Awards for the top communications specialists were presented during the American Farm Bureau Federation’s 2016 Strategic Policy, Advocacy, Resources and Communications conference. California, Illinois and Pennsylvania took home the most honors, including awards of excellence in news, print media and audio/video production.
Following is a list of the winners. Winners of larger state membership competitions are listed first. Combined competition categories will only have one winner.
Best News Story: California – Ching Lee; New York – Steve Ammerman; Honorable Mention to Pennsylvania.
Best Feature Story: Michigan – Paul Jackson; Utah – Matt Hargreaves; Honorable Mention to Florida.
Best News or Feature Series: Illinois – Kay Shipman; Montana – Rebecca Colnar and Mariah Shammel; Honorable Mention to Ohio.
Best Single Blog Item, Editorial or Column: Florida – G.B. Crawford; Pennsylvania – Sam Kieffer; Honorable Mention to California and Wisconsin.
Best Column Series: Ohio – Jack Fisher and Joe Cornely; Pennsylvania – Sam Kieffer and Darrin Youker; Honorable Mention to Iowa and Utah.
Best Blog: Louisiana – Carey Martin and A.J. Sabine; Wisconsin – Amy Eckelberg and Casey Langan; Honorable Mention to Iowa and Montana.
Best Website: Illinois – Linda Olson and Lori Laughlin; Utah – Matt Hargreaves: Honorable Mention to Kansas, Iowa and Minnesota.
Best Social Media Campaign or Program: Texas – Gene Hall, Mike Barnett, Gary Joiner, Julie Tomascik, Penny Cox, Jessica Domel, Justin Green, Kelly Bogard, Ed Wolff, Ben Cox, Cindy Wennin and Angela Lujan; Honorable Mention to Pennsylvania.
Best Audio News Story: Ohio – Leah Curtis and Joe Cornely.
Best Audio Feature Story: Illinois – DeLoss Jahnke.
Best Audio Commentary/Editorial: Texas – Gene Hall and Mike Barnett.
Best Audio Program: Illinois – Rita Frazer, Alan Jarand and DeLoss Jahnke.
Best Newspaper: California – Dave Kranz, Steve Adler, Kate Campbell, Christine Souza, Ching Lee, Karin Bakotich, Sarah Lee and Matt Salvo; New York – Jeff Williams, Steve Ammerman and Jaclyn Zaleski: Honorable Mention to Iowa.
Best Magazine: California – Barbara Arciero, Steve Adler, Karin Bakotich, Kate Campbell, Ching Lee, Sarah Lee, Matt Salvo and Christine Souza; Wisconsin – Casey Langan, Lynn Siekmann, Amy Eckelberg and Marian Viney; Honorable Mention to Ohio.
Best Member/Leader Newsletter: Kansas – Sheridan Wimmer and Meagan Cramer; Minnesota – Pam Debele and Kristin Harner; Honorable Mention to North Carolina.
Best Pamphlet or Brochure: California – Karin Bakotich; Nebraska – Jessica Falt and Audrey Smith; Honorable Mention to Minnesota and Alabama.
Best Single Photo: Illinois – Cyndi Wiggs; Montana – Rebecca Colnar; Honorable Mention to Iowa, Georgia and Pennsylvania.
Best Graphic Design: Indiana – Diane Brewer; Pennsylvania – Lorraine Potochney-Kobold; Honorable Mention to California and Oregon.
Best Video News Story: Louisiana – Avery Davidson, Kristen Oaks-White and Karl Wiggers.
Best Video Feature Story: Arkansas – Steve Eddington, Robert Potter and Ken Moore.
Best Regularly Scheduled Video Program: California – Tracy Sellers, Scott Monaco, Kim Mims, Charles Williams and John Larimore; Honorable Mention to Virginia and Louisiana.
Best Promotional or Educational Video or Documentary: Louisiana – Kristen Oaks-White; Oregon – Dave Dillon and Cassidy Davis; Honorable Mention to Iowa.
Best Advertising Campaign or Spot: Virginia – Greg Hicks, Chris Baxter, Kathy Dixon, Pat Hooten, Norm Hyde, Maria LaLima, Sherri McKinney, Claire Mills, Sara Owens, Pam Wiley and Barbara Zeidman.
Best Public Relations Campaign: Indiana – Andy Dietrick, Kathleen Dutro, Rachel Schrage, Jay Wood, Mindy Reef and Diane Brewer; Pennsylvania – Sam Kieffer, Joel Rotz, Mark O’Neill, Darrin Youker, Bill Zeiders and Lorraine Potochney-Kobold; Honorable Mention to Virginia.
Best Media Relations Event: New York – Steve Ammerman; Honorable Mention to Pennsylvania.
Dave Lane Award for Media Relations Excellence: Ohio – Joe Cornely and Rebecca Everman; Pennsylvania – Mark O’Neill; Honorable Mention to Alabama.