How Are Awards Judged?
Entries for the Annual PMA Design & Editorial Awards open from June to July each year. The awards are judged by the University of Missouri School of Journalism. The judges look for the best in local and regional parenting publications, special issues, websites and social media. This competition recognizes and rewards editorial, design and general excellence in local and regional parenting publications.
Editorial judges evaluate entries for accurate and comprehensive reporting, superior writing, and thoughtful analysis of the issues relevant to the publication’s audience and evidence of editorial judgment, insight and enterprise. In the design area, this competition recognizes and rewards excellence in the visual presentation of editorial matter and advertisements. Judges look for originality and intelligent use of resources in publication design.
In the Digital categories, judges will evaluate integrative approaches to multi-media and use of new digital tools. They will look for innovative ways that members have utilized websites, social media and other digital media to build “community” and to further extend their reach.
The Chesapeake Family Life awards received were announced as follows.
Non-Traditional Story Form Award
Gold: Chesapeake Family Life; “Best Places to Live”; Donna Jefferson, Ann Levelle
Six different aspirational neighborhoods are spotlighted with a photo and similar information for each one. Icons and numbers present data visually in a way that makes for easy comparison. The text blocks provide interesting current and historic details.
Bronze: Chesapeake Family Life; “Love Wins”; Ann Levelle, Jillian Amodio
This piece is a good starter for parents looking for language to discuss LGBTQ awareness in their families. Sidebars with terms to understand and a list of resources are especially valuable.
Special Section Within a Publication
Gold: Chesapeake Family Life; “CFL Virtually Together,” April 2020; Ann Levelle, Jenny Cardoza, Claire Darcy, Jessica Kannegieser and Joyce Heid
What an inspired, timely idea it was to step into the center of the “new normal” and create virtual learning tools for parents during the pandemic. From virtual field trips to virtual playdates to a set of child-friendly podcasts, the pages are full of clever, out-of-the-box ideas. Packaged in bright primary colors, the section was clearly designed to uplift parents and children during a dark time.
Front Cover: Illustration
Silver: Chesapeake Family Life; “CFL March 21”; Jenny Cardoza
While the pink background evokes a feeling of calm and happiness, the separate windows demonstrate the isolation of COVID. Nonetheless, each subject in this illustration is actively engaged in greeting the other subjects. This simple style of illustration fits with the complicated topic and number of subjects.
Silver: Chesapeake Family Life; “Summer Bucket List”; Jenny Cardoza
The bold combination of colors effectively screams summer. Well-chosen photos convey the activities, along with excitement and diversity. The handwritten feel of the typography adds to the sense of relaxed adventure, while a strict grid keeps the layout from feeling too chaotic
Gold: Chesapeake Family Life; “Virtually Together”; Jenny Cardoza
The package benefits from a very clean and tightly structured design. Yet the display is open and airy. The art is playful, colorful and engaging. Fun is the appropriate description for “Virtual Playdates” and podcast package. It appears the staff had as much fun creating this as the readers will have reading it.
Bronze: Chesapeake Family Life; Jenny Cardoza
Covers of this publication particularly stand out. A subtle color palette on each one effectively steers attention to the great, emotion-filled image. The typography throughout gives the publication a feeling of freshness. The June issue especially includes a nice range of photographic shapes and sizes.
Silver: Chesapeake Family Life; “CFL Third Floor Views Podcast”; Janet Jefferson, Donna Jefferson, Claire Darcy, Caitlyn Mateik
The myriad topics covered in the podcast, whether it’s health and safety or ideas to spend time, are already a home run. More than that, the conversations are genuine, real and very accessible because the guests and experts are more than talking heads. They’re relatable people talking about relatable things in a way that helps the listener feel comfortable and familiar, as well as educated and more aware.
Best Use of Multimedia
Silver: Chesapeake Family Life; “STEAM Fair”; Donna Jefferson, Jessica Kannegieser, Claire Darcy
The amount of useful information packed into the flyer might overwhelm in other cases, but this example contains and offers it concisely, clearly and beautifully. Colors don’t overdo it but accent the design extremely well. The necessary information about what’s being offered is shown clearly enough that the essentials are immediately available and not lost on the page.
Ancillary General Excellence
Gold: Chesapeake Family Life; “CFL Field Guide 2021”; Jenny Cardoza, Jessica Kannegieser, Claire Darcy, Donna Jefferson
This clever and resourceful field guide combines information with interactivity. Parents and children alike will find this a cool and refreshing way to spend time together. The consistent design fits the content, with a new opportunity for exploration on each spread. This innovative guide is loaded with fun ideas.
Website General Excellence
Bronze: Chesapeake Family Life, “ChesapeakeFamily.com”; Donna Jefferson, Jessica Kannegieser
The warm color scheme is a smart choice for creating a comfortable feeling on the site. The use of clear photos with headline graphics efficiently directs readers to the featured content, and the sections are cleanly and clearly segmented and set apart while still feeling cohesive.