Newspaper wins top awards in state contest


Call Newspapers won top awards at the Missouri Press Association Better Newspaper Contest in 2019, including the first-place award for Best Website or Online Newspaper and awards in the Best News Story and Best Breaking News Story categories.

The Call’s website,, placed first in the website category for Class 3 newspapers, with the award going to Editor Gloria Lloyd, Staff Reporter Erin Achenbach and Graphic Designer Taylor Kelly. The award honored the first full year of The Call’s new, upgraded website.

The Call also received second place for “Best News Story” for its election coverage. An article written by Lloyd in the runup to the August 2018 election on right-to-work, “Voters to decide fate of Missouri ‘right-to-work,’” took the second-place honor. First place went to the St. Louis American newspaper with its coverage of the first anniversary of the kettling arrests in downtown St. Louis after the Jason Stockley protests.

This year’s Missouri contest was judged by journalists from Colorado.

The Best News Story judge wrote of Lloyd’s right-to-work article, “Well written and researched explanation of the issue and inclusion of multiple perspectives on an issue that goes well beyond this local vote. It highlights the importance of newspapers in educating voters to understand both sides of the issue as they make their decision.”

Lloyd also placed second for “Best Breaking News Story” for an article written about St. Louis County’s shutdown of the notorious Sunset Hills Econo Lodge motel, “Econo Lodge termed unfit for human occupancy,” which included photos taken at the scene of the shuttered motel. The first-place winner was the Branson Tri-Lakes News with its coverage of the duck boat sinking.

The judge commented on Lloyd’s Econo Lodge article, “Great hustle on a story that you couldn’t find out about on a police scanner. You went to the scene, dug up background information and provided context.”

On the column and editorial side, the staff took home honorable mention for the Tilghman Cloud Memorial Editorial Award for the “Most Misguided Quotes” series of columns in 2018. The award honors unsigned editorials written by the staff.

The newspaper also received second place for Best Columnist-Serious for columns written by former Executive Editor Mike Anthony.

The award-winning columns submitted written by Anthony included reviewing a decade of The Call’s Most Misguided Quotes, slamming St. Louis County Auditor Mark Tucker for a year of being employed as auditor without producing any audits, and asking for more changes to the Sunshine Law.

“Naming names and calling for specific change will forever be the hallmarks of strong column writing, and this column features plenty of both,” the judge said of Anthony’s columns.

A third-place award for Community Service was given to The Call and its sponsorship of the USO of Missouri’s Operation October food drive, which became the most successful food drive of the USO. The award covered The Call’s all-encompassing support of the food drive, including running ads, collecting food items at the newspaper office, writing articles in print and online previewing the event and showing its success afterward with the newspaper staff sorting the items at the USO’s storage facility. The award for the coverage and event was given to Publisher Deb Baker, Advertising Manager Pat Dillon, Lloyd and Achenbach.

“This is a great community service and has done so much to improve the involvement of the community the paper serves,” the judge said.