COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Delaware Gazette took home three awards during the annual Ohio Associated Press Media Editors (APME) Awards Banquet held Sunday at the Villa Milano Banquet and Conference Center.

Managing Editor Joshua Keeran received first place in the Best News Photo category and second place in the Best Headline Writer category, while The Gazette placed first in the Best Digital Presence category.

In the Best News Photo category, Keeran won for his photograph of a Preservation Parks of Delaware County park tech torching grass during a prescribed burn at Gallant Woods Park.

“Eye-catching with the centered framing, and highlights the danger of the situation,” the judges wrote.

Keeran, who holds a B.A. in journalism from The Ohio State University and has been honored with seven AP awards over his 17-year career, said being recognized for his photography work is something he never expected since he’s not a photographer by trade.

“In college, I never took any photography classes as I thought I would strictly be a writer when I entered the professional world,” Keeran said. “When I accepted my first job at the Urbana Daily Citizen back in 2004, I quickly realized journalists at small newspapers are often tasked with taking their own photos. Thanks to a lot of help and guidance from several professional photographers over the years, I’ve come to enjoy the art of photography.”

In the Best Headline Writer category in which Keeran submitted four headlines for consideration, the judges wrote, “Great use of wit, where appropriate.”

While no judges’ comments were shared for The Gazette’s first-place award in the Best Digital Presence category, the AP notes judges were “asked to view a newspaper’s website, social media feeds and apps, if applicable,” and the newspaper was “judged on its entire digital presentation, including content, overall appearance, ease of navigation, success at building an online audience and whether the site appears to be a valuable resource to the community.”

“All the credit for this award goes to the editorial staff at the Delaware Gazette: Gary Budzak, Dillon Davis, Glenn Battishill and Ben Stroup,” Keeran said. “The Gazette is able to keep the community informed via our website and social media feeds thanks to the hard work each of them puts into reporting on news and sports in Delaware County.”

The Gazette, which has claimed multiple awards in each of the past three APME newspaper contests, competed against 39 other publications in Division I.

In total, 48 daily newspapers submitted 1,302 entries in the annual contest, which featured news and sports stories, features, editorials, columns, graphics, and photos from 2021.

Entries in Division I were judged by editors from the Holland (Michigan) Sentinel and the Alpena (Michigan) News.

The Associated Press is a not-for-profit news cooperative representing newspapers and broadcast stations in the United States.


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