(WASHINGTON, D.C. – Feb. 27, 2022) – The White House News Photographers Association® announced that Brendan Smialowski of Agence France-Presse has been named WHNPA 2022 Photographer of the Year. Smialowski’s image of President Joe Biden meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin was awarded the Political Photo of the Year in the 2022 ‘Eyes of History®’ contest.
Smialowski’s first place wins included both Political Picture Story and Portfolio. When informed of his win Smialowski said, “Thank you for the recognition. It feels good, but I feel better out and about trying to do good journalism.”
In commenting on the wins WHNPA President Whitney Shefte said, “Huge congratulations to Brendan Smialowsi for sweeping both of the top photography awards this year. His work was timely and powerful, and we are so proud of him.” This is the second consecutive year the same photographer captured the two top awards.
The judges for the 2022 ‘Eyes of History®’stills competition were: Dennis Brack, Nikki Kahn and Eric Thayer.
Thayer said after the contest, “Congratulations to Brendan and to all of the winners, it was amazing to see the breadth and volume of stellar work to come out of Washington this past year. Thank you to WHNPA and my fellow judges for having me along!”
Brack, in talking about the work in the contest said, “News photographers have often been called, ‘the foot soldiers of history.’ For the last two days I’ve had the honor of seeing the history for 2021 as recorded by the visual historians of the White House News Photographers Association. The viewing was my pleasure, but the task of selecting the best photographs from this extraordinary collection was an almost impossible assignment. When you look at the winners of the WHNPA ‘Eyes of History ®’ I hope you will agree with our choices.
Khan continued and said, “It’s been a difficult year and photographers have risen to the task of bringing stories home to the viewers under lockdown during COVID. Bravo to all those who braved health risks to tell the story. Congratulations to everyone.”
Still Photography contest chairman Andrew Harnik said, “A huge congratulations to my long time friend and colleague Brendan Smialowski for an amazing showing this year. Additionally, we are so lucky to have three amazing photojournalists in their own right with decades of experience working in Washington, give their time and expertise to judge this year’s contest. They performed wonderfully, spending hours going through hundreds of incredible images from our community to decide whose images were the best this year. And finally, a special thanks to our contest committee for all the work preparing and hosting the contest. We couldn’t do this without their selfless time volunteering each and every year.”
The digital storytelling, broadcast and student competitions were also judged virtually over the weekend
due to the ongoing pandemic.
Full results from all contests are available on the WHNPA website at www.whnpa.org.
The top winners of the still, broadcast, digital and student contests will be honored at the annual ‘Eyes of
History®’ gala later this year in Washington. The black-tie event celebrates all the winning visual journalists. The WHNPA is celebrating its 101st anniversary in 2022.
The White House News Photographers Association is a 101-year-old non-profit organization dedicated to supporting the efforts of Washington’s professional visual journalists. The WHNPA aims to provide professional and educational outreach to its members and the community through scholarships, programming, an annual competition and a celebration of the industry at the annual “Eyes of History®” gala.
For more information, please contact Whitney Shefte at [email protected] or executive director Heidi Elswick at
[email protected] (301-606-8251). For further information about ‘The Eyes of History®’ and to view the winning images and videos, visit the WHNPA website at www.whnpa.org.