NENPA awards

Vermont Community Newspaper Group staffers in Boston to collect awards in the New England Newspaper and Press Association competition: from left, Beverly Mullaney, Scooter MacMillan, Madeline Clark, Josh O’Gorman, Kristen Braley, Tommy Gardner and Mike Verillo.

The Vermont Community Newspaper Group took home 35 awards in an annual New England-wide media competition. The tally included nine first-place prizes.

Awards in the competition, sponsored by the New England Newspaper and Press Association, were presented in Boston last weekend.

Publications taking home awards were the Stowe Reporter, the News & Citizen, the Other Paper of South Burlington, and the Stowe Guide and Magazine. Other members of the group are the Waterbury Record, the Shelburne News and The Citizen of Charlotte/Hinesburg.

The Stowe Reporter was named New England’s third-best small weekly newspaper, among publications with circulation under 6,000.

“A newspaper with an impressive variety of local news and photos,” the judges noted. “It features a strong editorial page, attention to news of community events, local sports and social activities. This is a newspaper committed to serve the local community with the best it can do.”

The Stowe Guide and Magazine, produced by Publisher Greg Popa, ranked third overall among niche publications in New England in its class. Said the judges of the Guide, “Gorgeous publication with great advertising support! Great use of the ski and snowboard advertiser coupons. I enjoyed all of the content but really like the departments content.”

The awards recognized writing, photography and multimedia, as well as design in advertising and marketing.

First-place winners

• Beverly Mullaney won three first-place advertising awards — real estate display ad, local display ad (color) and local display ad (black and white). “Upscale, pleasing layout,” the judges wrote of the color display ad. “Beautiful ad.”

• Kristen Braley won for local online ad — “Great job highlighting the accessories,” the judges said. Braley shared first place with Hannah Normandeau for the best newsletter among all classes. Judges called the Stowe Reporter newsletter “clean and crisp, easy to read.”

• The Stowe Reporter staff took first in the contests category for its annual 4393 Readers’ Choice awards.

• Rob Kiener’s story about skiing legend Billy Kidd, “The Kidd from Stowe,” was the top local personality profile. “Bright writing and skillful juxtaposition of Billy Kidd in his heyday and today make this a can’t-put-down profile — even if you’ve never strapped on skis.”

• Tommy Gardner’s story, “Look out! 160 stuck on a lift, rescued,” was first in its class in the Spot News category. The judges said the story provided readers “a unique analysis of a high-altitude rescue situation while never straying far from the element of human drama.”

• Photographer Paul Rogers won the top award in the Photo Story category for his piece “Agricultural Goddess.”

Second place, editorial

• Tommy Gardner, science and technology reporting, “Science for small towns”; and history reporting, “Moveable feasts.”

• Caleigh Cross, commentary, “American, on purpose”; and spot news story, “Glider crashes in rugged terrain; 3 killed.”

• Andrew Martin, sports feature story, “Best goaltender in Vermont?

• Josh O’Gorman, business/economic reporting, “New tobacco laws impact cannabis products, sales.”

• Madeline Clark, general news story, “To SoBu or not to SoBu?

• Julia Shipley, social issues feature story, “The Valedictorian.”

• Paul Rogers, photo story, “Light and Shadow.”

Second place, advertising

• Staff, themed multiple advertiser pages, automotive display ad, advertiser campaign and contests.

• Joslyn Richardson, advertising, local display ad (black and white).

Third place, editorial

• Tommy Gardner, human interest feature story, “Now you see me…

• Madeline Clark, government reporting, “Vermont’s child care crisis.”

• Glenn Callahan, personality photo, “Opal.”

Third place, advertising

• Staff of the News & Citizen, advertising general excellence.

• Katerina Hrdlicka, best ad designer and most creative use of small print space.

• The advertising staff for themed multiple advertiser pages and audience building promotion.

• Kristen Braley, real estate display ad.

• Beverly Mullaney, local display ad (black and white).

For more information about the New England Better Newspaper Competition, visit

Reliable news and information is vitally important. Local advertising has been affected by the COVID-19 crisis but the Vermont Community Newspaper Group remains committed to its responsibility to serve its communities. Your communities. With some assistance from loyal readers, community organizations, foundations and other funders, we hope to keep reporters on the job keeping you informed. Please consider making a tax-deductible donation to our local journalism fund. Thank you for your support.

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