SAN DIEGO – At the annual journalism awards banquet held July 11 by the San Diego Pro Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) on Shelter Island, Village News Inc. was presented with 14 awards, 8 of those being first place honors, for work published in 2012.
“We are very pleased to be respected as leaders in high quality community news,” said publisher Julie Reeder.
Awards were earned by the media group’s Fallbrook/Bonsall Village News, Temecula/Murrieta Valley News, and Valley Sports Magazine in categories ranging from stories and photographs to newspaper and magazine layout and design.
The eight first place awards bestowed on the newspaper group amounted to seven for Fallbrook/Bonsall Village News and one for Valley Sports Magazine.
Fallbrook/Bonsall Village News managing editor Debbie Ramsey received five first place awards – taking top honors in the following categories: Breaking News, Non-Deadline News, Legal, Real Estate, and Education. Award-winning stories all focused on the Fallbrook area and included “Trafficking ring bust the biggest in Fallbrook history,” “Fallbrook Street Extension project back in motion,” “IT Director sues FUESD for $972k,” “Inventory drop creates demand for homes,” and “Fallbrook High presents the graduating class of 2012 with ‘Doctors in the House.'”
Village News photojournalist Christine Rinaldi was honored with four awards for her work in 2012. Rinaldi completely swept the awards for Sports photography beginning with a coveted first place for her Sports photo “Loss to RBV prepares Lady Warrior hoopsters for league.” She was awarded second place for “Lady Warriors H20 triumphs over Escondido, 15-7;” and third place/honorable mention for “Power in the pool.” Rinaldi was also presented with a third place/honorable mention award in the Photo Essay division for the images she captured in “Get ready! Get set! Go! Scouts have a blast at annual Pinewood Derby!”
Graphic artist Sheri Schwarzweller earned a first place award for her feature layout design of “Annual Hoedown benefits REINS students.” Using a fun, Western theme, the meticulously constructed layout provided just the right dynamic background and embellishment for the feature photos taken by John Raifsnider.
For the second year running, Valley Sports Magazine editor Paul Bandong collected the first place award for Magazine Layout/Design. Published quarterly, judges presented the award based on the Football issue produced in the fall of 2012. The full-color, glossy magazine highlights seasonal sports and outstanding athletes in a thorough manner in the greater Temecula Valley.
Village News assistant editor Lucette Moramarco was honored with a second place award in the Health Story category for her inspiring story, “Living a life of ups with Downs Syndrome.” The well-written piece revolved around Fallbrook resident Ryan Duralia, his many talents, resilient personality, and commitment to healthy living.
Nathalie Taylor, the winner of numerous awards over her writing career, was presented with a third place/honorable mention in the Review category for her article on a popular, casual Fallbrook eatery. The story, “What makes Nessy Burgers outstanding? It’s a secret!” ponders the secret to the spices and blends that make the delicious burgers and other sandwiches so delectable to consumers.
Valley News editor Stephanie Ocano earned her first professional journalism award when presented with a third place/honorable mention in the Review category for “When roosters meet the art of warfare.” Ocano’s article told about her positive experience at Teriyaki Ninja Killer Rice Bowls restaurant in Temecula, and the interesting aspects of its cuisine and atmosphere.