2022 Online Pacemakers

NSPA names ‘best of the best’

Pacemaker competition recognizes
20 news sites for journalistic excellence

April 9, 2022

LOS ANGELES — Honoring the nation’s best, National Scholastic Press Association named 20 scholastic news sites as prestigious Pacemaker winners.

The online winners, plus the 2022 Innovation Pacemaker, 2021 Literary Arts Magazine Pacemaker and 2021 Yearbook Pacemaker winners, were announced for the first time during the closing awards ceremony of the JEA/NSPA Spring National High School Journalism Convention on April 9.

“The Pacemaker is the association’s preeminent award,” Executive Director Laura Widmer said. “NSPA is honored to recognize the best of the best.”

The NSPA Pacemaker, one of the oldest awards for scholastic journalism, has a rich tradition. The association started presenting the prestigious award to high school newspapers soon after the organization was founded in 1921. Throughout the years, yearbooks, magazines, online sites and broadcast programs were added to the competition. The organization is celebrating its 100th birthday this year.

To select the Pacemaker finalists, judges carefully studied approximately 140 sites submitted from 31 states and three countries. On March 3, NSPA announced 47 online sites as 2022 Pacemaker finalists.

The 20 Pacemakers represent 12 states. California and Texas led with three Pacemakers each. In all, entries from 16 states were recognized as either finalists or Pacemakers.

Two teams of three judges studied every entry, analyzing its strengths. The status of each entry was agreed upon by at least two of the three judges.

The sites competed in two different categories based on school population. Judges did not evaluate the size category that included their school.

Judges, from six states, served on two judging teams. The team leaders were award-winning collegiate advisers —

Amy DeVault, Wichita State University
Kelly Furnas, Elon University

Four advisers of Pacemaker-winning scholastic websites and publications also served as judges —

Vincent DeMiero, Washington
Lori Keekley, Minnesota
Julia Satterthwaite, California
Jim Streisel, Indiana

The online sites competed in two different categories based on school population. Two teams of three judges studied every entry, analyzing its strengths. The status of each entry was agreed upon by at least two of the three judges.

In this competition, only the online news product was judged. The news sites were either digital companions to print newspapers and newsmagazines or online-only products. In all, 91 sites were companions to print newspapers and newsmagazines and 44 were online-only products.

A separate 2021 NSPA Newspaper/Newsmagazine Pacemaker competition recognized 66 print news publications and specialty magazines in November. In all, 23 schools earned Pacemaker recognition for both their print and online products.

To celebrate its centennial, NSPA compiled the Pacemaker 100 — its top 100 Pacemaker winners.

Best of Show
Spring National High School Journalism Convention
Los Angeles
April 9, 2022

2022 Online Pacemaker winners

Berkeley High Jacket
Berkeley High School, Berkeley, California
Editor: Estella Zhou
Adviser: Peter Rodrigues

The Oracle
The Archer School for Girls, Los Angeles, California
Editor: Vaughan Anoa’i
Adviser: Kristin Taylor

Harker Aquila
The Harker School, San Jose, California
Editors: Alysa Suleiman, Nicole Tian
Adviser: Ellen Austin

U-High Midway
University of Chicago Laboratory High School, Chicago, Illinois
Editors: Lucia Kouri, Berk Oto, Peter Pu
Adviser: Logan Aimone

Carmel High School, Carmel, Indiana
Editors: Cady Armstrong, Chloe Sun
Adviser: Jim Streisel

The Little Hawk
City High School, Iowa City, Iowa
Editor: Rebecca Michaeli
Adviser: Jonathan Rogers

The Harbinger
Shawnee Mission East High School, Prairie Village, Kansas
Editors: Sophie Henschel, Campbell Wood
Adviser: Dow Tate

Mill Valley News
Mill Valley High School, Shawnee, Kansas
Editors: Gabby Delpleash, Avery Gathright, Damara Stevens, Ally Sul
Adviser: Kathy Habiger

The Harbinger
Algonquin Regional High School, Northborough, Massachusetts
Editor: Melissa Dai
Advisers: Lindsay Coppens, Michelle Shappard

Wayland Student Press Network
Wayland High School, Wayland, Massachusetts
Editors: Taylor McGuire, Garrett Spooner
Advisers: Mary Barber, Brian Keaney

The Communicator
Community High School, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Editors: Scarlett London, Sebastian Oliva, Lucy Tobier
Adviser: Tracy Anderson

The Rubicon
St. Paul Academy and Summit School, St. Paul, Minnesota
Editors: Elle Chen, Elizabeth Trevathan
Adviser: Kathryn Campbell

St. Louis Park High School, St. Louis Park, Minnesota
Editors: Andy Melear, Molly Schochet
Adviser: Lori Keekley

Parkway West High School, Ballwin, Missouri
Editors: Leah Schroeder, Mira Nalbandian, Brinda Ambal
Adviser: Debra Klevens

FHN Today
Francis Howell North High School, St. Charles, Missouri
Editor: Amber Winkler
Adviser: Aaron Manfull

Eastside Online
Cherry Hill High School East, Cherry Hill, New Jersey
Editors: Alexa Atlas, Nicole Vital, Angelina Witting
Adviser: Greg Gagliardi

The Shield
McCallum High School, Austin, Texas
Editors: Lucy Marco, Alice Scott
Adviser: Dave Winter

Coppell Student Media
Coppell High School, Coppell, Texas
Editor: Anjali Krishna
Advisers: Chase Wofford, Irma Kennedy

Liberty High School, Frisco, Texas
Editor: Trisha Dasgupta
Adviser: Brian Higgins

HHS Media
Harrisonburg High School, Harrisonburg, Virginia
Editor: Oziel Valdez
Adviser: Val Kibler