NSPA Names 9 Va. Yearbooks, 2 Websites Pacemaker Finalists


Nine Virginia yearbooks and two online news sites have been named 2020 Pacemaker finalists by the National Scholastic Press Association, ranking our state only second to Texas on this year’s list of 64 winners.

Described in a press release as the association’s “preeminent award,” the Pacemaker is also “one of the oldest awards for scholastic journalism.” Although this year’s judging process required some changes due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the award continues to honor the “best of the best” in student media.

NSPA will recognize finalists, and name 28 winners, at the JEA/NSPA Spring National High School Journalism Convention, which will be held virtually starting on March 15.

VAJTA would like to congratulate the following Virginia publications for each earning a spot on the Pacemaker finalist list:


  • The Appollo, Colonial Forge High School, Stafford, VA (Adviser: Tiffany Kopcak)
  • Crag, Turner Ashby High School, Bridgewater, VA (Adviser: Leslie Stevens)
  • Genesis, Rock Ridge High School, Auburn, VA (Adviser: Michelle Menna)
  • Indian Legend, Stafford High School, Falmouth, VA (Adviser: Linda Arney)
  • Odyssey, Chantilly High School, Chantilly, VA (Adviser: Mary Kay Downes)
  • The Quest, John Champe High School, Aldie, VA (Adviser: Suzanne Abdelrazaq)
  • Saga, Loudoun Valley High School, Purcellville, VA (Adviser: Martha Akers)
  • The Stinger, Brookville Middle School, Lynchburg, VA (Adviser: Sarena Wellman)
  • Techniques, Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, Alexandria, VA (Adviser: Erinn Harris)

Online News:

  • HHS Media, Harrisonburg High School, Harrisonburg, VA (Adviser: Valerie Kibler)
  • TRN Wired, Prince George High School, Prince George, VA (Adviser: Chris Waugaman)

VAJTA would also like to congratulate the following Virginia newsmagazines, which were named Pacemaker winners at this year’s Fall Convention:

  • The Highlander, McLean High School, McLean, VA (Adviser: Lindsay Benedict)
  • tjToday, Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, Alexandria, VA (Adviser: Erinn Harris)