By News-Register staff • 

ONPA awards 20 honors to NR

The Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association presented 20 individual honors and its top sweepstakes award to the News-Register at its annual conference last week. The News-Register has claimed the major award, recognizing it as the most decorated paper in its division, in 16 of the last 18 years.

The McMinnville-based, family-owned paper took firsts in photography, writing and web operations. It also gathered seven seconds and 10 thirds.

Photographer Rockne Roll placed first in feature photography for photos of the librarian in Grand Ronde.

The paper’s website, www.newsregister.com, claimed top overall honors in addition to a second in design.

Reporter Starla Pointer placed first in lifestyle coverage for “Taking their wheels for a spin,” a feature about local spinners. The story also placed first in the National Newspaper Association competition, decided earlier in the year.

Pointer also claimed three thirds. She was honored in personality profiles for “History buff,” about local amateur historian Cory Knutz; educational coverage for “Celebrating graduation rates,” an analysis of the McMinnville School District’s grad rate performance; and feature writing for “Looking and listening,” about a birdwatching expedition in Cozine Creek.

The News-Register editorial section, “Viewpoints,” place second among editorial pages. Managing Editor Steve Bagwell, Editor Ossie Bladine and Publisher Jeb Bladine are responsible for the weekly section.

The News-Register’s quarterly “Green Living” section, edited by Racheal Winter, won second in the special sections category.

Business editor David Bates also picked up a second in business coverage with a story about the Oregon hazelnut industry.

Reporter Tom Henderson collected two seconds, one for a selection of headlines and the other for a personality profile titled “Treasures from the past,” about a story about a woman who collects vintage diaries.

Henderson also picked up three thirds. He placed third in the best writing category for a selection of work; third in business coverage with a story titled “Where’s the beef?” detailing the woes of Dundee’s defunct Riteway shop; and third in lifestyle coverage for a story about the people who met riding a Yamhill County Transit Area bus.

Former reporter and editor Don Iler placed second in the enterprise reporting for “Commissioner tight with trash execs.” The investigative piece examined the relatonship between Commissioner Allen Springer and officials associated with the Riverbend Landfill and its parent company.

Photographer Marcus Larson placed third in three categories — best feature photography with “Tiger with a view,” Best news photography with “Plowing through” and best sports photography with “Savoring the Moment.”

In addition, columnist Nathalie Hardy won third-place for a selection of work from her column, “Raising the Hardy Boys.”

Bagwell said it is always gratifying to earn plaudits from peers in the field. He said the nearly unbroken run of sweepstakes honors speaks to the consistently high standards set by the paper, a function of committed and news-oriented family ownership.

“That makes all the difference,” he said. “It’s something the community should truly treasure.”

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