Kim Kell

Blue Mountain Eagle advertising representative Kim Kell has been named Advertising Executive of the Year by the Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association.

JOHN DAY — The Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association has honored Blue Mountain Eagle advertising representative Kim Kell with its first-ever Christine Moore Advertising Executive of the Year Award.

The recognition, announced last week, was one of 18 awards the John Day-based newspaper brought home from the ONPA’s annual Better Newspaper Contest.

Beating out ad execs from newspapers of all sizes around the state, Kell was nominated for the inaugural award by a combination of four managers and executives within the EO Media Group, the Eagle’s parent company.

Kell, a Grant County native and 13-year employee of the Eagle, serves as the only advertising rep for the weekly publication with a circulation of 1,900.

In 2020, hardly a banner year for advertising, Kell carried an average of 112 advertisers per month, 15% of the total businesses in Grant County. So when the pandemic hit and in-person sales calls turned into phone and email outreach, her efforts remained effective because of the relationships and the trust she had built with her clients.

All told, the Eagle picked up 18 awards in the ONPA’s annual competition, including seven first-place honors in categories such as best enterprise reporting, best government reporting and best writing.