Reporters from the Nelson Star, Trail Times and Grand Forks Gazette won eight times at the Ma Murray provincial journalism awards in Richmond on Saturday. L-R: Kathleen Saylors, Sheri Regnier, Sandy Leonard, Eric Lawson, Greg Nesteroff, Katelyn Hurley and Tyler Harper. Photo submitted

Nelson Star wins six community news awards

Reporter Tyler Harper took home the top prize for best feature at the 2019 Ma Murray Awards in Richmond

The Nelson Star has won six honours at the 2019 Ma Murray Community News Media Awards, including a gold for best feature.

Reporter Tyler Harper took home the top prize for his work on “The pieces of Darwin Greyeyes,” which profiled the disappearance of local artist Darwin Greyeyes in June 2017.

The judges called the story a “compelling, well-written feature.”

“With excellent research, including multiple sources who had worked with and befriended the subject, Harper weaves all the pieces together into a cohesive story.”

Harper also took home a bronze for outdoor recreational writing for “Giving Kootenay Lake back to special needs swimmers,” a story about a local program that offers barrier-free open water training.

Star designers Sandy Leonard and Katelyn Hurley won silver and bronze, respectively, for ad design. Hurley and salesperson Marc-Andre Hamelin’s Indulge Nelson campaign also took silver for the special section award. Judges called the campaign “a very attractive and interestingly designed supplement. Classy and chock full of information.”

Greg Nesteroff and his team meanwhile won silver for special publications award for the Nelson Adventure Magazine. “Great flow from beginning to end,” said the judges. “Really shows the fun and adventure to be had in Nelson.”

It is the most honours the Star team has ever won at the Ma Murray awards, which are held by the BC and Yukon Community News Association every April in Richmond.

Two other local Black Press publications took home gold for their work.

Former Grand Forks Gazette reporter Kathleen Saylors won the spot news photo award for a picture of two people embracing during the 2018 Grand Forks floods.

“The photo does an admirable job of personalizing a big issue and showing how it affected individuals,” said judges. “That made it a storytelling photograph imbued with emotion, which is an elusive but valuable goal in news photography.”

Trail Times reporter Sheri Regnier’s “Appraisers tasked with putting a value on community’s history” was awarded first place for the Neville Shanks Memorial Award for historical writing. The judges said, “The story is also a memorable statement about the contribution of local history to community identification and civic pride.”

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