The Los Angeles Times won Newspaper of the Year for 2011 among the state's largest daily newspapers and a total of 20 journalism awards as part of the annual Better Newspaper Contest, officials announced Saturday.
The Times won first-place awards among newspapers with a circulation of 150,000 or more in the following categories: local government coverage, investigative reporting, sports, and arts and entertainment. The paper also received second prize for design and general excellence in the contest sponsored by the California Newspaper Publishers Assn., a nonprofit trade group.
The San Jose Mercury News won first place for general excellence and local breaking news. The Contra Costa Times took the top prize for its coverage of the environment, while the Sacramento Bee won first place in the category of Business, Financial or Economic News.
Other winners included the Press-Enterprise of Riverside, which took home 13 prizes in the 25,00 to 150,000 circulation category, and the Mercury News, which won 11 awards in all.
The Times was awarded the inaugural Newspaper of the Year award, which was based on a point system.
The annual contest is designed to judge papers of similar size against one another in various categories, such as local breaking news and photography. More than 3,000 entries are received each year.
Winners of the 2011 awards were announced during a luncheon at the association's annual summit in San Jose.