COLUMBUS — Four Sidney Daily News staff members and a contributing columnist have been named finalists for the 2017 Ohio Associated Press Media Editors Awards.
The APME awards recognize outstanding print and broadcast journalism. The organization lists three finalists in each category and announces during its annual luncheon who among them receives the first-, second- and third-place awards.
This year, Sidney Daily News Editor Melanie Speicher, Chief Photographer Luke Gronneberg, retired Sports Editor Ken Barhorst, current Sports Editor Bryant Billing and contributing columnist Dave Ross will be recognized during a ceremony in Columbus, March 24.
The awards were made for work published in 2017. They are made in five divisions, based on circulation numbers. The Sidney Daily News competes in Division II, for papers with circulations of 8,000 to 11,999 readers.
Speicher is a finalist in the Best Spot News Coverage for “Firefighters rescue fisherman,” a story published March 30. Additional finalists in that category are teams of writers from the Steubenville Herald-Star and The (Newark) Advocate.
Gronneberg is a finalist for Best Photographer, based on his body of work represented by six photos: “A Valentine’s Day surprise” published Feb. 15, “Firefighters rescue fisherman” published March 30, two photos that ran under the headline, “Fire engulfs downtown building,” published April 19, “Minster nips Russia for D-4 baseball title” published June 5 and a pig scramble photo that ran under the headline, “Mud bog, pig scramble and more,” published July 31. Other Best Photographer finalists are Jessica Phelps of The (Newark) Advocate and Patricia Schaeffer, of the Lisbon Morning Journal.
Barhorst and Billing are finalists in the Best Daily Sports Section category, based on representative sports sections published June 5, Oct. 7, Nov. 6 and Dec. 11. Other finalists are Mike Plant of the Ashland Times-Gazette and the sports staff of the Lisbon Morning Journal.
Ross is a finalist in the Best Sports Columnist category for “I can see it in your eyes” published March 3, “Spring training roots date back to 1967” published March 24, “Extra points…many problems at state finals” published Dec. 13 and “Hoying: South Korea is ‘at the right time’” published Dec. 21. Bill Davis and Fred Main, both with the Mount Vernon News, are also finalists in this category.
“I’m so proud of our team of journalists,” said Natalie Buzzard, Sidney Daily News general manager. “I see each of them working hard to put out the newspaper on a daily basis, so it’s nice to see them recognized for the work that they do.”
Sixty-four daily newspapers submitted 1,922 entries in the contest.
The Sidney Daily News entries were judged by editors from the Niagara-Gazette, Niagara Falls, New York, and the Cadillac (Michigan) News.
The Associated Press is a not-for-profit news cooperative representing 1,400 newspapers and 5,000 broadcast stations in the United States.