Delaware Press Association encourages and rewards excellence in communication by offering many opportunities for recognition and professional evaluation through contests and awards for both professionals and students.

DPA Professional Communications Contest

The annual DPA Communications Contest, open to all professional communicators in Delaware, encourages and rewards excellence in communication. Judged by out-of-state communications professionals to ensure impartiality, the contest provides an opportunity to compete in various print or electronic broadcasting fields. All DPA contest winners are honored at the DPA Annual Meeting and Contest Awards Banquet each spring. First-place winners who are members of the National Federation of Press Women (NFPW) may enter the national competition.

DPA Contest Director: Katherine Ward   Contact: 302-655-2175;



DPA Contest: The annual DPA Communications Contest is open to all professional communicators in the state of Delaware and nearby out-of-state communities. You do not have to be a member of DPA to enter the contest. Winners will be notified in March.

Select your best work published or broadcast between January 1, 2016, and December 31, 2016. The governing date is the date the broadcast was aired, the date printed on the publication, or the date e-published. If the entry is a series, use the publication date of the final article as the entry date, which allows the beginning article to have been published in the previous contest year.

National Contest: First-place award winners in the 2017 DPA Communications Contest will be eligible to enter the National Federation of Press Women annual competition if member dues of $99 ($79 national, $20 local) are received at NFPW Headquarters by March 15, 2017.

Contest Deadlines

Early bird: The early bird  discount period for entries ends at 11:59 p.m., Tuesday, January 17, 2017.
Late for the worm: All  other entries must be submitted by 11:59 p.m., Monday February 6, 2017.
Entries submitted from January 18 through 11:59 p.m., Monday, February 6, will pay an additional $25 fee.


Members: $25 for the 1st entry; $15 for subsequent entries.

Non-members: $30 for the 1st entry; $20 for subsequent entries.

College students: $5 per entry (CLICK HERE to pay by credit card or check).

Late Fee: $25 fee added to an entrant’s first entry submitted after January 17, 2017.

When you have submitted your entries, you may SAVE and logout without paying if you think you will submit more entries at another time. If you submit more than one entry, all other entries will be charged at the discount rate.

On the View/Edit Entries & Pay page of the contest site, you may a) choose Pay Online to pay by credit card or b) choose Pay Offline  and send a check to the NFPW Contest Manager (name and address are listed on the contest site’s Payment page).

Your entries will not be official until they have been paid for, “submitted,” and show Accepted in the Status column.

Note: All DPA members who were paid through the end of 2016, or have renewed for 2017, may enter at the member rate. If you are uncertain, contact

Membership Forms

To join or to renew your DPA or your NFPW/DPA membership, please fill out and submit a membership application as directed on the form you select below.

DPA Only: Join or renew by credit card or check

NFPW/DPA: New Member


First State High School Communications Contest

Delaware Press Association offers an annual High School Communications Contest for student journalists statewide, with an opportunity for those who win a first in the DPA contest to enter the NFPW national competition. From time-to-time we offer seminars and workshops for high school journalists and their advisers, focusing on issues such as ethics and editorial responsibility, the new technology, and First Amendment rights and responsibilities. We believe it is vital to support these bright young future journalists and citizens, and we treat them as professional colleagues.

Communicator of Achievement Award

The annual Communicator of Achievement Award is the highest honor DPA bestows on its members. First and foremost, the COA Award is given for a lifetime of achievement in the communications profession. And second, it recognizes exemplary service to the community and to humanity as well as to the profession, especially to Delaware Press Association and the National Federation of Press Women.

The DPA COA competes annually in the NFPW COA contest for the honor of being chosen the National Communicator of Achievement. DPA members have done well:

National Winners

  •  At the 2011, conference in Council Bluffs, Iowa, Beth Miller, of Wilmington, DPA president from 2006 – 2008, received the NFPW National COA honor. Click here to see a video of the interview with Beth on having won one of NFPW’s highest awards.
  • DPA’s 2002 COA Kay Wood Bailey of Wyoming, Del., was named National COA at the NFPW Communications Conference in Bismarck, N.D., in September 2002.

National Runners-up

  • John Watson received the National Runner-up award in 2014.
  • Rita K. Farrell was named the National Runner-up in 2004.