Members of The Maine Monitor newsroom collectively received 56 accolades, a newsroom record, from the Maine Press Association during the association’s annual fall conference Oct. 22 in Bar Harbor.
Nineteen newsroom contributors received commendations for their work produced between April 2021 and March 2022 from a pool of judges representing the Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association. Judges from the ONPA judged the Maine contest after judges from Maine judged the Oregon contest earlier in the year.
The Maine Monitor has now earned 151 accolades from the Maine Press Association since the newsroom began participating in the MPA competition in 2015 (including under the identity of Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting and Pine Tree Watch).
The newsroom competed this year in the Weekly 2 division alongside news outlets such as the Ellsworth American, Mount Desert Islander, Penobscot Bay Pilot, the Forecaster newspapers, Boothbay Register, Courier Gazette and Lincoln County News.
“These honors demonstrate the importance of The Maine Monitor to the state. Many thanks and congratulations to the entire team, and to my predecessors in leading the newsroom, Dan Dinsmore and Eric Conrad,” said David Dahl, the Monitor’s editor.
In total, the Monitor earned 23 first place awards, 19 second place awards and 14 third place awards.
Roger McCord collected the most awards across the Monitor newsroom with nine, sweeping three categories in the process. Barbara A. Walsh, Samantha Hogan and Kate Cough each earned six. Rose Lundy received five awards.
A trio of accolades were bestowed, respectively, upon Marina Schauffler, Eric Conrad, Fred J. Field and Andrew Howard.
George Harvey, Vanessa Paolella, Hal Madsen, Garrick Hoffman, Janine Pineo, Jordan Andrews, Jill Brady, Douglas Rooks, Braeden Waddell and Olivia Martin each received one award.
The Monitor newsroom also received a second place in the Best Self-Promotion category for its Evening with The Monitor event held in Oct. 2021, and a first place in the Best Circulation Promotion category for using reader-submitted photos in the newsroom’s newsletters, an effort spearheaded by Harvey.
The newsroom also received a second place award in the General Excellence category for its digital presence. The Boothbay Register received first place.
Samantha Hogan, Rose Lundy and Kate Cough are all corps members with Report for America, a national service program that places journalists into local newsrooms across the country. Among those in attendance at the Maine Press Association ceremony Saturday night was Steve Waldman, the president and co-founder of Report for America.
First Place Awards
Best Investigative Report: Eavesdropping in Maine Jails
Best Business/Economics Story: ‘Dark store’ theory: Walmart, large retailers push to cut millions in property taxes statewide
Best Environmental Story: Staggering $1.5 billion lithium deposit discovered near Newry; excavating it poses a challenge
Best Feature Story: Lack of data stymies efforts to address firefighter shortage
Best Sports News Story: Numbers lag for women coaches across Maine varsity sports
Best Sports Profile: Pennsylvania community places hope in a tiger turned Barbarian from Maine
Best Education Story: As COVID-19 surged, so did the number of nursing students preparing to enter the fight
Best Arts/Lifestyle Story: From child refugee to “proud” Mainer
Best Religion/Spirituality Story: Keeping a culture alive, one drumbeat at a time
Best Outdoors Story: Bicycling alone, no more: Maine moves toward active transportation
Freedom of Information Award: Eavesdropping in Maine Jails
Best Continuing Story: Unsafe Homes
Best Feature Story Headline: Child homicides are the tip of Maine’s ‘iceberg of abuse’
Best Graphic: Taxes and fees on gasoline by state
Best People Photo: Marie Paul
Best Sports Video: The Ball Game
Best News Video: The Oasis
Best Features/Lifestyle Video: The Rodeo Clown
Second Place Awards
Best Environmental Story: Maine’s prime farmland is being lost to solar. Is ‘dual use’ the answer?
Best Feature Story: Tiny Coopers Mills reeling in the aftermath of nursing home closure
Best Politics Story: Make your case, await the verdict as Legislative Council sets agenda for session
Best Sports News Story: Pennsylvania community places hope in a tiger turned Barbarian from Maine
Best Picture Story: Deaths of Despair
Best Feature Photo: Thorndike Fire Department
Best Continuing Story: Deaths of Despair
Best News Photo: Downeaster train
Best Features/Lifestyle Video: The Indomitable Spirit
Best Sports Video: The Gold Ball
Best News Video: Cultural Ambassador
Third Place Awards
Best Investigative Report: Maine’s effort to address lead poisoning was gaining momentum before COVID-19
Best Environmental Story: There are more devices in Mainers’ lives than ever. No one knows where they end up.
Best Politics Story: Lawmaker pushes to restore parole to Maine’s justice system
Best Business/Economics Story: Help needed! Maine tourism faces too much business and too little staff
Best Courts Story: COVID-19 forces York County Jail to turn would-be inmates away
Best Arts/Lifestyle Feature Story: Keeping a culture alive, one drumbeat at a time
Best Food Story: What will it take to grow Maine’s local food economy?
Best News Story Headline: Maine’s pollen problem is nothing to sneeze at
Best Picture Story: Keeping a culture alive, one drumbeat at a time
Best News Video: The Antique Car Show
Best Features/Lifestyle Video: The Place of Peace
Best Sports Video: The Epic Comeback
Best Illustration: The Maine Monitor audio logo
Editor’s Note (Oct. 31): In the days that followed the awards ceremony, corrections to the list of earned awards distributed prior to the ceremony were made by contest organizers. Changes include the addition of a first place accolade for Best Outdoors Story; the addition of a second place award for Best Health Story; the Downeaster train photo receiving second place rather than third; the Deaths of Despair series receiving second place rather than third in the Continuing Story category; Rose Lundy receiving five awards instead of three; the addition of Braeden Waddell co-winning one award; and the total number of contributors receiving recognition increasing from 18 to 19.