The Yazoo Herald earned 14 awards at the Mississippi Press Association’s Better Newspaper Contest, with all three of the newspaper’s writers earning first place awards and Managing Editor Jamie Patterson leading the way with four first place honors.
The awards were presented at the Mississippi Press Association’s 150th annual convention in Biloxi Saturday.
Jamie Patterson won first place awards for Best Planned Series, Best General Interest Column, Best Feature Photo and shared a Best Graphic first place award with Publisher Jason Patterson.
She earned top honors for Planned Series for her series of Yazoo natives who were killed while serving in Vietnam.
“Can’t say enough good things about these stories,” the judges commented.
Jamie Patterson’s winning column was highlighted by one titled “Chasing the American Dream” where she described overcoming adversity to begin her career. The award winning feature photo pictured frozen logs at the chip mill with a rainbow in the foreground. The award winning graphic compared a photo of Yazooan Dale Thrasher standing in front of the ruins of Hillcrest Baptist Church after the 2010 tornado and standing in the same spot five years later with the new church in the background.
Hawkins earned a first place award for his feature on Benton Academy student athlete Blake Moore recovering from injuries suffered in an automobile accident.
Jason Patterson earned a first place award for a photo page of t-ball players in action. Sheila Trimm Young placed second in the same category with photos of Bentonia bluesman Jimmy “Duck” Holmes playing with his grandson and other photos of the blues being played in Bentonia.
The Herald earned second place in its category for General Excellence, with the Madison County Journal earning first place.
Jason Patterson said he was pleased.
“Many of the stories and photos that we chose to enter in the contest were selected because we got a lot of feedback from our readers about them,” he said. “We are competitive people, and we enjoy it when we are successful in these competitions, but nothing matters more than providing good content to the people who actually read your newspaper every week.”