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HomeClarion Awards - Judges & Requirements
Clarion Award Judges & Requirements

Clarion Judges have more than 10 years experience in the communications field. Click here to learn more about the criteria required to become a judge.

2020 Clarion Award Judges

Danette Baker

Danette Baker is director of external relations communications for the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center. She is active in the AWC Lubbock Professional Chapter and serves as president of the PRSA West Texas chapter. Danette also maintains a freelance communication business, offering writing, editing and proofreading services and has taught public relations as an adjunct instructor in the College of Media & Communications at Texas Tech University.

Stephanie Duquenne

Stephanie Duquenne is a Director for Alumni Engagement at Illinois State University and has been with the University since 2009. She received both her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from the School of Communication at ISU. In 2018 she received an Organizational Leadership Certificate from the College of Business at Illinois State University. She is a 2014 graduate of McLean County’s Multicultural Leadership Program and in the current class of Leadership Illinois.

Stephanie’s role focuses on executing Illinois State University’s longest standing tradition, Homecoming, along with being the Alumni Engagement’s liaison for government relations work and affinity and class-based reunions. She also teaches at ISU’s School of Communication, teaching a class that focuses on business and organizational communication.

Stephanie is the President of the Bloomington-Normal’s chapter for the Association for Women in Communication and serves as the PR chair on the Community Players Theater Board of Directors. She also volunteers for the Miss America Organization serving as a certified Miss America Organization 2.0 judge.

Peggy Fleming

Peggy Fleming has worked mainly in the financial services industry for over 35 years. She is currently Director of Communications at a community bank where she built their first Intranet, writes the employee newsletter, designs forms, documents and presentations, facilitates events and employee community involvement, and manages promotional materials.

Jeanette Gass

Jeanette Gass is Manager, Global Programs at the International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP) where she works in international programming and communications. Before joining IASP, she worked at The Optical Society and the University of Maryland. Outside of work, she is the Secretary/Treasurer for the AWC Washington DC Professional Chapter, volunteers with ASAE: The Center for Association Leadership, and has served in a number of volunteer positions with Phi Sigma Pi National Honor Fraternity. She holds an MS in Nonprofit and Association Management, an MA in Global Communication and a BA in International Studies and Anthropology.

Joanne Gerstner

Peggy earned her BA in Journalism from Drake University in Des Moines where she belonged to the student chapter of Women in Communications, Inc. (now AWC). While working as a technical writer at The Principal Financial Group, Peggy helped to found a local chapter of the Society for Technical Communications. Returning to AWC in 2007, she has served as Secretary and Communications Chair in the Greater Des Moines Chapter and is now Chapter President. She also serves as Co-Chair of the Marketing/Communications Committee on the national level.

Gerstner's book, "Back in the Game: Why Concussion Doesn't Have to End Your Athletic Career", was honored with the national 2017 Clarion Award for best non-fiction. 

Kristi Kawanna-Havener

Kristi Kawanna-Havener is a communications and branding strategist with an extensive background in content strategy, digital marketing and event management. She is currently Senior Brand Content Strategist for SME, a nonprofit organization supporting the manufacturing industry. Kristi has experience in B2B and B2C markets and taught interpersonal communication courses with a focus on emotion theory and research at Governors State University. Additionally, Kristi earned a M.S. and B.A. in Communication from Illinois State University and served as Chairperson for the Illinois State University Chicago Young Alumni Network. Kristi lives in Detroit, MI and enjoys urban exploration, documenting street art, travel and spending time with her husband, Tyler, and senior rescue dog, Babe.

Roberta Kelly

Roberta Kelly holds undergraduate degrees in animal science, biology and journalism and a master's degree in veterinary science.  Since 1985, she has taught writing in communication, reporting and science writing courses at Washington State University and the University of Idaho.  She directs the core beginning writing course and supervises the Peer Mentor Program in the Edward R. Murrow College of Communication at WSU.  In addition, she freelance edits and was a member of several research teams.  Kelly twice served as president of the Pacific Northwest Association of Journalism Educators and serves on its board and was twice journalism program head at WSU.  She also served six years as assistant dean of undergraduate studies for the Edward R. Murrow College of Communication and since 1999 has advised the WSU Pullman student chapter of AWC.  She is a member of the WSU President's Teaching Academy and a 2015 Outstanding Faculty Member of the Year.

Pat Meads

Pat Meads has been a member of AWC since 1976 – in the Twin Cities chapter in Minnesota, then Kansas City, and now as an Independent member. She spent 39 years in Sales Promotion, Advertising, Marketing and Event Planning in Minneapolis and Kansas City.  Pat is now retired but stays active in communications through volunteer activities with non-profits in Kansas City, and as a member of the AWC national board of directors. Pat is currently serving as your treasurer on the national board, and treasurer on the board of directors for the AWC Advancement Fund. This is Pat’s 16th year as a Clarion judge.

Lisa Nalewak

Lisa Nalewak has over 20 years of experience as a Marketing Communications professional. She has held senior positions with start-ups and established companies in the publishing, consumer electronics and Internet services industries. Her expertise in creative, copywriting, branding, integrated marketing strategies and consumer behavior has enabled her to successfully deploy profitable MarComm initiatives for established companies and to position her start-up companies for successful acquisition. Lisa is the Vice President of Marketing for SavvyCard, a consumer engagement and digital marketing platform she co-founded in 2010.

You can read more about Lisa and her accomplishements as well as follow her on social media by visiting her SavvyCard at 

Linda Strelluf

Linda Strelluf has been engaged in the study and practice of oral, written, and visual media for more than thirty-two years. Following this passion, she received a BA in Speech from the University of Missouri-Kansas City and earned a master's degree in both Film and Literature from Baker University.

In 2018 Strelluf was awarded the rank of Professor Emerita at Avila University, where she taught a variety of media, communication, popular culture, and public relation’s classes. During her 18 years at Avila, her students won more than 150 local, regional, national, and international awards.

Before coming to Avila, Strelluf was a high school English, communication and theatre teacher, a company agent for Starlight Theatre, worked on promotions for a national theatre chain, lectured on how to overcome audience anxiety, and conducted seminars on how to access creativity. In 1986, Strelluf founded a small company and in 1998, affiliated with Country Sampler Group.

Strelluf was elected to the Board of Directors of the Association for Women in Communication. She served for three years, as the board liaison to 36 colleges, and the Chair of the Clarion Committee. Strelluf has been a Clarion judge for the past fifteen years. She has also served on the advisory board for St. Joseph Institute for the Deaf, as a judge for the Stevie Awards, and as an advisor to student members of the International Association of Business Communicators.

In all aspects of her life Strelluf continues to explore her fascination with all forms of creative expression and media with her latest project in 2019, White Dog Studio.

Judge Selection Criteria

Please review the following Judge Selection Criteria to make sure you are eligible for judging the Clarion Awards competition. Judges must:

  1. Download and submit an application - Application Deadline - April 1, 2020
  2. Have at least 10 years of professional experience or hold a master’s degree in a relevant discipline.
  3. Have routine access to e-mail.
  4. Have routine access to high-speed internet.
    Be able to access the following file formats: Images (jpeg, png, psd), Documents (pdf, doc, docx), Audio/Video (mpg, avi, mov, wav, mp3, wmv, mp4).
  5. Feel comfortable learning new technology.
  6. Agree to have her/his bio and photo posted on the AWC website acknowledging her/his role as a judge.
  7. Agree to provide written feedback via email (through AWC HQ) for any entrant who requests. 
  8. Judges will receive registration information for the Clarion Awards Judges Site at the time their applications are accepted. This online registration must be completed by April 28, 2020. Assistance will be provided for any questions that may arise during the registration process. Once all judges are registered, they will be assigned specific categories. Entries in these categories will be made available to the judges online via the Clarion Awards Judges Site.
  9. Judges will be required to complete and submit their judging scores online by June 12, 2020.
  10. Judges may select one winning entry per category. If a judge determines that no award is merited for a category an explanation must be submitted to AWC headquarters by emailing

If you meet all of the above criteria, please complete the Clarion Awards Judge Application to be considered for a judging position in the 2020 Clarion Awards Competition.  Please complete the application and either email to the AWC National office or print and mail to The Association for Women in Communications,1717 E Republic Rd., Ste. A. Springfield, MO 65804.