The weekly Platte County Landmark captured a total of eight awards in the recent Missouri Press Association’s annual Better Newspaper Contest announced during the MPA’s annual convention held in Columbia.
The awards announced are for work performed in the calendar year of 2011.
While the awards are nice, Landmark owner/publisher Ivan Foley told Bottom Line his newspaper will keep its focus on its loyal readers.
“It’s rewarding to be recognized by your peers for your work, but our number one priority will always be to work for our readers,” says Foley. “In this business when you do that good things happen.
“We have a staff that is dedicated to keeping the local public as informed as possible about what’s going on in their communities while editorially protecting the interests of taxpayers.”
The Landmark won first place in two categories: Best Editorial Pages and Best Sports Photograph. Editorial pages in The Landmark each week are pages A-2 and A-3 and include opinion pieces from Foley and contributors James Thomas, Brian Kubicki, Chris Kamler, and former KCMO radio talk show host Chris Stigall, as well as editorial cartoons by Matthew Silber.
In their notes, judges described The Landmark’s editorial page entries as “interesting, creative yet consistent” and praised the layout, design and headlines.
The Best Sports Photograph award is for a shot by Landmark photojournalist Bill Hankins that was entitled “Good Save,” which judges said “captured the moment” with “good composition.”
Two second place honors went to The Landmark: A series of four articles written by Foley regarding a head-on crash of two Central Platte Fire District trucks grabbed second in the Best News Series category. Judges remarked: “This had to be hard for the community The Landmark serves. Foley did a good job telling the story fairly and following it to the final decisions. Interesting to follow. Good writing.”
The other second place finish for The Landmark went to Hankins in the category of Best Feature Photograph for his picture entitled “Happy 104th,” which judges described as a “touching photo that truly captures the moment.”
A third place finish went to Matthew Silber, Landmark cartoonist, for his piece entitled “True Grit,” described by judges as “funny, relative to today.”
The Landmark was awarded honorable mention awards in three categories, including Best Front to Back Newspaper Design. Judges wrote that The Landmark has “compelling images and crisp photos” and praised its thick borders and boxes on the editorial pages.
Other honorable mentions went to The Landmark in the category of Best News Content for overall news coverage and to Silber in the Best Editorial Cartoon category for his entry entitled “Pool Project,” described as “ironic and funny.”