Best Newspaper Columnist - 2011
Journalism is a dying profession that has been reduced to a motley bunch of bloggers and aggregators who never leave their desks. Tell that to Bill McClellan. Whether reporting from city hall, the courthouse or his favorite tavern, McClellan is always worth a read, four — that's right, four — times each week. Over the decades that he has anchored the St. Louis Post-Dispatch's local-news section, McClellan has maintained his common-man cred, bolstered by a sometimes-salty tone and delightful yarns about military buddies, booze and his hopeless Chicago Cubs. Who else in this town but Bill would roast Brazilians, Anheuser-Busch and hairy-legged women in a column titled "This Isn't Europe: I'll Shave When I Want"? And who else but Bill would devote a searing series of columns to the life and times and final days of a childhood friend who died of cancer, without health insurance. McClellan is already assured of a prominent place in the annals of St. Louis journalism. But as long as he's plugging away at those four columns a week, we'll be looking forward to reading 'em.