APEX 2012 Grand Award Winners


APEX 2012 APEX 2012 APEX 2012 APEX 2012


Where direct links to a specific publication or project are not available, we'll try to link to the organization's main website and/or closely related pages. Links are current when posted, but are subject to change and revision by the award-winning entrants. For example, the link may take you to the latest issue of a winning entry, but not the exact award-winning issue.

Newsletters | Magazines & Journals | Magapapers & Newspapers | Annual Reports | Brochures, Manuals & Reports | Electronic Media | Websites | Campaigns, Programs & Plans | Writing | Design & Illustration | Special Publications



Kraft Foods Delicious You! -- Spring 2011
Jill Folan, Kraft Foods and Towers Watson, Chicago, IL
"Wellness newsletters are a dime a dozen, but this one stands out. The spreads are dynamic and interesting. Copy is concise and to the point, with well researched, factual information reinforced with functional visuals and effective use of captions, screens and sidebars. It's a newsletter that readers will actually pay attention to."

Disney Newsreel -- June 17, 2011 Issue
Steven Clark, The Walt Disney Company, Burbank, CA
"From the (Grand Prix) cover designs (you could cut them out, frame them and hang them on your wall) to the spectacular spreads, each packed with dynamic photos and illustrations, to the very well written, very interesting features and shorts, this is one exceptional employee publication."

VDOT Hampton Roads Report
Brooke N. Grow, Virginia Department of Transportation, Suffolk, VA
"This employee newsletter won't win the ward for SLICK. It's simple and low cost (sent via email and DVD), but what it does do is connect with employees. It's all about them, and agency news -- in a warm, inviting format with plenty of large photos of staff and activities. Nicely done."

Hughston Health Alert -- Winter 2011

Denise Brogdon, The Hughston Foundation, Columbus, GA
"Superbly clear infographics explain complex medical topics and reinforce lively, informative copywriting."

Principal PR: Practical Public Relations Tips for Principals -- January 2012
Allison Grange, Upper Canada District School Board, Brockville, ON
"Practical advice, precisely targeted to the intended audience, with nicely chunked, concise copy in an attractive, easy-reading format. Not much more to ask for in an e-newsletter, or any other newsletter, for that matter."


Magazines & Journals

Food & Nutrition Magazine
Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics and GLC Custom Media, Northbrook, IL
"A striking design features world class photography and type, with interesting, varied headline schedules and very effective charts, sidebars and callouts. If it were a book, it would be on a coffee table."

T. Rowe Price Investor -- June 2011
Dow Jones Content Lab, New York, NY
"Top drawer financial advice -- delivered in a crisp, legible and appealing layout with very functional charts, graphs and illustrations. Copy is clear, interesting and offers an easy guide to complex subject matter."

Journal of Leadership Studies
Jeremy Moreland, Wiley, Hoboken, NJ
"Content is king, a saying which certainly applies to this journal. The well researched, clearly written and carefully edited features each take an in depth look at a complex topic. It's not a casual read, but the reader who brings his or her "A" game will be rewarded with new insights and understanding of leadership decision-making. The article on the effect of groupthink on decisions resulting in the 1996 Everest disaster is a particularly riveting case in point."

BergerWorld -- Engineering Solutions for India's Growing Demand
Warren Miller & Karen Kramer, The Berger Group of Companies, Morristown, NJ
"A well written, well argued persuasive presentation, which is beautifully presented with compelling photography in striking spreads. Nicely done."

PhotoMedia, Fall 2011 -- The Art of Observation
Gary Halpern, The PhotoMedia Group, Inc., Seattle, WA
"Remember people saying they get Playboy for the stories? Well, PhotoMedia is one magazine that you're not embarrassed to get for the photos because the photos and photo layouts are a visual feast -- a treat for the senses. And, the feature articles are the other, compelling reason, with superb insights into the photographs, and with interviews of (and comments by) the pros who took them."

Senior Living Executive -- March/April 2012
Stratton Publishing & Marketing Inc. for Assisted Living Federation, Alexandria, VA
"Good previous magazine, great new version. Superb layout with very appealing contents spread, top notch typography and layout, matched to crisp, clear copywriting."

HB Magazine
Hathaway Brown School, Shaker Heights, OH
"In layout -- photography, illustration, type, paper selection and dynamic spreads -- it's a work of art. Copy also is top drawer, with very interesting profiles, narratives and shorts --not easy to do when your subject matter is solely devoted to news
about alumni. But this is an interesting group of alums -- each with a story to tell."

American Spirit Magazine -- March/April 2012
Edith Rianzares, National Society Daughters of the American Revolution, Washington, DC
"As spectacular as ever, this is a richly designed and beautifully written magazine. Striking spreads feature elegant typography, exceptional illustrations and photos, and interesting, thought-provoking feature articles."

Niagara University Eagle
Lisa McMahon, Niagara University, Niagara University, NY
"The old magazine was good. The new version is better. Clean, elegant, large format design, well chosen and cropped photos, an appealing layout with legible typography on readable matte paper -- all create an impressive backdrop for strong editorial content, with interesting profiles, features and shorts. Well done."

The Penn Stater, January/February 2012
"A powerful issue, prepared in the immediate aftermath of scandal, the editors tackle it with a passionate (and compassionate) intensity. They present student and alumni views evenhandedly, with superb feature articles and visuals. From the front cover to the inside back cover's photo spread, everything tells a story and focuses on the story. A tour de force.

Hallowed Ground -- Summer 2011
Mary Koik, Civil War Trust, Washington, DC
"Beautiful photo spreads, striking typography, a layout jam packed (in a good way) with photo sidebars, usefully long captions and well drawn illustrations -- the design is equally matched by well written, interesting narratives which easily hold the reader's attention."

Phi Kappa Phi Forum -- Fall 2011
Peter Szatmary, The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi, Baton Rouge, LA
"The photos are well chosen and striking, but the heart of this theme issue is a series of intensely written essays, profiles and remembrances about the day. The stories are fascinating and well told, while the analytical pieces are thoughtful and thought provoking. Very well done."

IEEE Power & Energy Magazine -- July/August 2011
Geri Krolin-Taylor, Janet Dudar, Gail Schnitzer, IEEE, Piscataway, NJ
"It's not the prettiest design to ever come down the pike, but instead offers clean, simple, functional layout and illustration. Many of the illustrations and visuals have an almost infographic quality, and effectively reinforce the well researched and well written content. For a technical audience, this magazine in a keeper."

SWE, Magazine of the Society of Women Engineers, Spring 2012
Anne Perusek, Society of Women Engineers, Cleveland Heights, OH
"This is one print magazine that feels good in the hand. Nice heft, and a very readable, matte paper stock. Cogent, well researched and well written features display a subtlety and depth of coverage you don't always find in association periodicals. Clearly, some competent folks are editing this one. And all that solid content is nicely displayed, from the striking contents page to the very attractive and readable layout. Illustration, photography and type are first class throughout."


Magapapers & Newspapers
Green Sheet -- December 26, 2011

The Green Sheet, Inc., Santa Rosa, CA
"This industry periodical is tightly focused, but offers tremendous depth of thoroughly researched coverage -- all in a well written, interesting (and instantly recognizable) format. If you want fancy graphics, look elsewhere. But if you want to know what's going on in the field, then this is your publication."

Infectious Disease News -- March 2012
Infectious Disease News Editorial Staff, SLACK Incorporated, Thorofare, NJ
"Clean, attractive, well designed spreads frame the copy, which -- despite its technical nature -- is easy to read, offering a wealth of useful news and advice. What a magapaper should be.

Emergency Medicine News -- September 2011

Lisa Hoffman, Wolters Kluwer Health, New York, NY
"Content is absolutely first rate, with interesting, in-depth features that do an exceptional job of targeting topics to which emergency medicine professionals should be paying attention. Layout and typography are clean and readable, but the key to this magapaper is the richness and depth of the editorial well."

ASCO Daily News -- June 5, 2011
American Society of Clinical Oncology, ASCO Daily News, Alexandria, VA
"Conference dailies are very hard to do well under intense time pressure, but these achieve that rare goal. They are readable, interesting and well illustrated, in an appealing layout."

Sandia Lab News -- 9/11 Issue
Sandia Lab News Team, Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM
"Intense personal recollections mix with very interesting feature articles describing Sandia's role in the aftermath of 9/11. Powerful, compelling copy in a clean, attractive layout. Hard to ask for more."

Annual Reports
Breakfast for Learning 2011 Annual Report
Vince Rozas, Ariad Communications, Toronto, ON
"This charming annual report has a lot of eye appeal and a warm, inviting look. Appealing typography, attention getting illustrations and effective use of infographics combine to make this a very powerful, first rate annual report design."

2011 Annual Report: Energizing the World One BTU at a Time
Peabody Energy, St. Louis, MO
"An annual report that is both a report and a rationale for generating energy from coal. Visuals are bold, clear and effective, with functional charts and graphics which reinforce the copy's points. After reading this report, you come away realizing that coal is an essential -- and perhaps the dominant -- element in global energy supply increases over the next two decades. Powerful stuff."

2010 Sustainability Report: Leading Change

Tammy Stankey, The Doe Run Company, St. Louis, MO
"This impressive Sustainability Report offers a very appealing layout, with superb infographics that clearly demonstrate a very complex manufacturing process. Copy is not overlooked, with an interesting, crisply written and thorough presentation of the company's sustainability work. The takeaway is they've done really well, and that you ought to buy shares."

South Bank Corporation Annual Report 2010-2011

South Bank Corporation, Brisbane Australia
"A stunning annual report, with a clean, appealing design featuring striking photo spreads on an attractive matte paper -- all combined to frame a powerful message -- the bank's good works during the previous year, and its commitment to improving environmental quality. The report, of course, prints on recycled paper and is delivered via bicycle -- a sustainable method! But our favorite feature is that selected pages in the report are printed on seeded paper. They can be torn out, planted and, with luck, and a green thumb, flowers will grow."

Hebrew SeniorLife Report to the Community
Jennifer Davis, Hebrew SeniorLife, Boston, MA
"Rational, sensible and compassionate, this well designed and written annual report lays out an exceptionally persuasive strategy for senior care. A powerful communications piece."

WGBH 2011-2012 Annual Report: Constant. Change.
WGBH, Boston, MA
"A gem of an annual report -- clean, refined layout with spreads packed with photos, illustrations and much interesting copy. Screens, headline schedules, captions and a very nice (and very readable) matte paper choice all blend to make the whole greater than the sum of its parts."

Howard University Annual Report 2010-2011
Howard University, Washington DC
"Beautifully done, with appealing visuals and very interesting narrative flow -- not always found in an annual report format, where you're obliged to include a vast range of constituents. Here, the inclusion is deft, and does not interfere with the impact of the report."

2011 Annual Report to the Community
Peel District School Board, Mississauga, ON
"Superb, intuitive navigation in a clean, appealing, easy-reading layout offers easily digested copy 'chunks' packed with illustrations, charts, graphs and photos -- and plenty of links and opportunities to give feedback. Very effective, and very hard to ignore -- which is the whole point."


Brochures, Manuals & Reports
Ernst & Young Tax Guide 2012
Ernst & Young LLP, New York, NY
"Is there anything denser than the tax code? The complexity makes preparing a tax guide a massive, complex challenge -- which this guide handles with exceptional clarity of both well researched content and layout."

The Path to Your Retirement
FedEx Corporation - Retirement Plans, Memphis, TN
"A very thoughtful, well planned and clearly presented guide for employees approaching retirement. Useful. Well done. Impressive."

Health Advocate Holiday Party Playbill
Health Advocate, Inc., Plymouth Meeting, PA
"Very creative takeoff on Broadway playbills with first rate layout and clever copy. A very appealing and effective way to showcase employees and build morale. The title says it all. 'There's No People...Like Our People.'"

Airborne Maritime/ Fixed Joint Tactical Radio System

Creative & Strategic Services, Lockheed Martin, Richland, WA
"Persuasive, clear, powerful message -- delivered with fast paced, dynamic video, enhanced by well chosen soundtracks, together with striking print materials, including attractive brochures, and even a 'lay-flat' item that, when released, pops up and becomes a box in the shape of a tactical radio. Clever. And nicely done."

Your Wellness Program
Just Got Better

Mario Medina, Madison Miles Media, Arlington, TX
"Stunning, bold spreads with superb photography support concise, well-written, persuasive copy. An excellent and very effective sales brochure. It's one for your coffee table."

2011 Summer Art in China
Zhiyuan Cong, Thomas G. Uhlein, William Paterson University,
Wayne, NJ
"Striking photo spreads and a compelling narrative with storytelling reminiscent of Marco Polo make this an exceptional guide to -- and a record of -- one group's journey of exploration and discovery."

American Cancer Society Complete Guide to Family Caregiving, Second Edition
Len Boswell, American Cancer Society, Atlanta GA
"A marvelously thorough, interesting and well written guide to cancer caregiving at home. The writing, typography and illustration are geared to the needs of a layperson, and do an excellent job of conveying the content. It's a real keeper."

KUA Energy Conservation Guide

Chris Gent, Kissimmee Utility Authority, Kissimmee, FL
"A remarkable and exceptionally well done booklet which explains that electric bills don't always go up for the reason you might think. The striking design employs a retro style notebook format, complete with typewriter-like text. The line illustrations are clear and self-explanatory, while the handwritten notes, arrows and underlines (in red) stand out against the uncoated tan, beige and creme colored paper stock. All of this design frames the well written, nicely chunked copy and provides bulleted advice -- from your home's windows to the bathtub -- on lowering energy costs. It's genuinely helpful."

Electronic Media
Elite Access Multimedia
Jackson's Marketing Group, Jackson National Life Insurance, Denver, CO
"Very persuasive video narrative. The visual points -- illustrated with a felt-tip pen as the narrative proceeds -- are quite effective and a smart, humanizing touch. The topic is well researched, the key points are convincingly presented with great clarity and impact, and after 12 minutes of video, you're quite ready to hand over your life savings, or a good chunk of it, to this investment strategy."

The MatrixFiles.net Blog
Joanna Pineda, Matrix Group International, Inc., Arlington, VA
"A very readable blog, showcasing cutting edge topics with functional, appealing visuals, legible typography, and well-written, interesting and just-the-right-length posts. An excellent example of what a blog should be."

AAA Living Digital Edition, March / April 2011 - Michigan
Pace Communications / AAA Living, Greensboro, NC
"The striking thing about this electronic magazine is the complete extent to which the editorial and production staff have fully utilized the electronic medium. Every article has links. Almost every article is interactive in some way (or multiple ways). Imbedded videos are common, both in the editorial well and the space ads. And, through all this, very appealing spreads -- with attractive typography, photos and illustration -- showcase interesting, concisely written travel features. An A+."

TD Ameritrade Ticker Tape Quarterly
T3 Publishing, Woodinville, WA
"From the simple yet powerful cover design, to the clean, striking layout with first rate type schedule and appealing photography and illustration, and nicely intuitive Web navigation tools, this new online magazine is a tour de force. Equally effective are the thoughtful, analytical features -- each specifically targeted to the magazine's audience, and each written with a lively pace and exceptional clarity, for both a lay and an expert audience."

BizConnect E-book
Sophia Dower, Words'worth, Parkview, South Africa
"A very well organized and extensive 200 plus page easy-navigating online guide. The appealing and exceptionally well designed spreads make it possible for readers to quickly grasp the key points. Nicely 'chunked' copy, frequent numbered and bulleted lists, and effective use of screens, decks and subheads are the key design elements, which reinforce the well written, practical copy."

Bryan on Scouting
Scouting, Boy Scouts of America, Irving, TX
"The content is superb -- exciting topics, interesting copywriting, packed with actionable info -- all of it well chosen, and thoroughly presented in a clean, appealing, bold layout. Definitely worth bookmarking."

ASU Alumni Association Career Blog
Liz Massey, ASU Alumni Association, Tempe, AZ
"Excellent, simple, bold design with crisp, well written features -- each offering valuable career advice, along with useful and well-reasoned feedback from posters. Each blog post also offers pertinent, well chosen links to related content. Well done. Oh, and we particularly liked the 'tips for meeting impossible deadlines' post."

Javelina Today zmags
Cheryl Cain, Texas A & M University-Kingsville, Kingsville, TX
"Well implemented ePub version deftly incorporates video clips and YouTube within the spreads, to reinforce the lively, interesting feature articles and attractive layout. Very creative. Very cutting edge. They know their audience well."


Site Selection
Mark Arend, Conway Data, Inc., Norcross, GA
"An enormous, in depth, resource-rich site. Research first rate. Reporting first rate. If you're in the development business, this is the site you should be reading first."

The Truth About Money TV Website
Ric Edelman, Edelman Financial Services LLC, Fairfax, VA
"Funny, interesting, well researched and scripted, this site is packed with useful, informative, personal finance videos. Definitely worth bookmarking."

Great-West Retirement Services Participant Website Redesign
Kedra Hood, Great-West, Greenwood Village, CO
"These folks know their audience -- employees with at least some computer literacy. The website's home page has an iPad/apps look to it -- very effective, very well organized. The site is rich in in-depth content, well illustrated and clearly written -- with extensive 'help' sections to advise on financial planning, portfolio construction, retirement goals, and much more. It's a top-notch site, whose redesign is superb.

Merrill Lynch Advisor -- Test Your Financial IQ Infographic
John von Brachel, Merrill Lynch, Pennington, NJ
"A simple, powerful message, delivered with superb clarity in an interesting, interactive format, which is deftly (and successfully) targeted to its intended audience."

Kimberly Draper, Journalistic, Inc., Durham, NC
"Fine books. Fine website. Striking homepage, appealing illustrations, photography and attractive, readable type all blend to create just the right framework for interesting features, interviews, blog entries and news items. A very readable, very viewable site."

McKnight's Staff, McKnight's Long-Term Care News, Northfield, IL
"You could get lost in this homepage, and happily so. It's huge, and the visually interesting layout (nothing 'trick', mind you) contains an enormous depth and range of topics as you scroll down the very long page. In theory, so much data on a home page shouldn't work, but it does. Each story offers both a functional, descriptive head and a short deck to give readers a quick sense of the article. Pros in this field can keep their finger on the pulse just by skimming the homepage. But, of course, many drill through to read the full articles -- the whole point -- and other site resources, easily tapped via the drop down menus."

Young Moms Connect Website
Karen Gupton, North Carolina Health Start Foundation, Raleigh, NC
"Superb organization, with clean legible layout and typography. Very informative content -- concisely written, with top notch links."

Making it Click at ontarioshores.ca
Susan Nakhle, Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences, Whitby, ON
"Impressive range of content in this well-designed and resource-rich site. Everything works well, navigation is first rate and copy is clear, well written and cleanly presented."

Hesston College Website -- www.hesston.edu
Hesston College Marketing & Communications, Hesston College, Hesston, KS
"Old site: Good. New site: Superb. Beautiful, bold, striking design, top drawer. Very natural photography, excellent use of white space to frame the content, and clean readable type. Drop down menu navigation is intuitive and easy. Imbedded links take you where you need to go. Once there, content is thorough and concise, well written and informative."

Chip Boyd, Society For Technical Communication, Fairfax, VA
"Top drawer website in both design and content. Layout is clear, functional and attractive, with easy, intuitive navigation. A massive site, packed with a vast amount of valuable information and expertise -- all of it easily accessible."


Campaigns, Programs & Plans

Virtual Acquisition Office: Suite of Federal Acquisition Publications
Knowledge and Learning Products Division, ASI Government, Inc., Arlington, VA
"A very well researched and edited suite of publications -- all crisply written to made the tedious and impenetrable both readable and informative, and -- dare we say -- almost interesting. Rather a remarkable feat, considering the fairly dense subject matter."

Ford Frontline-February/March 2011
Ford Product Team, Ford Motor Company, Troy, MI
"Yes, it's a magazine -- but it's really a top notch education and tra0ining 'vehicle' (pun intended) -- a campaign masquerading as a magazine -- a very visually active and interesting magazine with dynamic action spreads, superb photography and short, chunked, bulleted text, with plenty of sidebars, illustrations and infographics to leaven the mix and hold the target audience's attention from cover to cover."

2012 Hearst Annual Enrollment Campaign
Andreau Blanchard, Mercer, New York, NY
"Very clever heading (Rock Enroll) for this rock 'n roll-themed annual enrollment campaign. It covers a complicated (and for employees, stressful) topic, but does so in a positive way, with well presented comparisons and option choices. Copywriting and graphics are clear and easily understood, while the navigation is easy and functional. And the interactive tools are particularly useful in helping employees make the best choices for plan coverage."

Recycle Moore
Brent Wheelbarger, Trifecta Communications, Moore, OK
"This recycling campaign is just too funny -- complete with kids' crayon pages (space aliens saying, 'Take us to your litter!') and green 'Let's Talk trash' wristbands. There's more of course -- well prepared multimedia materials, inclusive environmental videos and handouts from t-shirts to cloth grocery bags. An effective campaign. Even the title contributes, with its play on words, 'Recycle Moore.' Get it?"

Fine-tuning Your Investments to be Well Diversified
Gregory Spears, The Vanguard Group, Malvern, PA
"This is a step-by-step guide -- and a very well thought out one -- to building and running your investment plan. The well written and illustrated content is clear, easy to grasp, and -- if acted on -- will likely outperform the majority of the whiz-bang investment strategies touted by Wall Street. This is the epitome of clear communication."

Arthritis Today Track & React
Arthritis Today, Arthritis Foundation, Atlanta, GA
"A very smart campaign to help people track their daily activities and use that information to see how activities impact their arthritis. A very effective and helpful online program."

The Story of Us
Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan (HOOPP), Toronto, ON
"Wow. What a marvelous, pocket sized, little green book, that -- in a warm, inviting, interesting way -- describes for HOOPP employees the nature and culture of their organization. The copy is written with persuasive intensity, while the typography and illustration are delightfully varied from spread to spread. But in the end, the sum is far greater than its parts."

Space Shuttle Program Campaign
Dryden Flight Research Center, Edwards, CA
"An impressive campaign -- well thought out and effectively presented with lively, interesting powerful copy matched to superb visuals. Absolutely first rate."

Avenues for Hope Housing Challenge
Marketing and Communications Department, Home Partnership Foundation - Idaho Housing and Finance Association, Boise, ID
"An extensive, thoroughly planned and organized campaign with broad reach across all media. Crisp copy and appealing visuals reinforce the message. Can't think of anything they've missed."



Americana / American Way
American Airlines Publishing, Fort Worth, TX
" The writing is superb -- interesting, compelling and powerful in its ability to involve readers in the stories and leave them quietly satisfied at the end."

Sustainable Efforts Advertorial
Michael Corcoran, Bloomberg L.P., New York, NY
"Persuasive and well researched, it holds the reader through a range of sub-stories to the very end. Copy is crisp, interesting and informative. A good read."

10 Steps to Readable Communications
Marie Gettel-Gilmartin, CH2M HILL, Portland, OR
"An exemplar of how-to communication, in which clear, well organized and informative copy gets the point across with liberal use of well chosen visual examples. Really a first rate effort, and worth bookmarking."

Forward - The Burden of Taxation
Imagination Publishing, Chicago, IL
"A thoughtful, thought provoking and persuasive feature. The article defines the problem, analyzes the key issues, in detail, and makes persuasive recommendations. In-depth research shows through, as does the clarity of writing, which makes a complex financial topic both readily grasped and interesting. No easy feat."

In The Line of Fire - GX Magazine
Camille Breland, Nashville, TN
"The first paragraph is an attention-getter, and it gets better from there. A fascinating and exceptionally well written portrait of a life well lived."

Glen Campell: The Last Ride
Allan Richter, Energy Times, Melville, NY
"A compelling, poignant story, told with empathy and insight. Once you start reading, it pulls you through to the end."

Frantic Chase
Carole Liston, Write Solutions, Joplin, MO
"A strikingly moving account, grippingly told with such power and intensity that you simply cannot stop reading it."

Towering Imagination
Robert L. Reid, Civil Engineering Magazine, Reston, VA
"A fascinating read, it holds the reader's attention, presenting complex technical information in an interesting and easy reading style."

Let's Make a (Business) Deal
Tom Schuman and Rebecca Patrick, Indiana Chamber of Commerce/BixVoice Magazine, Indianapolis, IN
"Superbly researched, interviewed and written articles on the 'art of the business deal.' A range of valuable information from case histories to anecdotes to specific tips makes this series a worthwhile read."

Northeastern Law Magazine-Not in My Back Yard
Northeastern Law Magazine, Northeastern University School of Law, Boston, MA
"Very well written, very compelling look at a difficult topic -- powerfully told, with a riveting, intense narrative."


Design & Illustration
Winds of Change -- Tackling the Obesity Crisis
The Pohly Company, Boston, MA
"Type and illustration combine to create a bold, stark, stunning visual impact far stronger than the sum of its parts. This is a potent design, which makes creative use of white space to reinforce the layout's central theme. "

SilverKris -- January 2012
Joanna Lee-Miller, SPH Magazines Pte Ltd, Singapore
"From excellent to excellent -- that's the story here. The 'old' magazine was top drawer in every respect, but the new magazine edges by it, with stunning, varied spreads, which still manage to carry through the magazine's central design theme. Photography is world class, with informative captions used to full effect. While exciting and dynamic, the layout does not distract from the interesting content, but rather reinforces it. A top drawer effort."

Capital Acumen -- Issue 19, 2011
Jean Fitzgerald, Time Inc. Content Solutions, New York, NY
"'Less is more,' designers often say, and it's certainly true for this clean, simple, very effective visual. Using foliage imagery, each of four leaves in the design aptly reinforces its 'season' -- and the cover title, 'A Portfolio for All Seasons.' It just couldn't be any better."

UBM Electronics' Design News Redesign
UBM Electronics, New York, NY
"A cleaner design, starting at the well arranged homepage, with functional (and very appreciated) blurbs under each headline -- so you don't have to click through to see what it's about. Someone's obviously graduated from Web Design 101, and then some. The homepage goes on forever. It's really quite amazing, maybe one for the record books? But it works. You keep scrolling, and finding items of interest. Navigation works well throughout the rest of the site, with each feature article offering comments and related links."

AYP Magazine
Jen Smith, Network Media Partners, Inc., Hunt Valley, MD
"The 'before' version was a good, clean design, but the 'after' makeover really shines. It makes wonderful use of white space, and employs the headline schedule as a bold, varied design element. Decks, pull quotes and illustrations work exceptionally well together to reinforce the attractive spreads."

Grasshopper Business Card
Paul G. Feith, Paul Gregory Media, Naperville, IL
"A very beautiful and memorable die-cut design, whose slogan -- we know GRASS -- pops out of a background field of ... grass, of course. Beveled corners and a scanner code on the back are nice additional touches. In all, a superb business card for a landscaping company called Grasshopper Lawn Care. Their card makes you want to visit their website."

Engendering Trust
Rose Richey, Military Officers Association of America, Alexandria, VA
"Powerful, compelling layout with photo spreads and individual photos that 'put you there' -- all legibly captioned, with each photo carefully chosen to reinforce the visual impact of the spread. A superb design effort."

The New Basics
Julie Fournier, National Association of REALTORS -- REALTOR Magazine, Chicago, IL
"Top drawer design. Attention getting spreads display excellent illustration and typography, with care intelligently taken to ensure readability. Illustration reinforces the content, as does effective use of screens and white space. All is as it should be, design that is subtle, but effective. A very appealing look."

National Nutrition Month 2011 Poster
Sharon Denny and Georgia Gofis, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Chicago, IL
"In this wonderfully simple, elegant, powerful message, a few choice words and a clear, dynamic visual convey the message instantly and with great effect."

Resources Page -- www.carf.org/resources
Publications & Communications, CARF International, Tucson, AZ
"A very visually appealing design, very contemporary, very cutting edge, very striking. An excellent and functional redesign."

Go Teach -- March 2012 Table of Contents Page
Erin Young, Phi Delta Kappa International, Bloomington, IN
"Contents pages aren't normally contenders in a 'spreads' category, but this contents page (spread) is. It's a simple -- but very effective -- design, with an almost infographic quality that nicely previews the issue. Creative use of white space, illustration and legible, bold type -- combined with the briefest of blurbs -- makes for a whole greater than the sum of its parts."


Special Publications

AADE -- Managing Diabetes: Complications and Comorbidities
Cameron Bishop, Ascend Integrated Media, Overland Park, KS
"Impressively researched with a clean, well-organized format and crisp, clear, informative writing. This is a book, but it also functions as a reference manual -- a task made easier by the lay-flat spiral binding and the tab-style markers that aid in quickly finding specific topics."

Superbowl XLVI Program
NFL/H.O. Zimman, Inc., Lynn, MA
"Spectacular in virtually every way. Lively, interesting, informed copy keeps you reading, while the exceptional, pro-level action photos and lavish spreads reinforce the copy themes. A stunning, sensory delight."

2012 Pella Architectural Design Manual
Technical Publications Group, Pella Corporation, Pella, IA
"This manual exudes quality. A massive work, yet clearly organized and designed with the end user in mind. The many technical illustrations are superbly rendered, photography is top drawer, and content is well written, concise and interesting. What more could one ask for?"

Live Full Throttle by Tamela Rich
SPARK Publications, Matthews, NC
"Magnificent stories, movingly told, with compelling copy and striking photo spreads. It's a real page-turner."

Super-Charge Your Staff Meetings
Mara Dresner, Strategies, Centerbrook, CT
"A clever concept that showcases a lot of creative thinking, this compact spiral notebook offers 52 solid ideas for motivating and engaging staff members during meetings. The tips are helpful, concise, and each tip has space to add notes to customize the ideas."

eGFI 5th Edition Magazine: Dream Up the Future
eGFI Team, American Society for Engineering Education, Washington, DC
"Stunning illustrations and photography in dynamic, interesting spreads. Excellent use of well written copy -- nicely chunked where needed -- with well placed callouts and functional captions. A very unique publication."

9/11 -- A Look Back
Public Affairs, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New York, NY
"This special issue of New York District Times offers a powerful, well written narrative of the events on 9/11, with compelling interviews of participants, an attractive layout and well-chosen, well-captioned photographs."

Unmatched: The Spectacle and Sport of the US Open
Rick Rennert, United States Tennis Association, White Plains, NY
"Spectacular photography in beautifully designed, oversized spreads, with very effective, very readable captions. Copy is short, but very well written, and keeps you moving through the book, until you reach the end -- and wish there were more."

Milk & Oranges
Charlene Wexler, Central Park Communications, Chicago, IL
"A marvelous storyteller, the author keeps you reading from start to finish of each essay, and then on to the next. Warm, funny, poignant, interesting. Wonderful stories, all."

Loving our Neighbors Coloring Book
Barbara Lewis, Lutheran Social Services of Michigan, Detroit, MI
"Very effective narrative explains the concept of helping neighbors with special needs, all in coloring book form, geared perfectly to their intended audience -- children. Exceptionally well done."

Guide to Health Care Waste Management for the Community Health Worker
"A compact, easy to carry and use, spiral bound guide offers clear, wonderfully illustrated, step-by-step guidelines for safely managing and disposing of medical waste in challenging environments."

Afghanistan War: A 10th Anniversary Commemorative
Richard K. Kolb, VFW Magazine, Kansas City, MO
"A simple, attractive layout, appealing, well cropped photos, functional captions and infographics -- all reinforce the fast paced, interesting and very readable features. This special issue is a real page turner and a compelling read."

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Best of luck in APEX 2021!

Ken Turtoro
Executive Editor
The APEX Awards
Communications Concepts, Inc.

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The judges comment on the APEX® Awards, as well as writing, editing, publishing and media topics.


See top award-winning APEX entries below.

Peabody Energy, St. Louis, MO ... "An annual report that is both a report and a rationale for generating energy from coal. Visuals are bold, clear and effective, with functional charts and graphics which reinforce the copy's points. After reading this report, you come away realizing that coal is an essential -- and perhaps the dominant -- element in global energy supply increases over the next two decades. Powerful stuff."

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