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The San Diego County Water Authority won multiple awards including a first place award for Best Public Service or Consumer Advocacy Website for its communication efforts from the San Diego Press Club. Water News Network

Water News Network Honored by San Diego Press Club

For the third consecutive year, the Water News Network was recognized as the Best Public Service/Consumer Advocacy Website for its public outreach and education by the San Diego Press Club. The website was established by the San Diego County Water Authority to bridge the gap in news coverage of water-related issues affecting the region.

The first place award was announced during the San Diego Press Club’s 47th annual Excellence in Journalism Awards event, which was live streamed from the San Diego Automotive Museum on October 27.

Among the largest annual competitions in the United States, San Diego’s finest reporters, photographers, writers, artists, and communicators were honored with the region’s top awards.

Water News Network: “timely and accurate information about water issues”

“We’re proud to share this award with our 24 member agencies who provide the majority of the original content on the Water News Network,” said Denise Vedder, public affairs director for the San Diego County Water Authority. “The collaboration with our member agencies and other organizations make possible the timely and accurate information about water issues, projects, and programs that affect 3.3 million people across San Diego County.”

The Water News Network received the following Press Club awards:

Websites, Public Service or Consumer Advocacy Site: First Place, Water News Network

Online/Daily Newspapers, Wildlife/Nature: Second Place, Water News Network, Ed Joyce, “Cooper’s Hawk Chick Gets Special Handling Near Pipeline 5 Project

Online/Daily Newspapers, Wildlife/Nature: Third Place, Water News Network, Kristiene Gong, “Wildlife Protected for New Underground Reservoir Project

Online/Daily Newspapers, Science/Technology/Biotech: Third Place, Water News Network, Ed Joyce, “Baking Skills Used For Repair at Lake Hodges Pumped Storage Facility

Online/Daily Newspapers, Series – Light Subject: Honorable Mention, Water News Network, Ed Joyce, “Water Utility Hero of the Week

Online/Daily Newspapers, Environment: Honorable Mention, Water News Network, Ed Joyce, “Water Year 2020 Begins With Robust Reservoir Storage

Earlier in 2020, the Water News Network was given an EPIC Award as the Best California Public Agency Website by the California Public Information Officers (CAPIO). The CAPIO EPIC Awards recognize the “best of the best” in government communications throughout the state. Winning entries demonstrate the most creative and effective efforts in the areas of communication and marketing campaigns, newsletter production, photography, special events, writing, website development, and video production.

The Water News Network was praised by the CAPIO EPIC Award judges for its initiative in producing original story content with its stakeholders in mind.

This year’s San Diego Press Club awards program drew more than 1,100 entries across multiple media categories. Judges included members of press clubs in San Francisco, Los Angeles, New Orleans, Rochester (New York), Florida, Cleveland, Orange County, Milwaukee, Tulsa, and Alaska.

“The San Diego Press Club Excellence in Journalism Awards celebrates professionals whose research, writing, reporting, and visual skills shed light on newsworthy topics that matter to us all,” said Albert Fulcher, 2020 San Diego Press Club president. “At a time when many Americans distrust the news media, I am proud of our organization’s 450 members and their commitment to truth and fairness with integrity, high standards, and ethical reporting.”

“I am also proud of our success at uniting journalism and public relations professionals while providing career-enhancing programs and networking opportunities for our members,” said Fulcher.

San Diego Public Agencies Win Communications Awards

Two public agencies in San Diego County were recently honored with communications awards by the California Public Information Officers, a statewide professional trade group of communicators from public sector agencies.

The City of San Marcos received CAPIO Epic Awards for its San Marcos Creek Project groundbreaking ceremony, held December 2019, as well as the project’s logo. The San Marcos Creek Project is a three-year, $104 million construction project to raise the roadways and bridges over San Marcos Creek.

“These awards are a testament to the importance we place on keeping our community informed and involved in key infrastructure projects,” said Tess Sangster, economic development director for the City of San Marcos. The city hired JPW Communications to execute communications activities for the San Marcos Creek project.

In addition, the San Diego County Water Authority was honored with an CAPIO Epic Award for its Water News Network website, launched in mid 2018. Judges lauded the website for keeping stakeholders in mind with design and original content and photos. The water authority said stories from the website are picked up by regional news media on a weekly basis, and the percentage of views generated through organic search has increased 454% since inception.

“Over the past two years, the Water News Network has become a timely and reliable source of news and information about a variety of water issues, projects and programs affecting more than 3.3 million across San Diego County,” said Denise Vedder, public affairs director. “We’re proud to collaborate with our member agencies on this and other outreach and education efforts about region’s most precious natural resource.”

EPIC Award-CAPIO-San Diego County Water Authority-Water News Network

Water News Network Named Best California Public Agency Website

The Water News Network website has been named “Best Website” among California public agencies for 2020 in the California Public Information Officers EPIC Awards competition.

The CAPIO EPIC Awards recognize the “best of the best” in government communications throughout the state. Winning entries demonstrate the most creative and effective efforts in the areas of communication and marketing campaigns, newsletter production, photography, special events, writing, website development and video production.

Original news content praised by judges

The Water News Network received praise from competition judges for keeping all stakeholders in mind when creating the website, and for its initiative in producing original story content and photos. Other finalists in the Best Website/App category were the City of Santa Clara for its SantaClaraCA.gov website redesign; and Contra Costa County for its ‘Virtual Office’ entry.

“Over the past two years, the Water News Network has become a timely and reliable source of news and information about a variety of water issues, projects and programs affecting more than 3.3 million people across San Diego County,” said Water Authority Public Affairs Director Denise Vedder. “We’re proud to collaborate with our member agencies on this and other outreach and education efforts about region’s most precious natural resource.”

EPIC Award for Best Website/App revealed in package

In lieu of an awards ceremony, trophies were mailed to the winning entrants with results revealed upon being opened in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic. Photo: CAPIO

In lieu of an awards ceremony, trophies were mailed to the winning entrants with results revealed upon being opened in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic. Photo: CAPIO

The EPIC Awards honor work that transcends innovation and craft, work that made a lasting impact, providing an equal chance of winning to all entrants regardless of company or agency size and project budget.

Entries are assessed on research and planning efforts that display an understanding of audience objectives and needs for information; development and execution; and how successfully the entrant organization achieves its objectives.

This year’s CAPIO EPIC Awards program drew a record number of 275 entries in all categories from throughout the state of California.

The Water News Network has also won the Best Public Service or Consumer Advocacy Website category for the past two years in the San Diego Press Club‘s Annual Excellence in Journalism Awards.

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