The Duncan Banner


June 13, 2014

Waurika News-Democrat among big winners at press awards

Midwest City — The Waurika News-Democrat was among the winners Friday night when The Oklahoma Press Association presented its Better Newspaper Contest Awards at the Reed Center in Midwest City.

The Waurika weekly newspaper, written and edited by Jeff Kaley, a former managing editor and sports editor at The Duncan Banner, was named one of the best weekly newspapers in Oklahoma.

Also announced during the awards banquet were the recipients of the OPA

H. Milt Phillips Award and the Oklahoma Newspaper Foundation’s Beachy Musselman Award.

Ray Lokey, publisher of the Johnston County Capital-Democrat, received the Milt Phillips Award. Lokey is a third-generation newspaper publisher, following in the footsteps of his grandfather, E.R. Lokey, and his father, John Lokey. He began his newspaper career peddling his father’s paper, the Johnston County Capital-Democrat, in Tishomingo. After graduating with a degree in journalism from the University of Oklahoma in 1977, Lokey declined his father’s offer to purchase the paper. However, in 1990 Lokey purchased John D. and Gracie Montgomery’s interest in the Johnston County Capital-Democrat and became publisher and managing editor. He later purchased the remaining interest and was joined by his wife, Jenny Lokey, as co-publisher in 2006.

Lokey served as president of the OPA in 2003. He has also served as past president of many civic organizations in Tishomingo.

Receiving the ONF Beachy Musselman Award was Gloria Trotter, co-publisher of The Countywide and Sun. Trotter and her husband, Wayne, purchased the Tecumseh Countywide News in 1983. Along the way, they purchased and sold the McLoud News twice and started the weekly Shawnee Sun, which later merged with the Countywide News. Gloria Trotter was president of the Oklahoma Press Association in 2009, and was inducted into the Oklahoma Journalism Hall of Fame in 2009. She is very active within the Tecumseh community, serving on almost every board.

The winners of this year’s Sequoyah Award also were announced at the OPA Convention.  In the daily divisions, winners were Enid News & Eagle, Claremore Daily Progress and The Journal Record.

 Sequoyah winners in the weekly divisions were

The Purcell Register, The Bigheart Times in Barnsdall, Cherokee Messenger & Republican, Collinsville News, Waurika News-Democrat and El Reno Tribune. The Broken Arrow Ledger was named the Sequoyah winner in the sustaining member division, and the Daily O’Collegian at Oklahoma State University was the Sequoyah winner in the college division.

The Sequoyah Award, which is the highest honor in the OPA Better Newspaper Contest, is determined by the amount of points accumulated in the contest’s 12 events: News Content, Layout & Design, Advertising, Sales Promotion, In-Depth Enterprise, Editorial Comment, Personal Columns, News Writing, Feature Writing, Sports Coverage, Photography and Community Leadership.

Members of the North Dakota Newspaper Association and South Carolina Press Association judged the 878 entries from 93 Oklahoma newspapers.

In addition to the 11 Sequoyah Award winners, which included a tie in one of the 10 divisions, 120 first place plaques were presented during the awards banquet. Newspapers receiving second, third or fourth place in the contest received certificates.

A complete list of winners in the 2013 OPA Better Newspaper Contest is available on the OPA website at

Two professionals who have dedicated 50 or more years to the newspaper industry were inducted into the OPA Half Century Club during the banquet. Half- Century inductees were Larry Levy and Lillie Stafford.  In addition, seven members of the newspaper industry were inducted into the Quarter Century Club. Inductees were Brenda (Pettigrew Haney) Adams, Terri Bohanan, Alice Duree, Jerry Fink, Jeanne Grimes, Jill Hunt and Herman Thompson.

Several additional awards were presented during the June 12-14 OPA Convention including:

Editorial Sweepstakes Winner, sponsored by ONG, presented to

Kim Poindexter, Tahlequah Daily Press.

Column Sweepstakes Winner, sponsored by ONG, presented to

Faith Wylie, Oologah Lake Leader.

Daily Photo of the Year, sponsored by OGE Energy Corp., presented to Jay Chilton, The Norman Transcript.

Weekly Photo of the Year, sponsored by OGE Energy Corp., presented to Travis Akehurst, The Delaware County Journal.

ONF Joseph H. Edwards Outdoor Writer of the Year presented to

Ed Godfrey, The Oklahoman.

Print Quality Contest awards presented to The Journal Record (daily division) and Suburban Graphics (weekly division).

Website Contest awards presented to Bartlesville Examiner-Enterprise (daily division) and The Grove Sun and Delaware County Journal (weekly division).


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Should the date for The World's Largest Garage Sale be changed from the third weekend in July to sometime in October to take advantage of cooler weather like we had this past weekend?

No. It's better in the summer cause kids are out of school.
Yes. More shoppers would come during nice fall weather.
Either time is fine.

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