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UW Communications, Marketing Staff Members Honored for Excellence

February 7, 2022
two women in caps and gowns standing together
Milton Ontiveroz, a UW Institutional Communications specialist, won first place for “UW Success Stories” in the annual Wyoming Press Association Associates group contest for the state’s public relations professionals. Maria Montaño, left, and her oldest daughter, Ada Montaño Mushati, both from Sheridan, were among the subjects of the student success stories. (UW Photo)

University of Wyoming Institutional Communications and Marketing specialists and a UW communications coordinator received nine awards during the annual Wyoming Press Association (WPA) Associates group contest.

Winners were announced at the WPA’s annual winter meeting last weekend in Casper. The convention attracts Wyoming’s newspaper professionals and the WPA’s Associate members -- many of whom are public relations professionals -- for workshops, seminars and speakers.

The WPA convention culminated with the awards program where the top newspapers in three divisions (daily, Sheridan Press; large weekly, Douglas Budget; and small weekly, Pinedale Roundup) were named. Individual award winners also were announced in several categories.

In the Associates contest, Chad Baldwin, UW associate vice president for communications and marketing, won a first-place award; UW Institutional Communications specialist Milton Ontiveroz received three media writing awards; and media specialist Ron Podell won two writing awards.

Ali Grossman, a UW Institutional Marketing video producer, won two awards for her work.

Emilene Ostlind, communications coordinator for the UW Haub School of Environment and Natural Resources, received third place for the school’s magazine.

“The great work of UW’s faculty, staff and students provides an abundance of good stories to tell our state, the nation and the world, and we’re delighted to share them,” Baldwin says. “It’s great to be recognized for those efforts.”

This year’s contest drew entries from communications professionals from around the state. UW personnel competed against media representatives such as those from various Wyoming state government departments, Memorial Hospital of Sweetwater County and area public relations firms.

WPA Associates members, including those from UW, attended five workshops during the convention.

Ontiveroz is the statewide Associates members’ chair, representing the Associates on the WPA board. He is only the second person to hold that position in the association’s 29-year history.

Listed are the UW staff members with their individual awards, contest categories in which they won, titles of their entries and the judges’ comments for each entry:

 UW Institutional Communications

-- Baldwin, first place, One News Release, “Researchers Find Broad Impacts from Political Polarization.” The judges said, “A thoughtful examination of an important topic, written in a clear and digestible way.”

Awards Ontiveroz received:

-- First place, Three Features Dealing with the Same Topic, “UW Success Stories.” The judges said, “Three very well-written articles on three UW success stories.”

-- Second place, One Feature, “UW Cowgirl Overcomes Cancer.” The judges said, “This piece came in second, but just barely. It was a well-written article and highlighted the struggles and accomplishments of the subject without using her as just a model for inspiration.”

-- Third place, Three Releases Dealing with the Same Topic, “College National Finals Rodeo.” The judges said, “Nice work! Entertainingly informative with just enough rodeo culture sprinkled in to make it perfectly authentic.”

Awards Podell received:

-- Second place, Three Releases Dealing with the Same Topic, “Wildfires.” The judges said, “Excellent job distilling very technical work into great releases.”

-- Second place, Three Features Dealing with the Same Topic, “Wildlife Issues.” The judges said, “The pieces were very well-written and informative.”

UW Institutional Marketing

Awards Grossman received:

-- First place, Short Video -- Shorter than 1 Minute, “UW Grad Student Plays Key Role in UW Economists’ Pandemic Research.” The judges said, “Nice, short and to the point. I would have liked to know a bit more about the research specifically, but probably not possible in a short-form video.”

-- Second place, Long Video -- Longer than 1 Minute, “UW Research Spotlight.” The judges said, “High-quality video production, as one would expect from the state’s only public university. Good selling points for the program.”

UW Haub School of Environment and Natural Resources

-- Ostlind, third place, Publications, “Western Confluence.” The judges said, “Fantastic cover illustration! This magazine does a great job taking readers through the many layers of road ecology. It’s captivating, well-illustrated and written. Your efforts are very worthwhile.”

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