Paolo Marchetti, an independent photojournalist based in Italy, is the 2015 Photographer of the Year. His winning portfolio included two essays on animal harvesting for the benefit of "high fashion and standards of beauty" — “The Price of Vanity” and “Cold Blood Colombia.”

Carolyn Van Houten, Al Bello and Andrew Ellis were honored as Newspaper Photographer of the Year, Sports Photographer of the Year and Multimedia Photographer of the Year, respectively. National Geographic magazine won the Angus McDougall Overall Excellence in Editing Award.

The complete list of awards in all 40 categories can be found on the POY website.

Van Houten, a staff photojournalist at the San Antonio Express-News, was recognized for a portfolio that included "Oil Bust in South Texas," a story about the impact of job losses within the local oil industry, and "Rebuilding After the Floods," which focused on a family's effort to rebuild after Texas flooding.

The winning portfolio from Bello of Getty Images included photos from the 2015 Pan American Games and a wide range of collegiate and professional sports.

MediaStorm’s Ellis was touted by judges for two impressive stories: "Life After Water," on the plight of a farmer who is at risk of losing his farm to the California drought, and "The Last Move," which documents a video game collector who sells his collection to care for his family.

POY's Documentary Project of the Year Award went to National Geographic for its special issue, "Cool It: The Climate Issue."

Hossein Fatemi won the World Understanding Award for his long-form documentary photography project "An Iranian Journey," which chronicles the contrasts and changes in the society of Iran.

Brent Stirton of Getty Images won the Environmental Vision Award for his science and natural history photo project titled "Ivory Wars," which examines the conservation efforts to stop poaching elephants for ivory.

Casper Dalhoff earned the Community Awareness Award for "A Commitment to Life," a project that documents a Denmark village that is a special home to 232 adults with mental and physical disabilities.

Stephen Dupont’s "Generation AK: The Afghanistan Wars 1993-2012" won the Best Photography Book Award.

Fifteen highly respected professionals in visual journalism reviewed photographs, editing pages, and online pieces in 40 categories during 19 days of judging from Feb. 8 to 26.

The annual POY Education & Awards Program will be held in mid-April in Denver, Colorado.

Pictures of the Year International is a program of the Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute at the University of Missouri School of Journalism. Since its founding in 1944, POY is the oldest and most prestigious photojournalism competition in the world. For seven decades, newspaper and magazine photographers have sent their strongest images to POY, an annual contest started by the late Cliff Edom, the University of Missouri professor who coined the term "photojournalism."

The POY competition also provides educational and professional development within an academic setting. Six students serve as POY coordinators each year with the assistance of other student volunteers.  This year’s dedicated six — Cody Lohse, Taz Lombardo, Abby Connolly, Alexandra Jacobi and Shelby Baseler — sorted thousands of photographs, stories, pages, books, and website links, then orchestrated the technology to display the work during the contest.

Selected winning photographs are available upon request. For more information, contact POY Director Rick Shaw at 573-884-7351 or by email at


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