For the second time in six years, The Santa Barbara Independent‘s website, Independent.com, has been named the Best Weekly or Non-Daily Newspaper Website in North America by Editor & Publisher magazine, which announced the winners of its 18th annual EPPY Awards on October 30. Independent.com first won the award in 2008, less than a year after its relaunch as a daily site for news, arts, entertainment, and lifestyle coverage, and the 2013 honor reaffirms the website’s importance and prominence in Santa Barbara County and beyond.
“I’m so proud of The Santa Barbara Independent team, which has worked so hard reinvigorating our website to keep it an integral part of the Santa Barbara community,” said editor-in-chief Marianne Partridge, who co-founded The Santa Barbara Independent in 1986. “This is a tremendous honor to see Independent.com named alongside such internationally acclaimed media powerhouses as CNN, ESPN, NBC’s Today Show, and the Associated Press.”
“It’s been all-hands-on-deck with Independent.com for many years now, and our team couldn’t be prouder of the up-to-date and yet deeply analytical coverage we offer every day,” said Senior Editor Matt Kettmann, who’s supervised the paper’s online presence since 2006 and gives special credit to Webmaster Robert LeBlanc, Web Producer Michael Gahagan, News Editor Tyler Hayden, and Photographer Paul Wellman. “Although every one on our staff plays a role in making Independent.com sing, from the online columnists to the advertising sales reps paying the bills, these four folks really do a lot of the heavy lifting every day of the week, including weekends,” said Kettmann. “This award is a testament to their dedication, and proof that the profession of journalism is far from dead. Indeed, it’s more energized than ever.”
The EPPY Awards, now in their 18th year, recognize the best media-affiliated websites across 30 categories. The judges include the staff of the esteemed journal Editor & Publisher as well as a panel of 78 international media experts with backgrounds in website design, editorial, technology, education, marketing, advertising, and management.
See the full list of awardees here.