LEWISTON — Sun Journal sports columnist Kalle Oakes has been awarded first place in in the 2010 Associated Press Sports Editors sports journalism contest.
Oakes’ column, “The Hot Corner,” was selected as the outstanding column in the under 30,000 circulation category.
His competition included writers from Bellingham, Wash.; Bloomington, Ind.; St. Cloud, Minn.; and Westminster, Md.
Contest rules required each writer to submit five columns published between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31. Oakes’ entry included such topics as the Edward Little boys’ basketball team, Bates College track and field and the Boston Red Sox.
APSE announced 10 finalists in each contest category in February. The top five finishers in those categories were announced Thursday.
The Sun Journal sports section was previously honored as one of the 10 best daily sections in its circulation.
It is Oakes’ first win in the national competition. He previously finished third in column writing and fourth in feature writing in 2007.
Oakes, 38, joined the Sun Journal staff as a high school student at Monmouth Academy in 1989.
He has held every job in the sports department in his career, including editor from December 1999 to February 2004. After a brief stint in the news department, he returned to his first love and his roots as a sports columnist in January 2005.
Oakes has won numerous first-place awards for column and feature writing in Maine and New England contests. He also is a former Maine sportswriter of the year, as voted by the National Sportswriters and Sportscasters Association.
In addition to writing more than 40 columns a year, Oakes covers high school and college sports and auto racing.