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St. Francis de Sales Award

For outstanding contribution to Catholic journalism

The St. Francis de Sales Award is the highest award the Catholic Press Association presents to an individual for his/her "outstanding contributions to Catholic journalism.” Members of the Catholic Press Association are encouraged to nominate someone who, in the preceding year or throughout their career, has performed with excellence and contributed to raising the professional standards of Catholic journalism.

There are a number of dedicated journalists in the Catholic press who meet the criteria and deserve to be recognized and honored by their peers. Please give thoughtful consideration to those in the Catholic press who you feel should be nominated for the 2016 St. Francis de Sales Award.

Most Recent Winners

The past five winners of the St. Francis de Sales Award serve on the St. Francis de Sales Committee to help select the 2016 recipient.

2015: Greg Erlandson for his distinguished career in the Catholic Press and his notable work with the Vatican communications team.

2014: Jim Lackey for upholding a standard of excellence for himself, his peers, and future generations of journalists.

2013: Peter Finney for his unequaled skills and outstanding leadership, all this is done with class, steady encouragement, and enduring grace.

2012: Helen Osman for the affirming, collaborative way she works. She is a role model for women leaders in the Catholic media and elsewhere for her ability to win the ear of decision-makers though her character, her intelligence, vision and her grace under pressure.

2011: Robert Zyskowski
 for his leadership, commitment to excellence and his ability to understand the big picture. He studies the demographic and readership trends that are changing the way the Catholic press must do business if it is to fulfill its mission in the future. 

Criteria for Nomination

The St. Francis de sales Award of the Catholic Press Association shall be given to the person who, in the preceding year or during the years of his/her journalism career, while on the staff of or as a contributor to a publication which is a member of the Catholic Press Association, has performed the work of Catholic journalism either in general (for example, managing or editing a periodical) or in particular (for example, reporting) with such overall excellence or such originality or initiative, judged by that work's proper technical, intellectual, and practical-moral standards, as by his/her example to have contributed to raising the measure of performance of Catholic journalists, or to the development of new and more effective practices.

Procedure for Selection

Any member of the Catholic Press Association is considered qualified to nominate one person each year for the St. Francis de Sales Award. CPA will accept nominations through Friday, January 22, 2016. The nomination form is accessed via the CPA website. Since only CPA members may make a nomination, you need to log in to get access to the form.

Once all nominations have been received, the previous five winners of the St. Francis de Sales Award will vote for up to five nominees for the 2016 award. The committee will rank candidates from 1 (first choice) to 5 (last choice). The scores are weighted in the following manner:

  • "1" receives 5 points
  • "2" receives 4 points
  • "3" receives 3 points
  • "4" receives 2 points
  • "5" receives 1 point

The points will be totaled, and the three highest point rankings are the Final Candidates.

In the final phase, CPA members vote on the Final Candidates. Members choose their first place and second place candidates. These scores are unweighted. The candidate with the most first place votes is the winner. In the event of a tie, second place votes are used to determine the winner.

Make a Nomination

Thank you to everyone who made a nomination to the St. Francis de Sales Award. The nominating period for 2016 is closed.

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