The Kansas Press Association (KPA) announced the winners of the 2012 KPA Awards of Excellence last week, awarding the Kiowa County Signal seven awards in a variety of categories.
Signal Editor Patrick Clement, General Manager Conrad Easterday and Publisher Randy Mitchell received four first place finishes in the Non-Daily Division I for features, stories and editions published last year.
“Kiowa County Collectors,” a six-part series exploring unique collections by county residents, earned a first place finish in the Series category and last year’s coverage of the local Pinewood Derby “West is derby champion, again” earned a first place in the Youth Story category.
The Signal also won first place in the Headline Writing category with a trio of submissions including “Divide and Concur,” coverage of the county commissioners redistricting, “Big well-done for done Big Well,” about the grand opening of the Big Well Museum and “Chimps check champ chance,” a story about the final Maverick football game in Solomon.
The 2012 Halloween edition “Kiowa County Spookiest” earned the top spot in the Feature Package category for its mix or stories, photos, advertising and layout.
Last year’s two-part story “Local man searching” and “Buckle owner had deep roots in Greensburg and Colorado,” earned The Signal a second place honor in the Investigative Story category and the cover graphic for the June 20 edition “HIBye-Bye” earned a third place honor in the Photo Illustration category.
Clement also earned a third place finish in the News Photo category for a photo taken the morning after the April 18 tornado that hit the northern part of Kiowa County. The photo depicts John Colclazier Jr. mending a fence that was damaged in the storm.
KPA award winners will be honored at a banquet during the 2013 KPA Convention, held on May 3-4 in Topeka.
“Creating dynamic and award-worthy news content is a three-way street,” said Clement. “It takes an engaged readership and supportive management. The people of Kiowa County and my bosses at Gatehouse Media deserve as much credit as I do.”