Laramie County Community College’s student newspaper, Wingspan
, won first place “best all-around non-daily student newspaper” in the two-year college category in the Society of Professional Journalists’ Region IX Mark of Excellence competition.
The awards were presented April 14 in Denver at the SPJ Region IX conference, which includes Wyoming, Colorado, Utah and New Mexico.
In addition, Wingspan captured 19 other awards, more than any other two-year college. First-place awards will advance to national competition with the winners to be honored at the SPJ national convention Sept. 20–22 in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
The regional awards were as follows:
- Cody Tucker: first place, general news reporting, for “Pulpit of propaganda,” for a story about two ministers’ opposition to civil unions for gay couples but for different reasons; first place, feature photography, for “Runaway Train,” a picture of LCCC bull rider Loncey Johnson; first place, sports writing, for an accompanying story on Johnson; first place, sports column writing, for a series of three columns; first place, feature writing, for “Leaving Las Vegas” about a former drug addict making a new life for himself; third place, feature writing, for “Shamrocking,” about Wyomingites celebrating St. Patrick’s Day.
- Will Hebert: first place, general column writing, for a series of three columns; first place, breaking news photography, for “Walking Dead” about a zombie walk on the state capitol during ZombieFest; first place, photo illustration, for an illustration of a zombie during Cheyenne’s ZombieFest; second place, online news reporting, for an LCCC trustees’ discussion with employees on campus morale; third place, online news reporting, for an LCCC public hearing on proposed information practices rules; second place, breaking news reporting, for LCCC public hearing on proposed information practices rules; third place, general news reporting, for “College’s low graduation rate misleading.”
- Wingspan staff: first place, editorial writing, for a series of three editorials.
- Will Hebert, Jeffrey Pallak, Susann Robbins and Katie Blaser: first place, online in-depth reporting, on the college’s new master facilities plan.
- Will Hebert, Jeffrey Pallak and Amy Walker: first place, online news reporting, for LCCC’s naming Joe Schaffer as new LCCC president.
- Jessie Jo Witte: second place, sports photography, for “Blast off” for a picture of a bull rider.
- Shawn Havel: second place, general column writing, for a series of three columns.
- Jeffrey Pallak: third place, photo illustration, for a Veterans’ Day early morning flag-raising ceremony on campus.
The competition year was calendar year 2011. Herbert and Hannah Wheeler, both of Cheyenne, were co-editors during the spring 2011 semester, and Herbert and Havel, both of Cheyenne, were co-editors during the fall 2011 semester.
Rosalind Schliske and J.L. O’Brien are faculty advisers to the publication.
The Society of Professional Journalists is the nation’s most broad-based journalism organization, dedicated to encouraging the free practice of journalism and stimulating high standards of ethical behavior. Founded in 1909 as Sigma Delta Chi, SPJ promotes the free flow of information vital to a well-informed citizenry; works to inspire and educate the next generation of journalists; and protects First Amendment guarantees of freedom of speech and press.