2012 Young Journalist of the Year

Aisha Dow

Aisha Dow of The Border Mail won the 2012 Young Journalist of the Year award.

Dow’s work with The Border Mail included articles covering a spike in painkiller overdoses, a homeless pregnant couple and more.

Judges statement

Aisha’s portfolio was an impressive blend of disclosure journalism and descriptive writing. She executed both styles with maturity and creativity.

Her standout work in 2012 was a sustained investigation into the black market for pain-killing fentanyl
patches, a trade marked by recruitment of pensioners to sell their prescription drugs and rampant cross-border doctor-shopping. Aisha’s work made national headlines and disclosed that the trade had claimed the lives of at least 50 people in the last two years.

Aisha’s colour pieces on a homeless couple and the discovery of jellyfish in Lake Hume showed she is a gifted writer with an admirable aversion to adjectives and adverbs. All in all, the judges said, an eye-catching portfolio for major media recruiters.

Aisha Dow's award presentation, work and acceptance speech

Aisha Dow's work online

'Spike in painkiller deaths: claim'

'Pensioners selling deadly painkiller to addicts'

'No hope for homeless, pregnant couple'

'Lurking in the lake' story & video


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