First place: Staff, Pocono Record

About this entry: The Pocono Record’s Facebook page recognizes and engages with its readers through call-outs and the use of reader-submitted photos as its cover photo. A great deal of care is also put into the types of stories which are shared on Facebook and of how they are presented to viewers.

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The Pocono Record uses Facebook as much more than a place to drive traffic to the website. It smartly uses Facebook to engage its readers through callouts and reader photos of the day. The editors are picking great stories to share and are writing great captions as well.

Second place: Sarah Heth, The Holland Sentinel

About this entry: The Holland Sentinel’s Facebook editor Sarah Heth obviously takes great care at what posts goes online and how they are presented and her ability to engage with readers both are what make the page really shine.

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The Holland Sentinel’s Facebook page has something that a lot of much-larger news organizations don’t have: useful Facebook posts. The editor clearly is picking stories that she knows will be useful to the community, and the carefully-crafted captions reflect that goal.

Third place: Staff, The Independent

About this entry: “The Independent’s Facebook page, website and print version all work hand-in-hand to engage our readers in conversation and to get the news – breaking, sports, features and everything in between – to our community in a variety of formats. We have used the Facebook page for callouts, to gather sources and to gain story ideas. People have responded with fun callouts such as what they’re doing for Valentine’s Day. They also spurred some stories and we even wrote about how social media fueled some stories based on what people were responding to on Facebook. Crime stories always garner a huge “reach” but feel-good stories gain many ‘Likes.’” — Christina McCune

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The Independent has created an excellent, engaging Facebook page that informs but also gives the community a place to share their own content.