An independent day school serving grades K-12 | St. Paul, MN

RubicOnline's Rita Li '24 Named Minnesota Journalist of the Year

RubicOnline's Rita Li '24 Named Minnesota Journalist of the Year

The Journalism Education Association has selected SPA senior Rita Li '24, as the Minnesota Journalist of the Year (JOY). The Journalist of the Year program recognizes the top high school journalists in the country.

Li was selected among nominated student journalists from around the state. Candidates for the award must submit a portfolio of journalistic work, a personal statement, as well as demonstrate an understanding of Press Law and Ethics and a commitment to diversity. The judges wrote that Rita “is a leader, in many ways, in your newsroom: a fantastic sports photojournalist who provides meaningful workshops for her staff… above all, Rita Li is a journalist who makes a difference.”

Li joined the RubicOnline staff her sophomore year as a Podcast Editor, then worked as a Co-Feature Editor her junior year before rising to Creative Design Manager this year, as a senior. This fall, she launched Borderless (American) Dreams, a website of bilingual stories of immigration, and sponsored a writing contest to elevate underrepresented voices.

Upper School Director of Publications and Rubicon adviser Kathryn Campbell is delighted to see Rita honored as the MN JOY “Anyone who has met Rita knows she is special: confident, hardworking, talented, generous, inclusive, humble. Our staff is better because of Rita; she possesses an uncontained desire to discover more. Her motivation is deeply rooted in care for others.” 

Rita was presented with the award by JEA State Director Rachel Steil on March 6 and joins Elizabeth Trevathan ‘22 and Mimi Geller ‘19 as the latest Minnesota Journalist of the Year winners from SPA. Li is now entered into the national scholarship competition. She and the other state winners will be celebrated at the JEA/NSPA National Convention in Kansas City, with national winners announced on April 6, 2024.