Posted by: Jamie Stamm | March 1, 2008

We’re No. 2 – and it feels great!

There’s something really special about winning your first award from the North Carolina Press Association. I collected my first certificate – third place for feature page design – back in 2000 and was honored to receive my fifth individual press award on Thursday night, this time for a second-place finish in criticism. It’s an incredible feeling to be honored by your peers (the contest is judged each year by journalists from a different state – this year, they were from New York), especially when you love your job as much as I do.

But nothing could prepare me for the rush of pride I felt when the Herald received second place in general excellence for our circulation division during Thursday’s reception in Cary. While individual winners are notified of their awards in December, the “biggies” aren’t announced until the end of the banquet. And though every year I feel like we at least have a shot, this year I felt more confident than usual.

Because I think the Herald has become a great local paper.

At a time when other newspapers, both bigger and smaller than ours, are filling more pages with wire copy, we’re working hard to up the amount of content written in our own office. I don’t know if people realize how small our staff is – just three full-time news reporters, a full-time sports reporter and a correspondent, along with five editors and two news clerks, are responsible for the paper that arrives on your doorstep each morning. That’s three sections worth of news on most days (with four sections on Wednesdays and five on Sundays). Yes, there are spelling errors, and sometimes we run the wrong Jumble or Suduko puzzle, but overall, I think we do an admirable job.

Truly, I could blog all day about my co-workers. I am blessed to work with such a talented group of individuals. There is not a person in that newsroom who is not dedicated to his or her craft (I mean, honestly, who would put in the hours we do for the pay we receive? Journalism isn’t exactly a glamorous line of work.). And despite the stressful nature of our jobs, and the near-constant criticism that we face, we are able to make our work environment fun. I wake up in the morning looking forward to going to work. How many people can say that?

That’s why winning a general excellence award on Thursday – as a staff – meant more to me than all my individual awards combined.

One reader who stopped by the office to congratulate us today jokingly warned us not to let our heads get too big after our win. And, yes, while I do feel like I’m gloating a bit in this blog, this is the Herald’s day to enjoy being recognized for our hard work and dedication.

On Monday, it’s back to business as usual. Or, rather, it’s on to bigger and better things. Now that we’ve had a taste of the limelight, we only want to shine brighter.

And next year, we plan to come out on top.

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Responses

  1. OMG! You guys don’t have a photograper? 🙂

  2. *photographer

  3. Why, yes, Brooke. We have an amazingly talented, award-winning photographer. I only hope she can forgive me for omitting her from my post …


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