2022 Polly Bond Award Winners

[May 5, 2022 ] Episcopal Communicators announce the winners of the 2022 Polly Bond Awards for excellence in communications, covering the 2020 and 2021 awards years. These awards recognize excellence in church communications across eighteen different categories. Independently judged by well-respected and experienced communications professionals outside of organization membership, the best submissions in each category receive awards. After a postponement in 2020 in light of the pandemic, this year’s awards were open to submissions from each of the last two calendar years.

The awards began in 1980 and are named in honor of Polly Bond (1914-1979), former director of communications in the Diocese of Ohio. Among other things, Bond was known for spearheading the early use of electronic media in the church. The Polly Bond Awards ceremony is held each year in conjunction with the Episcopal Communicators annual conference, which was held this year from May 3rd through 5th in Savannah, Georgia.

General Excellence categories 

General Excellence categories are judged for the broad effort of a publication or media tool, rather than a specific issue or piece. For most of these categories, that means a full year’s worth of work, with entries offering several samples to judge to publication or tool.

Best Website

Entries will be judged on layout, user experience, content, consistency of message and visual elements, and successful use of the website to achieve organizational goals. A successful entry will describe the communication goals that the website seeks to address, demonstrate the efforts to achieve the goals and provide metrics of success (both qualitative and quantitative). Entries need not necessarily be newly-built websites, but should demonstrate that the site is actively managed to continually engage users and updates were made throughout the year, either in design, function, or content. 

Award of Excellence: A New Website for All Saints' Atlanta | All Saints' Atlanta | Zack Nyein, Jocelyn Cassada, Lisa Bell, and Ekklesia 360

Award of Merit: Trinity Episcopal Church New Orleans | Trinity Episcopal Church New Orleans | Ekklesia360, Ashley Eastham, Helen Reed

Honorable Mention: American Friends of the Episcopal Church of Jerusalem | AFEDJ | Heidi Shott

Best Print Newsletter/Magazine

Periodicals published on a regular schedule (weekly, monthly, quarterly, annual) may be submitted. Publications which have been printed for mailing or other distribution should be entered in the print category, even if they have also been distributed digitally. Awards will be given in each of the divisions (diocese/organization and parish/cathedral). Three different issues (not necessarily in consecutive order) from 2020-2021 must be submitted. NOTE: If you have a new publication and have produced only two issues rather than the required three, you may submit those two. Please indicate on the entry form that this is the case. All entries in the periodical categories should be submitted digitally, either as PDFs, or using a link to a platform such as Issuu or Yudu.

Entries will be judged on content, appropriateness for audience, timeliness and visual design.

Entries also will define the audience, specify the date of publication and describe the importance of the publication in the organization’s overall communication plan.

Parish/Cathedral

Award of Excellence: THE ARCHANGEL MAGAZINE Fall 2021 75th Anniversary Special Edition | Saint Michael & All Angels Episcopal Church | Steven Haal

Award of Merit: The Rubric | Saint Mark's Cathedral Seattle | Adam Conley and Gregory Bloch

Honorable Mention: Saint Stephen's Magazine | St. Stephen's Episcopal Church | The Saint Stephen's Magazine Team

Honorable Mention: faith! | St. Martin's-in-the-Fields Episcopal | St. Martin's-in-the-Fields Episcopal Church, Columbia, SC

Diocese/Organization

Award of Excellence: The Feast | The Episcopal Dioceses of Eastern & Western Michigan | Katie Forsyth

Award of Merit: Delaware Communion Magazine | The Episcopal Church in Delaware | The Episcopal Church in Delaware's Communications Team

Best Email Newsletter

Email newsletters sent on a regular schedule (weekly, monthly, quarterly) may be submitted. Three different issues (not necessarily in consecutive order) from 2020-2021 must be submitted. NOTE: If you have a new publication and have produced only two issues rather than the required three, you may submit those two. Please indicate on the entry form that this is the case.

Entries will be judged on content, appropriateness for audience, timeliness and visual design.

Entries also will define the audience, specify the date of publication and describe the importance of the publication in the organization’s overall communication plan.

Award of Excellence: The Feast Online | The Episcopal Dioceses of Eastern & Western Michigan | Katie Forsyth

Award of Merit: St. David's at a Glance | St. David's Episcopal Church | St. David's Communications Team

Honorable Mention: Holy Week and Easter 2020 (April 1 and 2) | St. Martin's-in-the-Fields Episcopal | St. Martin's-in-the-Fields Episcopal Church, Columbia, SC

Best Campaign

Best Campaign entries carry one message/theme throughout multiple pieces. Entries can be comprised of 3-6 pieces, and should include at least two different channels or media (IE: You may submit a banner, a booklet, and 3 email newsletters.). Entries will be judged on creativity and innovation, as well as the effort’s effectiveness in achieving organizational communication goals. A successful entry will describe the goals that the campaign seeks to address and the central theme, and demonstrate the efforts to achieve the goals, and provide metrics of success (both qualitative and quantitative). Entries must include images of or links to work. 

Award of Excellence: Forming Leaders At the Frontier | Campaign for Southwest | Seminary of the Southwest | Eric Scott

Award of Merit: Ring the Bell Capital Campaign | The Episcopal Church in Delaware | Cynde Bimbi

Award of Merit: 175 Years of Faithful Ministry | Trinity Episcopal Church New Orleans | Ashley Eastham and Raina O'Neil

Honorable Mention: Holy Land Pilgrimage | St. Martin's-in-the-Fields Episcopal | St. Martin's Holy Land Virtual Pilgrimage

Honorable Mention: St. Francis at the Zoo | Episcopal Church of the Heavenly Rest | Episcopal Church of the Heavenly Rest

Honorable Mention: St. David’s Pride | St. David’s Episcopal Church | St. David’s Communications Team

Individual categories 

Audio/Video

a. Long-form

Entries will be judged on content, quality of production, creativity, technical skill and overall presentation of the final product. Entries should specify the audience and date of the video’s release. Please submit a direct link to the video for evaluation.

Award of Excellence: The Way of the Cross: A Liturgy | Saint Mark's Cathedral Seattle | David Wild and Gregory Bloch

Award of Merit: EMC Dinner Skit Video | Christ Church Cathedral | Karen Kraycirik and Cathedral Staff

Honorable Mention: Imagine Church | Fall 2021 | Diocese of Atlanta | The Imagine Church Team

Honorable Mention: Service of Lessons & Carols: Dec. 24, 2020 | St. Michael's Episcopal Church | St. Michael's Video Team

b. Short-form Video, contracted shooting or editing

This category is for videos that utilized professionals (whether volunteer or paid) for shooting or editing. Entries must be 10 minutes or shorter, and will be judged on content, quality of production, technical skill and overall presentation of the final product. Please specify the audience and date of the video’s release.

Award of Excellence: See You Sunday | Trinity Episcopal Church New Orleans | Ashley Eastham and Max Cusimano (NolaVid)

Award of Merit: Calvary's 2020 Year in Review | Calvary Episcopal Church | Robyn Banks and Noah Glenn

Honorable Mention: Saint Stephen's Worship Overview Video 2021 | St. Stephen's Episcopal Church | The Saint Stephen's Video Team


c. Short-form Video, in-house produced

This category is for videos that were shot and edited entirely in-house. Entries must be 10 minutes or shorter, and will be judged on content, quality of production, technical skill and overall presentation of the final product. Please specify the audience and date of the video’s release.

Award of Excellence: Together in Hope | St. Columba's Episcopal Church | Bronwyn Roy, Jamal Williams and the staff of St. Columba's

Award of Merit: Listening, Seeing, Acting | St. Stephen's Episcopal Church, Richmond, VA | Dillon Gwaltney, videographer and editor

Honorable Mention: Doxology Handwashing Timer | Nina Nicholson / Episcopal Diocese of Newark | Nina Nicholson, Emma Moyer, Vivienne Longstreet, Roy DeMarco & William Butron

Honorable Mention: Gratitude and Grace | St. Stephen's Episcopal Church | The Saint Stephen's Video Team

d. Podcast

Entries will be judged on content, quality of production, creativity, technical skill and overall presentation of the final product. Entries should specify the audience and date of the video’s release. Please submit a file or direct link to one episode for evaluation.

Award of Excellence: For People | Body | Diocese of Atlanta | The Diocese of Atlanta Communications Team

Award of Merit: Sunday Morning Prayer Podcast | St. David's Episcopal Church | Mark Wischkaemper and Eric Mellenbruch

Honorable Mention: In the Fields/ Why Church with the Rev. Chris Slane | St. Martin's-in-the-Fields Episcopal | St. Martin's-in-the-Fields Episcopal Church, Columbia, SC

Writing

Writing categories are divided according to content, not medium of publication. Blog entries are eligible.

a. News

An article that reports the basics and details of an event within or relevant to your organization.

Award of Excellence: Churches across the diocese adapt as pandemic brought building closures | Episcopal Diocese of Kansas | Melodie Woerman

Award of Excellence: Episcopalians in public office face tough calls in the COVID era | The Episcopal Church in Kansas | Melodie Woerman

Award of Merit: Black leaders quit Brotherhood of St. Andrew board, alleging racial reconciliation failures | Episcopal News Service | David Paulsen

Honorable Mention: The B012 Compromise, Three Years On | The Living Church | Kirk Petersen

Honorable Mention: Hybrid series | The Living Church | Neva Fox

b. Feature

A human-interest article on a particular event, person, or place relevant to your organization.

Award of Excellence: The Feast 2021: Press, Fold, Turn | The Episcopal Dioceses of Eastern & Western Michigan | Theresa Williams and Katie Forsyth

Award of Merit:  Closer look at Episcopal scholarship, once limited to white recipients, reveals donor had slaveholding roots | Episcopal News Service | David Paulsen

Honorable Mention: El Camino Real Episcopalians continue jail and reentry ministries despite pandemic | Sharon Sheridan

c. Commentary/Reflection

An opinion or reflection on the subject matter, or addressing a theme through interpretive writing, or delivering a reaction to an event or topic relevant to your organization. This may include opinion pieces or theological reflections.

Award of Excellence: Life and Joy | St. Stephen's Episcopal Church, Richmond, VA | Allison Seay

Award of Merit: Racial reckoning | St. Paul's Memorial Church | John Reid

Honorable Mention: - 30 - | Episcopal Diocese of Kansas | Melodie Woerman

Visual Arts

Visual Arts categories are divided according to content, not medium of publication.

a. Photography

Photographs are judged on aesthetic merit, regardless of medium of publication.

Award of Excellence: The Acolyte Guild | Church of the Good Shepherd| Jerry Woods

Award of Merit: Pandemic Pet Blessings | St. David's Episcopal Church | Lori Blewett

Honorable Mention: COVID Communion | Saint Michael & All Angels Episcopal Church | Steven Haal

b. Graphic Design

These images, icons, or logos should be graphics that are designed by the communicator using image, text, colors, and layers, including overall design for posters, advertisements, event branding, etc. Submissions can be either print or digital pieces.

Award of Excellence: Logo Redesign | St. Paul's Episcopal Church | Jason Franklin

Award of Merit: Every Perfect Gift: Stewardship 2022 Campaign | Episcopal Church of the Heavenly Rest | Blaine Beyer

Award of Merit: Jesus CEO | Saint Michael & All Angels Episcopal Church | Steven Haal

Honorable Mention: St. Paul's Episcopal Cathedral Logo | St. Paul's Episcopal Cathedral | Sonja Slother

Honorable Mention: 2020 Advent Branding | St. Columna's Episcopal Church | Lauren Devito

Honorable Mention: Sunday Morning Prayer | St. David's Episcopal Church | Lori Blewett

Honorable Mention: St. David's Pride Logo | St. David's Episcopal Church | Lori Blewett

Honorable Mention: Chamber Music Concert Series Card | Episcopal Church of the Heavenly Rest | Blaine Beyer

c. Layout 

Single-page posters may include graphics, photographs, text, and other elements to achieve their goal. Banners are eligible in this category.

One page or a spread from a newspaper, magazine, or other printed publication, including the front or back page. Submissions may include graphics, photographs, text, and other elements to achieve their goal.

Award of Excellence: Imagine: Racial Justice | The Episcopal Church in Delaware | Cynde Bimbi

Award of Merit: Cover, The Harvest, Summer 2020 | Episcopal Diocese of Kansas | Melodie Woerman

Honorable Mention: The Lord is My Shepherd: Music & Meditation, 20th Anniversary of 9/11 | St. Paul's Episcopal Cathedral | Sonja Slother

e. Booklet

These multi-page publications may include graphics, photographs, text, and other elements to achieve their goal. Entries will be judged on design quality and effectiveness in meeting intended goals. Brochures are eligible in this category.

Award of Excellence: Making Our Home for Faith | Christ Church Cathedral | Christ Church Cathedral Ministry Staff and Communications Team

Award of Merit: Christ Church Cathedral Indy 2022 Annual Meeting Report | Christ Church Cathedral | Elise Shrock

Honorable Mention: Joined Together By God: Our Shared Mission and Ministry - 2021 Annual Appeal | The Episcopal Diocese of Alabama | The Diocese of Alabama Communications and Mission Funding Teams

Honorable Mention: Saint Michael and All Angels 75th Anniversary Coffee Table Photo Book | Saint Michael & All Angels Episcopal
Church | Steven Haal

Social Media

Each entry should be a single post on social media, either by screenshot or direct link to the post. Entries will be judged on creativity and aesthetic, as well as its effectiveness on the platform. Metrics of success are encouraged but not required.

Award of Excellence: Doxology Handwashing Timer | Nina Nicholson / Episcopal Diocese of Newark | Nina Nicholson, Emma Moyer, Vivienne Longstreet, Roy DeMarco & William Butron

Award of Merit: O Lord of Light and Dark | Trinity Episcopal Church New Orleans | Ashley Eastham and Helen Reed

Honorable Mention: 9 Things You Can Do to Heal the Nation | Diocese of Atlanta | The Diocese of Atlanta Communications Team

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