Blank Slate Media was recently recognized with five awards at the New York Press Association’s Better Newspaper Contest.
Columnist Andy Malekoff received first-place honors in Division 2 for best column on his work.
“Great job of localizing a national issue,” judges said. “Great research. The words flow so effortlessly, the readers don’t even realize they are being educated.”
Layout editor Yvonne Farley, who has served at Blank Slate since 2016, earned first place in the Best Special Section Cover for the Williston Times. Farley’s work was praised for standout images and eye-catching visuals.
“Receiving the awards was a nice surprise,” Farley said in a statement. “It is a pleasure to create work that I am proud of and being recognized among my peers is an added bonus. I would also like to thank Blank Slate Media for submitting my work for consideration.”
The honor was one of Farley’s three from the weekend. She also netted second place for audience development promotion for her work.
“This is such a wonderful idea to build audience trust in a community,” judges said. “Every paper should try to do something like this, especially in these times. Perfect.”
The third and final honor for Farley came in the Great Neck News, where she earned third-place for a large space ad.
“Everything an ad should be – great dominant illustration; good headline; good use of white space,” judges said.
Blank Slate also earned honorable mention for best opinion page. Judges said the works, presented in all six of Blank Slate’s newspapers, give readers something extra to look forward to.
“Good job of making the editorials prominent and powerful.” the judges said. “Letters to the editor are packaged together and easy to follow. Well done! I’m betting your readers can’t wait to get their hands on the Williston Times and read the opinion page
Steven Blank, editor and publisher of Blank Slate Media, said the honor is a first for the opinion page and is spearheaded by the engagement readers have with both the papers and their communities.
“This was the first time we won for the editorial page and had our readers included among those who have made our opinion pages must-read on Long Island,” Blank said. “We have a very well-read and involved readership that likes to express themselves. I’ve always said if people don’t agree with something, write your own letter and we’ll be happy to publish it.”
2022 marks the second straight year that the publication has received five honors at the NYPA Better Newspaper Contest. Last year, Blank Slate earned first place in the Best Editorials category, second place in the Best E-Mail Marketing, Best House Ad.
Blank said the hard work of the production team has been constantly recognized throughout the years.
“It speaks to the caliber of people we have,” Blank said. “The talent we have reflects our strengths in many areas and the dedication of our staff.”