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First place for portrait photography 2018

Missoulian photo editor Kurt Wilson won first place in portrait photography from the Montana Newspaper Association Saturday for this picture of Giuseppe Antonio Caltabiano, originally from Milan, Italy. The newly minted American is showing his citizenship certificate and waving the American flag at his wife, who was in the audience for the naturalization ceremony at the Russell Smith Courthouse in Missoula in March 2017. 

The Missoulian staff brought home honors in 15 different writing, photo, design and digital categories in the Montana Better Newspaper competition.

The awards, announced Saturday night in Billings, recognized the work of 10 current and four former Missoulian journalists in categories ranging from breaking news to investigative reporting and in storytelling forms from portrait photography to column writing.

Missoulian Editor Kathy Best said the number of staff members singled out for both print and digital excellence reflects the depth and breadth of the newsroom's talent.

Kurt Wilson, the Missoulian's photo editor, won first place for portrait photography for a picture he took of a newly minted American at a swearing in ceremony for new citizens. 

Wilson, City Editor Gwen Florio, Best and former Missoulian designer Adam Potts won first for niche publications for the Park-to-Park issue of Montana Magazine.

And sports reporter Kyle Houghtaling took home a first for best headline writing. Houghtaling joins the Ravalli Republic in August.

The Missoulian placed second for:

- Breaking news coverage, by Florio and former Missoulian reporter Jayme Fraser.

- Best sports story, by Frank Gogola and Bob Meseroll.

- Best sports feature, by Kyle Houghtaling.

- Best lifestyle coverage, by Rob Chaney.

- Best sports and outdoor column writing, by Bill Speltz.

- Best digital presentation, by Tommy Martino and Chase Doak.

- Best page layout and design, by Wilson and former editor and designer Ashley Klein.

The Missoulian staff earned third-place honors for:

- Best website.

- Best news story, by Keila Szpaller.

- Best investigative journalism, by David Erickson.

- Best news photo, by Tommy Martino.

- Best sports photo, by Tommy Martino.

All of the state's daily newspapers go head-to-head in each of the categories. The Billings Gazette took home overall honors as the state's best newspaper in the contest, which was judged by journalists in Oregon.

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