T-G feature places second in nationwide awards

Tuesday, October 24, 2006
T-G City Editor John I. Carney holds his second place award certificate from the Inland Press Association for personality / individual profile stories among newspapers with less than 10,000 circulation. Carney won the award for a profile of a Shelbyville woman and the childhood friend who was obsessed with finding her. (T-G Photo by Doug Dezotell)

For the second year in a row, Times-Gazette city editor John I. Carney has placed in Inland Press Association's Local News Writing Contest, a nationwide competition recognizing excellence in newspapers.

Last year, Carney's account of Ted Lewis's mission trip to Thailand received the third place award for personality / individual profile stories among newspapers with less than 10,000 circulation.

This year, he won the second place award in the same category for his May 15 story about Anita Fields and Aizic Sechter. Fields and Sechter had been childhood friends in Texas, and Sechter (a native of Argentina who later moved to Israel) tried for decades to locate her and renew the friendship.

Sechter and his wife Ita visited Shelbyville in May, and that was when Carney interviewed them and Fields for the article. The Sechters had visited the U.S. for what was intended to be a three-month trip, but when violence broke out in Israel, his children discouraged the couple from returning during the summer. They did not actually return to Israel until this month, according to Fields.

The awards, which are sponsored by the University of Kentucky, were announced Oct. 16 during Inland Press Association's 121st annual meeting in Chicago.

The Times-Gazette was the only Tennessee newspaper to be honored.

"What an honor this is for John and the T-G," said Editor Kay Rose. "This newspaper and Bedford County as a whole are fortunate to have someone of John's caliber representing us. He is an excellent writer and is well-respected by his colleagues and the community."