- Associated Press - Saturday, June 25, 2016

BILOXI, Miss. (AP) - Six newspapers are being recognized for excellence by the Mississippi Press Association.

The Sun Herald of Biloxi, The Natchez Democrat, The Oxford Eagle, The Lamar Times in Hattiesburg, The Madison County Journal in Ridgeland and The Sun-Sentinel in Charleston won top honors for general excellence Saturday at the association’s 150th annual convention in Biloxi.

Sam R. Hall, executive editor of The Clarion-Ledger in Jackson, won the J. Oliver Emmerich Award for Editorial Excellence. Hall’s editorial criticized the Jackson school district for hosting private committee meetings.

The Hattiesburg American won the Bill Minor Prize for Investigative Journalism for daily newspapers for examining incorporation in Lamar County’s Bellevue community. The Lamar Times won the Minor Prize for weeklies for reporting on the deaths of police officers Liquori Tate and Benjamin Deen.

Zack Plair of The Commercial Dispatch won the Bill Minor Prize for General News for a story examining a dispute between municipal judges and city officials over how high judges should set bail in efforts to deter crime.

Tim Isbell of the Sun Herald won the Photo of the Year for a photo entitled “Field of Sparks,” taken during a fireworks display prior to a University of Southern Mississippi home football game

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