Communication Contests

Two Levels of Contests Recognizing Excellence

Recognizing Excellence Through State and National Contests

APW offers professionals and students two levels of communication contests to compete – statewide and nationally. 

Our professional contest finds its roots in an era when women journalists were not welcome in competitions. Fast forward and our contest is still unique in that it enables the communicator to decide what work to enter in the competition.

For our high school competition, we have long partnered with the Arkansas Scholastic Press Association to recognize winners. 


APW President Kristin Netterstrom Higgins presents Ginny Monk of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette with a certificate for her work at the 2019 Arkansas Press Women Awards Luncheon in Springdale.

Arkansas Press Women Professional Communications Contest

The annual Arkansas Press Women Professional Communications Contest recognizes excellence in print, broadcast, electronic media, photography, marketing, public relations, graphic arts and journalism in Arkansas.

The purpose of the contest is to improve professional skills by recognizing excellence in communication. The message – how well it communicates, how it is directed to its target audience, how well it achieves its objectives – is the judging standard.

The APW Professional Communications Contest is the first of a two-tier contest open to anyone regardless of age or gender. Publications may enter the work of their staff, but the contest is also open to self-nomination by the communicator. Contest winners are announced in spring and state awards are presented at APW’s annual luncheon.

First place winners at the state level are offered the opportunity to advance their entry into the second tier of the contest, the national level of judging at the National Federation of Press Women. To be eligible to compete at the national level, the entrant must be a member in good standing with the National Federation of Press Women. Entrants can join NFPW once they learn of their winning status. Winners are announced in the summer and the national awards are presented at the NFPW Conference.

Review the complete list of categories.

For more information about the professional contest, contact Kristin Netterstrom Higgins at or Richard Plotkin at

Arkansas Press Women High School Communications Contest

Arkansas Press Women’s High School Communications Contest is part of the National Federation of Press Women High School Contest. It inspires students to do their best work, which earns them recognition and reflects well on their advisers.

Students may enter in one of multiple categories including: Editorial, Opinion, News Story, Feature Story, Sports Story, Columns, News Video, Feature Video, Sports Video, Feature Photo, Sports Photo, Cartooning, Review, Graphics, Single-Page Layout, Double-Truck Layout and Environment. Contest entries are made online through the NFPW platform.

First place winners of Arkansas’ contest continue to the NFPW High School Communications Contest and will compete with students from across the country. In both contests, professional communicators judge APW entries and provide written comments. All first place, second place, third place and honorable mentions receive certificates.

For more information about the high school contest, contact Maryanne Meyerriecks at