At the 2015 awards gala in Toronto, a new award named Journalist of the Year was presented for the first time. The NNA Board of Governors added this award because year after year, the board found that some NNA-winning journalism is so extraordinary, it deserved further recognition. Some stories are simply unforgettable, some journalists beyond exceptional.
The NNA board of Governors convened a panel of former NNA winners to judge this award to ensure it was the highest honour possible – an award bestowed by other working journalists who understand what it means to produce journalism at this level.
The 2018 Journalist of the Year, announced on May 3, 2019, was Kevin Mitchell of the Saskatoon StarPhoenix.