Shelby County Reporter wins 16th consecutive General Excellence award

Published 4:45 pm Wednesday, June 29, 2022

By ALEC ETHEREDGE | Managing Editor

COLUMBIANA – For the 16th year in a row, the Shelby County Reporter has won the Alabama Press Association’s General Excellence award, which is the top award given out to local newspapers each year.

The announcement was made during the annual APA Convention held at the Perdido Beach Resort in Orange Beach on Saturday, June 25.

In addition to winning the top editorial award, Shelby County Newspapers, Inc. was also awarded two of the other top awards at this year’s banquet—Magazine of the Year and Ad Sweepstakes.

Vestavia Hills Magazine was named this year’s top magazine in the state of Alabama ahead of Jackson Monthly and Lake Magazine, who finished second and third, respectively.

The Shelby County Reporter totaled 16 first place editorial wins this year, while also adding 32 combined second and third place finishes for a total of 48 top-three awards in the editorial contest.

In advertising, the paper received 11 first place awards, while also totaling 15 additional top-three finishes.

The magazine contest featured seven wins this year and an additional seven top-three awards for work in Vestavia Hills Magazine, Homewood Life, Shelby Living and Hoover’s Magazine.

SCNI publishes the Shelby County Reporter, 280 Reporter, Alabaster Reporter, Pelham Reporter, Shelby Living, Vestavia Hills Magazine, Helena – The Magazine, Mountain Brook Magazine, Homewood Life and Hoover’s Magazine.

This year, more than 60 publications submitted 2,548 entries in the annual contest, which was judged by the Illinois Press Association.

The Shelby County Reporter competes in category C in the editorial and advertising contests against other large weekly newspapers, while each magazine produced by Shelby County Newspapers, Inc. competed in the magazine contest.

Shelby County Newspapers Inc. received the following awards:

Editorial contest (48)

-First place in General Excellence

-First place in the Best Local News Coverage category

-First place in the Best Newspaper Website category

-First place in the Best Layout and Design category

-First place in the Best Public Service category for “Tornado Coverage” by Alec Etheredge, Emily Sparacino and Scott Mims

-First place in the Best Sports Coverage category by Alec Etheredge

-First place in the Best Lifestyle/Family Pages category

-First place in the Best In-Depth News Coverage category for “Tornadoes” by Alec Etheredge and Emily Sparacino

-First place in the Best Local Sports Column category for “Ultimately it is just a game, but it is one that helps with healing” by Alec Etheredge

-First place in the Best News Photo category for “Matthew Blount’s father Barry Blount in front of his son’s tombstone” by Keith McCoy

-First place in the Best Sports Photo category for “Cam Crawford gets horizontal on dunk” by Keith McCoy

-First place for Best Special Section-Newsprint category for “Profile” by staff

-First place in the best Online Breaking News Coverage category for “Major flooding event hits Shelby County” by Alec Etheredge

-First place in the Best Use of Social Media category for “Instagram Reels” by staff

-First place in the Best Use of Video Shorter than 2 Minutes category for “Polar Express reel” by Meg Herndon

-First place in the Best Use of Video Longer than 2 Minutes category for “Election Forums” by Keith McCoy

-Second place in the Best In-Depth News Coverage category for “Chelsea school system by Emily Sparacino and Alec Etheredge

-Second place in the Best Local News Coverage category

-Second place in the Best Lifestyle/Family Pages category

-Second place in the Best Editorial category for “Weathering the storm together” by Alec Etheredge

-Second place in the Best Human Interest Column category for “COVID-19 is not discriminatory” by Daniel Holmes

-Second place in the Best Editorial Column or Commentary category for “Workers not lazy, just tired” by Michelle Love

-Second place in the Best Sports News In-Depth Coverage category for “Oak Mountain championship run” by Alec Etheredge

-Second place in the Best Spot News Photo category for “House flattened by tornado” by Alec Etheredge

-Second place in the Best Sports Photo category for “Catching a dynasty” by Keith McCoy

-Second place in the Best Photo Essay category for “Number Juan” by Keith McCoy

-Second place in the Best Niche Publication category for “Profile” by staff

-Second place in the best Online Breaking News Coverage category for “Tornado breaking news coverage” by Alec Etheredge and Emily Sparacino

-Second place in the Best Podcast Series category for “Shelby County Live Pregame Show” by Alec Etheredge

-Second place in the Best Use of Video Shorter than 2 Minutes category for “October Haunted House” by Meg Herndon

-Second place in the Best Local Education Coverage category

-Third place in the Best Local Economic Coverage category

-Third place in the Best Public Service category for “Chelsea school system” by Emily Sparacino and Alec Etheredge

-Third place in the Best Spot News category for “Tornadoes rip through county” by Alec Etheredge

-Third place in the Best News Feature Story Coverage category for “Couple rescued from rubble of collapsed trailer following tornado” by Alec Etheredge

-Third place in the Best Editorial Column or Commentary category for “My new perspective on COVID-19” by Alec Etheredge

-Third place in the Best Sports News In-Depth Coverage category for “Thompson state championship coverage” by Alec Etheredge

-Third place in the Best Sports Feature Story category for “Dad reunites with son at football game” by Alec Etheredge

-Third place in the Best Feature Photo category for “A wood crafter shapes a wooden bowl” by Keith McCoy

-Third place in the Best News Photo category for “Alabaster July Fourth celebration” by Keith McCoy

-Third place in the Best Spot News Photo category for “Waterlogged” by Keith McCoy

-Third place in the Best Sports Photo category for “Never wavered” by Keith McCoy

-Third place in the Best Photo Essay category for “Path of destruction” by Alec Etheredge and Keith McCoy

-Third place in the Best Niche Publication category for “Football” by Alec Etheredge

-Third place in the Best Use of Social Media category for “Football Pregame Show” by Alec Etheredge

-Third place in the Best Use of Video Shorter than 2 Minutes category for “9-11 reel” by Meg Herndon

-Third place in the Best Use of Video Longer than 2 Minutes category for “Shelby County Live Pregame Show” by Alec Etheredge

-Third place in the Best Use of Photographs/Editorial Content category

Advertising contest (26)

-First place for Advertising Sweepstakes

-First place in the Best Single Ad ½ page and under, black and white category for “Southwest Water” by Rhett McCreight

-First place in the Best Single Ad over ½ page, black and white category for “CPAP Plus” by Jessica Caudill

-First place in the Best Regularly Scheduled Special Section-Newsprint or Glossy category for “Profile 2021” by staff

-First place in the Best Original/Creative Idea category for “Lawn Mower For Sale” by Daniel Holmes

-First place in the Best Classified Display Ad category for “Lawn Mower For Sale” by Daniel Holmes

-First place in the Best Niche Publication category for “Shelby County Football” by staff

-First place in the Best Use of Humor category for “Lawn Mower For Sale” by Daniel Holmes

-First place in the Best Presentation of Online Advertising for “Shelbycountyreporter.com” by staff

-First place in the Best Innovative Online Advertising-Single Ad category for “CreActive” by Tori Montjoy

-First place in the Best Online Revenue Builder category for “Digital Subscriptions” by Meg Herndon

-Second place in the Best Single Ad over ½ page, black and white category for “The Shelby County Chamber – Small Business Awards” by staff

-Second place in the Best In-Paper Promotion of Newspaper category for “Profile 2021” by staff

-Second place in the Best Original/Creative Idea category for “Vulcan Termite” by Rhett McCreight

-Second place in the Best Classified Display Ad category for “Wimberly Apartments” by staff

-Second place in the Best Signature Page category for “Oak Mountain State Champs” by staff

-Second place in the Best Use of Humor category for “Alabaster For Tomorrow” by Tori Montjoy

-Second place in the Best Innovative Online Advertising-Single Ad category for “DaySol Coffee” by Rhett McCreight

-Second place in the Best Online Revenue Builder category for “SCR Daily Email” by staff

-Third place in the Best Single Ad ½ page and under, black and white category for “Valleydale Animal Clinic” by Rhett McCreight

-Third place in the Best Single Ad over ½ page, black and white category for “The Shelby County Chamber – Tourism Awards” by staff

-Third place in the Best Single Ad over ½ page, color category for “Alabaster For Tomorrow” by Tori Montjoy

-Third place in the Best Advertising Campaign category for “Health Services, Inc.” by staff

-Third place in the Best Signature Page category for “Veterans Day” by staff

-Third place in the Best Niche Publication category for “THS Calendar” by staff

-Third place in the Best Innovative Online Advertising-Single Ad category for “Bug Out Training” by Rhett McCreight

Magazine contest (14)

-First place in the Magazine of the Year category for Vestavia Hills Magazine

-First place in the Best Personality Profile category for Vestavia Hills Magazine’s “A Family Man” by Madoline Markham and Blair Ramsey

-First place in the Best Business Feature category for Hoover’s Magazine’s “A Clean Start” by Amy Ferguson

-First place in the Best Photo Essay category for Shelby Living’s “Running Free” by Denise George and Madoline Markham

-First place for Best Individual Website for Vestaviahillsmagazine.com

-First place in the Best Overall Design category for Vestavia Hills Magazine

-First place in the Best Travel Feature category for Vestavia Hills Magazine’s “Rediscover Gatlinburg” by Christiana Roussel

-Second place in the Best Single Feature Story category for Vestavia Hills Magazine’s “A Mission in High Gear” by Madoline Markham

-Second place in the Best Personality Profile category for Homewood Life Magazine’s “Everyone’s Favorite Mailman” by Melanie Peeples and Kathryn Bell

-Second place in the Best Photo Essay category for Shelby Living’s “In the Dark” by Klint Rhodes and Madoline Markham

-Second place in the Best Single Ad category for “Collective & Co.” by staff

-Second place in the Best Travel Feature category for Vestavia Hills Magazine’s “The Great Carolina Outdoors” by Christiana Roussel

-Second place in the Best Culinary Feature category for Vestavia Hills Magazine’s “Cookie Cheer” by Sara Guven and Karen Askins

-Third place in the Best House Ad or Self-Promotion category for “Subscribe Now” by staff