Arkansas Business won several individual prizes and was named best newspaper for its size category — medium tabloids — at the Alliance of Area Business Publishers annual Editorial and Design Excellence dinner Monday in Detroit.
Contributing Editor Gwen Moritz took a gold prize for best scoop, Mark Friedman and Kyle Massey won silver for best investigative reporting, and Online Editor Scott Carroll won silver in best daily email for Arkansas Business Morning Roundup.
Arkansas Business Publishing Group’s annual Greenhead magazine was named best ancillary publication, a prize it has won for six straight years.
The AABP, founded in 1979, represents nearly 60 publications around the country with a combined circulation of over 1.2 million. Some of its better-known members include Crain’s Chicago Business, Biz New Orleans and Florida Trend. The contest was judged by members of the University of Missouri’s journalism faculty.
In the medium tabloids best newspaper category, Arkansas Business beat Providence Business News of Rhode Island and the Hartford Business Journal of Connecticut to win the gold.
Led by Publisher Mitch Bettis, Editor Lance Turner, Managing Editor Jan Cottingham and Art Director Wayne DePriest, Arkansas Business drew the judges’ praise for its clean, consistent design, use of photos, graphics and color, and “enterprise stories that often zoom in on key themes.” The judges praised the paper’s use of lists, enterprise and investigative reporting on subjects “that are meaningful to readers.”
In the best scoop category, Moritz wrote exclusively about Auburn University’s attempt to poach University of Arkansas athletic director Hunter Yurachek. The judges cited her strong sourcing, and noted that “news and sports outlets in SEC country soon followed up on the scoop.”
Friedman and Massey took silver in investigative reporting with “Medical Marijuana Licensing Under Fire,” which reported on irregularities and reports of attempted bribery in the system. “Good use of documents to raise questions,” the judges’ remarks said. “Gives the public a window into an otherwise veiled process that gave away licenses worth millions of dollars.”
The Morning Roundup, a daily email offering a selection of stories online, won Carroll a silver prize and praise from the judges for “simple but clever use of bold text to highlight key names and events” that help readers grasp essential information “which can easily be explored further … The outline format makes for a quick and efficient reading experience when only a short time allows.”
Greenhead, ABPG’s duck hunting magazine, won praise for Publisher Chris Bahn, Editor Brent Birch, Managing Editor Todd Traub and Art Director Dean Wheeler. “From the gorgeous cover to the beautifully illustrated pieces throughout, this magazine is a treat,” the judges said. “The ‘My Question Is’ feature allows readers glimpses into the personalities of key figures in the hunting world, and the publication exudes authority on a multitude of issues. The use of photography is exceptional.”