Tribune takes home 12 awards from MNA

Published 10:16 pm Friday, January 25, 2019

BLOOMINGTON — The Albert Lea Tribune took home 12 awards Thursday evening at the annual Minnesota Newspaper Association banquet at Doubletree Hotel in Bloomington.

The most prestigious award received was for reporter Sarah Kocher, who won first place for the Dave Pyle New Journalist Award among all new journalists at daily newspapers in Minnesota. The award is named after Dave Pyle, a longtime MNA committee member and Associated Press bureau chief covering Minnesota, who died in 2015.

Kocher has worked at the Tribune since October 2017.

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“From the get-go, this reporter grabs you,” the judge wrote of Kocher. “The lede in each story is top of the line. It’s easy to see why the editor relies on this reporter as a go-to source.”

In addition to the new journalist recognition, Kocher won third place in the Human Interest Story category for daily newspapers under 10,000 circulation for a story she wrote about area residents who dress up as Santa Claus.

“Fascinating, heartwarming and a really fun read,” the judge wrote.

The Tribune won first place in the General Reporting, Advertising Excellence and Use of Photography as a Whole categories among daily newspapers under 10,000 in circulation.

“The section fronts in this entry are remarkable,” the judge wrote in the photography category. “Great big photos, bright colors and prominent placement in the design. The sports sections are very well done with lots of big photos, which, let’s face it, is what parents really want to see. A fun mix of feature, news, sports and photo collages.”

The newspaper won second place in the Editorial Page as a Whole category for daily newspapers under 10,000 circulation, and photographer Colleen Harrison won second place for her photo story among all daily newspapers for her photographs highlighting Lester Perschbacher, a longtime milk tester.

“Cute and fun story,” the judge wrote. “Looks like an interesting character to follow around.”

Graphic designer Kim Ehrich won second and third place in the Advertising Campaign category for a series of advertisements she created for Addie’s Floral & Gifts and Lewis Charles Cycles, respectively.

The Tribune won third place in the Typography and Design category for daily newspapers under 10,000 circulation, and third place for its website and classified advertising section among all daily newspapers.

“Clean, nice to look at page design,” the judge wrote of the website. “Easy to navigate to lots of good local content.”

Awards were for work performed between September 2017 and August 2018.