Northwest Asian Weekly (NWAW) reporters and staff members won 27 awards at the annual Washington Newspaper Publishers Association (WNPA) 2021 Better Newspaper Contest. The winners were announced in a virtual awards ceremony on Oct. 8.
“It was exciting to watch the entire evening. There were so many awards that we received, I wasn’t able to keep track of the total number,” said NWAW Publisher Assunta Ng.
The first place winners were Janice Nesamani in the Education story category; Andrew Hamlin in the Art reviews and General feature (long) categories; Nina Huang in the Personality profile (short) category; and Assunta Ng for a Business feature story.
The contest—held annually for non-daily Washington state newspapers to compete in a variety of writing, photography, editorial content, advertising, and design categories—covered works published between April 2020 and March 2021. NWAW competed against other newspapers with circulation between 3,400 and 9,499. However, NWAW won seven awards in categories spanning circulation groups of all sizes:
News writer of the year
— Janice Nesamani, 2nd
Feature writer of the year
— Andrew Hamlin, 3rd
Sports writer of the year
— Jason Cruz, 3rd
— Jason Cruz, The Layup Drill, 3rd
— Stacy Nguyen, APop!, 3rd
Comprehensive coverage, multiple writers
— Jason Cruz and Assunta Ng (Anti-Asian bias crimes and attacks), 3rd
Feature page design category
— Han Bui, 3rd
Nguyen also took third place in the Front page design category and Becky Chan won third place in the Color pictorial photo category.
Ng said, “The awards reflect our writers’ spirit, hard work, and dedication to cover the Asian community and BIPOC communities in general. Through Covid, it’s never easy for us journalists to do our job, but our writers pull through every time. I am so proud of them and of our editorial staff. It’s a team effort.”
Other wins include:
Advertising, Community Service
— Han Bui, Assunta Ng, John Liu, George Liu, and Ruth Bayang, 3rd
Newspaper House Ad
— Han Bui, Assunta Ng, John Liu, and George Liu, 3rd
— Mahlon Meyer (Caregiver vaccine story), 3rd
— Becky Chan (Clean fuel), 2nd
Business News story
— Mahlon Meyer (Businesses sidelined by CHOP), 2nd
Social issue story
— Mahlon Meyer (Elder abuse), 2nd
— Jason Cruz (Washingtonians write postcards to Georgia), 2nd
— Kai Curry (Marilyn Strickland), 3rd
— Stacy Nguyen (Bill & Ted Face the Music), 2nd
Business feature story
— Riz Reyes (Support local flower farms), 3rd
— Andrew Hamlin (Simon Tam), 2nd
Sports feature story
— Jason Cruz (Kaname Yonamine Asian Hall of Fame), 2nd
Personality profile, long
— Mahlon Meyer (Taky Kimura), 2nd
WNPA represents about 89 community newspapers in Washington state.
This year’s contest was judged by the Kentucky Press Association. Fifty-one newspapers across Washington participated.