North Iowa Times earns three awards in Iowa Better Newspaper Contest

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North Iowa Times Editor Audrey Posten received two first-place awards for best breaking news photo and best breaking news story, as well as a second-place award for best personality feature.

This photo depicting the damage to the INKspiration Tattoo following the July 19 tornado earned the first-place award for best breaking news photo in the weekly 1 category in the 2018 Iowa Better Newspaper Contest. (Photo by Audrey Posten)

For the fourth year in a row, the North Iowa Times has been recognized as an award-winning newspaper. Editor Audrey Posten recently received three awards in the 2018 Iowa Better Newspaper Contest.

Posten received first place awards for best breaking news story and best breaking news photo in the weekly 1 category, for newspapers published weekly with 1,001 circulation and less. Both awards stemmed from her coverage of the EF-1 tornado that struck McGregor on July 19, 2017.

The article, entitled “Dented, but not broken,” beat out seven other entries for the top spot. The judge’s comments noted the article featured a “good lead and overall writing,” and also complimented Posten’s use of many sources to tell the story.

The first-place photo depicted the damage to the INKspiration tattoo building. According to the judge’s comments, the image provided a clear and complete view of the destruction caused by the tornado. The category had a total of nine entries.

Posten’s final award came in the best personality feature story category, where she took second place for the article “The thrill of the climb,” which detailed Marquette resident Don Smalley’s quest to climb the highest point in each state. “The writer did a splendid job of helping readers to understand what motivates a 60-plus-year-old man to climb 12,000-foot peaks,” read the comments. “The reporter’s eye for detail—such as the alarm clock being set for 11:30 p.m.—helped bring the story to life.” One of the more popular categories, best personality feature had a total of 45 entries.

In all, approximately 4,378 entries in dozens of categories were judged by class, based on circulation, for this year’s contest. The entries were judged by the Wisconsin Newspaper Association.

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