Division 6: Writing

Category 6A: News Release


Given to the best news release or media advisory promoting members’ activities, programs, or initiatives.

Selection Criteria

  • Content
  • Clarity   

Category 6B: Blog


Given to the best blog written by staff and featuring members’ activities, programs, or initiatives.

Selection Criteria

  • Content
  • Innovation
  • Engagement  

Category 6C: Feature Story


Given to the best feature story written by staff and placed in local media or in internal publications (such as newsletters).

Selection Criteria

  • Content
  • Clarity     

Category 6D: Story Placement in Publication


Given to the best earned media coverage of members’ activities, programs, or initiatives.

Selection Criteria

  • Media pitch effectiveness
  • Final story     

Category 6E: Speech  


Given to the best written speech by internal staff and intended for a public audience.

Selection Criteria

  • Content
  • Clarity

2022 Winners


Division and Category 6C

Colorado Division of Motor Vehicles

Connecting the Dots

“Connecting the dots” is a unique feature story about an assistant office manager who worked for years on this art project and focuses on her personality and creative drive. She collected thousands of tiny, leftover credential pieces that were typically discarded after staff would void a credential by punching holes in it, and then painstakingly painted and arranged these pieces, each not much larger than a grain of sand, to create the Colorado flag. In this feature article, the manager’s passion for her artwork, Colorado, and its people were on full display. The article captured every step, every frustration, and every triumph the manager experienced as she worked through the creative process. The story was used in Colorado DMV's award-winning internal newsletter, DMViews, and it was well received internally and had a 72% open rate.

Category 6A

Maryland Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Administration

Child Passenger Safety Week 2021 Press Release

In summer 2021, Maryland experienced multiple crashes on its roadways involving children who had not been properly secured in a safety seat. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death in children. he Maryland Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Administration (MDOT MVA) used the Child Passenger Safety Week 2021 observance to craft a press release that provided education and resources for parents and caregivers to support safe travel practices and to point them to new videos that demonstrate the proper installation of child safety seats for various ages, interviews with safety experts, and guidelines and tips for transitioning children from booster seats to seatbelt only. In addition to being sent to MDOT MVA’s media list, the press release also was posted to the MDOT MVA newsroom and circulated on all social media platforms. The press release was picked up by the Southern Maryland Chronicle and reached more than 12,000 people, with 600-plus direct engagements with our social media. 

Category 6D

Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles

ABC Editorial

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the Virginia DMV continued to serve Virginians online, in-person by appointment, and in a multitude of other ways. When Virginia DMV Commissioner Rick Holcomb read a critical editorial on the Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star website questioning why the DMV offered service by appointment only while the state’s Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority (ABC) stores did not require appointments, he felt compelled to respond. His guest editorial positively asserted that the work of the Virginia DMV to serve its customers during the pandemic was extraordinary and that both agencies should be given credit for their distinctly valuable services to the Commonwealth. The article was received very positively by DMV employees and remains a valuable point of reference in DMV’s efforts to affect public perception of the agency and promote the outstanding work of its employees.

Category 6E 

Idaho Transportation Department

Alberto Gonzalez Speech

The speech was delivered in person and through WebEx to Division of Motor Vehicles employees at an all staff meeting, which are held quarterly. The purpose of the speech was three fold: To acknowledge the difficult journey the transition to a new DMV system had been; to validate the new system was now running as planned; and to congratulate the employees on their commitment, service, and dedication and announce an upcoming celebration. All DMV employees had contributed in some way to the modernization project. While Administrator Gonzalez had thanked employees many times through multiple communication channels, it was important to do it in person. The tone of the speech was positive and celebratory.