Blank Slate Media wins eight awards at New York Press Association’s Better Newspaper Contest

Blank Slate Media wins eight awards at New York Press Association’s Better Newspaper Contest
Blank Slate Media won five awards from the Press Club of Long Island.

Blank Slate Media won eight state-wide awards at the New York Press Association Better Newspaper Contest this past weekend, including a sweep of the top three places for the best column award.

“It’s always gratifying to get recognition for all the hard work and effort that gets put into producing these papers and us doing our best job to serve the community,” Blank Slate Media publisher and editor Steven Blank said. “It’s nice when we get that recognition of that.”

The company, which publishes six weekly newspapers covering the North Shore, won awards in column writing, advertisements, photography, and news coverage at the New York Press Association conference in Saratoga Springs.

The New York Press Association represents all weekly and small daily newspapers in New York State.

Blank said the awards demonstrate the talent and dedication of Blank Slate Media’s staff and its contributors.

Blank Slate Media swept the best column category, with columnists Robert Scott in first place, Tom Ferraro in second place, and George Marlin in third.

Blank said the winning columnists reflect the diverse opinions that Blank Slate Media publishes, including a range of opinions on politics, sports, education and beyond.

“It shows you what a vibrant opinion section that we have,” Blank said.

Editorial designer Yvonne Farley was awarded second place for best small space ad. Both Farley and marketing director Susan Tabakin for best house ad/ad campaign.

Roy Schneider, a Port Washington-based photographer who contributes to Blank Slate Media, was named third place in best photo story. He was honored for his collection “Port Washington in Photos,” which captured a diverse array of sceneries around his community.

Former reporter Robert Pelaez, reporter Cameryn Oakes and contributing sports reporter Michael Lewis were awarded a third-place finish for best spot news coverage in their joint reporting on the deaths of Roslyn tennis stars Drew Hassenbein and Ethan Falkowitz, both 14, who died in a car accident after their vehicle was struck by an alleged drunk driver.

Blank applauded the spot news coverage immediately after the deaths of the two teens but said reporters continue to follow the story, whereas other publications’ coverage may have tapered off.

Blank Slate Media also received an honorable mention for best editorial page.

Blank Slate Media began operation in 2010 with the purchase of three newspapers – the Great Neck News, New Hyde Park Herald Courier and the Williston Times.

The company ultimately grew to six newspapers with the opening of the Manhasset Times, Roslyn Times and Port Washington Times.

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