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Alabama Power publications honored by National Federation of Press Women

Alabama Power Public Relations employees were recently honored by the National Federation of Press Women (NFPW) for communications published between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31, 2021.

About 2,000 entries were submitted from across the U.S. in the NFPW Communications Contest Awards for judging by a panel of journalists, communications specialists and educators. Writers from 38 states and Washington, D.C., were presented awards in Fargo, North Dakota, on June 25.

Alabama Power’s 102-year-old magazine Powergrams won first place nationally for a magazine or newspaper regularly written by employees. The staff includes editor Chuck Chandler, art director Jay Parker, chief photographer Phil Free and writers Donna Cope and Carla Davis. The magazine is published for company employees and retirees and is available at

Content Manager Bob Blalock, Communications Specialist Mark Kelly, Content Manager Michael Sznajderman and Chandler took second place for in-depth reporting for a six-part series published on Alabama NewsCenter about the 150th anniversary of the founding of Birmingham. The series included “Birmingham birthed from ‘weeds and briars’” by Blalock; a four-part package by Chandler about musical legends with ties to the Magic City; “Birmingham’s founding full of drama and paradox” and “What’s in a name? How Birmingham became Birmingham” by Kelly; and “Cholera and COVID: Birmingham’s two historic health crises” and “The Hawes Murders: a dark moment in Birmingham’s early history” by Sznajderman.

Communications Specialist Donna Cope won second place nationally for the Alabama NewsCenter story “End of an era: Alabama Power family bids goodbye to Plant Gorgas,” which was published after the 104-year-old power plant structure was imploded. The story was entered in the feature story for an online publication category.

Communications Specialist Dennis Washington won second place nationally in the specialty articles, science or technology category for “Alabama meteorologists remember April 27, 2011, tornadoes” published on Alabama NewsCenter.

Sznajderman received honorable mention in the category of personality profile, more than 500 words, for “Alabama Freedom Rider Catherine Burks-Brooks recalls her civil rights journey” published on Alabama NewsCenter.

Only first-place winning entries at the state level were eligible to enter the national contest. The Alabama Power employees previously took top honors in the Alabama Media Professionals 2021 contest.

NFPW is a nationwide organization of women and men pursuing careers across the communications spectrum, including print and electronic journalism, freelancing, news media, books, public relations, marketing, graphic design, photography, advertising, radio and television.

Solomon Crenshaw, a frequent contributor to Alabama NewsCenter, received two national second place honors for specialty articles about history and sports.