Better Newspaper Contest

2014 Award Winners

Hoosier State Press Association - The Indiana Publisher - Better Newspaper Contest

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Page 40 of 67

Page 41 Best General Commentary/Category 4 First place Amanda Beam The News & Tribune (Jeffersonville) Comments: Gut-wrenching story on SOAR; you brought me right into that room. The tween story was entertaining. Well- done. Second place Grace Housholder The News-Sun (Kendallville) Comments: Interesting, local stories about farming and your son-in-law. You brought "Junk DNA" into layman's terms. Third place Jason Recker The Herald (Jasper) Comments: Wonderful family stories. The Denny's story had me laughing as did the trophy one. Best Editorial Writer/Category 5 First place Roger Schneider The Goshen News Comments: Each editorial did what is needed: State an issue, take a stand, offer solutions. Done, and done. Very good reading too. Second place Matt Koesters The News & Tribune (Jeffersonville) Comments: A good editorial sparks discussion and invites participation; these did that. Third place Michael Wanbaugh The Goshen News Comments: Editorials addressed local issues with strength and authority. Best Business/Economic News Coverage/ Category 6 First place Common ground Jim Mayfield Daily Reporter (Greenfield) Comments: What an interesting comparison between local farmers and their foreign counterparts. It was fascinating to read how each viewed the other, and how even though the crops are the same, the methods and government oversight were so different. Wonderful writing style. Second place Ag census: Farmers getting older Jim Mayfield Daily Reporter (Greenfield) Comments: Very informative story. Writer has a great, light style that was employed beautifully while he stuffed in a lot of statistics and numbers. I didn't go cross-eyed reading them! Third place Plus-size and proud Sarah Einselen Pharos-Tribune (Logansport) Comments: Delightful read. Wonderful writing style and left me saying "atta girl" to the owner for catering to plus-size brides who deserve to be pampered too! Division 4 A sleight of hand Amanda Beam The News & Tribune (Jeffersonville) In the middle of a person's palm near their life line, a spot exists that when poked causes a burst of discomfort. It's the funny bone of the hand, if you will. The body automatically reacts to the contact. Your fingers gnarl down into a claw as the sensation travels along the nerves, up your wrist until it finally dissipates around your forearm. When I can't keep my emotions in check during group, this is the place I prod for comfort. From the get go, the ladies at Survivors of Abuse Restored [otherwise known appropriately as SOAR] warned this night was the most difficult of the 12 sessions. Each week, the support groups they sponsor conquer a different chapter in selected workbooks. This evening, as part of the lesson, the facilitators asked each woman to share aloud a memory of her sexual abuse. Under the table, away from the stares of the six women around me, I forced a car key into my palm to get through the moment. Even though each of them has experienced abuse firsthand, the story is tough to get through. Writing about my abuse is one thing. Speaking about it is entirely another. During my turn, my voice cracked while my talking quickened. Bile crept up my throat. Smells came to mind, somehow filling the room. Horrible, terrible scents of things children shouldn't know. To snap out of it, I stabbed the metal into my hand even harder. The sting brought me back to reality and away from the memories. Self-inflicted pain isn't the best way to control emotions. I know that, and would never advocate it as a solution for anyone. Still, it's not uncommon. Women cut for the same reasons. At times you feel these methods are the only way to escape the encroaching darkness intact. Not every survivor has a memory. That doesn't mean the molestation didn't happen. Roger Schneider The Goshen News A horrible criminal act perpetrated on her could have pushed Mekayla Diehl down a dark path. But through her personal strength, faith and courage, she has moved on and will represent Elkhart County and Indiana tonight in the Miss USA contest as Miss Indiana. We so want her to win. Since becoming Miss Indiana, Diehl has made it her mission to help children in trouble by working through Bashor Children's Home in Goshen. She knows about trouble at a young age. When she was 8 a trusted family friend sexually abused her at her Union, Mich., home. Because her parents were dysfunctional at the time due to drug abuse, the perpetrator wasn't prosecuted, and she did not receive the support and help she needed. Then others stepped in who cared. She and her brother were adopted by Katie Stauffer of Bristol. She became active in many events and especially liked to dance. Then she decided to try participating in pageants. She found her calling. Diehl has been Miss Bristol Homecoming Queen, Miss Elkhart County 4-H Fair, Miss Elkhart County, the runner-up in the Miss America Miss Indiana pageant and then captured the Miss Indiana Miss USA crown. Along her journey her parents have improved their lives and have reconciled with Diehl. By the way, Diehl is a Native American and a win by her would be a cultural first in the Miss USA pageant. All of this information she has posted on her Facebook page. This public telling of her story will surely help other young people who have been victimized and wonder just how they can find peace and a way forward. Tonight Diehl will compete in Baton Rouge, La. for the national title. While Diehl certainly possesses the necessary physical qualities to wear the crown, we think her personal journey and how she has overcome a great obstacle and embraced the troubles of others, is certainly worth every judge's vote. Miss Indiana motivated by her past Common ground For complete story, see Click on "Contests." Jim Mayfield Daily Reporter (Greenfield) Situated firmly as the world's second-largest soybean producer and predicted in some quarters to soon surpass the United States for the top spot, it's no wonder farmers in Brazil and the United States like to keep an eye on each other. A few years ago, Hancock County farmer and Indiana Soybean Alliance Board member Jim Cherry threw in with a contingent of American growers to visit Brazil to view farming and growing operations there. Wednesday, about 40 Brazilian soybean farmers and agricultural representatives stopped their charter bus at Cherry's 3,000-acre corn and soybean operation off CR 100S on a 10-day trip through the Midwest to return the favor. Sponsored by a local agricultural co-op in Mato Grasso, one of two major Brazilian soybean producing states and the third-largest in the South American country, the visiting farmers listened to and queried their Hoosier counterparts on topics ranging from government involvement in the agriculture industry to farm ownership. On the former topic, farmers from both hemispheres uniformly agreed farming would be best left to the farmers without the assistance of Washington or Brasilia. "The American farmer wants the government out of agriculture," Cherry told the group. "There is now more worldwide demand, and we're more interested now in the government just letting us grow our crop. We'll sell it." Cezar Bronzel, a grower from Campo Mourao in Parana, Brazil's other soybean producing For complete story, see Click on "Contests."

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