Martha’s Vineyard Times honored by the New England News and Press Association

Science reporting, spot news reporting, and design were among the winning categories.

Graphic Designer Nicole Jackson won first place for best infographics for a Martha’s Vineyard lexicon map. – Art by Nicole Jackson

The New England News and Press Association (NENPA) handed out nine awards to The Martha’s Vineyard Times at its annual convention banquet, held at the Seaport Hotel in Boston Saturday night.
NENPA judges recognized Times reporters for their work in science reporting, environmental reporting, health reporting, spot news reporting, and sports reporting. The newspaper was also recognized for outstanding special section or supplement, and outstanding graphic design. The Times web site,, also received two awards.

Graphic designer Nicole Jackson won first place for best infographics for a Martha’s Vineyard lexicon map that explained common Island lingo in a humorous manner.

Reporter Barry Stringfellow won second place in the sports category for his story on runner Marylee Schroeder (April 16, 2014, “Islander runs her 11th Boston Marathon”).

Mr. Stringfellow took home a second-place award for reporting in the health category for his series on opiate addiction on the Island, a series of stories that looked at the issues surrounding addiction from many different perspectives, including that of health professionals and those on the road to recovery.

Highlighting his versatility, the judges handed Mr. Stringfellow a third-place award in the environmental reporting category for a story about a dog trained to sniff out box turtles before fields are mowed (May 16, 2014, “A girl named Johnny”) so the turtles can be removed.

Times summer intern and 2014 Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School graduate Nathaniel Horwitz of West Tisbury received a third-place award in the science/technology category for a story that examined the science behind an effort to raise funds to bring back the extinct heath hen with new genetic biotechnology (July 16, 2014, “Heath hen’s boom could echo again on Martha’s Vineyard”).

Editor Nelson Sigelman won a third-place award in the spot news category for his report about two young men from Oak Bluffs who narrowly survived an avalanche on Tuckerman Ravine while hiking on Mount Washington in New Hampshire (Dec. 31, 2013, “Oak Bluffs men survive Tuckerman Ravine fall”) last winter., managed by Jamie Stringfellow, won second place for website design and third place for best overall website.

Island Holidays, an annual supplement that celebrates holiday traditions on Martha’s Vineyard, received a second place award.

The Times also received honorable mentions in the category of local display ad, black and white, and advertising general excellence.

The Times competed in the large weeklies category, for weekly newspapers with a circulation over 6,000 readers. The Vineyard Gazette, an Edgartown weekly, took home a total of 35 awards in multiple categories.

“I congratulate all of the winners from all of the publications represented at the NENPA conference,” Times editor Nelson Sigelman said. “Newspapers fulfill an important and vital role in the daily lives of their communities across New England. These awards represent professional recognition from our peers of our efforts to tell the stories about life on Martha’s Vineyard. Equally important are the comments we receive from our readers that The Times tells the stories and provides the information that matters to them.”

“Our entries and awards displayed a wide range of skills and community interests,” Martha’s Vineyard Times publisher Peter Oberfest said. “We’re very proud of the hard work of our staff, and happy for the chance to learn from NENPA’s peer review process.”

NENPA is the professional trade organization for newspapers in the six New England states. More than 450 publications are members of NENPA, and this year’s competition drew over 3,600 entries, according to a NENPA official. Entries were evaluated by the New England Newspaper & Press Association’s panel of judges.