Meet our Judges
Jim Gehrz began his photojournalism career as a staff photographer at the Worthington Daily Globe. He has also worked on the photo staffs at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, St. Paul Pioneer Press and Star Tribune in Minneapolis. While at the Star Tribune, a story Jim worked on about a soldier who was injured in Iraq was finalist for a Pulitzer Prize in Feature Photography, and he was also named Photographer of the Year by the National Press Photographers’ Association. Jim has two daughters and enjoys spending time with his four grandchildren.
Darlene began her professional journalism career at 18, working her way through college as a staff photographer for the Waukesha Daily Freeman. After a short stint at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, she moved to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, where she spent the next 30 years as an award-winning photographer, director of photography and reporter.
In 2007, Darlene traded big city life for a quiet cabin near the northwoods resort town of Hayward, Wisconsin. She earned teaching certifications in CrossFit, kettlebells and Olympic weightlifting for her current career as a coach at CrossCut CrossFit, which she co-owns with her husband Dave.
I was a staff photographer for the Mesabi Daily News, the Duluth News Tribune and the Star Tribune. Since retiring, I work as a caregiver, play accordion in a band and do freelance photography. My most recent assignment was photographing Twin Cities organizations that aid the homeless for the Library of Congress. I look forward to being a contest judge.