The Daily Journal Newsroom won over 20 awards for reporting and writing, photography and design in a statewide newspaper competition.
The newspaper received two of the top prizes in the Hoosier State Press Association’s Best Newspaper competition. The Photo and History of the Year awards recognize the state’s most outstanding image and history, regardless of paper size. The Daily Journal won both.
Scott Roberson, longtime Daily Journal photographer, won the coveted Photo of the Year award for a photo in March 2020 from New Whiteland resident Maribeth Alspach reaching out to her mother, Betty Jo Owen, during of a visit to Compass Park. They were separated by a window due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Former editor-in-chief Michele Holtkamp and editor-in-chief James Vaughn won the coveted story of the year award for a series on secrecy surrounding former prosecutor Brad Cooper’s felony charges, impeachment and disciplinary hearings – a case that lasted two years. In February, a judge suspended Cooper from practicing law for four years.
The Daily Journal staff also won first place in General Excellence, which is an overall award given to newspapers based on their performance in all categories.
First, second and third place prizes were announced on Friday. The contest period lasted a year and a half – from July 2019 to December 2020 – due to the coronavirus pandemic that delayed the annual contest last year. He was tried by foreign journalists.
Here are the other awards won by the newspaper:
First place for the best media coverage without time constraints went to Holtkamp and Vaughn for the impeached prosecutor.
First place for the best short film went to former reporter Emily Ketterer for a story on local nurses working in the COVID-19 unit at a local hospital.
First place for the best profile functionality went to sports editor Ryan O’Leary for Unbreakable, a story about Indian Creek swimmer Chase Smith’s long-term battle with leukemia. It also received second place in the category of best sports news or reporting in history. Smith died in April.
First place for the best coverage of sporting events went to sports reporter Mike Beas.
First place for the best sports commentary went to O’Leary.
First place for Best General News Photo, Best Sports Report Photo, Best Sports Action Photo and Best Report Photo it all went to Roberson. He also received second place in Best Sports Action Photo.
First place for the best sports section and the best feature film section also went to the Journal.
Second place for best breaking news coverage went to see reporter Leeann Doerflein for a story about a former inmate attending a Johnson County Commissioners Council meeting with COVID-19 to complain about prison conditions.
Second place for the best coverage of business / economic news went to Doerflein for a story about the pandemic leaving more than 332,000 people out of work.
Third place for the best sports commentary went to Béas.
Third place for the best editorial page went to the Journal.
Third place for best website went to the Journal.
And third place for the best newspaper design went to the Journal.
The Daily Journal competes with newspapers of similar circulation in Division 3.