By Heidi Sutton
From news articles and feature stories to photography, special supplements and classifieds, Times Beacon Record News Media raked in 10 awards, including three for first place, from the New York Press Association’s annual Better Newspaper Contest. The winners were announced during NYPA’s annual, and this year’s virtual Spring Conference on April 8 and 9. Over 150 newspapers competed for awards in 64 categories.
Editor Julianne Mosher won third place in the News Story category for her article titled “Local pharmacies concerned over Amazon Pharmacy.” The judge wrote, “Well done, with good interviews that give the reader the complete picture.” Mosher also won third place in the Feature Story category for “Local dance studios change shape in the age of COVID.”
“This story shows the other side of the COVID-19 pandemic,” commented the judge. “It may not be about health care workers, but it told a story of resilience on the part of businesses and young people looking to have some sense of normalcy.”
Former editor Kyle Barr also did well, winning first place in the Feature Story category with his article, “History of Pride: LI’s first LGBT march reveals history of fighting prejudice.” The judge commented, “This piece was extremely well done and not only covered the history of the event, but brought the emotions of it to the forefront.” Barr also received an honorable mention in the News Story category for his article “Bars/restaurants on north shore struggle to comply with restrictions.”
Reporter Daniel Dunaief won second place in the Feature Story category for his piece, “Health care workers become critical partners in viral battles,” which honored local health care workers who put themselves in harm’s way to offer comfort, cures and solutions for COVID-19. The judge wrote, “This story brought us the stories of health care heroes that have been so important in all of our communities this past year.”
Freelance photographer Steven Zaitz won first place in the Spot News Photo category for an emotional image captured at a Trump rally last October.“The moment that tells the whole story. Great shot to sum up all sides and be fair to all points,” commented the judge.
Zaitz also won third place in the Sports Feature Photo category. The image, which was featured in the article, “Let’s Play Two: Little League Holds Championship Games,” impressed the judge. “In our state (of Pennsylvania), it’s no longer allowed to tank the catcher. If the same is true in New York, at least this little guy got as much as he could out of his illegal action. The determined catcher’s expression completes the scene.” for an image that was featured in the article, “Let’s play two: little league holds championship games.”
TBR News Media won first place in the Best Public Service or Non-Profit Special Section for its 2020 Graduation supplement. “What a fantastic section to put together for Senior Class, their families, and the community during a pandemic. Outstanding work!” gushed the judge. The paper won second place in the Innovative Ad Project category for its TBR Artist Coloring Book which the judges said was a “great idea to get the readers to interact with newspapers and doing a contest.”
The paper also won second place in the Classified Advertising category. “This newspaper has created a classified section that does not feel overbearing or overcrowded. With judicial use of space and bolded type, the section is easy to read,” wrote the judge.
“We are, of course, thrilled to continue our winning ways in the annual New York Press Association Better Newspaper Contest,” said Publisher Leah Dunaief. “But some things must be said particularly for this year’s performance. First, as always, we feel so privileged for the chance to serve the community with our newspapers, website and social media. We are grateful for the support of both readers and advertisers in every season and especially now, during this unprecedented time of the COVID-19 pandemic, as we have struggled to fulfill our mission of publishing relevant news and information.”
“The staff and I have drawn inspiration from the people who live and work in the community. They have tirelessly delivered food, provided health care and ensured that everyone endured through a health and economic challenge we have never before seen but are now confronting. We have been deeply moved by the willingness to help each other that we have witnessed in order to get to a safer tomorrow. And finally, blessings on all our clearly talented staff members, without whose Herculean efforts we could not prevail.”
NYPA holds the Better Newspaper Contest each year during their spring conference. For a full list of winners and more information, visit nynewspapers.com.