Victoria’s CHEK-TV staff won the 2009 J-Source Journalism Integrity Award, the Canadian Journalism Project announced Thursday. The station’s employees initiated a takeover plan to acquire 25 per cent of the station when Canwest, the station’s former owner, threatened to shut it down if it could not find a new buyer. The remaining 75 per cent would come from local investors. In a few weeks the employees raised $2.5 million. On Sept. 4, Canwest sold the station to the CHEK employees and local investors for $2. The buyers got access to a portion of the programming and use of the studios in Vancouver at a favourable leasing rate. Since the purchase, station manager John Pollard has operated CHEK as an independent station with local news and a mix of other programming, including movies and older syndicated Canadian and American television shows. This was the first year The Canadian Journalism Project presented the award.