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Northwest Herald takes five first-place honors in Illinois APME contest

Logan West (center, left) and Emma Hyde stand among a sea of classmates traveling through the hallway to their destinations, simulated boats, during an Ellis Island immigration event April 18 at Cary Junior High School. Group photo editor Matt Apgar was awarded by the Illinois Associated Press Managing Editors awards for this photo.

The Northwest Herald received five first-place awards in its category of mid-sized daily newspapers in the Illinois Associated Press Managing Editors awards, which were announced March 13.

Group photo editor Matthew Apgar led the way with three first-place honors for his work in the Sports Action Photo, Portrait/Personality and General News Photo categories. Apgar was awarded for his portrait of Marengo’s Finn Schirmer, a Cary-Grove football state final photo and a photo of an Ellis Island immigration event at Cary Junior High School.

Sports reporter Sean Hammond received first and third place for his work in sports breaking news, with his first-place story coming after Crystal Lake South’s semifinal boys soccer win. His third-place story was about schools across the state voting to create a district football plan.

Eric Olson and Jon Styf shared the first-place honor for Editorial Writing for a trio of editorials that ran on the paper’s editorial page. Styf also received third place for column writing.

The sports staff won second place for use of social media by an institutional account for its work with McHenry County Sports online, while columnist Michael Penkava won second place for his creative headlines.

Cynthia Wolf’s story “Will to Survive,” about a Lakemoor mother held in Mexico, was given third place. Joe Stevenson received third place in sports column writing. Reporter Ed Komenda won third place in enterprise writing for his profile of former McHenry County Board candidate Orville Brettman.

Illinois APME awards for General Excellence and Photo and Editorial Sweepstakes, as well as News Innovator of the Year, will be announced during the annual convention of the Illinois Press Association on May 2 in Springfield.

Thirty-five daily newspapers submitted 916 entries in the contest, which featured news and sports stories, features, editorials, columns and photos from 2018.

The Associated Press is a not-for-profit news cooperative representing 1,400 newspapers and 5,000 broadcast stations in the U.S.