Tribune brings home 38 Alabama Press Association Media Awards

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The Cullman Tribune's Sherry Brown accepts her first-place award for Magazine- Single Photo in the Magazine division for Community Matters at the 2024 Alabama Press Association Summer Convention. (APA)

CULLMAN, Ala. – The Cullman Tribune recently brought home 38 awards from the Alabama Press Association (APA) Media Awards Summer Convention, held in late June in Orange Beach. The awards  recognize the many news publications throughout Alabama and spotlight those that uphold the spirit of ethical journalism and adhere to APA standards.

The 38 awards claimed by The Cullman Tribune included three wins in Online Breaking News Coverage and one in General Excellence, as well as an FOI – First Amendment Award.

“Winning these awards is a reflection of the dedication and hard work of our crew. It’s a testament to their talent and commitment to reporting unbiased local news that matters to people in Cullman,” said Associate Publisher Dustin Isom. “We have always been focused on producing quality community content and these awards show it is recognized and appreciated.”

Through hard work and a deep dedication to the community, The Cullman Tribune aims to close the gap that allows false news and rumors to spread like wildfire, seeking the facts while keeping the community up to date on important events or incidents on every day.

Publisher Noah Galilee said he believes the awards show the heart of his team. He said that through staff turnovers, trials and tribulations, The Cullman Tribune is on track to achieve its goal of becoming Cullman’s No. 1 trusted news source throughout the county.

“We have consistently stayed at the top when it comes to online news and breaking news, and this is our fourth or fifth consecutive year placing in general excellence which is quite a feat since we had two near-full turnovers in a three-year span,” he said.

The APA Media Awards shone a light on an often overlooked portion of publications. the Public Service Award category is meant to recognize segments that assist the community or offer a needed public service.  Free obituary listings and The Cullman Tribune’s Pet of the Week series won the local paper two awards.

Through a partnership with the Cullman County Animal Shelter, The Cullman Tribune features one shelter resident weekly in print and throughout its social media pages. The success of Pet of the Week has had an amazing impact on the shelter and community. With a 96% adoption rate for featured pets, the weekly feature has landed hundreds of shelter animals into their safe and loving forever homes, all at no charge to the shelter. Likewise, obituary listings are free of charge, extending a tiny bit of grace and goodwill to families experiencing the devastation of losing a loved one.

“Well, we don’t send a bill to either the City or County for printing arrests, so why should we charge families of the deceased any amount to list their loved ones full obituary?” Galilee remarked.

About Pet of the Week, Gallilee added, “It’s truly one of the few outreach programs that brings us all joy, seeing these lonely pets being adopted nearly instantly once it’s posted. We’re truly grateful and blessed to be able to offer both programs completely free.”

Community is something that Isom and Gallilee want The Tribune to embody daily, becoming involved with the community and the readers it serves. In 2023, The Cullman Tribune launched “Bedtime Stories,” which won in the APA Best Podcast category.

Isom said, “’Bedtime Stories’ began as a simple and heartfelt video series to encourage reading to children during the Christmas season. Members of the community were invited to come in and share their favorite Christmas bedtime story in our studio. Since then, we have expanded to a nightly broadcast available at 8 p.m. on The Cullman Tribune’s YouTube and other social media channels.”

The nightly webcast hosts community leaders, teachers, officials and everyone in between, as they read a bedtime story to children. To date, “Bedtime Stories” has been able to immerse local children in over 150 stories and the number grows each day. Those interested in reading a story for The Cullman Tribune’s “Bedtime Stories” series can contact janet@cullmantribune.com to schedule a reading time.

The full list of this year’s APA Media Awards and winners will be posted at www.alabamapress.org/contests-awards/apa-media-awards.

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