tony gonzalez journalist
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Online portfolio and blog by Tony Gonzalez, family issues reporter for The Tennessean newspaper in Nashville. I married my high school sweetheart, Katie, a designer and bookbinder. I like juggling, maps, baseball, and bullmastiffs.

Two years at The Tennessean, July 2011 to present. Three years reporting and editing at The News Virginian, 2008 to 2011. Editor of college and high school newspapers. Internships at The Star Tribune, The Detroit News, and The Toledo Free Press. Chips Quinn Scholar 2007.

Tennessee Associated Press Managing Editors 2012 statewide Malcolm Law Memorial Award for Investigative Reporting, as well as the Freedom of Information award, for Department of Children's Services project.

Gannett company-wide award 2012 for Watchdog Journalism

Associated Press Managing Editors 2010 International Perspective First Place for "The Borders Within," as well as Public Service Honorable Mention for investigation into troubled children's psychiatric hospital

2009 and 2010 winner, with staff, of the Virginia Press Association's highest award: the Award for Journalistic Integrity and Community Service.

Virginia Press Association 2008, 2009, and 2010 awards for crime, investigative, breaking news, and feature writing

2011 Robert Novak Fellow

Michigan Collegiate Press Association "Journalist of the Year" 2008

Chips Quinn Scholar, Class of 2007

Civil Rights Project DCS project
Borders Within Multimedia
Friday, July 09, 2010
Couple on road to recovery
By Tony Gonzalez
The News Virginian

STUARTS DRAFT — Her writing skills fully recovered, but her legs another two months from carrying her again, Betsy Nelson sat in her blue wheelchair this week writing thank you cards.

Of the hundreds she could be writing, she struggled to begin the dozens that would go to complete strangers who took to her story because of messages dispatched by her mother on Facebook during 34 days in the hospital.

She may not know many of those supporters, but all the diagnoses, surgeries and hospital gadgets she encountered are familiar to the people who followed her progress, prayed, donated money and sent cards.

Betsy, 21, and husband Josh Nelson, 26, were injured in an April 22 head-on collision on Wayne Avenue in Stuarts Draft that rescuers consider one of the most devastating ever. Crews tore at the couple’s Jeep Cherokee for an hour to free Betsy.

Barbara Womack chronicled her daughter’s days at the University of Virginia Medical Center on the Facebook page “Please Pray for Betsy and Josh Nelson.”

She began with the facts: the couple was hit head-on. Her daughter lost seven teeth and incurred multiple fractures in her jaw, legs and feet. Her son-in-law fared better in the passenger seat, but was still in the hospital.

“Please pray,” became the refrain.

Read the full story at

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