Sequim Gazette staffers, columnist earn statewide honors

SEQUIM — Several staffers and contributors at the Sequim Gazette earned kudos from fellow journalists at the 135th-annual Washington Newspaper Publishers Association (WNPA) annual convention and Better Newspaper Contest earlier this month.

Professionals recognized top industry work at Washington state non-daily and small daily newspapers at the association’s annual convention, held Oct. 7-9 in Bellingham.

The Gazette, a Sound Publishing newspaper, earned second place in general excellence in WNPA’s Group 2 among WNPA’s four circulation groups. Some of Group 2 includes the Bainbridge Island Review, Vashon-Maury Island Beachcomber, Stanwood-Camano News, Chewelah Independent, Nisqually Valley News, Methow Valley News and The Courier-Herald (Enumclaw) newspapers.

The contest considered writing, design, photography, advertising and web content from newspapers statewide between April 1, 2021, and March 31, 2022, and special sections between June 1, 2021, and May 31, 2022.

“I am proud of the work our team does each and every week,” said Terry Ward, vice president of Sound Publishing and publisher of the Sequim Gazette, Peninsula Daily News and Forks Forum.

“It is especially great to see them recognized by their peers. The Sequim community is fortunate to have such an outstanding group of professionals working on their behalf.”

The South Dakota Press Association judged this year’s WNPA contest, with submissions totaling 1,166 news entries, 280 photos, 231 advertisements, 75 special sections and 30 digital/web submissions from 48 participating newspapers.

Sequim Gazette’s 2022 Better Newspaper Contest honors include:

Special Sections

Drew Herman, Raquee Rivera

• Second place, Tourism, Groups 1-2 (“North Olympic Peninsula Visitor Guide 2022”)

Drew Herman, Molly Omann, Raquee Rivera

• Third place, Event/Festival, Groups 1-4 (“Lavender Season”)


Matthew Nash

• First place, News Story-Short (“City, Catholic church partner on crosswalk,” Sept. 22, 2021)

• Second place, Business News Story (“Eateries seek support, workers during crisis,” Sept. 15, 2021)

• Third place, Business Feature Story (“The fibers of family,” Oct. 6, 2021)

• Third place, Health-Medical Story (“New option to help tame tremors from afar,” Sept. 29, 2021)

• Third place, Social Issue Story (“Juneteenth alleged hate crime bring 140 to protest,” June 23, 2021)

• Third place, Feature Writer of the Year

Emily Matthiessen

• Third place, History Feature Story (“Gone but not forgotten,” Oct. 20, 2021)

Michael Dashiell

• Second place, Education Story (“Mask dispute postpones school board meeting,” Sept. 15, 2021)

• Third place, Government Story (“Mayor’s T-shirt draws criticism, support,” May 12, 2021)

Bertha Cooper

• First place, Editorial (“Wardrobe Maleficence,” May 28, 2021)


Emily Matthiessen

• Third place, B/W Feature, Portrait or Pictorial Photo (“Gone but not forgotten,” Oct. 20, 2021)

• Third place, Color Portrait Photo, Groups 1-2 (“Stitching together the colorful pieces,” Jan. 26, 2022)

Michael Dashiell

• First place, B/W Feature, Portrait or Pictorial Photo (“Starlings in search of supper,” May 26, 2021)

• First place, B/W Sports Photo (“Wrestling donut,” June 9, 2021)

• Third place, Color Sports Action Photo (“Wolves top Roughriders,” Sept. 15, 2021).

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