(785) 864-0605


2016 KSPA Annual Award Winners


The KSPA Administrator of the Year Award recognizes secondary school administrators who have stood up for the First Amendment and his/her students.  The nominee should meet the following five criteria: 1) Supports the Kansas Student Publications Act and the First Amendment; 2) Provides adequate and appropriate financial support for student media; 3) Understands the importance of journalism’s place in a complete secondary school curriculum; 4) Encourages academic and professional growth, both for students and for journalism teachers: 5) Provides personal support and encouragement for students and journalism advisers

Dr. Linda Wiley

Principal of Topeka High School


Dr. Linda Wiley (with certificate) along with Eric Thomas, KSPA executive director (left), Herff Jones representative Barry MacCallum, (second from left) and Topeka High publications adviser Kristy Dekat (right) are in the front row. Topeka High School students are in the background.

Photo Gallery by Vincent Carper
Words of nomination from Kristy Dekat, publications adviser from Topeka High School

During my time at Topeka High, I have received a few emails from her regarding some potentially controversial stories that she heard the newspaper staff was writing. These sorts of emails could make any adviser worry. However, in each of those emails she said that she understood the Kansas Student Publication Act; meaning she understood the Act allows my students to function on the same platform as professional journalists.

In order to keep that tradition alive, she provides adequate and appropriate financial support. She understands that it is important for the school to cultivate a deep connection with the community, and the publications do this.

Dr. Wiley is truly a supporter of scholastic media and understands the freedom that high school journalists have been given.

KSPA congratulates Dr. Linda Wiley and thanks her for her support of her students and their free speech rights!



The Friend of KSPA Award recognizes a professional partner’s efforts to support KSPA and scholastic journalism on a state or local level. The nominee will be judged on the following four criteria: 1) Contribution of personal time and effort on behalf of scholastic journalism in Kansas; 2) Support of KSPA advisers in the community and/or state; 3) Support of student journalists’ First Amendment rights: 4) Involvement in local, state, regional or national scholastic journalism organizations.

Barry MacCallum

Sales representative for Herff Jones Yearbooks


A group of students, advisers and Herff Jones employees gathered to congratulate Barry MacCallum, Herff Jones sales representative, for this winning the Friend of KSPA Award.


Herff Jones yearbook representative Barry MacCallum poses with a cake designed to look like his high school yearbook during a ceremony for his winning the Friend of KSPA Award.


A look at the cake for the celebration of the Friend of KSPA Award for Barry MacCallum of Herff Jones Yearbooks. The photo is of MacCallum in high school and the page at right is a replica of the messages in his yearbook.


Words of nomination from Kathy Habiger, publications adviser from Mill Valley High School:

When I first started teaching 20 years ago, my first friend, mentor and ally in scholastic journalism was Barry MacCallum, sales representative for Herff Jones yearbooks. In that first year, Barry taught me the ins and outs of producing a yearbook, like a good sales rep should. But some time in that first-year fog, he asked me a question that would change the course of my career: “Have you joined KSPA yet?” Being new, I hadn’t the slightest idea what KSPA was and what it would do for me as an adviser, so even then, Barry was looking out for what was best for me and for scholastic journalism across Kansas. I consider KSPA to be my lifeline to surviving in this crazy business, and I have Barry to thank for making that first connection for me. It’s for this reason and many others that I hope you will consider Barry more than qualified and deserving of the Friend of KSPA honor.

Words of nomination from Michelle Huss, publications adviser from Blue Valley High School:

The time Barry dedicates to his job goes above and beyond his call of duty. Especially toward the end of the year when there’s inevitably an issue with technology, he makes himself available to help troubleshoot the issues rather than just assuming everything will run smoothly.

Words of nomination from Amy Morgan, publications adviser from Shawnee Mission West High School:

I know that Barry goes out of his way to help adviser, and to put them in contact with the right resources if they need help he cannot provide. When he has new advisers, he takes them under his wing and introduces them to the people they need to know and helps them navigate the sometimes tricky world of advising student publications. He encourages them to join KSPA and participate in the activities and programs offered.

KSPA thanks Barry MacCallum for all of his work on behalf of Kansas advisers and also in supporting KSPA’s mission and programs.



This award honors an individual who has displayed a significant effort to 1) continually improve his/her journalism program; and 2) make a significant contribution to the profession of advising in Kansas. Winners will receive a $250 cash prize, a plaque, and a complimentary one-year membership to KSPA.

Jill Holder

Publications adviser, Bonner Springs High School 


Jill Holder, second from right, accepts the Ad Astra Award in a presentation by, from left, KSPA president Kathy Habiger, Herff Jones yearbook representative Molly Baker and KSPA executive director Eric Thomas at Bonner Spring High School April 6.

Words of nomination from Brandi Stout, former student and teacher at Northgate Middle School & Briarcliff Elementary:

Now, she is my mentor as I am beginning my career as a high school journalism teacher. Her relationship with me and with my high school staff inspired me to pursue my high school teaching career.

No one deserves this award more than Jill Holder. In high school, I was inspired by her constant support, her consistency in the classroom and her knowledge of journalism. Today I am inspired by her commitment to the profession, her tenacity with her colleagues and her support for her former students.

Words of nomination from Rick Moulin, vice principal of Bonner Springs High School:

Mrs. Holder is an outstanding teacher and has made a profound impact on me for the past two decades.

Mrs. Holder was my role and because of the impact she made in my life. I eventually became an English teacher and now a Vice Principal at Bonner Springs High School.

I have visited her classroom on multiple occasions and it is amazing how much pride our students take in developing our newspaper and yearbook. Our students spent countless hours outside of the school day creating our publications because they strive for perfection.

Jill has used journalism as a vehicle to impact thousands of lives in the Bonner Springs and Edwardsville communities. In the process, her students have brought the news to our community, learned what makes a story, newsworthy, and how to write.

Words of nomination from Molly Baker, sales representative for Herff Jones Yearbooks

When I took over the account this year, I was excited to have an All-Kansas yearbook in my portfolio, but I was more excited to get to work with Jill. She has a great reputation amongst her peers.

She has such a positive spirit and welcomed me with open arms. Being able to lead and inspire her students to perform the way she does without a diva attitude is a true gift.

Words of nomination from Lisa M. Terrell, counselor and teacher

There is no greater accomplishment for a teacher than to impact a student in a content area so much that they choose to follow that career path or become a teacher. The students she has worked with hold professional journalism jobs and many have become teachers. I am one of these students. She was one of my role models that inspired me to pursue a career in education. She has been a resource, role model and a big sister to me throughout my teaching career.

KSPA congratulates Jill Holder for years of service to students and journalism in the state of Kansas. What an amazing impact you have had!




The Sunflower Award recognizes a new adviser who shows enthusiasm and dedication to building a strong journalism program and aims to encourage him/her to remain in the profession. The recipient of the award will receive a student scholarship to a Kansas summer media workshop, a plaque and a complimentary one-year membership to KSPA.  

The nominee will be judged on the following four criteria: 1) Has five or fewer years advising experience: 2) Demonstrates commitment to journalism education; 3) Supports first amendment rights through teaching of the law and allowing student leadership and free expression; 4) Shows improvement in journalism program during advising period.

Dan Loving

publications adviser at Maize High School

Dan Loving of Maize High School accepts balloons and a cake April 6 in recognition of winning the Sunflower Award.

Dan Loving of Maize High School accepts balloons and a cake April 6 in recognition of winning the Sunflower Award.

Words of nomination from Mary Patrick, yearbook adviser at Maize South Middle School

Not only does Dan teach First Amendment rights, but he was responsible for bringing the Mary Beth Tinker tour to Maize High and organizing assemblies both for the high school students and the public at large.

Dan continually works to improve his program through student contest, student community service, and recruitment/encouragement of middle school students.

Words of nomination from Anne Debes, yearbook adviser at Maize High School

Dan made a bold, deliberate, heart-felt decision to pursue a teaching career. Since day one, I have been impressed by Dan’s sincerity and enthusiasm for this job. Others have taken note of his passion for this career, and it has carried over to his students as he has led them to winning NSPA All-American Newsmagazine awards, KSPA All-Kansas awards, and various other state and national forms of recognition. 

Words of nomination from Kendra Cunningham, Play Newsmagazine Editor-in-Chief

Since day one, Mr. Loving has advocated that he wants us to learn more from his classes than just academics.

Mr. Loving takes the time and dedication to improve the magazine staff as a whole, but also focuses time on each individual who makes up our team. He has proven time and time again that he cares about each student as a person.

He has had a profound impact on my life, and I am thoroughly grateful for our many conversations which continue to shape me into the leader that I am today.

Words of nomination from Chris Botts, principal from Maize High School

I believe what separates Mr. Loving from other qualified teachers is the exceptional relationship he builds with students. He has an innate ability to build rapport with students and also recognize if a student is struggling.

Finally, Mr. Loving does a great job of inspiring students and making journalism relevant. He challenges students to think, to be mindful of their rights as a student press organization, and to continually challenge the status quo.

Congratulations to Dan Loving on being named the Sunflower Award winner for 2016. Your students and fellow advisers have been profoundly affected already by your work.



  • Do you know someone who fits the descriptions above? Do you have an award winner in mind for next year? KSPA continually accepts nominations for the awards until a March deadline each year.
  • The winner of the Jackie Engel Award — juried by Kansas Collegiate Media — will be announced later this week. Please stay tuned to hear the results of this award, coming soon.

Post a comment

    Your Cart
    Your cart is emptyReturn to Shop