Writer Cookson Beecher has won two first place awards in the National Federation of Press Women (NFPW)’s annual contest for articles published by Food Safety News.

To win the first-place awards on the national level, she had to win first-place awards in the organization’s  At-Large division, which included about 20 different states.

One of the articles, “Agrivoltaics Scores Impressive Triple Win, but Some Food Safety Concerns Remain” deals with using solar panels to generate power for houses, barns or even farm equipment but also to grow crops.

The other article, “Super Bugs Bedevil Food” deals with antibiotic resistance, which some human and animal health experts are referring to as a “slow moving pandemic.”

The judge of the first piece about solar power complimented Beecher for writing a well-thought-out and executed article. “The difference between a good writer and a great writer is the ability to take a complicated topic, or one that is completely foreign to the reader, and explain it thoroughly,” said the judge.

The judge of the second piece about antibiotic resistance complimented the article for being well-organized and well-written.

The awards were presented at NFPW’s 2022 conference in Fargo, North Dakota, in June.

About Cookson Beecher: Beecher spent 12 years working as an agriculture and environment reporter for Capital Press, a four-state newspaper that covers agricultural and forestry issues in the Pacific Northwest. Before working at Capital Press, she was the editor of a small-town newspaper, the Courier Times, in Skagit County, WA. She received her bachelors in political science from Hunter College in New York City, and before moving West, she worked for publishing companies in mid-town Manhattan. In the 1970s and ’80s, she and her family lived in North Idaho, where they built a log home and lived a “pioneer life” without running water and electricity for almost 10 years. She currently lives in rural Skagit County, WA.

 About NFPW: NFPW members are professional women and men who adhere to the NFPW Code of Ethics, which calls for upholding truth, objectivity, fairness and freedom of the press, according to the organization’s website. They offer the opportunity to purchase affordable libel insurance. The NFPW Education Fund offers grants for professional development. They provide constructive feedback and accolades through professional communications contests at both the state and national levels. 

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