Editor Jamee A. Pierson and associate editor Christopher Braunschweig at the Iowa Newspaper Association contest awards banquet with the many first place finishes the newspapers received.

All three newspapers received a total of 19 top-three finishes

The Newton News, Jasper County Tribune and PCM Explorer received a total of 19 awards — including five first-place plaques — during the 2023 Iowa Newspaper Association Awards Ceremony on Feb. 2 at the Marriott hotel in downtown Des Moines.

PCM Explorer received the most honors with nine top-three finishes. The weekly newspaper covering the Prairie City and Monroe communities earned first place for Coverage of Education while associate editor Christopher Braunschweig earned first place for Best News Photo.

Second place honors were awarded to PCM Explorer for Best Sports Section, Coverage of Government and Politics, Coverage of Business, Best Headline Writing and General Excellence.

Third place finishes were awarded to sports editor Troy Hyde for Best Sports Feature Photo and editor Jamee A. Pierson and Braunschweig for Best Breaking News Story.

Jasper County Tribune, which covers the Colfax, Mingo and Baxter communities, received eight top-three finishes, including first place for Coverage of Government and Politics and Best Sports Feature Photo and Best Sports Columnist for Hyde.

Second place honors were awarded to Jasper County Tribune for Coverage of Education and Coverage and Agriculture. The paper also received third place honors for General Excellence, Best News Photo for Braunschweig and Best Sports Story for Hyde.

Newton News earned second place for Best Continuing Coverage and third place for Best Breaking News Story.

“In two very competitive divisions, it was great to see recognition for all three papers, including several first place finishes,” Pierson said. “It helps show the hard work put in by our local journalists to share important and compelling stories with the public. I am very proud of our achievements.”

Braunschweig was pleased to see the papers recognized for their work.

“Like many newsrooms in Iowa, we’re made up of a small but mighty staff of journalists who want to cover our communities in the best way possible,” Braunschweig said. “These awards show we are doing just that. I’m so proud of the accomplishments from my co-workers and fellow Iowa journalists.”

Hyde is grateful for the wins, but he doesn’t do the job to win awards.

“But it is nice to be recognized by some of our peers for the hard work we all put in every day,” he said. “I work with incredible athletes and coaches every day, and without them none of this would be possible. I want to congratulate all my co-workers and friends who also were blessed to win awards.”

The 2023 INA Contest was judged by the North Carolina Newspaper Association.