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A male and female salmon swim along the spawning grounds on the banks of the Adams River in Roderick Haig-Brown Park, located northeast of Kamloops, B.C. The Adams River salmon run occurs every year, but every fourth year is the dominant year, which is when the largest return occurs.John Lehmann/The Globe and Mail

Globe and Mail photographer John Lehmann has been named Photojournalist of the Year by the Canadian Association of Journalists (CAJ).

"This award is a testament to John's talent and dedication," said Moe Doiron, Globe and Mail photo editor. "His winning images are proof of the important role that photography plays in powerful storytelling."

The Vancouver-based photojournalist has been with the Globe since 2001. Mr. Lehmann has earned a string of accolades including a National Newspaper Award for news feature photography in 2007. He was named photojournalist of the year in 2012 and 2013 by the News Photographers Association of Canada.

"I'm very honoured the CAJ recognized my portfolio," he said. The collection of photographs includes one of his favourite shoots from last year, the sockeye salmon run on the Adams River.

The annual run draws tourists from around the world to gather on viewing platforms. But Mr. Lehmann placed his professional camera in an empty aquarium tank, set in the river's current, to get a fish's-eye view of the busiest run in years.

"It was a very technical challenge and it took four attempts to get it right," he said.

The CAJ is a professional organization with more than 600 members across Canada. It promotes public-interest advocacy work and professional development for its members.

This year's CAJ awards, announced on Saturday in Halifax, recognized the CBC Edmonton team of Jennie Russell and Charles Rusnell for their stories chronicling former premier Alison Redford's fall from grace. The pair captured both the community broadcast category and the top investigative entry.

John Wells, a reporter with The Hamilton Spectator, won the open media category for his feature on Jeremy Hall, one of Hamilton's most notorious criminals.

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