The Democrat receives 10 TPA awards

Staff Reports • Updated Jul 15, 2014 at 11:45 PM

NASHVILLE – Newspaper writers, editors, designers and publishers won top awards Friday in the Tennessee Press Association’s 2014 newspaper contest, co-sponsored by the University of Tennessee.

The Lebanon Democrat earned 10 awards in the annual contest.

“It’s rewarding to see the hard work by our editorial department get such deserving praise from their peers. Perhaps more exciting is the fact that it seems their work continues to improve each and every edition,” said Jesse Lindsey, publisher of The Democrat.

The Democrat earned top honors in the best special issue or section category, placing first for its “Our Home” magazine. 

The Democrat also placed second for best business coverage; third for community lifestyles, best sports coverage and best single editorial; fourth for local features and public service; and fifth for editorials, best education reporting and make-up and appearance.

“We are pleased by the number of awards garnered in this year’s TPA awards contest and are honored to share these with our bright and talented staff at The Democrat,” said Jared Felkins, director of content. “It’s gratifying to know everyone’s hard work is recognized by our peers in the newspaper industry, and we pledge to provide the best work we possibly can in each edition we publish.”

The Chattanooga Times Free Press, the Jackson Sun, the Elizabethton Star, the LaFollette Press and the Erwin Record won the top general excellence awards at the association’s luncheon ceremonies held in Nashville. General excellence honors are based on total points accumulated for awards in five circulation categories.

This marks the fifth year in a row the Jackson Sun has won the general excellence award and the second year in a row the Elizabethton Star has also won the general excellence award in its category.

As part of the annual contest, UT’s Edward J. Meeman Foundation honors newspapers with $250 awards in the categories of editorials, best single editorial and public service. The Chattanooga Times Free Press won all three Meeman Awards for Newspapers in its circulation group. The Daily Herald (Columbia) also swept all three for newspapers with between 50,001 and 200,000 combined weekly circulation. The Independent Herald (Oneida) won the top award for editorials and best single editorial in the category of papers with weekly combined circulation of 5,000 or less.

The Meeman Foundation was established in 1968 at the University of Tennessee to fund the contests, provide professional critiques of journalists’ work and support students and faculty.

The Arkansas Press Association judged a total of 1,577 entries from 80 of the association’s 122 member newspapers. The University of Tennessee has co-sponsored the annual contest since 1940.

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