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Weirton Daily Times recognized by WVPA

WEIRTON — The Weirton Daily Times has been recognized for its continuing work in providing news coverage in the Tri-State Area, as part of the West Virginia Press Association’s annual Better Newspaper Contest.

WVPA officials announced the awards Monday afternoon.

The publication’s news and sports staff received 11 awards, with staff writers Andrew Grimm and Linda Harris, Sports editor Joe Catullo and Managing editor Craig Howell receiving individual recognitions.

Harris received four awards in news categories, including a first place finish in Best Governmental Affairs Reporting; second place in Best News Feature; and third place in both Best Business, Economic or Labor Reporting and Best News Feature.

Her first place award was for the article “Allegations continue at Brooke BOE,” with judges commenting “This series showed thoughtful reporting with excellent organization. The sources that were quoted seemed to better represent the entire community. Fantastic job!”

Harris’ second-place finish in Best News Feature was for “Nearing an end,” reviewing the history of the former Weirton Steel Corp. Basic Oxygen Plant as its demolition approached, with the third place in Best News Feature for “Honoring the fallen: Community remembers 120 steelworkers who never made it home,” focusing on Weirton’s annual steelworker memorial service.

The third place award for Best Business was for “A landmark comes down,” providing coverage of the BOP demolition the morning of March 9, 2019.

Judges commented, “More than just an account of what happened — a detailed account of how it affected local citizens. Top-notch work.”

Grimm received first-place honors in Best Sports Columnist, with judges commenting “Very readable, personable and enjoyable columns. Andrew writes the kind of columns I’d look forward to reading every week.”

He also received third place in Best Sports Event Reporting for “Toronto received its close, must-win victory,” for coverage of Toronto football’s September overtime win against Crestwood.

Catullo received a second-place award in Sports Photography for “Tagging Out,” appearing in the May 17, 2019 edition as part of coverage of a Steubenville and St. Clairsville baseball game. Judges wrote, “Tag outs and plays at the plate are often so hard to capture, but this photographer did a really good job getting it. I’m impressed.”

Catullo also received a second-place recognition in Best Sports Event Reporting for “Gem City of champions,” chronicling the Toronto High School baseball team’s state championship victory.

Howell received a third place recognition in the category of Best News Columnist, with judges calling it “Great community-based analysis. Exactly what a local newspaper should provide to readers.”

The newspaper also received two staff awards: Second place in the Best Sports Special Section for “The Gridiron 2019,” and third place in Best Single Issue for the Nov. 12, 2019 edition, which included coverage of local Veterans Day services.

According to Don Smith, executive director of the WVPA, thirty-six West Virginia newspapers submitted entries as part of this year’s contest, which was judged by members of the North Carolina Press Association.

The awards for General Excellence, Newspaper of the Year, Ad of the Year and other top prizes will be announced in September when the WVPA hosts a virtual convention.

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