l staffers past and present took home awards for reporting, design and photography at the annual Excellence in Kentucky Newspapers Contest.
The awards, presented by The Kentucky Press Association, were announced Friday at the Brown Hotel.
During the 2012 contest period, The State Journal competed among daily newspapers with circulations between 7,501 and 19,999.
State Journal staff members received five first-place awards, two second-place honors, two third-place awards and two honorable mentions.
Individual winners were:
> Former Opinion Editor Ron Herron: First-place for best editorial and first-place for best opinion page.
Herron recently retired after 43 years with the newspaper.
> Photographer Hannah Reel: First- and third-place for best general news picture, first- and second-place for best picture essay, first-place for best sports picture essay, and honorable mention for best sports picture.
With six awards, Reel took home more honors than any other photographer in the division.
Reel joined the staff in December 2010 after working at The Natchez (Miss.) Democrat. She’s a 2006 graduate of Central Michigan University.
> News Editor Katheran Wasson: Second-place for best feature story.
Wasson worked as a reporter at The State Journal from January 2009 to November 2012, when she became news editor.
She’s a 2006 graduate of the University of Kentucky and worked for The Winchester Sun before coming to Frankfort.
> Assistant News Editor Jordan Smith: Honorable mention for best sports feature story.
Smith has worked at The State Journal since May 2010. She’s a 2010 graduate of Asbury University.
> Former reporter Lauren Hallow: Third-place for best investigative story or series.
Hallow, a graduate of The Ohio State University, now works as an assistant editor for Technomic, a Chicago-based research and consulting firm for the food industry.
The contest period ran from Oct. 1, 2011, to Sept. 30, 2012.
State Journal photographers also won awards from the Kentucky News Photographer Association.
The contest was judged Saturday at the Brown Hotel in Louisville.
Dylan Buell won first-place and an honorable mention in pictorial, and an honorable mention in sports feature photo.
Hannah Reel won honorable mentions in general news photo and feature picture essay.
Reel and Buell also won second- and third-place honors for their team coverage of local events.
The contest is open to all professional photographers in Kentucky, regardless of the size or type of publication they work for. Photos entered in the contest were all taken in 2012.