Two stories on Rollins nab state editorial awards

Stories about Rollins College's football team and senior photography class win state awards.

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  • | 10:09 a.m. July 11, 2012
  • Winter Park - Maitland Observer
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The Winter Park-Maitland Observer won awards in three categories — sports feature story, serious column, and health, medical and science reporting — at the Florida Press Association Better Weekly Newspaper awards on Saturday, July 7, in Destin.

The Community Media Division of Turnstile Media Group, which includes the Observer and its sister papers Seminole Voice and East Orlando Sun, took home seven awards in all, winning first place in five editorial categories.

• Editor Isaac Babcock’s first-place sports feature “Rollins resurrects a legacy” details one man’s mission to revive Rollins College Football, a team that hadn’t played organized football since 1949. One judge wrote, “Tremendous feature sports story! Excellent job of research and use of photographs to tell the story of the past and future of football at Rollins…”

• Babcock’s story “American dreamer,” chronicling a Winter Park woman’s fight to adopt a Namibian girl with spina bifida, earned first place in the faith and family reporting category. One judge wrote, “Beautifully written account of one girl’s difficult journey. We really come to care about Elizabeth and to rejoice in the happiness she’s found.”

• Longtime columnist Louis Roney won first place for his column “Living the role of Samson” that reflects on his journey from singing the part of the blind character in “Samson et Dalila” to living with macular degeneration. One judge wrote, “Gripping account of going blind and its lessons for seeing the world.”

• Staff writer Brittni Johnson won second place for her story “Photographic memories,” which follows seniors with dementia taking a Rollins College photography class to improve brain fitness. One judge wrote, “Well written story gives hope to many dealing with the same disease.”

Congratulations to the Community Media team and to the Winter Park-Maitland community. Thank you for allowing us to tell your amazing stories!

—Jenny Andreasson

Managing editor

Community Media awards:

Click the links to read these award-winning works.

Sports Feature Story, Division C circulation under 7,000

First Place – Winter Park-Maitland Observer, “Rollins resurrects a legacy,” Isaac Babcock

Serious Column, Division C circulation under 7,000

First Place – Winter Park- Maitland Observer, “Living the role of Samson,” Louis Roney

Sports Feature Story, Division B circulation 7,000 to 15,000

First Place – The Seminole Voice, “Brittany’s game,” Isaac Babcock

Faith and Family Reporting, Division B circulation 7,000 to 15,000

First Place – The Seminole Voice, “American dreamer,” Isaac Babcock

Local Government Reporting, Division A circulation over 15,000

First Place – East Orlando Sun, “Water tests promised for Bithlo,” Megan Stokes

Health, Medical and Science Reporting, Division C circulation under 7,000

Second Place – Winter-Park Maitland Observer, “Photographic memories,” Brittni Johnson

In-Depth Reporting, Division A circulation over 15,000

Third Place – East Orlando Sun, “Kid says to be a helmet hero,” Megan Stokes


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