LITTLE ROCK — The Log Cabin Democrat won both the General Excellence and Sweepstakes Awards among medium-sized dailies, along with nine other first-place awards, in the 2013 Associated Press Managing Editors contest.
Awards were presented Saturday during the annual APME convention at the Doubletree Hotel here.
Judging was by newspaper executives and staffs in Oklahoma.
General Excellence is based on an appraisal of a random selection of newspapers during 2013. The Sweepstakes Award is based on a point system that includes the number of first, second and third places plus the General Excellence finish.
In awarding the Log Cabin the General Excellence Award, the judge of the category wrote, "Best front page design, really making a grab for the reader’s attention. Newsiest of the papers as well. I’m particularly impressed by the special edition on Lake Conway (regarding research on the Mayflower oil spill). Strong editorial stances. This is fine, community-centered journalism."
The Oklahoma judge went on to say that the competition was tough and he was very impressed with the quality of the smaller newspapers in Arkansas.
Sports columnist/editor David McCollum swept all sports categories, including all three places in Sports Story for game accounts on Hendrix football and University of Central Arkansas Sugar Bear basketball. He won first place in Sports Feature for a feature on Vilonia clock operator Fred Weaver and second place for a story on Hendrix track star Elizabeth Krug. He won first place in Sports Column for a reflection on a local golf tournament and a high school reunion.
Lee Hogan won two awards, one for a political reporting on a crime related to the Faulkner County Sheriff’s race and another for Service to FOI on a probe that did not follow policies. It is the second straight year the Log Cabin has earned a Service to FOI Award.
Courtney Spradlin won in News Photo for a photograph of an oil-drenched duck after the Mayflower oil spill.
Angela Spencer won a top award on beat reporting for her work on the education beat.
Designer Stewart Cole won in headline writing for "Unfortunate 500," concerning layoffs at Hewlett-Packard.
The Log Cabin staff won first place in Community Service/Special Project concerning a Sunday package on whether Lake Conway was safe after the oil spill.
Editor Ricky Duke for an editorial about the Pegasus pipeline. Cole for a headline on "Headache on the Highway."
The Log Cabin staff for News Coverage on the oil Spill, for Digital and Website and for Digital Storytelling about the oil spill.
Spencer also earned second place for her report about "Is Lake Conway Safe?" and for Political Reporting on a second voter ID bill.
Cole for Graphics on the Lake Conway report and Cole and Adam Sweeney for Page Design.
Eric White for Photographer’s Portfolio.
Megan Reynolds for Unfortunate 500.
The Log Cabin Staff for Non-Traditional News Item and for Digital Storytelling on Toad Suck Daze.