T-G earns four firsts in state press awards

Tuesday, July 26, 2016
Members of the T-G news staff gather to display awards won during the recent state press award's banquet, which was held in Franklin. The T-G carried four first place awards back to Shelbyville. From left: city editor John I. Carney, Jason Reynolds, editor Sadie Fowler, Carol Spray and copy editor David Melson. Staff members not present: sports editor Chris Siers, Jim Davis and Mary Cook. (T-G Photo by Lakita Victory)

The Times-Gazette captured four first places and a total of 17 awards in the state's annual press contest.

Winners were announced Thursday during the Tennessee Press Association's annual summer convention in Franklin.

"The annual awards are always a great chance for us to reflect on our work from the previous year, set new goals for the year ahead, and also simply enjoy the celebration of our craft and industry," said T-G editor Sadie Fowler. "I'm very proud of my staff of veteran journalists who have all done an outstanding job of staying the course during the busy news year of 2015.

"Though we try to remember our primary goal as journalists is to serve our readers and the public, it's always nice to see good work recognized among our peers."

First places were awarded for:

Derrick Hill
Chris Siers

Local Features -- A composite of feature stories produced by various staff writers published during 2015.

Best Single Feature -- A profile of beloved music teacher Billie Crowell, written, photographed and videoed by former staff writer Derrick Hill.

Investigative Reporting -- The winning entry involved reporting on horse inspections, and issues surrounding them, at the Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration. The Times-Gazette also earned second place in the category for reporting on courthouse security. Staff members involved with the winning investigative entries were editor Sadie Fowler, copy editor David Melson, city editor John I. Carney and city reporter Jason Reynolds.

Headline Writing -- The entry consisted of three headlines written by city editor John I. Carney and copy editor David Melson.

Additional categories in which the T-G placed:

Jim Davis
Mary Cook

Second: Best Single Editorial, written by Fowler urging the city to be prepared for dangerous situations. Public Service, and the T-G's devotion to coverage of mental health and cancer awareness, captured the judge's attention for another second place award.

Third: Best Business Coverage, Best Breaking News Coverage (also fifth)

Fourth: Make-Up and Appearance, Community Lifestyles, Best Personal Humor Column, Best News Photograph

Fifth: Best Sports Coverage, Best Website, Best Feature Photograph

The convention was also attended by members of the T-G advertising and circulation staffs. In addition to the awards banquet, training took place Friday where Fowler sat on a panel discussing how to draw readers in to community newspapers. Also, longtime employee Morris Winfrey was honored Friday for having served the community through his work at the newspaper for more than 50 years.

Longtime T-G employee Morris Winfrey was honored in a special "50 Year Club" luncheon during the Tennessee Press Association annual convention Friday. From left: T-G advertising manager Sissy Smith, advertising representative Diandra Womble, circulation clerk Adria Sharp, office manager Becky McBee, Dianna Winfrey (Morris' wife), Winfrey, editor Sadie Fowler, general manager William Mitchell, and publisher Hugh Jones. (Submitted photo)

"To me, that was the best part of the whole conference," said T-G general manager William Mitchell.