COLUMBIA — The Fort Mill Times won nine awards at the annual South Carolina Press Association better newspaper contest awards luncheon in the Hilton Columbia Center Saturday.
The Times won two first place awards for series of articles in the News and Sports categories. Reporter Jenny Overman accepted one of the awards for her year-long series on the reality of homelessness in Fort Mill and sports correspondent Mac Banks accepted the other for his month-long series on the Charlotte Knights’ AAA baseball team's final season in Fort Mill. Banks’ category was in the “open” category, meaning his entry was judged against entries from the largest daily newspapers in the state as well nondaily papers.
Banks also won a third place award in the Enterprise Sports Reporting category for a story about a Tega Cay native who is now a successful professional wrestler with the WWE.
Correspondent Stephanie Marks Martell won two awards – a first place in sports feature writing for a story about the Nation Ford High School baseball team’s bat boy. Martell also won a third place award for a series on breast cancer survivors that was reported and produced to be published during Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Banks, Martell and Overman are all Fort Mill natives and graduates of Fort Mill High School.
The newspaper also won a second place award for Best Facebook Page and third place for best website, fortmilltimes.com. Editor Michael Harrison received a third place for editorial writing.
Overman and Harrison also received second place Jay Bender Assertive Journalism award for uncovering and reporting on secret meetings held by town officials.