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District 21 Texas Senator Judith Zaffirini was presented with 45 awards in the Press Women of Texas’ 2021 Professional Communication Contest last month, a greater number than she has earned in the past.
Founded in 1893, the organization champions First Amendment rights, supports women in communication and funds student scholarships.
Sen. Zaffirini swept five categories in the contest, earning first, second and third place prizes for her speeches, press releases, advertisements, crisis communication campaigns and page designs.
The senator’s 17 first-place entries will advance to the National Federation of Press Women’s contest, in which they will judged against the work of talented communicators from across the country.
Zaffirini also won 15 second-place awards, nine third-place awards and four honorable mentions in 24 categories.
“I am delighted to receive these awards from the Press Women of Texas, of which I have been a member since 1973,” Sen. Zaffirini said. “They reflect my longstanding commitment to excellence in communication, especially in my capacity as a legislator.”
The senator was lauded for her efforts surrounding the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Laredo’s ‘boil water’ notice and Winter Storm Uri. Those efforts won first, second and third places, respectively, in the crisis communication category.
“Communicating during emergencies is integral to effectively serving the constituents of Senate District 21,” Sen. Zaffirini said. “I prioritize sharing timely updates, acting with transparency and adapting to meet their needs.”
Of the more than 1,100 awards the senator has won for her legislative, professional and civic leadership, more than 400 are in communication, including this year’s 45.
Sen. Zaffirini holds Bachelor of Science, Master of Arts and PhD degrees in communication from the University of Texas at Austin, where she worked at The Daily Texan as a reporter, feature writer, copy editor, headline writer, assistant editor and special issue editor.
The university and its Moody College of Communication named her a Distinguished Alumna in 2003 and 2016, and she received the UT Presidential Citation in 2013.