For the fifth consecutive year, Times Review Media Group — publishers of the Riverhead News-Review, The Suffolk Times and Shelter Island Reporter — took home more awards than any other newspaper group in the New York Press Association’s Better Newspaper Contest. The papers won 48 awards and combined to earn 465 points in the contest, which was 165 more than the second-best newspaper chain.
The News-Review finished third in total editorial points (120) behind the Sag Harbor Express (190) and The Suffolk Times (155).
The paper won four first-place awards and earned second place for the Past Presidents’ Award for general excellence. It was the fourth consecutive year the News-Review was honored in that category, which judges three full issues throughout the year.
“Many of the papers we reviewed were tabloid sized publications; this one was the most impressive of the bunch,” the judges wrote for the Past Presidents’ Award.
The awards were presented Friday and Saturday in Albany at NYPA’s annual spring conference.
The News-Review won first place for Best Front Page, Coverage of Elections/Politics, Sports Coverage and Sports Action Photo.
The Election/Politics award went to staff writers Tim Gannon, Kelly Zegers, Joe Werkmeister and Grant Parpan. The judges wrote: “A well written mix of stories that look at a variety of local political issues.”
Read some of our winning stories
For the sports coverage award, which went to sports editor Bob Liepa and contributor Michael Lewis, the judges’ comment was:
“The best written and designed section with outstanding use of art. A very professional product.”
News-Review photographer Robert O’Rourk won first place for sports action photo as well as honorable mention in both the sports action and sports feature photo categories. News-Review photographer Daniel De Mato also won third place for sports action photo.
The News-Review also earned second place for Advertising Excellence.
“The Classified Section and Service Directory was organized and easy on the eyes. Great paper,” the judges said.
A special report by Mr. Werkmeister and Ms. Zegers on teen suicide won third place for the Thomas G. Butson Award for In-Depth Reporting.
“The writers give a strong example of how to look behind the obvious and take a deeper look at an issue,” the judges wrote.
The first-place winner in that category was The Suffolk Times, for its investigation into the 1966 disappearance of a Cutchogue woman. The series, “Gone,” was also published in the News-Review. Executive editor Steve Wick, multimedia reporter Krysten Massa and Mr. Parpan were all honored with that award. The story also won first place for Best Feature Story and the accompanying
documentary video won first place for Best Use of Video.
For the first time, The Suffolk Times won the Newspaper of the Year award, which goes to the paper that earns the most combined points between editorial and advertising awards. The award was created in 2013.
Members of the Michigan Press Association judged the contest entries in January, combing through a total of 2,783 entries.
Caption: Times Review staffers accept the award for Newspaper of the Year.