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Wisconsin State Journal wins awards for outstanding coverage in 2019

Wisconsin State Journal wins awards for outstanding coverage in 2019

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Several Wisconsin State Journal staff members won statewide awards for outstanding news coverage in 2019.

The Wisconsin Newspaper Association on Friday announced the winners of the 2019 Better Newspaper Contest, after previously canceling the annual convention of the nation’s oldest newspaper association due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

This year’s Better Newspaper Contest included 2,533 entries from 106 newspapers across the state. Eligible entries were published between Sept. 1, 2018, and Aug. 31, and were judged by members of the New York Press Association.

State Journal reporter David Wahlberg won multiple awards, as did photographer John Hart. Wahlberg won first place for best localized national story for “As Wisconsin farmers struggle, new effort aims to prevent suicide.” Hart won first place for a portrait or artistic photo for his photograph of a pilot in a vintage aircraft.

Vintage pilot

State Journal photographer John Hart won first place for portrait or artistic photo with this shot of Greg Heckman, chief pilot and mechanic for the Kelch Aviation Museum. 

Hart and photographers Steve Apps and Amber Arnold won first place for all-around news photography. Apps also won first place for a spot news photo for his photograph of an active shooter incident.

Reporter Shelley K. Mesch won first place for a general news story for “Juveniles to get long-term treatment closer to home.”

Active shooter

State Journal photographer Steve Apps took first place for spot news photo with this shot of a woman being escorted from the scene of a shooting at WTS Paradigm in September 2018. 

Editorial page editor Scott Milfred won first place for an editorial, “Officer knows she belongs at city school.” Milfred also won third place for Open records/FOI Award for “Lame-duck bills flout transparency.”

Snow plow armada

John Hart won second place for general news photo by capturing this armada of Dane County plows clearing snow from the Beltline in January last year.

Reporter Barry Adams won second place for a local column for “Libraries cope in aftermath of floods,” “Wimbledon-style tennis comes to central Wisconsin“ and “Great River Road offers up 100 miles of garage sales.”

Hart also won second place for a general news photo, “Plowing brigade,” and third place for a feature photo, “Brightening windows and spirits.”

Wahlberg won third-place awards for best localized national story for “Madison-area stem cell clinics part of ‘gray market’ under increased scrutiny,” and for enterprise/interpretive reporting for “Fatal falls: Wisconsin leads nation in deadly problem.”

Reporter Kelly Meyerhofer won third place for a feature (profile) for “Wisconsin man planted small rose garden in honor of his wife. Now it draws thousands.”

The State Journal also won third place for general excellence.

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Howard Hardee is a general assignment reporter for the Wisconsin State Journal. He has written extensively about government, natural disasters and forest health in northern California.

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