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Staff members at the Central Kentucky News-Journal won 12 awards at the Jan. 23 Kentucky Press Association's Excellence in Kentucky Newspapers awards banquet at the Galt House Hotel in Louisville.
The News-Journal competes in the multi-weekly division with other newspapers from across the state. Entries for this year's contest were dated from Oct. 1, 2007, through Sept. 30, 2008.
Collectively, the staff won three first-place awards, three second-place, two third-place and four honorable mentions.
Social Writer Neila Schuhmann won first place for Best General News Story. Schuhmann's story, "Greased Lightning," featured local resident Mike Kehoe, who produces his own biodiesel fuel from recycled cooking oil.
Judges said, "Interesting, and especially when gas prices were at a major high in July '08."
Editor Rebecca Cassell won a first-place award for Best Front Page Design. Judges said, "Good writing, clean layout, good use of photographs and typeset well."
Cassell also won a second-place award for Best Sports Picture Essay for a page of photographs from Campbellsville Youth Soccer's opening day.
Cassell and the news staff won two awards in the Special Sections category - a third place for the annual community guide "This Is Taylor County" and an honorable mention for the "Taylor County Woman of the Year" section published in May.
Former Publisher Richard RoBards won first place for Best Sports Picture Essay with a special wrap-around section of photos of J.B. Holmes playing in the Masters golf tournament.
RoBards also won a third-place award for Best Sports Picture for his photo of Campbellsville University football player Sean Thompson on the cover of the CU Homecoming section in October 2007.
Staff Writer Calen McKinney won second place in the Best General News Story category for a story about child abuse. Judges said: "Good general news about an often hush-hush topic."
McKinney also received an honorable mention in the Best Feature Story division. Judges said, "Nice lead and quotes."
Sports Editor Bobby Brockman won second place for Best Sports Story. His entry, a story about pro golfer J.B. Holmes, garnered these judges' comments: "This story did a good job connecting the reader with the hometown star who just had the rare opportunity to excel on the international stage (which just happened to be close to home)."
Brockman also received an honorable mention award for Best Sports Page/Section.
Staff Writer James Roberts received an honorable mention award in the Best On-Going/Extended Coverage category for his series of stories about the alcohol petition and vote in Campbellsville.
The Kentucky Press Association, a statewide association of newspapers, celebrated its 140th anniversary earlier this month.