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Navy League Awards: Mackie Awards

Submission Instructions


Newsletter - March 31, 2011
Website - Extended - January 17, 2011


Submission Instructions

- Send a minimum of four newsletter issues published in the calendar year. Electronic (in Word or pdf format) and paper copies are acceptable.
- Please include two (2) copies of each issue.
- Be sure to indicate your council size, the name of your newsletter editor and who receives it (in addition to your Council membership).

Email submissions to:
Subj: Mackie Award - Newsletter Submission

Mail to: (must be post marked by March 31st.)
Director of Public Relations
2300 Wilson Blvd. Ste. 200
Arlington, VA 22201

Categories: There are separate subcategories council newsletters - small up to 125 members), medium (126 - 499 members) and large (500+ members). There is a winner and at least one runner-up chosen for each category. Newsletters are judged on the basis of how well the editor works with the resources that he or she has. The overall appearance of a newsletter is a factor, but "slickness" is not, so a neatly produced newsletter created on a typewriter might beat out a color one produced on a computer, for example.


  • frequency (must be issued a minimum of four times a year)
  • quality of writing
  • readability & layout
  • timeliness
  • subject matter
  • visibility in the community
  • good use of photographs
  • distribution

A checklist of what you may want to look for in your newsletter is available below:

Your Newsletter -- Is It a Mackie Contender?

This checklist was designed as a tool to help you improve your newsletter. Look through the list to see what ideas you can use to improve your publication.


  • Do you have a masthead? Pick a name and have it rendered graphically.
  • Is the editor's name readily visible?
  • Do you have an issue and volume number?
  • Is the editor and/or council's address easy to find?
  • Do you have page numbers if there are several pages?
  • Do your headlines stand out from the rest of the copy?
  • Is your type large enough to be read easily? (Applies only to those who have a choice of type sizes.)
  • Do you stick to a very few styles of type? Do your articles all have the same size type? Too many type styles and sizes clutter up a newsletter and make it hard to read.
  • Do you stick to one format? (Three-column, two-column or one-column.)


  • Are your articles short and to the point?
  • Are your articles well written and interesting?
  • Is your writing grammatically correct?
  • Are there any typos? Catch them before the newsletter goes to print.
  • Do you have someone else read through your newsletter to proof it and check for clarity and readability?
  • Is your only news the next dinner meeting and the biography of the speaker? Try for a greater variety of information.
  • Is there a variety of news from your council, the state, the region, and National Headquarters? Do you use headquarters-provided Legislative Reports?
  • Do you have articles about the sea services?
  • Do you have articles about all the good things your Navy League Council is doing in the community?
  • Do you include pertinent quotes?
  • Do your headlines grab the reader?
  • Is information easy to find?
  • Do your articles follow a logical progression? Are like articles grouped together?


  • Do you use more than one piece of clip art or on-line art per page? Try to keep clip art to a minimum as it can clutter up the page.
  • Is your artwork interesting and relevant or just filling up space?
  • Are your photographs clear and well reproduced?
  • Do you use photographs to graphic advantage? For example, one large clear photograph is better than four fuzzy ones.
  • Is your newsletter reproduced clearly, or are you using a third-generation photocopy of the original artwork for your masthead? Remember that if you are photocopying, photographs do not reproduce well. If you must photocopy photographs, try to take photos that are slightly underexposed with good contrast.
  • Do you use "white space"? Running copy to the edge of the page instead of leaving a margin makes it harder to read. Leave space around photographs, headlines, pull-out quotes, and your masthead. An airier layout is easier to read.
  • Do you switch typefaces from article to article? This is very hard to do well. It's better to have only two type styles: one for headlines, and another for body copy.
  • Is everything laid out straight on the page?


  • Do you have advertisers?
  • Do you distribute your newsletter to influential non-members such as:
    • Mayor
    • Board of Supervisors
    • local libraries, high schools, colleges and universities
    • active duty sea service people -- especially your adopted ships, units, or facility personnel
    • radio, television, and newspaper editors
    • religious leaders
    • potential members
    • community leaders and members of your congressional delegation?
  • Do you provide extra copies to people featured?
  • Do you send a copy to National Headquarters (Director of Public Relations)?


Websites are judged on the basis of how well the webmaster works with available
resources. The overall appearance of a website is a significant factor, but equally
important elements are compelling content, clearly defined goals and easy navigation.
A good web site puts the needs of its users first.

The website judging process consists of two steps

1) An initial screening for meeting minimum criteria which all entries undergo. This is carried out by the Navy League’s Information Technology Committee (ITC).
2) The final evaluation and judging of the entries that have passed all of the initial screening criteria of ITC. This step is administered by Navy League headquarters (NLUS HQ)

Submission Instructions:
1) Websites entered must have been in general use for at least part of the calendar year.
2) Websites must be available for viewing in January following the award year.
3) Since judging of the websites will be done in January each year, no design modifications to the websites should be made during the judging month. Only content updates are permitted.
4) Website request for consideration (see form below), with completed Initial Screening Criteria may be emailed or faxed no later than Jan 17, 2011:

Email: [see below regarding submission…your pleasure]
Subject: Mackie Award - Website Submission

or Fax to: Senior Director of Communications - (703) 528-2333
Subject: Mackie Award - Website Submission

The following fields are required for entry:
Name of Council/Region/Area: ___________________________________
Council membership as of December 1:  __________________________
Title of Website Entry: __________________________________________
Site URL: (http://) _______________________________________________
Name of Webmaster: ___________________________________________
E-mail (Council contact): ________________________________________

Attach a completed copy of the Initial Screening Criteria (see below).

1) Size of council: The award categories for the websites will be the same as the newsletters subcategories and one unique category:

  • Small (up to 125 members),
  • Medium (126 - 499 members)
  • Large (500+ members)
  • Non-Council subcategory that includes NLUS entities such as Areas or Regions. The number of awards will be determined by the number of entries received in each subcategory.

2) Winners:
1-3 entries - First Place only  [Should there be fewer than 3 entries, Honorable Mention may be considered.]
4-6 entries - First and Second Places only
7 or more entries - First, Second, and Third Places 

Entries will be judged on the Initial Screening Criteria and Web Site Evaluation Criteria:
Click here for “Initial Screening Evaluation Criteria"

Click here for "Web Site Evaluation Criteria"


Navy League headquarters staff will recruit knowledgeable PAO/webmaster/etc. persons to serve as judges who should include representatives from the Sea Services IT/Public Affairs Communities and/or other independent and unbiased persons willing to serve. The judges will be selected by the Senior Director of Communications, with the National President’s concurrence. NLUS Staff will acknowledge receipt of each entry to the Council Contact as shown on the entry.

The Information Technology Committee (ITC) will be charged with initial screening of submissions for meeting the requirements. Councils will submit the request for consideration, required information and Initial Screening Criteria form to NLUS Staff who then will forward to the ITC Chairman early in January for review by the committee to only determine whether initial requirements are met, not to judge the entry. ITC will review entries and report results to NLUS Staff.

What makes your website a good Mackie contender?

-Credible, original content relevant to the local council, local sea service activities and regional or national Navy League goals and activities
-Good inter-activity, engages the user and makes your site memorable
-Clearly defined goals
-Easy to read
-Good organization
-Easy to navigate
-Valuable, timely information to the user, not lots of data
-Consistent design throughout
-Compelling, quality content
-Visually attractive
-Well-presented with proper spelling and grammar
-Loads quickly
-Uses special effects only if they add value
-Has working links
-Builds user loyalty; custom-tailor the information to user preferences
-A mechanism for contacting site administrator, including e-mail, phone number and street address

Send all submissions to Senior Director Communications/Mackie Websites, Navy League of the United States, 2300 Wilson Boulevard, Suite 200, Arlington, VA 22201-3308, or email to or FAX to 703.528.2333, Attn. Comms. Dept./ Mackie Website.