The Virginia Press Foundation (VPF), the charitable arm of the Virginia Press Association, has announced winners of the 2020 VPF Leadership & Innovation Awards.

The awards recognize and celebrate those who work in journalism in Virginia and who have exhibited leadership and innovation, in big and small ways, by making their organization, newsroom or classroom a better place.

The VPF named winners in two main categories – Leadership & Innovation. Among the subcategories included for this inaugural year were community engagement; mentoring staff or students; starting a new or revamping an existing publication; promoting civic engagement through journalism; and, creating successful partnerships/collaborations within your organization or community.

Colleagues, bosses, employees, peers and members of the community nominated the winners.

The 2020 VPF Leadership & Innovation Awards winners are:

  • Ryan Alessi – JMU/School of Media Arts & Design
  • Bill Atkinson – Petersburg Progress Index
  • Terry Beigie – Greene County Record
  • Peggy Bellows – The Virginia Gazette
  • Dave Fawcett – Inside NoVa/Prince William
  • Catherine Komp – VPM-Richmond NPR
  • Dylan Lepore – The Tartan, Radford University
  • Larry “Bud” Meyer and Bill Dietel – The Foothills Forum
  • Betty Ramsey – The Farmville News
  • Tom Silvestri – Richmond Times-Dispatch
  • Chris Tyree – VA Center for Investigative Journalism
  • Rob Walters – Bristol Herald Courier
  • Wilma Wirt – Capital News Service/VCU
  • Robert Zullo – Virginia Mercury

The winners will be honored at a reception and concert on Friday, April 3, 2020 at Charter Hall  in Roanoke, Virginia. For more information, contact Betsy Edwards, Virginia Press Association Executive Director, by email at or call 804-521-7584

Those who wish to attend the event may register HERE. (NOTE: This event is listed separately on the conference registration form under “Fundraiser—Virginia Press Foundation Leadership & Innovation Awards Celebration).