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    Globe columnist Brian McGrory wins award

    Globe columnist Brian McGrory
    Globe columnist Brian McGrory

    The Boston Globe’s Brian McGrory has won a 2011 Scripps Howard Award for his Metro section columns, the Scripps Howard Foundation announced Friday.

    The national awards are presented annually to recognize the “best work in the communications industry and journalism education.’’

    McGrory, a former Globe metro editor and a national reporter, took the top prize for commentary for “helping a priest clear his name, cutting to the core of Mitt Romney, and an array of other thought-provoking columns about big events and small moments,’’ the foundation said in a statement.

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    Other columns for which McGrory received the award ranged from an account of a quiet meeting with a former president at a Maine farmstand to a reminder that the 2011 Red Sox represented everything that Boston is not.

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    Also among his award-winning columns: An insightful retrospective, 10 years after the Sept. 11 attacks, about those still dealing with the anguish of that unforgettable day.

    In a letter to the judges, Globe editor Martin Baron wrote that McGrory “offers a clear, compassionate view and a deep sense of place, always gracefully told.’’ Baron described the common sense-driven columnist as “exactly what a Metro columnist needs to be.

    “Born and raised in Boston and its environs, he knows this city, his city, like few others,’’ Baron wrote.

    “That knowledge rolls through his fingertips and onto the pages of The Boston Globe rooted in passion and often coated in wit.’’

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    This is McGrory’s first Scripps Howard Award. The winners are selected by industry experts and will be honored April 26 in Detroit.

    For the full list of winners, go to www.shawards.org/winners. Colin A. Young can be reached at colin.young@globe.com.