ANNAPOLIS — The Cumberland Times-News won eight awards, including three first-place honors, Friday from the Maryland-Delaware-D.C. Press Association.

Sports Editor Mike Burke won first place in the Sports Column category for “One way or another, Lefty filled the house” about former University of Maryland basketball coach Lefty Driesell and second for “Remember him as a man who also coached,” a tribute to the passing of Allegany College of Maryland basketball coach Bob Kirk.

Editorial page editor Jim Goldsworthy took first place honors in the Local Column category for “These people once went to The Wall for us.”

Retired Outdoors Editor and reporter Michael A. Sawyers won first in the Feature Story category for “100 years won’t lie to you,” chronicling the anniversary of Curtis Coney Island Famous Wieners and owner Gino Giatras. Sawyers also earned a second place honor in the Education category for “Recent events don’t deter those from teaching calling.”

Digital Editor Teresa McMinn earned second place in the General Social Media Reporting category for #MDBears2018, a blog detailing day-to-day happenings of Maryland’s 2018 bear hunt.

Reporter Jeffrey Alderton won second place in the Continuing Coverage category for “Wellersburg — A community on edge.”

Photographer Steve Bittner received second place in the Breaking News Photo category for “Every second counts,” an image of a Maryland State Police helicopter lifting off from an accident scene.

“These awards represent the Times-News’ daily commitment to providing the most accurate news and sports that impacts our communities,” Managing Editor John Smith said. “We competed against papers that produced some great content.”

The Capital Gazette’s Wendi Winters received the inaugural Courage in Journalism award for her heroic efforts during a June 28, 2018, shooting that left Winters and four of her colleagues dead after a gunman stormed the newsroom.

Gazette Editor Rick Hutzell said it took “an incredible amount of heart to return to work” following the shootings and thanked the Baltimore Sun, University of Maryland and parent company Tribune Publishing for providing assistance to staff in the days and weeks following the event.

MDDC Press Association President and CNN analyst Brian Karem talked about today’s public perception of the media.

“I’ve never had death threats until the current administration,” Karem, a member of the White House Press Corps, said. “The press is not the enemy of the people, we are the people.”

River Hill High School senior Lauren Mitchell received the Michael S. Powell High School Journalist of the Year Award.

The awards were presented during the MDDC’s annual Local News Builds Communities Conference & Celebration at the DoubleTree by Hilton hotel.

The Times-News competed with newspapers in Division C, including the Carroll County Times, Cecil Whig, Delaware State News, Daily Record, Daily Times of Salisbury and the Star Democrat of Easton.

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