards; the original is displayed at the ASME offices in New York. National Magazine Award entry fees and ticket sales fund the Osborn Elliott-National Magazine Awards Scholarship at Columbia.

Nearly 270 publications entered the National Magazine Awards in 2011, submitting 1,673 entries. The judges included 359 magazine journalists and journalism educators.  The awards were presented at two events: the National Magazine Awards for Digital Media lunch (known as the Digital Ellies) on March 16 and the National Magazine Awards dinner on May 9. The finalist this year with the largest print circulation (22 million) was AARP The Magazine; the finalist with the smallest (3,000) was The Antioch Review.

About the American Society of Magazine Editors (ASME)

The American Society of Magazine Editors is the principal organization for magazine journalists in the United States. The 700 members of ASME include the editorial leaders of most major consumer and business magazines published in print and online. Founded in 1963, ASME works to defend the First Amendment, protect editorial independence and support the development of journalism. ASME sponsors the National Magazine Awards in association with the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. To learn more about ASME, please go to