At least 31 of the 50 states publish a magazine about wildlife and outdoor recreation, promoting appreciation for America’s natural heritage. In any given year, only one of those magazines can be named “the best state wildlife magazine in the nation.”
I’m excited to share the news that this year, that title was awarded to Arizona’s magazine, Arizona Wildlife Views.
Published by the Arizona Game and Fish Department since the 1950s, Arizona Wildlife Views doesn’t have a big advertising budget. All its resources are devoted to developing articles that educate people about wildlife conservation and help readers enjoy Arizona’s great outdoors.
Our state’s wildlife magazine earned the top honor this year in the state wildlife magazine category from the Association for Conservation Information. This nonprofit association includes information and education professionals representing state, federal and Canadian agencies, along with private conservation organizations.
Arizona Wildlife Views also earned kudos for articles written by Randall D. Babb and Johnathan O’Dell, and for design. The awards were announced at the association’s annual banquet July 17 in Flagstaff.
Winning this national award means a lot to me, personally. I’ve worked on this magazine since 2005, and as my 10th anniversary draws near, taking the top honor in a competition I highly esteem is a thrill. But there are a couple things that matter even more than winning an award like this. One is the pleasure of working with the creative team on each issue: our wise leader, editor Heidi Rayment; our talented and funny art director, Cecelia Carpenter; photographer George Andrejko, who has served on staff for the past 26 years; and Madeline Gaffney, who keeps the administrative side running smoothly.
The other is this: producing a publication that helps people appreciate Arizona’s amazing wildlife. We have such incredible diversity here—more than 800 native wildlife species, not including bugs—and every one is worth celebrating. As Heidi pointed out, “We’ll never run out of good material.” Winning awards feels good, but this is the real reason I love my job.