OOIDA media wins Best of Best, takes other top honors

| 4/7/2008

More than 60 top-scoring entries from trucking journalists were recognized at the fifth annual Communications Awards at the Truck Writers of North America industry awards banquet at the Mid-America Trucking Show in Louisville.

Land Line Magazine and “Land Line Now” radio staffers were among those receiving top awards.

“Land Line Now” News Anchor Reed Black teamed up with producer and Senior Sound Engineer Barry Spillman to win a Gold Award in the radio, general history category. The pair also won Best of Radio and subsequently copped the prestigious Best of the Best 2007 award, outscoring more than 110 total entries.

Black’s winning piece was “Survivor,” a story of the sole survivor of the sinking of the Daniel J. Morrell, an ore freighter that went down on Lake Huron on Nov. 29, 1966. It’s also the story of trucker Brian Morgan who became friends with survivor Dennis Hale and later wrote a definitive account of the ordeal.

Other honors awarded to “Land Line Now” included:
Gold Award to Reed Black and Second Sound Engineer James Fetzer for “Gun Trucks of Vietnam,” general history, radio category. This is the story of the brave men who escorted truck convoys in heavily armored, heavily armed gun trucks.

Gold Award to “Land Line Now” staff for “The Hudgins Holiday Sing-Along” adapted from a Land Line Magazine feature by Bill Hudgins. Inspired by his love of trucking and the holiday season, Hudgins created trucking versions of a number of carols. With a group of OOIDA singers, “Land Line Now” brought them to life.

Silver Award to “Alaska’s Road to Nowhere” by Reed Black and James Fetzer in the radio, investigative category. Black told the story of a $7 million gravel road being built on an Alaskan island to connect with a bridge that will not be built.

Silver Award to Reed Black and James Fetzer for “The Twyoming Zone,” radio, regulatory category. Black reported on rules that Wyoming – and only Wyoming – put into effect regarding what constitutes an “overweight” truck.

Bronze Award to Senior Correspondent Terry Scruton and Barry Spillman for “Leland Martin, a Trucker with a Song” in the radio, entertainment category. Scruton interviewed country singer and OOIDA member Leland Martin about his life and hit song, “Stone Cold Fingers.”

Bronze Award to Host Mark Reddig, Staff Writer Charlie Morasch, Barry Spillman and James Fetzer for “Rusty Nail” in the radio, driver’s lifestyle category. Member David Broyles, known by the handle Rusty Nail, needed his fellow truckers’ help in his battle against cancer. “Land Line Now” documented his fellow truckers’ efforts to lend a hand.

Land Line Magazine awards
In the print division, Land Line Magazine Managing Editor Sandi Soendker accepted the award for Best Single Issue, in the category for publications with more than 100,000 circulation, for Land Line’s March/April 2007 issue.

Other awards in magazine writing were:
Gold Award to Sandi Soendker and Staff Writer David Tanner for their combined byline piece “Pass Go Collect Billions” in magazine writing, business.

Silver Award to Charlie Morasch for “CARB” in magazine writing, environmental/regulatory category. Morasch wrote about the powerful California Air Resources Board and its sweeping new truck rules.

Silver Award to Charlie Morasch for “Left out in the Cold,” magazine writing, driver’s lifestyle category. The story told of a sick, injured driver abandoned by his company, who picked up the trailer, but left him behind.

Silver Award to Photographer Jan Sturmann, Art Director Debbie Johnson and Sandi Soendker for “Face Value” in magazine graphics, pictorial design. Sturmann’s lens captured faces at 2007 MATS, Johnson designed the feature, and Soendker wrote the copy.

Bronze Award to Staff Writer Clarissa Kell-Holland for “Food Fight” in magazine writing, investigative category. Kell-Holland exposed the FDA’s wishy-washy position on food safety regulations, recall procedures and the importance of trucking’s role in safe food transport.

Bronze Award to Contributing Writer Jeff T. Barker for “Choices, Choices,” in magazine writing, technical category. Barker outlined critical needs for cab comfort before you plunk down the big bucks.