Colorado Community Media garners 27 awards in Better Newspaper Contest

Highlands Ranch Herald wins major General Excellence and Advertising categories

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The Highlands Ranch Herald took two top honors in its weekly newspaper division with General Excellence in Editorial and Advertising in the 2021 Colorado Press Association’s Better Newspaper Contest. The paper was among numerous weekly and monthly Colorado Community Media publications in the annual statewide competition. Colorado Community Media — which prints 24 publications — also won 25 total awards in specific categories: 15 first place and 10 second place. The Colorado Press Association teamed with the Kansas Press Association to provide numerous online seminars during the virtual convention May 20-21.

Advertising awards

In Best Advertising Special Section, the Highlands Ranch Herald won first place and the Golden Transcript won second place. The first-place award was for “New Year, New You,” by Erin Franks, Stephanie Dyke and Tina Meltzer. The second-place award was for the “Golden Guide 2020” by Glenn Wallace, Erin Franks, Tina Meltzer, Shanna Maxcy and Ben Wiebesiek.

For Best Advertising Campaign, the Littleton Independent won first place for “Vita Littleton invites you” by Tina Meltzer. For Best Classified Pages, the Highlands Ranch Herald won first place.

For best print ad, the Northglenn-Thornton Sentinel won first place with “NerdToGo North” by Tina Meltzer. The Arvada Press won second place for “Virtual Colorado” by Tina Meltzer.

For Best Classified Pages, the Highlands Ranch Herald won first place under the direction of Erin Franks.

Editorial awards

For Best Breaking News/Deadline Reporting, the Highlands Ranch Herald won first place for “Shooter sentenced to life in prison, possible parole” by Jessica Gibbs: The Littleton Independent won second place for “Homeless sweep starts process over again” by David Gilbert.

In Best Business News/Feature Story, the Littleton Independent won second place for “Renters struggling amid pandemic” by David Gilbert.

For Best Editorial Collaboration, the Highlands Ranch Herald won first place for “Under attack” by Jessica Gibbs (Colorado Community Media) and Jesse Paul (Colorado Sun).

For Best Editorial Special Section, the Highlands Ranch Herald won second place for “STEM School tragedy: One year later” by Jessica Gibbs.

In Best Education Story, The Centennial Citizen won first place for “A united voice” by Ellis Arnold. The Highlands Ranch Herald won second place for “Parents fight medical marijuana policy” by Jessica Gibbs.

In Best News Story, the Brighton Standard Blade won second place for “Adams County judge: Supporters find flaws in retention process” by Liam Adams and Michael Karlik.

For Best Investigative Package, the Highlands Ranch Herald won second place for “A school’s nightmare” by Jessica Gibbs.

For Best Health Enterprise/Health Feature Story, the Highlands Ranch Herald won first place for “A ferocious fighter” by Elliott Wenzler.

“From the first time I heard Patrick’s story, I was blown away by his tenacity and passion. Telling stories like his is one of the greatest privileges of being a journalist and I’m so grateful that I was able to do that and that CPA recognized this story,” Wenzler said.

In Photo and Design, the Northglenn-Thornton Sentinel won second place for “Remembering Service” by Stefan Brodsky.

In Best Page Design, the Highlands Ranch Herald won second place for “Community Service Groups” by Stephanie Dyke.

In Best Sports or Sports Event Story, the Highlands Ranch Herald won second place for “Cycling event survives” by Jessica Gibbs.

In Best Photography Portfolio, the Littleton Independent won first place for photos by David Gilbert. For Best Photo Slideshow, the Littleton Independent won first place for work by David Gilbert.  See some of his photos here, here and here.

For Best Public Service Project in Class 3, the Canyon Courier won first place for “Teen Mental Health” by Deb Hurley Brobst. In Class 4, the Centennial Citizen won first place for “A united voice” by Ellis Arnold.

MORE: CCM wins 19 SPJ regional awards

Monthly publication awards

In Best Column Writing Award in monthlies, the Washington Park Profile won first place for “A reflection of the times” by Christy Steadman.

“I had never written a personal column before, so receiving the first-place win for my column on pandemic times was certainly a surprise, but one that I am proud of,” Steadman said.

In Best Education Story for monthlies, the Washington Park Profile won second place for “An unexpected new normal” by Christy Steadman.

For Best Feature Story, the Washington Park Profile won second place for “Grasmere Lake: murky no more” by Kirsten Dahl Collins.

For Best Series of Sustained Coverage, the Washington Park Profile won first place for “Rosedale Elementary” by Christy Steadman.

For Best Photo and Design, Life on Capitol Hill won first place for the February 2020 cover by Ben Wiebesiek.

“I work closely with the page designer to ensure that with each turn of the page, readers have something spectacular to enjoy, something new for them to learn or something to experience in their community,” Steadman said of her work on the two monthly papers.

Statewide major awards

Major award winners were First Amendment: Jeff Campbell, for letters to the editor about a killing by sheriff’s personnel in Kiowa County; Rising Star: Erin McIntyre and Mike Wiggins of the Ouray County Plaindealer; and News Leader: Lisa Schlichtman and Steamboat Pilot & Today staff for the paper’s “Indivisible” series.

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