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Pilot honored with 10 Catholic Press Awards

By Pilot Staff
Posted: 6/22/2018

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Gregory L. Tracy's photo "Illuminated," taken during a Mass at the 2017 March for Life, was named Best General News Photo of the year at the 2018 Catholic Press Awards. Pilot photo/Gregory L. Tracy

For a second year in row The Pilot has set a record for the number of honors received at the annual Catholic Press Awards competition. The Pilot received 10 awards in the Catholic Press Association's 2018 Press Awards competition, topping the record of nine awards, which was set just last year.

Each year, the Catholic Press Association (CPA) invites submissions from Catholic newspapers, web sites, and magazines which are judged by a panel of independent experts for excellence. The Pilot has been honored with awards every year since 2002. This year's winners were announced at the 2018 Catholic Media Conference held June 13-15 in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

The newspaper as a whole received a third-place win "Newspaper of the Year" in the category of a weekly diocesan newspaper with a circulation 25,000 or less. In making the award, the judges described The Pilot as, "a well-designed paper with beautiful graphics and clear pictures," adding that "The feature stories and photo spreads were stunning."

The Pilot also took third place for "Best Online Presentation of Multimedia Visuals," for its website, competing against all member publications.

Individual awards competing against all member newspapers were presented to managing editor Gregory L. Tracy and jointly to advertising manager Larry Ricardo and production manager Nan Wilkins.

Tracy took first place for Best General News Photo, "Illuminated," taken at a Mass celebrated by Cardinal O'Malley at the Shrine of the Sacred Heart in Washington, D.C. during the 2017 March for Life.

"This image quickly rose to the top of a category with many entries. The quality (and most likely fleeting) of light and awareness by the photographer is perfect. An all around outstanding image," the judges said in their comments.

Ricardo and Wilkins received third place in the category of Best Special Supplement or Special Issue with Advertising Emphasis for their work creating The Pilot's 2017 Open House special issue. The judges particularly praised Wilkins' cover design noting, "That cover is worth a thousand words (and more)," describing it as "bright and clever and simple."

But it was in newswriting for a weekly diocesan newspaper with a circulation 25,000 or less that The Pilot took the highest number of honors, with former staff reporter Mark Labbe earning a total of six awards. That included sweeping the category of Best Reporting on the Celebration of a Sacrament.

In the sacramental reporting category, Labbe won first place for his story "Prison ministry brings Middlesex inmate to Baptism;" second place for "Sacred oils prepared for Chrism Mass;" and third place for "Hundreds prepare to enter Catholic Church at Rite of Election."

Labbe earned third place in Best Coverage of Pro-Life Issues for a series of stories that included coverage of the March for Life, the 2017 Palliative Care Colloquium and 40 Days for Life.

He also received honorable mention for Best News Writing on a Local or Regional Event for his story "Residents, clergy, and police walk for peace in Dorchester" and Best News Writing on a National or International Event for his story "Vatican 'too optimistic' in talks with China, says visiting Hong Kong cardinal."

"I am particularly pleased that, for the third year in a row, we are being recognized as one of the Newspapers of the Year in the Catholic Press," said editor Antonio M. Enrique. "It really is a win for all of us here at The Pilot."

"The fact that we were honored in so many varied areas -- photography, editorial content, graphic design, advertising and online -- is a testament to the talent and hard work of all our staff," he added.