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Congratulations 2023 State Press Contests Winners!

List of 2023 winners
Link to photos of first place winners with UT President Randy Boyd

FRANKLIN, Tenn.— The University of Tennessee System and the Tennessee Press Association (TPA) gave top honors to newspapers across the state during the 2023 Tennessee State Press Contests awards luncheon held at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Franklin. The UT System has been co-sponsoring the contests since 1940. 

The Tennessee Press Association Newspaper Contest celebrates excellence in all areas of journalism, including reporting, writing, photography and more. 

The Tennessean received the most overall wins, going home with 10 first-place awards. The Chattanooga Times Free Press won seven first-place awards, while the Kingsport Times News finished with six. 

The Carthage CourierThe Standard BannerThe Knoxville Ledger, the Kingsport Times News and the Tennessean won the top general excellence awards in their respective divisions at the association’s ceremony. Points were awarded for each entry and general excellence honors were based on the newspaper’s total points in their division.

“News organizations have an increasingly difficult responsibility to tell the stories that impact our lives – the good, and sometimes the not-so-good,” said Randy Boyd, president of the UT System, who presented the awards at the ceremony.  “We are fortunate in Tennessee to have outstanding reporters, photographers and designers who work with great enthusiasm and a genuine commitment to public accountability, and I truly appreciate the high standards you hold for yourselves in reporting in a fair and ethical manner.” 

As part of the annual contest, newspapers winning first-place awards in the categories of editorials, best single editorial and public service will receive $250 prizes from UT’s Edward J. Meeman Foundation.

The Meeman Foundation was established in 1968 at UT to fund the contest, provide professional critiques of journalists’ work and support journalism students and educators.

Each year, reciprocal judging is done with another state’s association. This year, the Virginia Press Association judged 1,077 entries from 71 of the Tennessee Press Association’s 131 member newspapers.