The Daily Camera received 25 excellence in journalism awards Friday — including eight first-place honors for general excellence, spot news story and photo, business story and sports column, among others — from the Colorado Associated Press Editors and Reporters.

The awards were presented at the organization's annual awards ceremony. The Camera competed against other medium-sized newspapers statewide with "assessed weekly circulation" (print and online) of 65,000 to 175,000. The contest period was for work published, aired or posted in 2017.

The Camera took first place for overall general excellence.

The staff also took first in the spot news category for its coverage of the Sunshine Fire titled "Fire Burns 62 Acres."

Shay Castle won first place in the business story category for her piece "Affordable or Not?" She also won third place in the category.

Additionally, Castle took second place in the prestigious public service category — entries from all Colorado AP member newspapers regardless of size compete against one another in this category — for her piece "The Search for an Errant Gene."

Reporter Mitchell Byars won first in the sports story category for "Some days good. Some days bad. Rashaan Salaam and the weight of life after football," while Buffs reporter Brian Howell placed second in the category.

Pat Rooney took first in the sports column category for his piece "Remembering Salaam: Tragedy a Stark Reminder of Life's Travails."


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Photographer Jeremy Papasso won first in the spot news photo category for his picture "Wildfire Containment." He also took first in the feature photo category for "A Diving Catch" and in the sports photo category for "Victory on Ice."

Additionally, Papasso took second place honors in the general news photo category for "Goat Yoga," second in the picture story/photo essay category and second in the portfolio category.

Editorial page editor Dave Krieger won second in editorial writing for a package of editorials he penned on behalf of the Camera's Editorial Board.

Community columnist Mara Abbott won second place in both the investigative reporting category and in the series category for her five-part series titled "GMO debate about everything except GMOs."

Photographer Cliff Grassmick took second in the feature photo category for his piece "CU Graduation." Cliff Grassmick also won third place for the photo portfolio category and in the sports photo category.

The Camera's staff won second in the online: breaking news category for its work on dailycamera.com

Third place finishers included:

• The Camera staff in the beat reporting category for its coverage of the Joe Tumpkin scandal.

• Matt Sebastian in the feature story category for his piece "Long Life to Postman Roger."

• Elizabeth Hernandez in the spot news category.

• Christy Fantz in the portrait/personality category.