Steve Mistler named 2011 Journalist of the Year

Steve Mistler, State House reporter for the Sun Journal in Lewiston, is the 2011 Maine Press Association Journalist of the Year.

Mistler was honored Saturday during the annual MPA Fall Conference at Point Lookout in Northport.

Heather Steeves of the Bangor Daily News was winner of the Bob Drake Young Writer’s Award.

General Excellence awards went to The Portland Press Herald for daily newspaper of the year; the Sun Journal for weekend newspaper; The Ellsworth American for Weekly 2 newspaper; and Mount Desert Islander for Weekly 1 newspaper.

The Sun Journal was named winner of the 2011 Freedom of Information Award.

Three Maine journalists also were inducted into the Maine Press Association Hall of Fame: Beurmond Banville, longtime┬áBangor Daily News reporter; the late David Bourque, sports editor of The Times Record in Brunswick; and Seba Smith, founder of the Portland Courier, Maine’s first daily newspaper. Smith edited the newspaper from 1830 to 1837.

Mike Dowd, editor in chief of the Bangor Daily News, is the MPA’s new president for 2011-2012. New members of the board elected during MPA’s annual business meeting on Saturday are Mike Lange of Hometown Newspapers and Lisa Williams Ackley, staff writer for The Bridgton News. Lange is a former MPA executive director.

A complete list of MPA Better Newspaper Contest award winners will be posted this week.