Announcement from Dan Beyers, Capital Business editor:

We’re very excited to announce that The Washington Post’s Real Estate weekly took the gold for the best newspaper real estate section in its class at last weekend’s National Association of Real Estate Editors journalism awards. The Wall Street Journal came in second place; the Orange County Register, third; and the San Francisco Business Times received honorable mention.

Editor Dion Haynes and Kathy Orton have done a terrific job transforming the section from a broadsheet to a tabloid, introducing a host of new features while building an admirable Web audience.

Here’s how the judges summed it up: “This section is a nice mix of content, including hard news, practical advice and fun features. There is a lot of information laid out attractively with good photographs. Someone new to Washington or even a long-time resident will find many surprises here.”

In addition to the section at large, Washington Post Writer Group’s Kenneth Harney picked up the president’s bronze award for best freelance collection and he claimed a bronze for best column. He also won an honorable mention for best collection of work by an individual. Freelance writer Katherine Salant also won honorable mention for best column.

Please join me in congratulating Dion and his team.