New Mexico communicators win national awards

Communicators in New Mexico have won a slew of awards — nine first-place awards, six second-place, six third-place and seven honorable mentions — from the 2016 National Federation of Press Women annual communications contest. The official awards will be given at NFPW’s national conference in Wichita, Kansas Sept. 8-10, 2016.

1st place winners

  • Ross Van Dusen, Children’s books
  • Heath Haussamen, Investigative reporting
  • Megan Kamerick, Talk show (radio or television)
  • Mandi Kane, Personality profile 500 words or fewer
  • Richard Melzer, History nonfiction for adult readers
  • Sharon Niederman, Cookbooks nonfiction for adult readers
  • Peter St. Cyr, News story – print-based newspaper
  • Kelly Urig, General nonfiction for adult readers
  • Catherine Wanek, Book editing

2nd place winners

  • Mary-Charlotte Domandi, Interview for radio or television
  • Kathleen McCleery, Prepared report for television and special programming for television
  • Sherry Robinson, Specialty articles – green/environmental
  • Diane Thomas, Novel for adult readers
  • Ross Van Dusen, Children’s books

3rd place winners

  • Margaret Cheasebro, Specialty articles – business
  • Merilee Dannemann, Personal blog
  • Bob Diven, Graphics
  • Ruth Friesen, Book design
  • Mary Alice Murphy, Photo essay
  • Diana Sandoval-Tapia, Reports

Honorable mentions

  • Nicolás Cabrera, Feature story – online publication
  • Margaret Cheasebro, Specialty articles – history
  • Ariana Kramer, Specialty article – arts and entertainment
  • Tara Lumpkin, Website editing/management
  • Sherry Robinson, Continuing coverage or unfolding news
  • Marsha Scarbrough, Biography or autobiography
  • Peter St. Cyr, Enterprise reporting

New Mexico Press Women would like to congratulate all of the winners listed above for your remarkable achievements, and thank you for representing our state and our organization so well!


Download the news release in case members would like to include it in your publications.


National Federation of Press Women is a dynamic nationwide organization of professional women and men pursuing careers across the communications spectrum. NFPW is comprised of affiliate organizations across the United States. Learn more at

New Mexico Press Women installs new board of directors

Loretta Hall

Loretta Hall

Loretta Hall is the new president of New Mexico Press Women. She was elected and installed at the recent state conference in Albuquerque. In addition to Hall, the new board is as follows:

President – Loretta Hall

2017 Conference Chair – Cassie McClure

Broadsheet Editor – Sherry Robinson

Communicator of Achievement – Diana Sandoval

High School Contest – Chris Burroughs

Public Relations – Sharon Niederman

Scholarship – Desiree Cooper

Zia Book Award Coordinator – Jessica Savage

Website – Karen Wentworth

There are other state board positions open. Anyone who is a member of New Mexico Press Women and who is interested, can contact Loretta Hall.

The winners of the 2016 New Mexico Press Women Communications Contest have been announced.

Fifty-three contestants took home nearly 140 certificates honoring their work from the previous year. There are 64 separate media categories in which participants can enter.
A highlight of the contest is the Awards of Excellence, given to writers and organizations who make major contributions to their communities through their work. The Award of Excellence is based on a weighted scale: the more entries in a media category, the more points the winners earn. For example, a first place in a category with three entries earns four points. That same first place in a category with ten entries earns five points. Writers entering multiple categories stand the better chance of winning an Award of Excellence.
This year, The Awards of Excellence went to:
Nicolás Cabrera — First Place
Margaret Cheasebro — Second Place
Colleen Keane — Third Place
Peter St. Cyr — Honorable Mention
The top organizations were:
Majestic Living, Farmington — First Place
Frontera NorteSur, NMSU, Las Cruces — Second Place
Navajo Times, Window Rock, AZ — Third Place
Rio Grande Books, Albuquerque — Honorable Mention
Santa Fe Reporter, Santa Fe — Honorable Mention
Download the winners list: NMPW 2016 Contest Winners with city (PDF)

Congratulations to the 2016 NMPW contest winners!

The 2016 NMPW Communications Contest is in the books! With 170 entries in 56 categories, 50 entries were awarded first place and qualified to move on the NFPW contest. Congratulations to all the winners and finalists.
Thanks to our Communications Contest Committee: Marissa Bond, Bud Russo, and Tracy Roy for all their hard work in making this year’s contest a reality. Thanks, also, to our judges around the country for supporting our contest. We couldn’t do it without you! Of course, we appreciate everyone who entered the contest and hope that you’ll save up your best work of 2016 to enter in next year’s contest.
Download the winners list: NMPW 2016 Contest Winners with City (PDF)
(Corrected 4/26/2016)