Citizen Telegram wins top honors in state contest |

Citizen Telegram wins top honors in state contest

Staff Report

The Citizen Telegram took home three first-place honors, as well as two second-place wins this past weekend at the annual Colorado Press Association convention in Lakewood.

The CT competed in Class 1 of the 2015 Colorado Better Newspaper Contest, a class that includes weekly newspapers with a circulation of up to 1,000 — which made it the class with the largest number of competing papers this year.

Editor Ryan Hoffman won first place for best feature for a story on Rifle High School graduate Veronica Toscano-Santoyo, whose mother was killed in a shooting when Veronica was 4.

Hoffman also won first place in the best ag category for an in-depth look at the role of the cattle industry in Garfield County.

In their comments, contestant judges stated: “Uses multiple data sources and quotes to paint a coherent picture of ranching as agribusiness. Builds to real, soul-searching issues at its center and closes with hope of industry revitalization, that a highly-educated youth was instructed to gain from the trade. Great economic storytelling.”

Randy Essex, editor of the Post Independent, brought home another first place award for The CT in the best environmental story category for his analysis of government solar power generation in the county.

“Well-researched story about the benefits and challenges associated with solar power arrays,” judges wrote of the story. “When writing about local issues and conditions, a review of how current conditions came to be can sometimes be overlooked. Not so in this case.”

For her design work in the 2015 feature “Blue with envy,” Emily Stott, designer, won second place for best feature page design.

“Nice application of carrying the ‘blue’ theme throughout the page in a very tasteful way,” judges wrote.

Rounding out this year’s award wins for The CT, Hoffman won second place for best news photography. Regarding his mutton busting photograph from the 2015 Garfield County Fair and Rodeo, judges stated: “Hanging on for dear life, indeed. The facial expressions of the bystanders were the perfect complement to the (4-year-old) mutton buster.”

The 2015 contest marks a return to the award stage after a one-year absence in 2014. In 2013, The CT won nine first-place awards.

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