Washington FAMILY received 12 awards for publication excellence from the 2021 Parenting Media Association’s (PMA) annual conference held in St. Petersburg, Florida, Nov. 14-16, 2021. Find out which stories and designs won in the categories below.
Column: Publisher’s and Editor’s Note
Former editor PJ Feinstein earned a gold award for her column, “First Word,” which was praised for its strong pacing and use of lists to propel the writing forward.
“Creative leads and compelling questions draw the reader in immediately, and glimpses of the author’s own family life create the sense that we’re all in this pandemic together,” judges write.
Washington FAMILY staff were awarded gold for an “At a Glance” section that had appeared in 2020. Its inclusion of local arts coverage, national parenting and education information and parenting sidebars cover topics “in-depth without being too lengthy,” judges note.
Column: Family Fun
Contributing writer Lindsay Ponta took home a silver award for her “Family Fun” column. An article on making use of yarn stashes while stuck at home during the COVID-19 pandemic was commended for offering great ideas in a short and informative format.
Contributing writer Laura Farmer was recognized with a silver award her personal essay, “When Mom Becomes a Teacher,” about the difficult transition from parenting to at-home teaching.
“This honest, heartfelt and personal account doesn’t hold back,” judges write. “It chronicles the blood, the sweat and the tears of a seminal experience for many pandemic parents: turning a home into a home school.”
This profile of a mother weaving environmental living into her parenting earned contributing writer Jason Fontelieu a silver award. “‘Teaching Values Through Green Living’ informs readers while making them feel like they can do it too,” judges write.
Former intern Jenn Attanasio garnered a bronze award for a fast-paced conversation with “groundbreaking” authors on their book about mothers and daughters bonding over journal writing in her Q&A “Just Between Us.”
“This quick read gives us insight into why this book, and its updated version, have connected generations of moms and daughters,” judges write.
Contributing writers Joy Saha and Lauren Harris took home a gold award for collecting expert recommendations for parents on how to support the Black Lives Matter movement, such as at-home protests, fundraising ideas and age-appropriate storybooks.
Of their article from the July 2020 issue, “Yes, You Can Still Support Black Lives Matter Without Attending a Protest,” judges write, “This series of listicles provides parents with a series of actionable advice on how to involve their children in social justice work from home with the gentle reminder that activism can take many forms.”
Washington FAMILY staff were recognized with a gold award for overall writing in the magazine. Judges gave a special shoutout to the editor’s introductory “First Word” section for setting the tone and praised writers for stories that include clear tips and parents and medical experts as sources. They praised the “My Turn” column for leaving readers with “strong voices and peaceful, hopeful endings.”
Contributing designer Lonna Koblick earned a gold award for her whimsical page design for “How to Make a Yarn Wreath.”
The illustrations work well with the instructions in demonstrating how to make a yarn wreath and the use of white space on the page creates balance, judges note.
Washington FAMILY was recognized with a gold award for art director Sherley Taliaferro’s layout of the feature, “4 Indulgent Ways to Pamper Yourself This Mother’s Day.” Despite a lot of elements competing for attention, judges say her effective layering of color, texture and shape work together to unite them on the page.
The layout for the February 2021 feature “Sprouting Wings” also garnered graphic designer Jay Sevidal a bronze award.
“The plane in the illustration flies the reader right into the start of the story,” judges write. “Text flows naturally through the layout, which ties together visually with the opening spread.”
The art department staff of Washington FAMILY received a gold award for overall design of the magazine. Judges praised the creativity of the design team in presenting visuals.
“The design is driven by photos and illustrations that communicate rather than decorate. Cover images take an interesting approach of focusing on moments of action or joy rather than standard studio portraiture,” judges note.
The PMA is a national trade association of regional parenting media companies with magazines, websites and events across America and around the globe to Australia. Visit parentmedia.org for more information.