These special awards are presented in recognition for outstanding achievement over the course of a career.
2019 – Jared Hagan
Jared Hagan originated the role of conference photographer, and has done an outstanding job of providing interesting, professional shots of our conferences and events, often with very little direction. Beyond that, he’s been a tireless optimist and supporter of all at the conferences, encouraging people waiting to pitch their heart’s work into the light of day. He’s always a pleasure to work with, has a wonderful sense of humor, and ended up hanging around writers so long that he became one himself. He’s a friendly face to contest winners, staff, faculty, and attendees alike, and has helped with events outside of conference. He is the epitome of a great volunteer—on time, cheerful, supportive, encouraging, and professional.
2018 – Karen Fox
Karen, who has been a part of PPW since its inception, has worked a lot of PPW jobs (some of them twice) while maintaining a writing career and a non-writing career. She is always a pleasure to work with, and she’s the one person we have who can keep Laura Hayden in check. (Sorry, Laura, couldn’t resist.) 🙂 Karen is also very thoughtful of others, works harder than almost anyone you can think of, and maintains a zen-like aura of calm and her sense of humor.
2017 – Shannon Lawrence
Shannon Lawrence was a longtime blog editor for PPW before stepping into the role of NCE coordinator. There, she worked tirelessly to bring Write Brains back from the verge of extinction–and she did it all with a budget of $0. She brought in a great variety of speakers and added some wonderful half-day programs, like Pam McCutcheon’s synopsis workshop. Shannon later stepped up when our treasurer abruptly left, and did an outstanding job of keeping PPW on track financially. She put in many hours as a conference volunteer in addition to these jobs, and has been a positive force against the formations of cliques within PPW.
2015 – Susan Mitchell
Susan Mitchell has faithfully and diligently served on the Board of Directors for Pikes Peak Writers since 2009. She has been the Marketing/PR Director for most of that time, and in that role, she’s proved invaluable to conference, non-conference events, and contest, particularly during the recent contest metamorphosis into The Zebulon. She has served multiple times as the Faculty Director for the Pikes Peak Writers Conference and as such she’s brought to the forefront engaging, eccentric, and enjoyable presenters many of whom have taken up a permanent spot in the PPW Family. She serves with skill, vision, fortitude, and a smile. She’s a dynamo possessing wit and humor, strength and humility, and she makes all of it look so easy.
2014 – Bonnie Hagan
Bonnie Hagan is unfailingly the single nicest person to work with in all of PPW, and is the most enthusiastic supporter of the conference. She has more tact and grace under pressure than most professional diplomats. Despite her ability to knuckle down and get things done, she’s also got a tremendous, fast and smart sense of humor, and a keen sense of how to bring people together. She’s thoughtful of others and quick to lead the cheers for others’ successes, while rarely taking credit for all the hard work she’s done. Legacy award? We think she needs her own shrine.
Bonnie doesn’t just remember names and faces, she remembers the nuances. She extrapolates what has happened in the past and uses it to project for the future. She’s sincere, approachable and has been doing an outstanding job for PPW for many years, as Pitch Coordinator, Conference Director and Board Member. As one PPW member said, “I’d like to be her when I grow up.”
2012 – Chris Mandeville
Chris Mandeville’s absolute devotion to Pikes Peak Writers is amazing. Over the past year she has worked ardently, not only as Community Liaison, Treasurer, and Immediate Past President, but also on a dizzying variety of behind-the-scenes tasks such as maintaining our bookstore, organizing holiday book sales, and pursuing a number of fundraising endeavors. She is always looking for ways to grow our group by helping and reaching out to as many writers as possible. It’s obvious that Chris cares deeply about Pikes Peak Writers, and she deserves our utmost gratitude.
2011 – Chris Myers
In addition to having served on the PPW Board of Directors, Chris Myers has contributed to almost every aspect of Pikes Peak Writers, both in the trenches and at the highest levels of planning and decision making. At PPW events, if you look hard you’ll often find her behind-the-scenes doing un-sung but absolutely necessary jobs. Always logical, ever-dependable, and incredibly hard-working, “ChrisM2” has been a steadfast long-term volunteer, all while developing her craft and staying on top of publishing industry news and trends, completing numerous manuscripts, maintaining a full-time job, and being a dedicated wife and mother. She has earned this Legacy Award, along with the respect and gratitude of her PPW peers, for her significant contributions to Pikes Peak Writers over the course of a long volunteer tenure.
2010 – Laura Hayden
Once upon a time in the history of the Pikes Peak Writers Conference, Laura Hayden was crowned “Queen of the Universe.” Literally, a tiara was put upon her head, a sash was draped from her shoulder, and a customized rendition of the “Miss America” song was belted in her honor in front of a banquet hall of writers and publishing professionals. So how do you top that? We on the PPW Board of Directors had to figure that out after the Queen gifted PPW and PPWC with a universe worth of royal favors. So in 2010 we bestowed upon her the greatest honor in all the PPW Land: a Legacy Award honoring her for the hard work, brilliant ideas, savvy decisions and plucky leadership that she has graced us with over the course of her reign. Long live the Queen!
2009 – Linda Rohrbough – NewsMag Legacy Special Award
PPW would like to recognize an individual who has a distinguished record of high quality writing, dedication to the NewsMag, and again a habit of beating deadlines. To honor her years of NewsMag contributions, most recently with her column, “The Business of Writing”, we’d like to present this NewsMag Legacy Award to Linda Rohrbough.
2009 – Duncan Mandeville – Youth Volunteer Special Award
Duncan attends most Write Brains and quarterly workshops where he:
- Sets up tables and chairs.
- Prepares really good coffee.
- Bravely serves as a lemonade taster.
- Rolls around the evil red cart (the bookstore).
- Runs the cash register at the bookstore.
- Is friendly and courteous to everyone.
- Tears down the aforementioned tables and chairs.
Bottom line, Duncan does everything that needs doing willingly and with a smile. He relieves the NCE crew of most of the hard physical labor, and gives us tremendous peace of mind in knowing that he’ll be there, that he’ll work hard, and that he’ll make sure everything is done right. The monthly Write Brains and quarterly workshops just wouldn’t be possible without him.
If it wouldn’t embarrass him, we’d tell him we love him. 🙂
2008 – Charlie Rush
Charlie Rush retired from the PPW Board of Directors in 2008, after being an invaluable asset to the organization for a number of years. Charlie defined many of the strategies that helped PPW grow into one of the most respected writers’ organizations in the country, and built PPWC’s reputation as the friendliest conference around. We could fill a book with Charlie’s accomplishments, and we’re exceptionally fortunate that he will still be available as an advisor and mentor in his retirement.