Awards recognize top Gazette reporting, photography, advertising

Wednesday, February 19, 2014
NORTHAMPTON — The Daily Hampshire Gazette received regional honors Saturday for the quality of its reporting, editing, photography, design and editorials.

The day before, the newspaper’s advertising department took home three first-place awards for the quality and creativity of its work, along with two other honors.

The 2013 New England Better Newspaper Competition awards were presented Friday and Saturday in Boston at a meeting of the New England Newspaper & Press Association.

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The Gazette’s newsroom won a first-place education coverage award for a May 24, 2013, series by Kristin Palpini and Barbara Solow that examined the true costs of the state’s school choice program. The judges said that work took “an excellent idea that led to well-researched and well-written stories ... A good look at families and their choices and difficult decisions brought the statistics home to the reader.”

Palpini also received a second-place award for her Aug. 13, 2012, report on how well area school districts live up to requirements that they report use of pesticides. “A good example of checking public records to see if the intentions of state law are matched with real-world reality,” judges said.

Hampshire Life, the Gazette’s Friday magazine, won a first-place award for its weekly mix of arts and entertainment coverage. The magazine is edited by Kathleen Mellen and Suzanne Wilson and designed by Lucy Pickett. The newspaper won for its Feb. 8-14, 2013, issue, of which judges said: “The lively front page captures attention immediately. It’s refreshing to see a book section at all, especially so nicely laid out. The editorial content is equal to the quality of design with fine writing covering a variety of local events.”

In photography, Carol Lollis won a second-place award for a series of photographs of a Northampton woman who lost both of her legs in a car accident. The images accompanied a story by Laurie Loisel, the Gazette’s managing editor for days. “Sensitive coverage of a double amputee,” the judges said of Lollis’ work. “Strong set of images of which you should be very proud.”

Editor Larry Parnass won a third-place award for editorial writing.

The awards were presented in the category covering daily publication with up to 30,000 circulation.

Advertising honors

On the advertising side, the Gazette on Friday night received first-place awards for its Fashion supplement and for a kite-flying promotion in support of its a Newspapers in Education program, which is overseen by Laurel Gardner.

The Fashion supplement is the work of the newspaper’s graphics team, led by Rita Turcotte, and was promoted by Laura Ewald. The NIE project was designed by Jim Curran and promoted by Anne Zononi.

Also, Isabella Dell’olio of the Gazette’s design team received a first-place award for her work on the newspaper’s Create-an-Ad supplement.

The advertising department, led by Jon Stafford, also received second-place honors for a Northampton Bag Day program created by Ewald and Sue Vivier.

Many Hands, a quarterly “niche” publication produced by the Gazette, won an honorable mention in the competition. The magazine is edited by Nicole Cusano and designed by Lucy Pickett.