Northwest Asian Weekly (NWAW) publisher Assunta Ng called it an “amazing night.”
NWAW won 24 awards at the annual Washington Newspaper Publishers Association (WNPA) 2020 Better Newspaper Contest—the winners were announced in a first-ever virtual awards ceremony on Oct. 9.
“This is a record-breaking year in the number of awards and first place awards. Five years ago, we won 13. Last year, 11 awards and four 1st place awards,” said Ng.
The annual contest is a chance for non-daily papers across Washington state to compete in a variety of writing, photography, editorial content, advertising, and design categories. The contest covered works published between April 2019 and March 2020. NWAW competed against other newspapers with circulation between 5,001 and 12,500. However, NWAW won five awards in categories spanning circulation groups of all sizes:
Carolyn Bick and Mahlon Meyer won first and second place, respectively, in the News Writer of the Year category for their writing on social justice issues and Asian American immigrants,
Kai Curry took third prize in the Feature Writer of the Year category,
Samantha Pak and her monthly “On the Shelf” book recommendations took first place in the Topical Column category,
And Sam Le won first place in Video Groups: Lunar New Year Parade.
“It takes a village to put together an event,” said Ng of the Lunar New Year Parade. “The number of people involved is huge, including Sam Le videotaping, John Liu and Tracy Luu as co-chairs, and a dozen volunteers and sponsors.”
NWAW also swept the Business Feature and Art Review categories. Jason Cruz, Stacy Nguyen, and Joshua Holland won first, second, and third for business features, and Nguyen took first and second place in Art Reviews, while Curry took third.
Our most prolific winner and writer won seven awards, in addition to News Writer of the Year.
Meyer took first place in the Crime & Court category, first and third place in the Business News category including a story on how the coronavirus has affected business in the Chinatown-International District, second place in the News Story Short and Health/Medical categories, third place in the Social Issue category, and third place in Comprehensive Coverage, Single Writer for his series on the closure of the Keiro nursing home.
Cruz picked up another win in the Sports Personality profile category, coming in third place;
Andrew Hamlin and Janice Nesamani won first and third place, respectively, in the Story on the Arts category; Evangeline Cafe won third place for her story on an Asian American healthcare worker who contracted COVID-19 and survived; Curry won first place in the Social Issue category; and Ruth Bayang won second place in the Elections Story category.
“We are deeply grateful and proud of our team. They are the ones who make the Northwest Asian Weekly great. And thank you to our community for pitching story ideas to us.”
This year’s contest was judged by the New York Press Association. Fifty-one newspapers across Washington participated.