TYLER, Texas— The Texas Associated Press Managing Editors presented its 2011 journalism awards at its annual convention over the weekend with the Daily Light staff being honored with a total of 11 awards for excellence in journalism.
More than 3,000 entries were submitted in this year’s journalism contest for work published in 2010. The Daily Light competed in the Division A category against other daily newspapers with a circulation less than 10,000.
Associated Press Managing Editors Association Awards received by the Daily Light staff this weekend were:
• Star Reporter of the Year — First Place, JoAnn Livingston, Daily Light Managing Editor.
• Star Investigative Report of the Year — First Place, JoAnn Livingston.
• Freedom of Information Award — First Place, JoAnn Livingston.
• Photo Gallery — First Place, Neal White, Daily Light Editor; Second Place, Neal White.
• Sports Photo — First Place, Alex Riley, Daily Light sports writer.
• Team Page Design — First Place, Neal White, Chad Wilson, Alex Riley, Daily Light.
• Editorial Writing — Second Place, Neal White
• Specialty Reporting — Third Place, Andrew Branca, Daily Light staff writer.
• Photojournalism — Third Place, Neal White.
• Headline Writing — Third Place, Neal White.
“I’m very proud of our news team and want to extend my congratulations to Neal, JoAnn and the entire newsroom staff for their well-deserved recognition,” said Ray Pike, vice president and publisher of Waxahachie Newspapers Inc. “Among our peers in the newspaper industry, WNI has gained a reputation as being an outstanding news organization, one synonymous with excellence in journalism.
“We all believe the communities we serve deserve the best newspaper in the state of Texas. Neal, JoAnn and the WNI news team put in a great deal of time and effort in producing newspapers Ellis County can be proud of,” Pike said.
“For more than a decade, our print edition has established a solid reputation for journalism excellence throughout the state,” Pike noted, adding the Daily Light continues to win industry awards for excellence while competing against much larger newspapers with newsroom staffs twice and in some cases nearly three times its size.
“That’s quite an accomplishment and quite a statement to the dedication and determination of our newsroom staff. I can honestly say they work hard to produce newspapers the residents of Ellis County can be proud to call their hometown paper,” Pike said.
During the past 13 years, the Daily Light news team has earned more than 250 awards for excellence in journalism from various state newspaper organizations.
Both White and Livingston have received multiple APME awards each year during their tenure with the Daily Light, including multiple Star Reporter of the Year, Star Investigative Reporter of the Year and Freedom of Information honors for Livingston.
Wilson received his second APME honor, with Riley and Branca earning their first APME awards.
“I am extremely proud of this news team,” White added. “It is nice to be recognized by our peers in the industry and singled out for excellence in our craft. While appreciative of the recognition, we truly love what we do — serving our communities and ‘Shining the Light’ on Ellis County. I am extremely proud of our news team. They are the best! Every day, they come to work with the single goal of producing a newspaper Ellis County can be proud of.”