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, June 10, 2011
No forgiving Parkway shooter
By Tony Gonzalez
The News Virginian

HARRISONBURG, Va. -- Ralph Leon Jackson could have expected at least a life term in prison when entering federal court to be sentenced for shooting two people last year at a scenic overlook on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

What he could not know was the intensity his victims’ families and friends would show Thursday as they labeled him cowardly, cold-blooded, sick and selfish.

Blasts from Jackson’s 20-gauge shotgun and an ensuing fight disfigured Christina Floyd, then 19, of Palmyra, and killed Charlottesville disc jockey Timothy Davis, 27.

“I’ll never be able to forgive you for that,” Daniel Olewine, a friend, said directly to Jackson, who had turned in his chair to face whatever might be said.

Staring back at the killer during almost an hour of testimony was a framed photo of Davis propped up on the witness podium.

From there, his mother, Leticia Davis, talked about her only child as a man motivated to advance his radio career and begin a family. He enjoyed doing simple things, like being with his two cats and hanging out with friends. He worked closely with volunteers at WNRN, including Floyd, and considered the station’s signal tower on Carters Mountain to be a favorite place.

“When you shot him, he was doing one of those simple things: He was just enjoying a sunset on a beautiful spring day with a pretty girl on a mountain overlook,” Davis said during a tearful, 10-minute statement. “At least a beautiful view was the last thing Tim saw before you shot out his big, brown, beautiful eyes. I shudder to think of the horrific pain he must have felt.”

Read the full story at

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