CHEYENNE — Wyoming Tribune Eagle staff members received 43 awards from the Wyoming Press Association at its annual winter convention last weekend in Casper.
Honors were presented Jan. 12-13 at the Ramkota Hotel for work published between Nov. 1, 2022, and Oct. 31, 2023.
Among the major awards, the WTE was presented with:
General Excellence, honorable mention: Judges’ comments: “A very strong paper with all the important components readers need. Good journalism paired with good design.”
Advertising Excellence, second place: “Impressive advertising.”
Typographical Excellence, honorable mention: “Good looking front pages. I like the way the paper sets off sections in type.”
Editorial Leadership, first place (based on 10 editorials written by Managing Editor Brian Martin with input from the WTE editorial board).
Sweepstakes Award, second place, daily newspapers.
Photographic Excellence, first place, daily newspapers.
Photographer of the Year, daily newspapers, Alyte Katilius.
Spot news photo, Alyte Katilius, “House burns in south Cheyenne.” Judge: “A solid spot news photo. Good use of space.”
General news photo, Alyte Katilius, “Partial solar eclipse.” Judge: “This category lacked a wide variety of actual news. The sun is a pretty newsworthy happening and this is good seeing.”
In the Pacemaker Awards for individual and staff achievement, the WTE took first place for:
General news story, Samir Knox, “Teachers say LCSD1 book policy will put them at breaking point.” Judges said, “In a category with a lot of very strong entries, this story rose to the top with a good lede, solid organization and great writing. I appreciated the variety of quotes used. This is such a difficult topic, and it was handled well. Outstanding work!”
Spot news story, Jasmine Hall, “Wyoming Supreme Court disbars former Laramie County DA.” Judges said, “Excellent coverage of the disbarment ruling, including providing background, context of the ruling to explain the details from the document, reaction and potential impacts and outcomes.”
News-feature story, Will Carpenter, “A rainy day in October.” Judges said, “This teenager and his mom are my heroes. I would love to read his essay. Great job, Will Carpenter. Your subjects opened up to you and you didn’t waste a single word.”
Feature story, Will Carpenter, “One terrible capitalist.” Judges said, “The story was captivating. I enjoyed how you took an otherwise mundane topic and added such passion to the human element. I felt like I got to know the artist very well.”
Column writing, Will Carpenter, “Weekend Picks.” Judges said, “Extremely lively and excellent opportunity for the reader to feel as though he or she is beside the writer. The columns take us on interesting journeys. Compelling.”
Sports feature story, Jeremiah Johnke, “East grad Ware sets Guinness hoops mark.” Judges said, “The novelty of this subject made the story stand out. It is about a local man who set out to establish a world record with a trick basketball shot. The fact that his high school mates voted him most likely to set a world record was an extra touch. It is still a story of ‘local athlete makes good so let’s write a feature on him’ like so many others in the competition, but the ‘success’ was unique.”
Obituary writing, Samir Knox, “Who was the man found at Curt Gowdy?” Judges said, “The writer brought a touching story to readers on a person who lived a troubled life, was jailed several times, but delved into the subject’s life and how he touched the lives of those who tried to rehabilitate him. A great piece on a marginalized sector of society that shined a light on the human side of this tragic story. A very nice job of storytelling.”
Open page design, Debbi Ungerman, “Commitment pays off.” Judge: “Nicely done elements on a page which uses each part well.”
Best video story, Alyte Katilius, “Our chance to compete.” Judge: “This story of young women proving their ability, strength and courage is moving and powerful. Their quotes and wrestling clips are well selected and flow together to illustrate how they took full advantage when they earned their chance to compete.”
Feature photo, Alyte Katilius, “Easy does it now!” Judge: “We know there are reasons the pumpkin is covered, but we still wanted to see it. Either way, this is a cool image.”
Sports feature photo, Alyte Katilius, “The Butchers take a tumble.” Judge: “We got to this category near the end of our judging after sifting through a few pig rasslin’ photos that weren’t quite right for a top spot. As soon as this one popped up, we shouted, ‘There it is!’ A really fun image. Hard to miss at this event, but probably harder to stay clean.”
Photo story, Alyte Katilius, “Our chance to compete.”
Best use of photos, staff.
The following took second place in the Pacemakers:
Government issue reporting, Jasmine Hall, “Will Wyoming turn a darker shade of red?” Judges said, “Really detailed reporting with a nice variety of viewpoints from all the difference-makers to let readers know exactly what’s happening.”
News-feature story, Samir Knox, “The victim has vanished from the case.” Judges said, “Excellent story that spotlights a flaw in Wyoming’s legal system. Other states offer criminal mediation that keeps the victim’s family in the loop and makes them feel part of the process. Writer does an excellent job of personalizing the issue.”
Sports news story, Jeremiah Johnke, “Carrying the torch: Prep athletes have come a long way in Title IX era.” Judges said, “It’s interesting to see where other states are in regards to Title IX.”
Education reporting, Jasmine Hall. Judges said, “Strong, balanced reporting on controversial topics.”
Arts-entertainment-culture reporting, Will Carpenter. Judges said, “The writer covered stories about Buffalo Nichols, a blues singer; a new book memorializing Matthew Shepard; and an interview with Ken Burns about his latest documentary, ‘American Buffalo.’ Well-written and the stories flow. The most impressive thing about these stories is how they dig down beyond the subject to discuss something bigger.”
Obituary writing, Jasmine Hall, “Marietta Dinneen revered for role in preserving CFD history.” Judges said, “A nice tribute to a volunteer in the community who used her talents to help others. The writer wove many quotes from others who told the story of why the subject was important in helping to preserve a part of the community’s history.”
Use of graphic elements, Jeremiah Johnke, “Fatherhood and football.” Judge: “Nice design.”
Best website, staff, “WyomingNews.com.” Judge: “Wyomingnews.com website offers good local news and information to the community.”
Best video story, Alyte Katilius, “Community Spirit Award winner Tom Bass.” Judge: “A very touching interview with Tom Bass on the heritage of service and patriotism in his family and also the spirit of pride and community that thrives in Cheyenne. The video is well produced and edited to command your attention.”
General news photo, Alyte Katilius, “Seeking justice for granddaughter.” Judge: “Not a lot of true news images in this category. This image is solid for a daily, but benefitted as an award winner by being among the few qualifying newsy images.”
Feature photo, Alyte Katilius, “Right up his alley.” Judge: “A nice daily feature in a thin category. We like the tight framing and the interaction.”
Sports action photo, Alyte Katilius, “Leaving it all on the field.” Judge: “Good, clean sports frame. Nice lens choice. The rubber pellets add a sense of speed and the uniformity of the golden crowd keeps us focused on the action.”
Sports feature photo, Alyte Katilius, “Hop, hop and away!” Judge: “Despite a very messy background, we like the play in the photo between the two participants. The boy jumping is so high.”
Portrait-personality photo, Alyte Katilius, “Seeing art in chess.” Judge: “This is a solid portrait of the champ. The light could have been improved by strobe or perhaps the shooter could have found a way to shoot through the chess pieces. Lots of variations could have helped.”
The following received honorable mention:
General news story, Jeremiah Johnke, “Nonprofit swimming club plans to sue LCSD1 over use fees.” Judges said, “I really enjoyed this story and thought it was well done, with good quotes. It is hard to get folks to talk on this kind of issue because folks want to get their foot back in the door. Great work with what you had to work with.”
Government issue reporting, Jasmine Hall, “Medicaid expansion waits in the wings of the House.” Judges said, “Excellent details in the breakdown of the entire Medicaid expansion situation. Anyone interested in this issue will have to look no further than this report for information.”
Business-energy reporting, Ivy Secrest, “Woman-owned tech company strikes major opportunity.” Judges said, “Nice profile about a local business owner, but also includes a great description of what the business actually is and how it can positively impact the community.”
Headline writing, staff. Judges said, “Very well done.”
Special section or supplement, staff, “Community Connections.” Judges said, “Love this concept!”
Open page design, Jeremiah Johnke, “WyoSports Laramie County Volleyball Player of the Year.” Judge: “Nice portrait.”
Portrait-personality photo, Alyte Katilius, “Burns restaurant owner prepares for court battle.” Judge: “Solid light and mood.”