2013-04-10 / Front Page

PCN&R Wins Four Statewide Awards

Announcement comes at Press Association convention
Special to the PCN&R

The Putnam County News & Recorder won four awards in the New York Press Association Better Newspaper contest, including for best local government coverage.

The association made the announcement during its annual convention last week in Saratoga Springs. The PCN&R and its sister paper, the Putnam County Courier, sent three people to the gathering, which drew 435 from around New York to the Gideon Putnam Resort in Saratoga Springs. Both newspapers are published by Elizabeth Ailes of Garrison.

Reporter Tim Greco, who attended on behalf of the newspaper, won in the “best coverage of local government” category with a third-place award. Said the judges: “Greco shows a knack for capturing the mood of his subjects as well as pithy quotes. That includes a man who considers Dunkin’ Donuts’ orange-and-pink decor a deal breaker and a woman who plants herself in front of a piece of heavy equipment to protest damage to trees. He covers his beat thoroughly.”

Eric Gross, senior reporter, won in the “best spot news coverage” category, with a second place for his report on the Carmel fire that left four members of one family dead. The judges wrote, “Thorough reporting on this fire. Well sourced in a time when the sources are emotionally attached to the story and likely were difficult to interview.”

Matt Mellon, graphics editor, who also attended for the newspapers, won in the “best color ad created by the newspaper” category, with a third-place for an advertisement in the PCN&R about Zen archery instruction. “Zen… a word that applies as well to the ad as to the event it promotes,” the judges wrote of his work.

Douglas Cunningham, associate publisher and editor, also won in the “best column” category, with a third place. “The writer’s conversational approach to sometimes dry topics helps readers answer the question: Why should I care? Good job,” wrote the judges.

Cunningham serves as a member of the Association’s Board of Directors and took part in its quarterly meeting Thursday afternoon.

Michelle K. Rea, executive director of the press group, said the conference is now the largest journalism education gathering in the country. Under Mrs. Ailes’ leadership, the PCN&R and Courier are active participants in the Press Association’s efforts.

All of the winning entries can be found here, at the NY Press Association site.

Greco's stories can be found at these links: Death by Delay for Dunkin'?; Historic Board OKs Dunkin' Design; Donut Debate Flies into Bald Eagles; Mayor Silences Critics; Shiver Me Timbers (Stone St. Shed) and Tree Trimming Protest in Garrison.

The story from Gross that won in spot news is here; this story initially broke online and was updated throughout as developments warranted. The deaths sent Carmel into mourning for weeks. A discarded cigarette was later identified as the cause.

Cunningham's columns can be found here: Bringing a Village to Heel; the Petri Dish Matters; and Stasis for Cold Spring. Reactions or news tips are always welcome; email Cunningham here. Greco can be reached here, and Mellon here. In eastern Putnam, Gross can be reached here. As ever, Advertising Manager Lynn Duffy is happy to assist with advertising requests, including designing ads for clients. She can be reached here.

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