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UW Staff Members Honored for Communications Excellence

January 20, 2015

University of Wyoming communications specialists and a UW professor received 15 awards during the Jan. 16-17 Wyoming Press Association's (WPA) annual associates' group communications contest.

Winners were announced at the WPA's annual winter meeting in Cheyenne. The convention attracts Wyoming's newspaper professionals and the WPA's associate members for two days of workshops, seminars and speakers.

Approximately 180 WPA and associate members attended the convention, which culminated with the awards banquet where the top newspapers in three divisions (daily, Casper Star-Tribune; large weekly, Cody Enterprise; and small weekly, Lovell Chronicle) were named. Individual award winners also were announced in several categories.

UW staff members won five first place awards in the associates' contest, two second places, five third places and three honorable mentions. This year’s contest drew a high number of entries from communications specialists from around the state.

Associate members, including those from UW, attended three workshops last Friday, which included two speakers with UW ties. UW College of Law graduate Bruce Moats, a Cheyenne attorney, discussed open meeting laws in Wyoming; and Denver Post photojournalist AAron Ontiveroz, a 2008 UW journalism graduate, conducted a photo workshop and showed some of his latest work. Also presenting was Ron Gullberg, Wyoming Business Council communications director, who led a workshop on social media for the associate members.

Listed are UW communications specialists with their individual awards, contest categories in which they won, and titles of their entries:

-- Chad Baldwin, Institutional Communications director: first place, one news/feature release for “UW Doctoral Student Earns National Counseling Fellowship”; honorable mention, one news/feature release, “UW Researchers to Detail Newly Discovered Deer Migration”; and honorable mention, one news/feature release, “Cartoon Cultural Phenomena Help Drive Interest in UW Japanese Programs.”

-- Paul Flesher, UW Department of Religious Studies professor: third place, column writing for “Gay Marriage, the Evangelical Response and Freedom of Religion.”

-- Jim Kearns, Institutional Communications specialist: second place, three news/feature releases on the same topic, “Students Acquire Skills to Improve Health Care in Wyoming”; and honorable mention, three news/feature releases on the same topic, “UW Camp Prepares Students for Careers in Health Care.”

-- Steve Miller, UW Extension communications and technology coordinator: first place, magazine article, Ag News, “This Flyboy Always Felt a Pull to the Ground.”

-- Milton Ontiveroz, Institutional Communications specialist: first place, one news feature, “UW Employees and Students Volunteer with Saratoga Flood Relief Efforts”; first place, three releases on the same topic, “Wyoming Residents Complete Distance Master’s Degree Program”; second place, one news/feature release, “UW Petroleum Engineering Students Ranked No. 1”; third place, three news/features release on the same topic, “Local High School Students Participate in Summer UW Research Program”; and honorable mention, magazine article, UWyo Magazine, “The Cowboy Way.”

-- Ron Podell, Institutional Communications specialist: third place, three news/feature releases on the same topic, “Wildlife Issues.”

-- Tana Stith, UW Extension communications and technology manager, and Miller: first place, publications, “Barnyards and Backyards”; and third place, publications, “2014 CONNECT.”

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