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History of the Jade Ring Writing Contest, List of Winners

  • The history of the Jade Ring

    The Jade Ring Writing Contest has a celebrated history that began in 1949 when the Wisconsin Rural Writers Association (which later became the Wisconsin Writers Association) opened its inaugural writing competition. At the time, the contest was unnamed and its prizes, one could say, were ordinary. But that fall, the extraordinary happened when members gathered at the Green Lake Conference Center in Green Lake, Wis. for the first statewide meeting. 

    They were treated to a presentation by a man whose name could be found in almost every refrigerator across the country. James L. Kraft’s talk that day wasn’t about the popular pasteurized cheese slices that had taken America by storm, or how he’d built a business that today is one of our country’s most powerful brands. The 76-year-old founder of Kraft Foods shared his collection of semi-precious stones and hobby of collecting, cutting and polishing jade into beautiful gemstone. He read his poem, Desert Jewels and offered to create and donate the prize for the first annual writing contest.  

    Kraft’s talent and generosity of a beautifully handcrafted jade ring sparked interest that inspired over 1,000 writers to enter short stories, poems, and plays in the 1950 competition. The contest found its name in the highly valued and sought-after first-place prize. Through the years, Kraft designed original jade rings for the contest, much as he did to reward his employees at Kraft Foods. After his death in February 1953, rings were created by other jewelers.

    According to WWA lore, the Jade Ring Writing Contest would never have been if not for a happenstance meeting at a diner near Kraft’s Wisconsin home. While members of the organization discussed the writing contest during lunch one afternoon, Kraft happened to be present, overhearing their conversation. Kraft enjoyed honing his writing and jewelry making skills at his nearby home, Kraftwood, an estate that meanders along the shoreline of Lake Mashkinosiew (known today as Enterprise Lake). 

Desert Jewels

1950  Green Lake, WI

JL Kraft read this poem he wrote to Wisconsin Rural Writer Association during his talk about his passion for rock collecting. He later designed the jade ring, the namesake for the writing contest sponsored by Wisconsin Writers Association. 

Jewels and gems and beautiful stones

Are minerals and rocks and dinosaur bones

They come from the valley, mountains and streams

And the bowels of the earth yield the fire of dreams.

They hold you entranced, these wonders of God

They are where He placed them in gravel or sod

Gems are where you find them – they’re yours for the getting

They are where they are, regardless the setting.

No combination of color has ever been known

To equal the beauty of a colorful stone.

The hues of the rainbow, the gold of the sun

Are reflected in glory when the cabochon is done.

Agate rose of the desert and chalcedony rare

In bleak lonely places, why are they there?

God scattered His jewels from clouds in the sky

That’s why we find them so low and so high.

Therefore we should search wherever we are

For the jewels of heaven that came from afar

He scattered them widely – He tossed them away

So people who love them could find them some day.

Wisconsin Writers Association Historical Jade Ring Contest, Al P Nelson, Florence Lindemann Competition Known Winners and Placers

 This is a list in progress. If anyone has updates or corrections, please contact us!

1949 – first year held, over 1,000 entries, with 20 plays; 20 HM in each category

1st, Short Story, Mrs. Bernadette P. Friedl

2nd, Short Story, Mrs. Wilhelmina Guerink

3rd, Short Story, Mrs. Dan Linehan

1st, Poetry, Dr. R.W. Southworth

2nd, Poetry, Inga Gilson Caldwell

3rd, Poetry, Mrs. Louis P. Zimmerman

1st, Play writing, Ruth Westover

2nd, Play writing, Mrs. Zimmerman

3rd, Play writing, Mrs. Ray Gibbons

1950 – over 1,000 entries, 50 plays (none outstanding enough for a first place, however)

3 categories: Short Story, Poetry, Playwrighting

Short story

1st – Daniel Kasen, Racine, “Country Style”

2nd – Ruth Westover, Waukau, “Retired Farmer”

3rd, John Cappon, Madison, “Young Stock”

HM, Bernice Barney, La Crosse, “Neighbor to the West”

HM Doris V. Brecka, Baraboo, “Social at Cedar Hill”

HM, Eleanor Knight, Bayfield, “R.E.A. or Bust”

HM Agnes O’Connell Landwehr, Fond du Lac, “The Scythe of Time”

HM Edna K. Meudt, Dodgeville, “A Man’s Soul is His Fate”

HM Marianne O’Neil, Hokah, MN, “The Divided Years”

HM Letha P. Parfrey, Richland Center, “The Wedding Dinner”

HM Marcella Gill Relyea, Talor, “Veils are for Virgins”

HM Laila E. Skagen, Manawa, “Home from Christmas”

HM Dr. FW Southworth, Edgerton, “The Mills of God”

HM Helen R. Stieve, Baraboo, “Someone for Joel”

HM Clara Tutt, Whitewater, “They Crossed a River”

HM Wanda Waters, Wauwatosa, “O Vagrant Worm”

Poetry, 1950

1st, Inga Gilson Caldwell, Waupaca, “Farm Sequence”

2nd, Anne C. Rose, Gilmanton, “The Lupine”

3rd, Sharon Romero, Janesville, “Pioneer”

HM Mrs. RW Berger, Portage, “Farm Home Lights”

HM Wilma Black, Columbus, “My Father’s Hand”

HM Marie Barlow Buckman, Crivitz, “The Last Pilgrimage

HM Frances R. Burt, Albany, “Thoughts in Rhyme”

HM Edward Eldridge, Janesville, “Yucca”

HM Bernice Corey Ferguson, Park Falls, “I Travel Alone

HM Bernadette Friedell, Badger, “The Harmonica Boy”

HM Mr. W. Geurink, Ringle, “The Unattainable”

HM Sheila Kohlenberg, Milwaukee, “R.B.T., Age Thirty”

HM Hazel La Tour, Baraboo, “The Bride Signs Here”

HM Mrs. Louis Lindow, Waupaca, “Worship”

HM Evelyn McLean, South Byron, “Metamorphosis

HM Mrs. Hans Morken, Taylor, “Common Clay

HM Faith Oemig, Stanley, “Pine Song”

HM Enid Boyer Rogers, Pittsville, “Haunted”

HM Dr. FW Southworth, Edgerton, “Roadside Tavern”

HM Helen C. Smith, Evansville, “Finality”

HM Helen R. Steive, Baraboo, “The ‘New’ Look”

HM Nellie R Simak, Bridgeport, “Sage of the Cracker Barrel”

1950 Playwrighting – no first place awarded

2nd, Elizabeth Epstein, Millston, “Time to Retire”

3rd, Frances R. Burt Albany, “Just Desserts”

HM Karin Anderson, Phillips, Taken in by a Face”

HM Marie Barlow Buckman, Crivitz, “Money for the Fair:

HM Rith Bermeister, Reedsburg, “A Square Deal”

HM Winnie Gibbons, LaValle, “Garden Variety”

HM Mrs. John Kruse, Middleton, “The Quilting Party”

HM Isobel OS McIsaac, Rhinelander, “Three Blind Mice”

HM Edna Meudt, Dodgeville, “Lucifer Bigwheel”

HM Mrs. G. Moore, “Grandpas’ Sweet tooth”

HM Mrs. A. Miller, “Project Leaders Nightmare”

HM S Miller, “All Suckers Don’t Live in Water”

HM E Olson, “The Jeffreys Join PTA

HM R Westover, “Sweet Valentine”

HM Mrs. LJ Totten, “The Sleet Storm”

HM H Stieve, “Man For Miss Marshall”


1st, Mary H. Zimmerman, Whitewater, Playwriting

1st, Anne C. Rose, Gilmanton, Poetry, “The Barn”

1st, Isadore B. Schwartz, Shawano, Short Story, “House; Block 3, Lot 1”

1st, Dorothy F. Douglas, LaValle, Article, “Modern Apartments – On the Farm”

1952 – new rule of only one entry per category cut down entries, but more than 500 new entrants; special merit was awarded for contestants who were eligible due to being a past winner


1st, Article, Eva John Kuhn, Whitehall, “Tell Him This For Me”

2nd, Article, Mrs. Floyd Lange, Chippewa Falls, “Fringe Area Farmer”

3rd, Article, Mrs. John Lloyd, Cambria. “The Paul Bunyan Breeze”

HM, article, Dorothy Cole Schrader, Evansille, “Are You Missing Fun In Your Own Back Yard?”

HM, article, Mrs. Chris Nelson, Evansville, “There Goes Another Pig”

HM, article, Mrs. Muriel Worfal, Milton Junction, “We Like Artificial Breeding”

Special Mention, Frances Burt, Brodhead, “Exchange House: Third Floor Front

Special Mention, Wilma Fritz Black, Columbus, “Make “Make Your Home Say Welcome”

Special Mention, Frances Austin, Bloomington, “Another Change Needed”

Special Mention Ruth E Brady, Bancroft, “A Thing of the Past, The Hired Man”

Special Mention Willard J. Cox, Mineral Point, “We Operate a Beef Farm”

Special Mention Adelle Fritz Krebs, Waukesha, “A Tale of the Dunbar Oak”

Special Mention Alice Kelly, Rhinelander, “Don’t Sell Those Bacon Drippings Short”

Special Mention Frederic Portney, Viroqua, “Improving and modernizing Wisconsin’s Education System”

Special Mention “Time Marches On” Mattie Simmons Patterson, Granton

Special Mention Mary Allen Rowlands, Cambria, “Like Mother Used to Make? Heaven Forbid”

Special Mention, Nan Morken, Taylor “Sister Hobbyists”,

Special Merit, Helen C Smith, Evansville, “Farm Credit”

Short Story

1st, Edwin M Emmons, Rhinelander, “The Long Shadow”

2nd, Eleanor Knight, Bayfield, “Month of Kindness”

3rd, Edna Meudt, Dodgeville, “The Dream”

HM, Fidelia Van Antwerp, Wisconsin dells, “Only the Rich”

HM, Rose McCalmont, Janesville, “The Little Glass Man”

HM, Helen C Smith, Evansville, “Take to the Hills”

SM, Dana Kneeland Akers, Superior, “Jean L Joie—Lumberjack Extraordinaire”

SM, Marie Barlow Bucker, Crivitz, “The Windigo Charm”

SM, John Flad, Madison, “The Hard Way”

SM, Margaret Freer, Oconomowoc, “Return to Tomorrow”

SM, Mrs. Marshall Perham, Eleva, “When a farm is Not a farm”

SM, KJ Repsold, Phillips, “There is No End”

SM, Normal Sainty, Fall creek, “Soldiers All

SM, Hedwig Sorenson, Rhinelander, “Design by Hester”

SM, Doris B Smith, Fennimore, “Shame on Me!”

SM, Mrs. Floyd Lange, Chippewa Falls, “The Offspring”

SM, Mary Allen Rowlands, “Mrs. Ballantine and the Robin”

SM Olive Glasgow, Crandon, “Pioneer Blood”

SM Helga Jackwitz, La Crosse, “Ina Ann McQuade”


1st, Frances R Burt, Brodhead, “Love in Wool”

2nd, Emily Sprague Wurl, Wauwatosa, “This Old Man”

3rd, Burton G. Williams, Watertown, “If She Hadn’t Kicked the Bucket”

Tie? Marie Barlow Buckman, Crivitz, “The Day the Gypsies Came”

HM, Sylvia Liedtke, Rhinelander, “The Day the Flood Came in Gays Mills”

HM, Estella Bryhn, Mindoro, “Just An Old Batch”

HM Winnie Crandall Saunders, Janesville, “School is Called”

HM, Rose McCalmont, Janesville, “The Elm is Staunch”

Special Merit, Betty Lee Epstein, Millston, “For the Love of Lizzie”


1st, Ruth Moorehouse, Woodruff, “Hemlocks”

2nd, Fidelia Van Antwerp, Wisconsin Dells, “Painted by Ann”

3rd, Vera Springer, Elmwood, “Old Roads are Haunted”

HM, Wilma Fritz Black, Columbus, “The River Road”

HM, Mrs. Jan O Skagen, Manawa, “Paid in Full”

HM, Mildred R Jones, Baraboo, “The Old Pucketechute”

HM. Mary Ellen Pourchot, Ripon, “The Seed Snapper”

HM, Mrs. Robert Onish, Mukwonago, “Freedom”

Special Mention, Marian Paust, Richland Center, “The Meeting Place”

Special Mention, Alice Davis, Waukesha, “Wild Geese”

Special Mention, Gretta Trainer, Sparta, “Spring Whirl”

Special Mention, John A Lonsdorf, Birnamwood, “The Pioneers”

Special Mention, Myrta Abbot Lange, Eau Claire, “Memorial Birch: A Legend of the Chippewas”

Special Mention, CF Knight, Dalton, “The King of the Northern Slash”

Special Mention, Evelyn McLean, South Byron, “My Heart Has Wings”

Special Mention, Helen C. Smith, Evansville, “Self-Appraisal”

Special Merit, Anne C. Rose, Gilmanton, “My Farmland, In Beauty Arrayed”


2nd, (No 1st place award given), Marie B Buckman, Crivitz, Playwriting, “Princess of the Cornfield”

1st, J. Lee Douglas, Wood, Poetry “The Grand Terminal”

1st, Clara E Berdan, Whitehall Short Story, “A Woman in the House”

1st, Mrs. Hans Morken, Taylor, Article, “When Farmers Retire”



1st, Anne M. Dunst, Milwaukee, Playwriting

1st, Maude Totten, Delavan, Poetry

HM, Edna K. Meudt, Dodgeville, Poetry, “Transition”

1sy, Erma Graeber, Rhinelander, Short Story

1st, Mattie S. Patterson, Granton, Article

1st, Norman Sainty, Fall Creek, Nonfiction



1st, Ruth Burmester, Reedsburg, Playwriting

1st, Ethel Case Cook, Eagle River, Poetry, “Tenderly With Words”

3rd, Emily Sprague, Wurl-Wauwatosa, Poetry, “The Old Settler”

HM, Theo Marie Ferch, Pelican Lake, Poetry, “Filler?”

HM, Frances Crewes, Milwaukee, Poetry, “An Old One’s Prayer”

HM, Belle Schacht, West Bend, Poetry, “Leave-Taking”

HM, Mary Chambers, Madison, Poetry, “Orison Morale”

HM, Vera Springer, Elmwood, Poetry, “The Night Is Like A Cat”

HM Bette Chapman Buckley, Waukesha, Poetry, “Rebuttal”

1st, Margaret Freer, Oconomowoc, Short Story

3rd, Marion Kirkland Brown, West Bend, Short Story, “Advertisement”

HM, Patt Roberts, Milwaukee, Short Story, “Broken Alibi”

HM, Wanda Waters, Wauwatosa, Short Story, “Young and Tender Green”

1st, Nina Adair Schell, Blue River, Article

HM, Pat Theisen, Cassville, Article?, “Jamison’s Wonder Museum”

HM, Viola M. Stout, Edgerton, Article?, “Albion Academy and the Union League”

1st, Dorothy Carey, Monroe, Essay, “Half Past Five”



1st, Essay, Anne Megna Dunst, Milwaukee, “Bread”

2nd Essay, Alvin M. Peterson, Onalaska, “Music of the Wild”

3rd, Essay, Erva Loomis Merow, Kenosha, “The Singing Teacup”

HM, Essay, Helen C. Smith, Evansville, “A Part of the Sea”

*judge Professor Clarence A Schoenfeld

1st, Poetry, Marian Pier Paust, Richland Center, “Winter Corn Fields” and “The Passing of the Leaves”

2nd, Poetry, Anne C. Rose, Gilmanton, “Land Measure”

3rd, Poetry, Emily Sprague Wurl, Wauwatosa, “Is This the Same Wind?”

HM, Poetry, Dorothy Dalton, Menasha, “A Poem Must Lead You”

HM, Poetry, Ruby J Kuenzli, Brooklyn, “His Final Meed”

HM, Poetry, Florence McNitt, Fort Atkinson, “Autumn Parade”

*judge August Derleth

1st, Playwrighting, Dorothy McCain, Oshkosh, “Installment Dilemma”

2nd, Playwriting, Rose B. McCalmont, Janesville, “But For Delilah”

3rd, Playwrighting, Marie Barlow Buckman, Crivitz, “The Flour Barrel”

*judge Julius Landau

1st, Article, Norman Sainty, Eau Claire, “Reverend, Would You?”

2nd, Article, Wanda Waters, Wauwatosa, “Evergreen in Memory”

3rd, Article, Marie Barlow Buckman, Crivitz, “Shrubs for Autumn Beauty”

HM, Article, Amy Zehm, Eleva, “Be a School Cook”

HM, Article, Pearl Keilman, Baraboo, “The Cake Stand”

HM, Article, Mildred Francis, Stevens Point, “Farmers, Spare That Bee”

*judge Arthur Broughton

1st, Short Story, Helen C. Smith, Evansville, “Called Back”

2nd, Short Story, Melba Bachr, Eau Claire, “Cherry Red Ribbon”

3rd, Short Story, Mildred Moses, Gays Mills, “The Girl Who Wanted Wings”

HM, Short Story, Ruth Christianson, Frederic, “Kimba”

HM, Short Story, Frances Goesling, Milwaukee, “Potato Pancakes”

HM, Short Story, Dorothy Carey, Green Bay, “The Poor Old Sinner”

*judge Edward Harris Heth


1st, Henry C. Spear, Hartford, Playwriting,

1st, Edna K. Meudt, Dodgeville, Poetry, “For Such a Child’s Waiting”

1st, Isadore Brothers Schwartz, Minocqua, Short Story

1st, Alyce Densow, Waukesha, Article

1st, Wilma Fritz Black, Columbus, Nonfiction



1st, Marie B. Mellinger, Ft. Wentworth GA, Playwriting

1st, Mary H. Zimmerman, Milwaukee, Poetry

HM, Ruth Morehouse, Woodruff, Poetry,  “Natal Day”`

HM, Barbara Jurgenson, Scandinavia, Poetry, “To My Three Children, Sleeping”   

1st, Roswell B. Rhode, Augusta, Short Story, “Escape to “Grenada”

HM, Irene Bowman, Muscatine, IA, Short Story, “The Bobbinet Cap”

1st, Alvin M. Peterson, Onalaska, Article

2nd, Florence Trumpy, Monroe, Article, “Rambling Richland Creek”

HM, Margaret Blundell, Shrewsbury, England, Article, Elegy For Johnny Joseph”

1st, Louise Briesemeister, Wash. Island, Creative Nonfiction,  “Island “Winds”

2nd, Maxine Dannenbaum, Madison, Creative Nonfiction, “Conversation With Myself”

HM, Joyce Edgar, Eau Claire, Creative Nonfiction, “Genesis”

HM, Irene Bowman, Muscatine, IA, Creative Nonficion, “Zero in February”



1st, Milt Polsky, Madison, Drama, “Tell Them I Failed”

2nd, Mark Berman, Madison, Drama, “The Holdout”

HM,RP Hoare, Shrewsbury, England, Drama, “The Sight of the Blind”

HM, Jay A Knaack, Beaver Dam, Drama, “Morning At Kelly’s”

HM, Agnes O’Connell Landwehr, Madison, Drama, “The Better the Deed, The Better the Day”

*judge Nancy Hoffmann

1st, Marian Paust, Richland Center, Poetry, “There Is Honey to be Savored”

2nd, Alice Davis, West Bend, Poetry, “Wood Fire”

HM, Marian Paust, Richland Center, Poetry, “Departure”

HM, Ruth Behling, Oconomowoc, Poetry, “Divine Dispensation”

HM, Edythe Kazla, Evansville, Poetry, “Night Pasture”

HM, Ruth Christianson, Frederic, Poetry, “A Day In A Quiet Wood”

HM, Rockwell Schaefer, New York, Poetry,  “Escape”

HM,  Dorothy C. Schrader, Evansville, Poetry, “Winter Cold”

HM, Emeline Ennis Kotula, Chicago, Poetry, “And in the Night”

*judge Ruth Mary Fox

1st, Marjorie Hill, Madison, Short Story, “I’ll Always Remember—Everything”

2nd, Loretta Strehlow, Waupun, Short Story, “The High Price of Violets”

HM, Jean Bunker Schmidt, Rock Springs, Short Story, “Postscripts for Paulie”

HM, Dorothy Wrenn, Attingham Writers, England, Short Story, “Lucifer Hears the Call of Spring”

HM, Jack Hoehn, Augusta, Short Story, “Small Town Cop”

*judge Haskell M. Block

1st, Paul W. Miller, Bristol, TN, Article, “An Evening with WH Auden”

2nd, Harold Uehling, Waupun, Article, “The Inner Man Steps Out”

HM, Helen G. Lindahl, Superior, Article, “Wisconsin’s Only Starting Gate”

*judge Jim Dan Hill

1st, Anne C. Rose, Gilmanton, Essay, “Trees, As Symbols”

2nd, Irene Kindler Bowman, Muscatine, IA, Creative Nonfiction, “A Lump of Clay”

HM, Roswell B. Rohde, Augusta, Creative Nonfiction, “Be A Writer – Without Writing”

HM, Melba Baehr, Eau Claire, Creative Nonfiction, “Summer!”

HM, Irene Kindler Bowman, Augusta, “Kin”

HM, Eileen M. Hasse, Loganville, Creative Nonfiction, “The Age I Am”

HM, Cecelia Rossman, Green Bay, Creative Nonfiction, “Busza’s Christmas Legacy”

HM, Ruth Behling, Oconomowoc, Creative Nonfiction, “Gates”

HM, Alvin M. Peterson, Onalaska, Creative Nonfiction, “The Birds of March”

HM, Dorothy Julius, Fond du Lac, Creative Nonfiction, “Empty House in the Country”

HM, Alice Davis, West Bend, Creative Nonfiction, “Great-Uncle Webby”

*judge EH Jamison



1st, John Green, Harrisonburg, VA, Playwriting, “Senator, Senator”

*judge Adele Gordon

1st, Charles B. Stonebarger, Hartland, Poetry, “Spun Silence”

2nd, Poetry, Beatrice Frackelton, Oconomowoc, “Itinerary”

HM, Pearl Swiggum, Soldiers Grove, “Counterpoint”

*judge David M Stocking

1st, Charles B. Tinkham, Hammond, IN, Short Story, The Student”

2nd, Ruby Yarber, Short Story, Racine, “Brand New”

HM, Jack Hoehn, Short Story, San Leandro, CA, “Like Squaresville”

*judge Leroy D. Haley

1st, Carrie Cropley, Kenosha Article, “Col. Elmer E. Ellsworth”

1st, Roswell B. Rhode, Augusta, Creative Nonfiction, “My Auto-Dilemma”

2nd, Helen C. Smith, Evansville, Creative Nonfiction, “The Materials of Poetry”

HM, Ann Uehling, Waupun, Creative Nonfiction, “Metamorphosis”

No second or third place given. Judge John Patrick Hunter

HM, Janet Schlatter, Milwaukee, Article, “The Other Side of the Mountain”

HM, Mildred R Jones, Baraboo, Article, “Over the Hills”

*judge Richard H. Leonard



1st, George Bergemeister, West Allis, Poetry

1st, Patricia Kieckhefer, Waukesha, Short Story

1st, Bernice Yonkee, Deerbrook, Article



1st, Erva Loomis Merow, Kenosha, Playwriting

1st, John G. Parker, Hartland, Poetry

1st, Loretta Strehlow, Milwaukee, Short Story

1st, Eva Dingwall, Superior, Article


1963 (Categories not known)

1st, Ronnie Druckenbrod, Madison

1st, Mr. Otto (Frances) Goesling, Milwaukee

1st, Hazel Maryan, Madison

1st, Mrs. Stanley Reinke, Oshkosh

1st, Frieda Lease, Oregon

1st, Esther Kinateder, Brookfield



1st, Dennis Roidt, Stoughton,  Playwriting

1st, Dorothy C. Schrader, Evansville, Poetry

1st, June Renny, Madison, Short story

1st, Dorothy Litersky, Sheboygan Falls Article

1st, Dorothy Litersky, Sheboygan Falls Essay

1st, Donna Pape, Sheboygan Juvenile



1st, Barbara Vroman, Hancock, Playwriting

1st, Anne Stubbe, Wausau, Poetry

1st, Joy Daane, Hingham, Short Story

1st, Roger P. Brueswitz, Fox Lake, Article

1st, Annette B. Kurz, Port Edwards, Essay

1st, Sara Rath, Gays Mills, Juvenile



1st, Chester W. Megal, Milwaukee, Playwriting

1st, Mrs. Lawrence Larmon, Minocqua, Poetry

1st, Joe Mays, Fox Lake, Short Story

1st, Michael Warlum, Madison, Article

1st, Jean B. Schmidt, Rock Springs, Essay

1st, Cora Germain, Sturgeon Bay, Juvenile



1st, Dorothy Litersky, Manitowoc, Playwriting

1st, Margaret Jurnigan, Port Edwards, Poetry

1st, Edythe Kazda, Evansville, Short Story

1st, Emma Force Lewis, Milwaukee, Article

1st, Ruth Bunker Christiansen, (?)Frederic, Essay

1st, Nancy Rose, Green Bay, Juvenile Fiction



1st, Marcia Frierdich, Milwaukee, Playwriting

1st, Marjorie Elliott, Madison, Poetry

1st, Genevieve Latus, Milwaukee, Short Story

1st, Marvin A. Price, Fox Lake, Article

1st, Dorothy Balts, Portage, Essay

1st, Helen Fahrbach, Menasha, Juvenile “A Pet for the Princess”



1st, Lu Bollow, Milwaukee, Playwriting

1st, Sara Rath, Boscobel, Poetry

1st, Sara Rath, Boscobel, Short Story

1st, George Reimers, Fox Lake, Article

1st, Clarice Dunn, Madison, Essay

1st, Elmer Otte, Appleton, Juvenile



1st, Arlene Bruso, Rhinelander, Playwriting

1st, Loretta Strehlow, Milwaukee, Poetry

1st, Nancy Rose, Green Bay, Short Story

1st, Marion Rewey, Verona, Article

1st, Marion Rewey, Verona, Essay

1st, Elvira Horn, Stevens Point, Juvenile



1st, E. Andrew Stark, Playwriting

1st, Frances May, Sturgeon Bay, Poetry

1st, Eleanor Richardson, Janesville, Short Story

1st, Ida E. Bahl, S Daytona, FL, Article

1st, Frieda Lease, Madison, Essay

1st, Lisa Proctor, Appleton, Juvenile



1st, Clarice Dunn, Madison, Playwriting

1st, Marion Rewey, Verona, Poetry

1st, Marge Killilea, Oshkosh,  Short Story

1st, Eleanor Richardson, Janesville,  Article

1st, Mildred Utke, Shawano (Marinette), Essay

1st, Sue Lanser, Beaver Dam, Juvenile



1st, Joy Daane, Hingham, Playwriting

1st, Ruth Burmeister, Reedsburg, Poetry

1st, Marion Rewey, Verona, Short Story

1st, Florence Lindemann, Milwaukee, Article

1st, Janet LaBrie, Essay

1st, Nancy C. Rose, Green Bay, Juvenile



1st, Randall Nicholas, Playwriting

1st, Jacqueline Maki, Poetry

1st, Lawrence Guth, Short Story

1st, Robert Berndt, Oshkosh, Article

1st, Marilyn Denham, Essay

1st, Annie Johnson, Juvenile



1st, Lu Bollow, Milwaukee, Playwriting

1st, Dorothy Litersky, Sheboygan Falls, Bicentennial play

1st, Joanne Bleakley Madison, Poetry

1st, Nancy Behrend, Short Story

1st, Nancy Olson, Taylor, Article

1st, Beatrice Smith, Cudahy, Essay

1st, Ellen Kort, Appleton, Juvenile



1st, Karen Stacey, Playwriting

1st, Nancy Rose, Green Bay, Poetry

1st, Evelyn Rozek, Short Story

1st, Margaret Damp, Article

1st, Lu V. Smith, Racine, Essay

1st, Paulette Sacksteder, Juvenile

1st, Anne Krueger, Greenleaf, Photography



1st, Josephine Broadhead, Playwriting

1st, Marion Stewart, Poetry

1st, Gerald Heideman, Short Story

1st, Lucy Baras, Sheboygan, Article

1st, Ellen Kort, Appleton, Essay

1st, Clarice Dunn, Madison, Juvenile

1st, Paula Delfeld, Brownsville, Photography



1st, Eileen Ehnert, Kiel, Playwriting

1st, June Zwickey, Appleton, Poetry

1st, Joan Zeier, Madison, Short Story

1st, Mildred Schroeder, DeForest, Article

1st, Blanche Lindblad, Sheboygan, Essay

1st, Marion Fuller Archer, Middleton, Juvenile

1st, Arlene Buttles, Photography

1st, Della Bopf, Rothschild



1st, Peter Roop, Appleton, Playwriting

1st, Joan Zeier, Madison, Poetry

1st, Thomas Malin, Brookfield, Short Story

1st, Donna Sanders, Chippewa Falls, Article

1st, Ruth Lembke, Sussex, Essay

1st, Carol J. Beuhlow, Juvenile

1st, Dan Behring, Photography

1st, Dorothy Schwenker, Janesville



1st, Mrs. Otto (Frances) Goesling, Playwriting

1st, Joanne Bleakley, Madison ,Poetry

1st, Emmy Lou Schenk, Cedarburg, Short Story

1st, Mary Ceci, Article

1st, Helen Hering, Wausau, Essay

1st, Kathryn Nawrocke, Historical

1st, Sarah Busjahn, Unknown category

1st, Don Davenport, Unknown category

1st, J.B. Dibble, M.D., Eau Claire, Juvenile



1st, Kathleen Warnes, Playwriting

1st, Grace Samuelson, Edgerton, Poetry

1st, J.B. Dibble, M.D., Eau Claire, Short Story

1st, Mabel Haugen, Tomahawk, Article

1st, Kathryn Nawrocki, (NE), Essay

1st, Jean Mackey, Manitowoc, Juvenile

1st, May Ann Rasmussen, Historical

1st, Cedric Vig, Rhinelander, Unknown category



1st, Ken Perejko, Playwriting

1st, Bonnie E. Selmer, Poetry

1st, Terry Germaine Free, Anoka, MN, Short Story

1st, Julia C. McCleary, Roscoe, IL, Article

1st, Douglas Prindle, Green Bay, Essay

1st, Peter Roop, Appleton, Juvenile



1st, Joan Rohr Meyers, Playwriting

Unknown Poetry

1st, Dorothy Carey, Green Bay, Short Story

1st, Kathryn Nawrocke, Article

1st, Bernice Abrahamson, Lewis, Essay

1st, Carolyn Muchala, Juvenile



1st, Janice Penkalski, Playwriting

1st, Della Bopf, Rothschild, Poetry

1st, Lynne Finch, New London, Short Story

1st, Kathy Taylor, Article

1st, Joan Zeier, Madison, Essay

1st, Lynne Finch, New London, Juvenile

1st, Vern J. Wolf, Photography



1st, Doris Cronk, Menomonie, Playwriting

1st, Nancy Sweetland, Green Bay, Poetry

1st, Lu V. Smith, Racine, Short Story

1st, Mary Conroy, Madison, Article

1st, Elmer Otte, Appleton, Essay

1st, Kathy Warnes, Juvenile

1st, Toni Becker, Sheboygan, Photography

(?)Connie Roop



Playwriting - Not awarded

1st, Joan R. Meyers, Poetry

1st, Mel Brenner, Short Story

1st, Larry Johns, Bloomington MN, Article

1st, Mary Conroy, Madison, Essay

1st, Marion Colbo, Milwaukee, Juvenile

Photography - Not awarded



1st, Edna Thorp, Janesville, Playwriting (May 2021 obituary said poetry)

1st, Helen Fahrbach, Neenah, Poetry

1st, Evelyn Blanek, Short Story

1st, Elmer Otte, Appleton, Article

1st, Mary Ellen Pourchot, Essay

1st, Katherine Von Ahnen, Cap May, NJ, Juvenile



1st, Joy Daane, Sheboygan, Playwriting

1st, Frances May, Sturgeon Bay, Poetry

1st, Sylvia w. Liedtke, Short Story

1st, Ann Jahnke, Appleton, Article

1st, Douglas Prindle, Green Bay, Essay

1st, Susan Connors, Madison, Juvenile



1st, Mel Brenner, Madison, Playwriting

1st, Ellen Kort, Appleton, Poetry

1st, Joy Daane, Sheboygan, Short Story

1st, Allen Werner, Germantown, Article

1st, Mary Maduscha, Shawano, Essay

1st, Lynne Finch, New London, Juvenile



1st, Randall Rehberg, Racine, Playwriting

1st, Laurel Mills, Neenah, Poetry

1st, Nancy Olson, Taylor, Short Story

1st, Tim H. McDonell, M.D., Waukesha, Article

1st, Kathryn L. Voigt, Menasha, Essay

1st, Al Wawrzaszek, Hatley, Juvenile

Florence Lindemann Humor, Rita Fredrick, Portage, “40th Wedding Anniversary Bed”



Playwriting -(insufficient entries)

1st, Russell King, Madison, Poetry

1st, Meg Ruville-Heitz, Deerfield, Short Story

1st, Elizabeth Brittonsmith, Menasha, Article

1st, Russell King, Madison, Essay

1st, Elizabeth Brittonsmith, Menasha Juvenile



1st, Elmer Otte, Appleton, Poetry

1st, Helen C. Johannes, Marshfield, Short Story

1st, John Bates, Mercer, Article

1st, Bud Johnson, Milwaukee, Essay

1st, Joan Zeier, Madison, Juvenile

1st, Patricia Dunson, Appleton, Mystery



1st, Cathryn A. Cofell Appleton, Poetry

1st, Richard C. Radtke, Madison, Short Story

1st, Barbara Hart, Racine, Article

1st, Nancy Sweetland, Green Bay, Essay

1st, Sandy Mickelson, Kimberly, Juvenile

1st, Lu V. Smith, Racine, Nostalgia



1st, Sue DeKelver, Marinette, Poetry

HM, Poetry, Kay Sanders, “Bath, in House, Alone”

1st, Fran Zill, Madison, Short Story

1st, Jane Ellis, New Berlin, Article

1st, Kay Sanders, Oshkosh, Essay, “Sign of the Owl”

1st, Judy Haskins, Oregon, Juvenile


1st, Debbie A. Tripp, Nashotah, Article

1st, Laurie Neubecker, Oshkosh, Essay

1st, Maureen Fitzgerald Waugh, Madison, Short Story

1st, Joan Simons, Wauwatosa, Juvenile

1st, Grace Houston, Kenosha, Nostalgia

Al P. Nelson Feature Writing contest began, and ran through 2011

Sheila Ross Doering Al P. Nelson Feature Article

2nd, Bernice Abrahamson, APN

3rd, Quentin Verdier, APN



1st, Kay Sanders, Oshkosh, Poetry, “Remembering Aunt Essie’s Hair”

1st, Elizabeth Deakman, Short Story

3rd, Short Story, Kay Sanders, “Mr. Bill”

1st, Barbara Coan Houghton, Verona Article

1st, Richard O. Haight, Egg Harbor, Essay

3rd, Personal Experience, Kay Sanders, “Typecast”

1st, Susan Marie Manzke, Juvenile

1st, Bernice Abrahamzon, Lewis, Nostalgia

1st, Jane Ellis, Al P. Nelson Feature Article



Honorable Mention, 50th Anniversary, Kay Sanders, “Seeing Grandpa Safely Home”

1st, Karla Huston, fiction, “Picture This”

1st, Mary Wendland, Poetry, “Floodgate”

Treva Davis, Al P. Nelson Feature Article



2nd, Karla Houston poetry

HM, Karla Houston poetry

Lyn Curry Lombard, Al P. Nelson Feature Article


1st, Karla Huston, humorous poetry, “The Waitress”

1st, Jackie Langetieg, youth poetry, “Casal’s Cello”

1st, William O Ladewig, Menomonee Falls, Al P Nelson Feature Writing Contest, “Food for Thought”

Kathleen Petrella, Burlington, Florence Lindemann Humor writing contest, “Italian—Language With an Attitude”


Les Goplen, Al P Nelson Feature Article

2nd, Jo Stewart, Solon Springs, Al P. Nelson



1st, nostalgia, Patricia Weisberg, Milwaukee

3rd, Nostalgia, Kay Sanders,  “The Language Children Never Forget”

Honorable Mention, Kay Sanders, “The Scale of Things”

Honorable Mention, Poetry, Kay Sanders, “Pinwheel”

Betty Walker Stark, Al P Nelson Feature Article



Tied 1st place poetry, both by Kay Sanders, “Aunt Ida” and “Along Back Roads”

2nd poetry, Margaret L Been, “Maple Candy in a Nursing Home”

1st, nostalgia, Wilma Leonard, Baraboo

Loa Huber, Al P Nelson Feature Article


*Poetry  - judge John Lehman

1st, Sandra J. Lindow, Eau Claire

2nd, Barbara  Houghton, McFarland

3rd, Kathleen Petrella, Walworth

HM, Judy Kolossa, Wauwatosa, Barbara Houghton, George S. Kulas, Fond du Lac

*Article – judge Bill Nelson

1st, Michele Bergstrom, Eagle River

2nd, Patricia Weisberg, Milwaukee

3rd, Charles P. Ries, Milwaukee

HM, Charlotte Clark, Pardeeville; Nancy Sweetland, Green Bay; Donald B. Derozier, Oshkosh; Bernice Abrahamzon, Frederic

*Essay – judge Jim Stingl

1st, Wilma Leonard, Baraboo

2nd, Jane C. Ellis, New Berlin

3rd, Sally Blair, Frederic

HM – Claudia Anderson, Whitewater; Mary Jane Lunde Burrell, Stoughton; Lou Lucknow Bulebosh, Plymouth

*Juvenile Literature – judge Ann Angel

1st, Darlene Buechel, Chilton

2nd, Mary Jane Lunde Burrell, Stoughton

3rd, Wilber E. Selbrede, Madison

HM – William Ladewig, Wauwatosa; Nancy Sweetland, Green Bay; Patricia Kasten, Appleton

*Nostalgia – judge Jerry Apps

1st,, Dorothy Loftus, Deerfield

2nd, nostalgia, Julie C. Eger,  “The Broken Bowl”

3rd, Alice Claypool, nostalgia, “The Radio”

HM – June Kinsey, Wauwatosa; Barbara Coan Houghton, McFarland; George S. Kulas, Fond du Lac

short story – judge Jane Toombs

1st,,Val G. Johnson, Grantsburg

2nd, Kathy Warnes, Toledo, OH

3rd, Jerry Peterson, Janesville

HM – Barbara Malcolm, Green Bay; Nancy Sweetland, Green Bay

2005, Contest Chair Cary Fellman

1st, Juvenile Short Story, Susan Kileen

1st, Article, Julie Eger, “Between a Fork and a Hard Place”

1st, Nostalgia, Sandy Tully, “Barefoot on Stones”

1st, Adult Short Story,  Kathie McGwin

2nd, Agnes Kennard, Short Story, “An Abiding Mystery”

1st, Richard E. Carter, Wauwatosa, Al P. Nelson Feature Article, “Going to Grandma’s”

2nd, John Friedell, Shell Lake

3rd, Boyd Sutton, Siren

HM, Bernadette Friedell

HM, J Ellis,

HM, Betty Smedlund

2005 Florence Lindemann humor contest 1st place, Herb Stanelle, Brown Deer, “Life of Rupert”

2nd, Judity Sepsey, New Berlin

3rd, Gwennith Hinz, Lomira

HM, Kathey Warnes, “Ecorse”



1st, Dorothy Lund, Article, “Cameo of Dad”

2nd, Nancy Bauer-King, Article, “Tobacco Ties”

3rd, Mickey Burgermeister, Article, “The Crick”

HM John Friedell, Article, “Call the Question”; Lou Roach, “Filmmaker’s Best Flourishes In a Most Unlikely Place”; Betsy Foley, “A Woman Ahead of Her Time”

* Contest Judge: Jenny Brantley


1st, Judy A. Kolosso, Essay, “One Less”

2nd Julie C. Eger, Essay, “La Que Sabe’s Bag of Tricks”

3rd Sylvia Oberle, Essay, “An Afternoon and Evening at the Free Clinic”

HM Essay, Dee Trein-Jucius, “Am I Old?”; Mary Farley, “Perennial Springtime”; Nancy Schultz, “Lady Bratt Ashley”

*Contest Judge: Carolyn Wedin

1st,  Barbara Megna, Nostalgia, “No Proper Goodbye”

2nd Harry Sarazin, Nostalgia, “A Close Shave”

3rd Ramon A. Klitzke, Nostalgia, “The Switchyard”

HM, Nostalgia, Ruth G. Smith, “Our Way of Life”; Margaret Nelson, “The Dutch Knew How”; Lola M. Huber, “Grandpa Added The Spice”

*Contest Judge: Wilma Bedmarz


Jade Ring, Brenda Nelson-Davis, “Elena and the Worries”

2nd William G. Ladewig, “Turtle Hunting on the Bayou”

3rd Cathy Conger, “Having Hula”


Mary Jo Stitch, “The Bakery”

Steve Betchkal, “How the Bear Ran Out of Patience”

Rachel DeRosa “The Sock-Nest Monster”

*judge Cornell M. Brellenthin


Jade Ring, Les Huisman, “The Ice Cream Man”

2nd Neela K. Suklhatme-Sheth, “Two Tigers Cannot Share

One Hill”

3rd Rebecca K. Blemberg, “After the Shooting at 12th Street


Honorable Mention:

Charles P. Ries, “Albino Prunes”

Mary Jacobsen, “The Red Patch”

Richard E. Carter, “Reunion”

*Contest Judge: Anthony Bukoski

Poetry, 135 entries by 52 writers.

Jade Ring, John Manesis, “The Ascent of Icarus”

2nd John L. Campbell, “The Clutter Brothers”

3rd Berit Aaker Pietsch, “Crossing A Great Distance”

Honorable Mention:

Margaret Been, “Summer of Horses”

Sandra Tully, “Origins”

Judy Kolosso, “A Proper Farewell”

*judge LaMoine MacLaughlin

1st, Susan Damgard O’Brien, Al P Nelson Feature Article

2nd, Boyd Sutton, place, article ?Al P Nelson feature writing article contest


1st, Boyd Sutton, Siren, Essay, “Owning Your Own Time”

1st, Patricia Weisberg, Milwaukee, Article, “20th Century Crusader”

HM Mark J Lucius, Milwaukee, article, “Cake Eaters”

1st, Susan Engebrecht, Wausau, Nostalgia, “Galoshes Memories”

3rd Nostalgia, Mary Jo Balistreri,- "October at Dad's"

1st, Ramon A. Klitzke, Waukesha, Adult Short Story, “The Summer of ‘33”

1st, Sue Wentz, Portage, “Servant to the Wolf” Juvenile Short Story

1st, Julie C. Eger, Wautoma, Poetry, “Broken Promise”

2nd Place Poetry, Mary Jo Balistreri, "Stairs In The Artist's Garden" after Bonnard

1st, Dorothy Lund, Al P. Nelson Feature Article



Charles P. Ries, Milwaukee, Humorous Poetry

1st, Peter Sherrill, Forestville, Serious Poetry

William G. Ladewig, Menomonee Falls, Nostalgia

1st, Mark J. Lucius, Milwaukee, Article, “No Accounting for Taste”

Julie C. Eger, Wautoma, Essay, “The Lesson Of the Deep Song”

LaMoine McLaughlin, “Clayton,” Adult Short Story

Denice Ryan Martin, Dousman, Juvenile Short Story

2nd, Julie C. Eger, memoir, “Puberty 101”

2nd,  Agnes Kennard, “Coffee and Common Ground”

Sue Wentz, Al P Nelson Feature Article

Florence Lindeman Humor Contest, Ronald H Schumber


Janet Grant-Gustafson, Nostalgia, “Summer Surrogate”

Charles P. Ries, Humorous Poetry

Mary Jo Balistreri, Short Story, "Bonnard Remembers Marthe in Evening Light"

Kim Suhr, Genesse Depot, Florence Lindemann Humor Contest, “To Cap it Off”

Heidi Overson, Onalaska, Al P. Nelson Feature Article, “King of Bees”


Yvette Viets Flaten, Serious Poetry, “Good Humorous Man”

Nancy Jesse, Short Story, “Creative Nonfiction”

Darlene Buechel, Nostalgia, “Witches, Fairies, and Chocolate Cherries”

Carolyn Marquardt, Al P Nelson Feature Article

HM, nonfiction, Dawn Bedore Proctor, Terror Management

HM, Al P. Nelson feature writing contest, Dawn Bedore Proctor, “Melissa Etheridge’s Autograph”

2010, Kim Suhr

2010, Joanne Nelson

2010, Dave Thome


Al P. Nelson feature writing contest, special merit, Dawn Bedore Protcor, essay, “The Arrogance of the Living”

HM, nonfiction, Dawn Bedore Proctor, “The Island Bridegroom”

1st, Karla Huston, Serious Poetry, “O’Hair”

2nd, Peter Lund, serious poetry, “Two Neighbors”

3rd, July Kolosso, serious poetry, “Farmer, Taster of Life”

HM, Yvette Viets Later, serious poetry, “To My Friend in Thailand”

1st, Sandra Lindow, Humorous Poetry, “The Fitting”

2nd Humorous poetry, Connie Ludlum, “Annie Cadaver”

3rd, humorous poetry, Nancy Jesse, “Question for My Deceased Father”

HM, humorous poetry, Alice D’Alession, “My Husband Dreams of Tomatoes”

HM, humorous poetry, Doris Bezio “Heart Covered Boxers”

1st, Rena Beyer, Nostalgia, “Our Church”

2nd, nostalgia, Gary Jones, “Edna”

3rd, nostalgia, Peg Sherry, “My Love Affair with Fire”

HM, nostalgia, Jamie Kinworthy, “The Skinny on Breakfast”

HM, nostalgia, JoAnn Jones Opsahl, “JoAnn”

1st, Dawn Bedore Proctor, Nonfiction Essay, “The Ride Home”

2nd essay, Gary Jones, “Memorials Forgotten”

3rd essay, James Guhl, “The Call of the Flambeau”

HM essay, Greg Peck, “A Giant of a Killer in a Body Too Small”

HM essay, Barbara Kaufmann, “When the Student is Ready, the Teacher Sparkles”

1st, Karl Rubenstein, Fiction, “Sparks”

2nd, adult fiction, Anne C. Zimmerman, “The Chrysalis Stage”

3rd, adult fiction, Maura Fitzgerald, “One Letter Off”

HM, adult fiction, Kim Suhr, “Rink Rats”

HM, adult fiction, John J. Mutter, Jr., “The Regulators”

1st, Elizabeth Haling, Juvenile Fiction, “If I Were…”

2nd juvenile fiction, Tia Svardahl, “One Beautiful me”

3rd, juvenile fiction, Heidi Overson, “Karl’s Hope”

HM, juvenile fiction, Elizabeth Gamache, “Curtain Call”

1st, Jenny Benjamin, First Chapter, “This Amazin’”

2nd, first chapters, Jeanette Michalets, “The Ten Cent Café”

3rd, first chapters, Andrew Davis, “Baker’s Dozen”

Susan Engebrecht, Wausau, Florence Lindemann Humor Contest, “O Chicken Feathers”

Ralph “Bud” Mason, Al P. Nelson Feature Article, (final contest), “My Honor Flight”


Judy Kolosso, Free Verse Poetry, “Settling Down”

Florence Lindemann Humor Contest: Erin Clune, “An Open Letter to Malcolm Gladwell’s Audio Book”

1st, Mary Jo Balistreri, Nonfiction, “When All Hell Broke Loose”

2nd place, essay, Dorothy Lund, “They Should’ve Asked a Logger”

3rd, Jeanette Michalets, essay, “To Kityma With Love: Books as Keepsakes”

HM, Lisa Lickel, essay, “Accounting for Spring”

HM, Carole McFarlin, essay, “Deerskin River on Sunday”

1sr, Kathy Lanzarotti, Fiction, “Have You Seen Me?”

2nd, fiction, Jonnie Guernsey, “Saint Lonely”

3rd, fiction, Mary Lu Perham, “The Bird Feeders”

HM, fiction, Lori Lipsky, “The Flip”

1st, Elizabeth Harmatys Park, Formal Poetry, “Ketterhagen Road”

2nd,  formal verse, Judy Kolosso, “To a Swamp Meadowlark”

3rd, formal verse, Paul Kosir, “The Northern Lights”

HM, formal verse, Paula Anderson, “Maybe”

HM, formal verse, Jim X, “Beastly Feelings”

2nd, Sharon Foley,  free verse, “Hospital Visit”

3rd, Margaret Swedish,  free verse, “The Cemetery”

HM, Brenda Axt, free verse, “Late December at Dusk”

HM, Judy Roy, free verse, “Departure”

1st, Nancy Jesse, Memoir, “Whitewashing”

2nd, Jennifer Taylor, memoir, “The Band”

3rd, Doris Bezio, memoir, “Good Wife”

HM, Joanne Nelson, memoir, Canned Peaches in Winter”

HM,  Elizabeth Haling,  memoir, “Memories of Grandma”


Lisa Lickel, Kewaskum, Juvenile Fiction, “Saxon Boy”

Dorothy Loftus, Nostalgia, “Tick Tock”

Nancy Jesse, Madison, Poetry, “The Nature of Memory”

Judge Marilyn Taylor, poetry

Judge Juvenile fiction, editors from Orange Hat Publishing


1st, essay, Bruce Campbell, Medical School Commencement v. Graduation

2nd, essay, Joel Habush, Nights of the Roundtable

3rd, essay, Brenda Axt, Read It Then Die

HM, essay, Joanne Nelson, Speeding, In a Good Way

HM, essay, Gary Jones, Adjunct

1st, memoir, Jim Brakken, “Dale”

2nd, essay, Bill Mathis, “Three Feet”

3rd, essay, Nancy Sweetland, “The Great Ride”

HM, essay, Jim Brakken, “Opening Day”

1st, fiction for young people, Jim Guhl, “Mr. Schnitzer’s Diamond”

2nd, fiction for young people, Brenda Axt, “Who Are You, What Do You Say?”

3rd, fiction for young people, Pamela Parker, “Quintin and Lucius”

1st, fiction, Naomi Musch, “Ellie Hollis Gets Her Man”

2nd, fiction, Heidi Overson, “Evil Sleeps While Goodness Creeps”

3rd, fiction, Heidi Overson, “Waters of Paradise”

HM, fiction, Joan Zeier, “Love Letters in the Dust”

HM, fiction, Jim Guhl, “Water Aerobics”

Mike Orlock, Free Verse Poetry, “Apocalypse”

Suzy Wedeward, Formal Poetry, “Dreaming in Sestina”



1st, nonfiction, Bill Mathis, “The Oak Tree”

2nd, nonfiction, James Guhl, “The Artist Within”

3rd, nonfiction, Paul Gurzynksi, “A Well-Timed Call”

HM, nonfiction, Brenda Axt, “River Rat”

HM, nonfiction, Carl Taylor-Carlson, “Letting Go”

1st, fiction, James Guhl, “Deep”

2nd, fiction, Tammy Bailey, “Closing Time”

3rd, fiction, GA Scheinoha, “J Street Blues”

HM, fiction, Billie Diersen, “Eight Words”

HM, fiction, Mary Jane Guhl, “Rabbit”

1st, poetry, Yvette Viet Flaten, “Skies by Tiepolo”

2nd, poetry, Jill Follett, “Control”

3rd, poetry, Irene Hansen, “Off-spooling”

HM. Poetry, Bill Mathis, “Of Balancing Rocks”

HM, poetry, Melinda Hagenson, “Easter Week”

Elaine Maly, Humor, “No Comprende

Dorothy Lund, Essay, “Cameo of Dad”


*Nonfiction judge, Laurie Scheer, Faculty Associate and Writing Mentor at the University of Wisconsin—Madison awarded:

1st, nonfiction, Robert Kinderman, Trego, “Saving Dad.”

2nd, nonfiction, Cyndy Irvine, Amherst Junction, “Tiny Stitches.”

3rd, nonfiction, Jessica Schnur, Milwaukee, “Unstuck.”

HM, nonfiction, Karin Schmidt, Wauwatosa “Literature’s Lavender Scented Little Old Lady”

HM, nonfiction, Maryclaire Torinus, Brookfield, “A Place Just Right”

*judge Marilyn Taylor, former Poet Laureate of Wisconsin, poetry

1st, poetry, Charles Haislet, Gordon, “Truth”

2nd, poetry, John Leighton, Hayward, “Amy”

3rd, poetry, Mary Jo Balistreri, Genesee Depot, “Sea Crows”

Honorable Mention poets Judy Roy of Bailey’s Harbor

HM poetry Gary Scheinoha, Eden.

*judge Novelist Patricia Skalka, fiction

1st fiction, Carolyn Toms-Neary, St. Francis, “Beware the Bindlestiff”

2nd, fiction, Elise Gregory of Ellsworth, “The Junction Bar”

3rd fiction, Lora Hyler, “Stealth Love”

HM, fiction, Melinda Hagenson of Eau Claire, “The War at Home”

HM fiction, Joel Habush, West Allis, “Judicial Sentences”



1st place, nonfiction, Greg Peck, “Small Decision, Big Consequence”

Not published: 1st, fiction, Kathleen Waldvogel, “I Can Fight as Well as Any Man”

1st, Katherine Yets, poetry

HM fiction, Nancy Jesse, Madison, “On Their Own Terms”


1st, Poetry, Kathie Giorgio, “Again”

2nd Poetry, Elizabeth Harrahy, “Center of the Universe”

3rd, poetry, Doris Bezio, “Sea Turtle”

HM Poetry, Christy Hoff, “I Was Will”

HM Poetry, Sharon Foley, “Thrown Away”

HM Poetry, Jennifer Vanderheyden, “Consolee’s Testimonial Chant”

1st, fiction, Owen Albric, “Tying the Knot With No End”

2nd, fiction, Mary Wimmer, “Five”

3rd fiction, Vickie Youngquist Smith, “Cloud Like a Lamb”

HM, Fiction, Bruce Campbell, HM Fiction, Janice Kehler, “Ode to Olympic Dreams”

1st, nonfiction, Lora Hyler, “Bill of Rights, A Negro Man, and 39 White Women”

2nd, nonfiction, Nancy Jorgensen, “Little Known Truths about Lilies of the Valley”

3rd, nonfiction, Joy Ribar, “Bird Envy

HM, nonfiction, Christa Bruhn, “Yolo”

HM nonfiction, Kevin Burghardt, “Runaway”

HM nonfiction, Rosie Klepper, “Swans vs Hippos”


Kathrine Yets, St. Francis, Poetry, “Plath’s Birthday”

Steve Fox, fiction, “Dumplings”

Nancy Jesse, Madison, Nonfiction, “The Road Not Taken”

Karin Schmidt, Humor, “The Dog Who Came in From the Cold”


1st, poetry, Kayla Knaack, poetry, “Bathtub Baptism”

2nd poetry, Paul Schulz, Slinger, “Do You See That?”

3rd poetry, Nancy Rafal, Bailey’s Harbor, “Twists and Turns”

HM poetry, Sharon Foley, Whitefish Bay, “Flapjacks”

HM poetry, Sara Sarna, Oconomowoc, “Coloring”

HM poetry, Susan Hunnicutt, Milwaukee, “I’m Not Gone”

1st, fiction, PJA Fullerton, “Going to Join Dickens”

2nd fiction, Steve Fox, Hudson, “Bread-Enders”

3rd fiction, Susan Hunnicutt, Milwaukee, “An Empty Metal Mailbox

HM fiction, Bruce Campbell, “Spinning”

HM fiction, Robb Grindstaff, Jefferson, “Airport Lounges”

HM fiction, Kim Suhr, Wales, “Numbered Days”

1st, nonfiction, Julia Gimbel, “My Miss New Orleans”

2nd nonfiction, Janice Wilberg, Milwaukee, “The Dog of Our Hard Times”

3rd place, nonfiction, Karin Schmidt, Wauwatosa, “The Suchness of my Muchness:

HM nonfiction, Mary J. Guhl, Neenah, “Through the Ice”

HM nonfiction, Nancy Sweetland, Green Bay, “April Ailment”

1st, humor, Janice Wilberg, “Crop Tending”

2nd humor, Jackie Langetieg, Verona, “My Phantom Belly Button”

3rd humor, pat Palechek, New Berlin, “The Woman Who Lived in a Shoe”

HM humor, Jim Guhl, Hudson, “Twisted”

HM humor, Tracey Gemmell, New Glarus, “Scooby-Doo and Hobnobs”

HM, humor, Nancy Bauer King, Racine, “Is There an App for That?”


1st, Camilla Cenek, Nonfiction, “After Midnight”

2nd, nonfiction, Ed Sarna, “Draft Day Prize”

3rd, nonfiction, Nan Bogue, “Cornfields Everywhere”

HM nonfiction, Julia Gimbel, “Once Haunted, Now Resolved”

HM nonfiction, Mel Miskimen, “A Girl Walked into a Bar…”

HM nonfiction, Cliffe Connor, “Fighting”

1st, J. MacKenzie, Fiction, “Puppy Day”

2nd fiction, Steve Fox, “Goat Milk”

3rd fiction, Doug Lewandowski, “Cold Comfort”

HM fiction, Joy Ribar, “The Bee Servant”

HM fiction, Brea Behn, “Letters to Love”

HM fiction, Jo DeMars, “Going for a Ride”

1st, Yvette Vliet Flaten, Eau Claire, Poetry, “He runs his fingers”

2nd place poetry, Jim Landewehr, “Wordnapped”

3rd poetry, Jackie Langetieg, “But I Try!”

HM poetry, Mike Orlock, “Uncertain Spring, 2020”

HM poetry, Debra McKinney, “The Box”

HM poetry, Sara Sarna, “A Place Past Cold”


1st, Owen Albric (Rick Whaley), Fiction, “Tying the Knot With No End”

1st, Lora Hyler, Nonfiction, “The Bill of Rights, One College-educated Negro Man, and a 1955 Protest by 39 White Wauwatosa Women”

1st, Kathie Giorgio, Waukesha, Poetry, “Again”



1st,Nancy Jesse, Madison, "Notes to the New Facilitator of the Reminiscence Writing Group at Sunnyvale Retirement Community"

2nd, Steve Fox, Hudson, "Larmet Lunker" 

3rd, Sherry Lee Feig, Madison, Chapter Three: An Avatar is Born

Honorable Mention, Silvia Acevedo, Milwaukee, "Two’s a Crowd" 

Honorable Mention, Ryan David Fleming, Birmingham, AL, "Come Ye Wanderin’ Goats" 


1st, Adrianna Lewis McCollum, Oregon, WI, "Mormon Girl and the Styrofoam Harem" 

2nd, RJ Kinderman, Trego, "A Message in a Cyber Bottle" 

3rd, Ann Zindler, Waukesha, "Snow Over Grass"

Honorable Mention, Victoria Lynn Smith, Superior, "The Dummy Never Showed Up" 

Honorable Mention, Nancy Jesse, Madison, "Water Sprites" 

Honorable Mention, Aleta L. Chossek, Milwaukee, "Intricate Pattern" 


1st, Yvette Viets Flaten, Eau Claire, "Reflections of a Poet as a Young Girl 1969" 

2nd, Sylvia Cavanaugh, Cedar Grove, "ALICE Drill" 

3rd, Lynn M Aprill, Seymour, "Love" 

Honorable Mention, Sara Sarna, Oconomowoc, "Missing" 

Honorable Mention, R.B. Simon, Madison, "Letter to My Mother in Winter" 

Honorable Mention, Lynne Shaner, Whitefish Bay, "Marriage" 



1st Place: Susan Huebner, Mukwonago, “Variation on a Theme”

2nd Place: Mary M Brown, Anderson, IN, “Another Aubade”

3rd Place: Yvette Flaten, Eau Claire, “Fade to Black”

Honorable Mentions:

Tad Phippen Wente, Port Washington, “At the Nursing Home”

Kathleen Van Demark, Kewaskum, “Postcards from Death”

Mike J Orlock, Sturgeon Bay, “Morphine-dipped Dreams”

Non-fiction, judge David McGlynn

No first place

2nd Place: Nancy Jesse, Madison, “Waiting Room”

3rd Place: Jeffrey Lewis, Madison “The Night was Dark”

Honorable Mentions:

Prasannata Verma, Milwaukee, “Fugitive”

Lisa Poliak, Santa Monica, CA, “The Visible Woman”

James Bonilla, Winona, MN, “Learning Grace from Mrs. Reed”


1st Place: Mary Beth Danielson, Waukesha, “How Crow Got Out of Jail”

2nd Place: Bert Kreitlow, Waukesha, “Abandoned school”

3rd Place: Brea Ruddy, Madison, “Shine On, My Light”

Honorable Mentions:

Robb Grindstaff, Osage Beach, MO, “Error: Memory File Corrupted”

Jo Ann Opsahl, Merrill, “Goose Girl”

Elizabeth Feil, Eleva, “Safe Haven”


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