Journal, UpCountry earn journalism honors

Staff report

The Manchester Journal was named a Distinguished Newspaper of the Year among weekly publications in its circulation class in The New England Newspaper & Press Association's 2017 competition.

UpCountry magazine, which New England Newspapers Inc. launched in January, took top honors as magazine of the year among specialty publications in New England. The bimonthly magazine covers Southern Vermont and the Berkshires of Massachusetts.

New England Newspapers Inc. — the Manchester Journal, Bennington Banner, Brattleboro Reformer, and The Berkshire Eagle — has been locally owned since May 2016. The ownership group includes Robert G. Wilmers, Hans Morris, Judi Lipsey and Fredric D. Rutberg.

Overall, New England Newspapers Inc. earned seven honors, including three Publick Occurrence awards for outstanding journalism.

The Journal was honored among weekly newspapers with circulations between 4,500 and 8,000.

"I feel thrilled beyond words that NENPA honored our papers with so many important awards," said Fredric D. Rutberg, president of New England Newspapers Inc. "While the recognition of our peers in the publishing industry is gratifying, the real appreciation must go to the talented, committed reporters and editors who turned the owners' commitment to quality into reality, and to our readers and advertisers who strongly supported our publications since the purchase in 2016."

Executive Editor Kevin Moran credited a team effort and support for the successes.

"The work that our news staffs put forward this past year and the support our ownership has provided have combined to produce some stellar journalism this past year, and we are pleased to be recognized for it," Moran said.

Alan English, publisher of New England Newspapers Inc., called the acknowledgments recognition of "a place where great work is being done."


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