Congratulations to the 11 Nebraska Press Women members who won a total of 34 awards in the National Federation of Press Women Communications Contest. These members won first place in the Nebraska contest to advance to the national competition.

NPW members also placed in the sweepstakes contest. Mary Jane Skala of Kearney, a reporter for the Kearney Hub, finished in second place. She was the NFPW sweepstakes winner in 2020 and 1996. Finishing in third place was Lori Potter, who retired earlier this year after a writer and photographer for the Kearney Hub. She was the national winner in 2018, 2014, 2012 and 2008.

BARB BATIE, Lexington:

  • Second place, humor columns, Midwest Messenger, “Mouse Wars, 2020”


  • Third place, Radio/TV Interview, “Nebraska Sod House”

TERRI HAHN, Osceola:

  • First place, publication regularly edited by entrant, newspaper: Grand Island Independent
  • Second place, headlines
  • Second place, columns, informational: “Recipes for a hot day” and “Build a Better sandwich”
  • Honorable mention, specialty articles, food, “Get ready to barbecue for Father’s Day”

HEATHER JOHNSON, Mid-Plains Community College, North Platte

  • First place, radio & television advertising, radio; Mid-Plains Community College commercials
  • Third place, public service program or campaign, “MPCC Annual report”

IRENE NORTH, freelance, Scottsbluff:

  • First place, news story, online publication, “COVID-19: Coronavirus pandemic”
  •  Third place, personal website, “Writings of Irene North”
  •  Third place, Single page, section or supplement edited by entrant, magazine/magapaper: “Plight  of the Black-tailed prairie dog”
  •  Honorable mention: personal blog, “COVID-19 ignored blue flags and refused to move over”

  BETTE PORE, Grand Island

  •  First place, single page, section or supplement, newspaper: Grand Island Independent

LORI POTTER – Kearney Hub, Kearney

  • First place,  Columns, general: “Graying, simple and free” & “Dawn strolls a bit brighter”
  • Second place, Specialty articles, Agriculture:  “Pandemic meddles with pork legacy” and sidebar, “Juhnke: Hard decisions ahead for pork producers”
  • Second place:  News story, newspaper: “First a flood, now a pandemic”
  • Third Place In-depth reporting: “Hemp, not marijuana” series
  • Honorable Mention:  Specialty Articles, Arts & Entertainment: “Woman of Steel”
  •  Honorable Mention, Photographer/Writer: “New field fashion/Despite COVID-19, detasseling”

   LORI POTTER and ANA SALAZAR, Kearney Hub, Kearney:

  •  Second place: Video for Web, single news or feature story, “Schwarz Family Farm, commercial hemp”

  ERIKA PRITCHARD, Kearney Hub, Kearney:

  • First: Photography, sports photo: “Pleasanton rodeo bareback rider”
  • Third place: Photography, General: “PHS seniors embrace”
  • Honorable mention: Specialty Articles, Business:  “Busy Butchers”
  • Honorable mention:  Specialty Articles, Building/design/hobby/construction:   “Big Kid at Heart”


  •  Second place, Radio & Television talk show, “The Mixtape”

 ANA SALAZAR, Kearney: (award shared with Lori Potter; see above)

 MARY JANE SKALA – Kearney Hub, Kearney

  • Second place: Continuing coverage: COVID-19 coverage, March –December 2020
  • Second place, personal opinion columns: “COVID reporter frustrated” and “He feeds more than stomachs”
  •  Second place, specialty articles, sports, ““After July bike injury Brittani back on the track”
  • Honorable mention, specialty articles, education, “He’ll be able to fix all 9,000 machines at Good Samaritan “
  • Honorable mention, specialty articles, green/environmental: “Valentine’s Eden”
  • Honorable mention, specialty articles, history : “Finding history: discovered dog tag turned out to have family connection”
  • Honorable mention, specialty articles, religion: “Minden and Zambia partner for orphans”
  • Honorable mention, personality profile more than 500 words:  “It’s like driving:”