Friend of Minnesota Newspapers Award
On Thursday, January 24, MNA President Kevin Anderson presented two “Friend of Minnesota Newspaper Awards” at the 2013 Better Newspaper Contest Banquet. Honored were Brent Schacherer and Doug Hanneman of the Hutchinson Leader, and Marshall Helmberger, of the Timberjay Newspapers.
The Hutchinson Leader was honored for excellence by Anderson and the MNA Board, for winning First Place in the General Excellence competition in the most recent National Newspaper Association’s Better Newspaper Contest.
In addition to honoring excellence, the MNA board recognizes editors or publishers of Minnesota newspapers that takes a stand in a significant court action on behalf of freedom of press, speech or information. The MNA Board selected Helmberger to receive a 2013 “Friend of Minnesota Newspapers Award” for his newspaper’s on-going efforts to obtain public information from Milwaukee-based Johnson Controls regarding the St. Louis County School District’s school facilities project. “Your work ensures that all Minnesotans have access to important government information – not just your readers,” said Anderson.
2013 President’s Citation
On Friday, January 25, MNA President Kevin Anderson honored Mirja Hanson, lead facilitator for the Editors & Publishers Community Leadership Program, with a special President’s Citation.
“We recognize your dedication and contributions to the Editors & Publishers Community Leadership Program and thank you for helping to mold true community leaders throughout our state,” said Anderson. “For your countless contributions and continued leadership I am pleased to recognize you with this President’s Citation.”
The Editors & Publishers Community Leadership Program, started in 2005, is entering its ninth year and has touched the lives of more than 100 MNA editors and publishers at 62 member newspapers.
The Leadership Program, modeled after the Blandin Foundation’s Community Leadership Program, assists editor-publisher teams in developing their community leadership and vision skills.
Many of the winners of MNA’s prestigious Lynn Smith Community Leadership Award are graduates of the E & P program.
Mirja Hanson has been the lead facilitator and trainer of the Editor and Publisher program s since its inception.
In addition to being a talented facilitator, Mirja is a published author, adjunct professor at the University of St. Thomas and is the former chair of the International Association of Facilitators, the Japan America Society of Minnesota and Simpson Housing Services.
In 2010, the Japanese Foreign Ministry appointed Mirja as the Honorary Consul General of Japan for Minnesota.