The Reflector received the first-place General Excellence award during an awards gala Friday at the Washington Newspaper Association convention in Olympia.
The award goes to the best publication in the category that includes the largest weekly newspapers across the state.
“This honor is evidence of the leadership of former editor-in-chief Jonathan Haukaas and his dedicated staff, current and former,” said Lafromboise Communications Regional Executive Editor Eric Schwartz. “Under his guidance, this newspaper has risen to become the best in the state among weeklies. North Clark County is fortunate to have such a comprehensive and professional news source to call its own, and all credit is due to Haukaas and his newsroom.”
Reporter Rick Bannan garnered the most awards compared to current and former employees of The Reflector. He took third place in the short news story category, second in the health or medical story category, second in the social issue category, third in the long feature category, second in the weird news category and second in the color feature photo category.
“Rick provides the foundation of our local news reporting,” Schwartz said. “He’s a rock for our newsroom, and these awards are well deserved.”
Haukaas, who left The Reflector last month, received a first-pace award in the editorial category and a second-place award in the headline category. He and designer Dave Boehmke shared a second-place award in the editorial pages category.
Former staffer Kaitlyn Baker took first place in both the long and short personality profile categories while former photographer Mary Broten earned a first-place award in the color feature photo category and third place in the color portrait category.
“I’m extremely proud of the staff of The Reflector,” said Reflector Publisher and Lafromboise Communications President Michael Wagar. “This is a monumental award. It is proof positive that The Reflector is performing its duty of serving North Clark County with great success.”
In addition to The Reflector’s General Excellence award, its sister newspaper the Nisqually Valley News won the General Excellence award in a category for newspapers with smaller circulations.