RALEIGH — Coastal Review has been recognized again this year for editorial excellence.
The daily, Monday-Friday, online news service of the North Carolina Coastal Federation received a third-place award in the North Carolina Press Association’s General Excellence For Websites and four other awards in the online-only division. The awards were presented Thursday during the association’s annual conference held this year at the Sheraton Raleigh Hotel.
Coastal Review staff won second place for use of social media and third place in the category of community coverage.
Capt. Gordon Churchill took first place in awards for lighter columns with his monthly Angler’s Angle commentary.
Trista Talton won a third-place award in the investigative reporting category for her story, “Understaffed environmental agency ‘stretched to the limit.’” The winning entry, published Nov. 9, 2022, reported how a fifth of the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality’s job positions were unfilled, leaving the agency responsible for administering regulations to protect water, air quality and the public’s health diminished. As Talton reported, the staffing problem was a combination of factors including insufficient funding for competitive wages and a retirement exodus, and it affected every state government sector, while billions of dollars remained tucked away, unappropriated, in reserve accounts.
Contest entries were judged this year by members of the Alabama Press Association.
Also recognized during the convention was state Rep. George Cleveland, R-Onslow, who was presented the 2023 William C. Lassiter Award for First Amendment proponents. The award, which has been presented since 1988, is named in honor of the late William C. Lassiter, a former North Carolina Press Association General Counsel and recognizes people who have made significant contributions in support of open government.
The North Carolina Press Association’s mission is to protect the public’s right to know through the defense of open government and First Amendment freedoms, and to help maintain the public’s access to local, state and federal governments.
Coastal Review has been a member since 2015.