Vindy wins 7 top Ohio honors


Staff/wire report

COLUMBUS

The Vindicator received 20 awards Sunday for journalistic excellence in the 2015 Associated Press Media Editors competition, including seven first-place rankings.

The newspaper competed in Division IV for newspapers with a daily circulation of 20,000 to 69,999.

The Vindicator took the top honor for Best Digital Presence but placed second in General Excellence after having won the top honor for 2013 and 2014.

Vindicator reporters Jordyn Grzelewski and Joe Gorman won Best Public Service for “Heroin in the Mahoning Valley.”

Other first-place winners for The Vindicator included Bertram de Souza for Best Columnist; Joe Scalzo for Best Sports Writer; Steve Wilaj for Best Sports Enterprise; David Dermer for Best Sports Photo; and the staff for Best Investigative Reporting.

Vindicator Editor Todd Franko said, “Earning top recognition for our Woodside and heroin reports was special due to the human cost of those events.

“We have a great staff that toils daily to bring such stories to light. The awards today are a tribute to the sacrifice and dedication shown by the staff,” he added.

Awards were presented at a luncheon in Columbus. Franko was named an APME of Ohio director representing newspapers with a daily circulation of 15,001 to 50,000.

The Associated Press is a not-for-profit news cooperative serving 1,400 daily newspapers and 5,000 broadcast stations in the United States. AP includes 85 daily newspapers in Ohio.

Vindicator winners and their rankings include:

General Excellence: The Vindicator, second place.

Best Columnist: Bertram de Souza, first place.

Best Editorial Writer: Bertram de Souza, second place.

Best Feature Writer: Jordyn Grzelewski, third place

Best Graphics Artist: Robert McFerren, third place.

Best Sports Columnist: Ed Puskas, second place.

Best Sports Writer: Joe Scalzo, first place.

Best Photographer: Robert K. Yosay, third place.

Best Sports Enterprise: Steve Wilaj, first place; and sports staff for “Death of Hamzah Ajahmi,” second place.

Best Illustration or Informational Graphic: Robert McFerren for “Oakhill Primer,” third place.

Best Feature Photo: William D. Lewis for “Special Needs Prom,” third place.

Best Sports Photo: David Dermer for “Catching Up,” first place.

Best Video: William D. Lewis for “Thankful: Rev. Steve Popovich,” third place.

Best Public Service: Jordyn Grzelewski and Joe Gorman for “Heroin in the Mahoning Valley,” first place, and Jordyn Grzelewski for “Supreme Court Same-Sex Marriage Decision,” third place.

Best Explanatory Reporting: staff report on “Mill Creek Park and Youngstown Sewers,” second place.

Best Investigative Reporting: staff report on “After Woodside,” first place.

Best Full Page Design: Robert McFerren, third place.

Best Digital Presence: The Vindicator, first place.

21 WFMJ-TV, The Vindicator’s broadcast partner , won nine 2015 Ohio Associated Press Broadcast Awards at the event Sunday.

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