The Daily Herald’s advertising department was awarded 20 prestigious state awards on Thursday night in Chapel Hill.

The Daily Herald won first-, second- and third-place state awards in the 2013 North Carolina Press Association’s Division D category, which is for daily newspapers under 12,500 circulation.

The Daily Herald was named the top newspaper in its division, as it accumulated the most points in the regular contest categories.

Rhonda Irby’s “Abudantly More — Vera Bradley” ad was named the best in show in Division D.

“Our advertising team has always produced some of the best creative designs for our customers,” Publisher Titus Workman said. “I’m pleased that their work has been recognized the past two years as the very best in our state for newspapers our size.

“This shows that our advertisers are really benefiting from award-winning creative designs by our advertising team.”

The Daily Herald took home 11 first-place awards — five more first-place finishes than in 2012. It took first for best food ad, best color restaurant/entertainment ad, best home furnishings and appliances ad, best apparel – jewelry and accessories ad, best color apparel – jewelry and accessories ad, best color institutional ad, best newspaper promotion, best small ad, best shared page in a niche publication and best advertising campaign. The Daily Herald was also awarded first place in the best real estate ad in a niche publication category.

Second-place awards were given to The Daily Herald in the following categories: best real estate ad, best innovative concept/wild card, best retail ad in a niche publication and best restaurant/entertainment ad in a niche publication. Third-place awards given to The Daily Herald were in the best food ad and best restaurant/entertainment ad categories.

The Daily Herald’s advertising department is led by Advertising Director Carol Crittendon and Workman. The department also features Advertising Administrator Phyllis White, account executives Martha Neville, Rhonda Irby, Stephen Conger and Dawn Barmer, as well as Graphic Designer Hope Callahan, inside sales executives Marshania Barnes and Phyllis Archer and Classified Manager Linda Foster.

The 2013 awards mark the second consecutive year The Daily Herald advertising department came away with many state honors.

In addition, many of the ads were designed in partnership with Wick Central Design.