The staff of The Island Packet and The Beaufort Gazette won 38 awards in the S.C. Press Association's annual contest, including a first place for public service and top honors for a sports special section.
Education reporter Sarah Bowman took first place in public-service reporting in the 18,000 to 45,000 circulation category for articles she wrote about the rush to ensure more than 1,500 Beaufort County School District seventh-graders received a state-required immunization before the start of the 2013-14 school year.
The newspapers' sports department took first place in a competition among all state daily newspapers, regardless of circulation, for its special section prepared ahead of the RBC Heritage Presented by Boeing. That was one of six awards that the newspapers claimed in competition across several circulation categories.
Entries entered under the Packet's banner won 21 awards, including nine first places, and the Gazette nabbed 17 awards, including seven first places.
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In most categories, the Gazette competed against the state's daily newspapers with a circulation of 18,000 or fewer. The Packet moved up to compete for the first time in the 18,000 to 45,000 division.
Packet award-winners were:
First place: Mike Bragg, sports headline writing; sports department, sports special section; Rebecca Lurye, short story; Sarah Bowman, public service; staff, use of Twitter; Sandra Ross, page one design portfolio; Kelly Davis, Rachel Damgen and Johnny Woodard, daily newspaper website (three-way tie); Sarah Welliver, online general news/feature video; Sandra Ross, news headline writing.
Second place: Janet Smith, E.A. Ramsaur Award for Editorial Writing; Gina Smith, reporting in depth; Liz Farrell, humor column writing; Steve Austin, news headline writing.
Third place: Sports staff, innovative concept; staff, news special edition or section; Dan Burley, business reporting; Alena Schwarz, single feature page design; Delayna Earley, online sports video; David Lauderdale, humor column writing; Mike Bragg, sports page design portfolio; staff, general excellence.
Gazette award-winners were:
First place: Erin Moody, profile feature writing; Sarah Welliver, online spot news video; Mike McCombs, sports page design; Mike McCombs, spot sports story; Tom Barton, enterprise reporting; Laura Oberle, beat reporting; Bailey Atkinson, single feature page design.
Second place: Jeff Kidd, online general news/feature video; Bailey Atkinson, feature page design; Delayna Earley, feature photo; Kelly Davis, Rachel Damgen and Johnny Woodard, daily newspaper website; Delayna Earley, online spot news video; Stephen Fastenau, sports feature.
Third place: Sarah Welliver, photo illustration; Casey Conley, business reporting; Erin Moody, reporting in depth; staff, general excellence.