Sound Publishing wins big through WNPA

The 2017 Washington Newspaper Publishers Association held their annual meeting from Oct. 12 to 14 in Olympia. This year the main benefactor of the rewards were the members of Sound Publishing as they managed to net a total of 250 journalism awards. Fred Obee, committee member for what they called the Better Newspaper Contest and member of the Board of Directors at the WNPA had nothing but praise for the winners. In his words of congratulations, he said, “While reviewing the contest entries, I was constantly impressed by the high-quality entries. Vivid photos, compelling stories and clever, attention-getting ads dominated.” In his praise he included that judges from the Pennsylvania News Media Association were also impressed by the overall quality of the entries. Obee went on to say that “it shows what can be accomplished, even when we are pressed for time and even when our resources are scarce. Our own initiative powers what we do, and it’s clear we have a lot of that among WNPA members.”
Among the recipients of the awards, three staff writers from Bellevue won multiple awards. Ryan Murray, Allison DeAngelis and Raechel Dawson each took home three awards a piece, with Dawson bringing home two first-place awards. Carrie Rodriguez, regional editor for the Bellevue Reporter, also included that as well as receiving numerous awards from the WNPA, they have also been recognized by the Society of Professional Journalists for their excellence in journalism.
In terms of how Sound Publishing is able to produce such high-quality content, Rodriguez elaborated that “quality content to our newsroom means producing stories that resonate with the community. Our reporters examine each issue that comes across our news desk and ask: What can we do as a community newspaper to humanize this topic?” According to Rodriguez, some reporters go to sit in on City Council meetings to cover what city leaders are trying to say. From this, they are able to determine what the issues are and go out into the community to gather their opinions on the topic. Rodriguez claimed that this method “translates this council issue into a story that is meaningful to Bellevue residents. This approach is at the forefront of every news story we cover.”
Obee explained that “the work we do in our communities is vitally important, especially today when fake news hawkers are so prevalent. We are needed more than ever, and the work in this contest proves we are up to the task.”

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