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Lloyd B. Dennis Award

Each year, the Public Affairs and Government (PAG) Section presents the Lloyd. B. Dennis Distinguished Service Award to an exemplary professional who has used his or her public affairs skills to promote truth, demonstrated high standards of integrity and honesty in business dealings, and who has helped effect positive change within an organization.

The award is named in honor of one of the great leaders among public relations practitioners, a true friend to the PRSA, and former chair of the PAG Section, Lloyd B. Dennis.


Nomination Procedures

We are currently accepting nominations for the 2022 Lloyd B. Dennis Award. Any PRSA member may nominate a candidate for the award. The nominee does not need to be a PRSA/PAG Section member, but should be recognized in public affairs, government, military, public sector or regulated industries.

Process for Submitting a Nomination

Write the nomination letter and collect supporting material. The letter of nomination must contain the following information:

  • Statement of the nominee’s achievements. Contribution of the nominee to the practice and profession of public affairs and government public relations, and to the Public Affairs and Government section.
  • The nominee’s volunteer service, board offices and committee assignments with PRSA and/or other industry associations. PRSA PAG involvement highly encouraged.
  • Description of the way the nominee’s involvement in the profession has advanced the practice of public affairs and government public relations.
  • The 2022 nominations are due no later than Sept. 30, and should be submitted to the Public Affairs and Government Section at pag@prsa.org.

Judging Criteria

Nominees must be a current member of the Public Affairs and Government Section and will be judged based on the following criteria:

  • Industry commitment. What has the nominee done to impact the profession and practice of public affairs and government public relations? What has the nominee contributed to the Public Affairs and Government Section of PRSA?
  • Professional experience. How have the individual’s contributions demonstrated ethical public affairs and made a positive impact on government (local, state or national)?
  • Community service. Has the nominee demonstrated a commitment to serving the community? How has the individual changed the lives of those in the community?
  • Judging will take place in August by a panel of former Dennis Award winners with the Section Chair-elect serving as ex officio.
  • Nominees will be informed of the Committee’s decision in early October. Winner will be announced in November, and the award presented during the PRSA International Conference in November 2022.
  • For questions, please contact the Public Affairs and Government Section at pag@prsa.org.


Previous Award Winners

2021: Lori Croy, Director of communications for the Missouri Department of Commerce and Insurance

2020: Judith Webb, Executive Vice President, Communications, International WELL Building Institute

2019: Rick Callender, Chief of External Affairs, Valley Water

2018: Jennifer Day, APR, Great Lakes Regional Coordinator, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

2017: Janelle Guthrie, APR, Fellow PRSA, Communications Director, Washington State Employment Security Department

2016: Capt. Brook DeWalt, APR+M, Fellow PRSA, Chief of Public Affairs, U.S. Strategic Command

2015: Lauri-Ellen Smith, APR, Senior Public Affairs and Public Relations Executive, Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office

2014: David M. Dozier, Ph.D., APR, Fellow PRSA, Professor of Journalism & Media Studies, San Diego State University

2013: Julie H. Wilson, APR, founder and president, Reasons Group, Inc.

2012: No award

2011: No award

2010: Robert Hastings, APR+M, senior vice president, communications, Bell Helicopter

2009: Joseph V. Trahan, III, Ph.D., APR, Fellow PRSA, president/CEO and media relations trainer, Trahan & Associates

2008: Robert E. Dittmer, APR, director, public relations, Indiana Departments of
Revenue and Labor

2007: Col. F. William Smullen, III, director, National Security Studies, Maxwell School of Public Affairs, Syracuse University

2006: James E. Lukaszewski, APR, Fellow PRSA, ABC, chairman and president, The Lukaszewski Group

2005: Dr. Larissa A. Grunig and Dr. James E. Grunig, internationally recognized educators and authors

2004: William Novelli, CEO, AARP and founder and former co-president of Porter Novelli



About Lloyd B. Dennis

Lloyd B. Dennis was president and founder of Dennis & Associates, a public affairs consulting firm he established in 1993. Before launching his firm, Dennis served as executive director of public affairs at the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, the nation’s largest municipal utility. For 15 years prior to that, he served as senior vice president and director of public affairs for First Interstate Bank of California. His Washington, D.C. experience included serving as a speechwriter and public affairs officer to three secretaries of the treasury in the Johnson and Nixon administrations. Before that he worked as a journalist for nearly 10 years at The New York Times, The Baltimore Sun and Congressional Quarterly.

Dennis chaired the PAG Section in 2000 and continued to serve as a member-at-large until his death; and he served as editor of the 1995 book, “Practical Public Affairs in an Era of Change.” He served on the International Editorial Board for the Journal of Public Affairs and was a member of the Los Angeles Chapter of PRSA. Dennis is missed by all who knew him, and remembered for the great good he did in furthering our profession.