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My Coast Guard
Commentary | Dec. 14, 2022

Your photos and videos could earn you awards

By Chief Warrant Officer 2 Lauren Jorgensen, Public Affairs program manager

Have you taken cool photos or video this year of Coast Guard people, missions, or equipment? 

That’s a rhetorical question. We know you have. We’ve seen them out there. Now is the time gather that imagery, show it off, and maybe win awards!  

The Coast Guard Public Affairs Program is soliciting submissions for the 2022 Chief Journalist Alex Haley awards. This photo, video, and writing competition has NINE categories and is open to Coast Guard active duty, reserve, civilian, and auxiliary members! It does not require you to compete against trained public affairs specialists, because that would be totally unfair. 

How will you hear if you’ve won? Award winners will be announced through the Coast Guard messaging system as well as MyCG. The first, second, and third place winners will be featured on the official Coast Guard social media accounts, the artist – yes, that’s you - will receive a commemorative coin, and you may receive other rewards. 

Winners also earn the right to shamelessly brag to all their co-workers, family, and friends that they are award-winning Coast Guard photographers, videographers, and writers. Awards look pretty good in your personnel record, too. So, what’s there to lose by competing?

But you do need to act quickly. The award submission deadline is Feb. 15, 2023, but to enter this year’s competition, your photos, videos, and writing must first be published on the Coast Guard’s official imagery database, DVIDS, no later than Dec. 31. This means you’ll need to coordinate with your servicing public affairs office before Dec. 31 so they can help you publish your content. Not sure how to reach them? Here’s the list with links to each office and their contact info. Seriously, don’t wait until the last minute!

Some important details:

  • All products must have been created between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31 of this year. We know you loved the 25-foot Response Boat-,Small, but that boat has been out of service for years now, so please don’t send us old photos of it!
  • All submissions must be cleared for public release. If you’re not sure what this means, chat with your servicing public affairs office. 
  • Products must be Coast Guard related. We love our doggos, too, but unless they’re rappelling from Coast Guard helicopters or doing other working-dog missions, photos and video of Rover snoring on your living room couch don’t apply here.
  • Full captions are required for each submission. At a minimum, this is who, what, when, where and photographer’s rank and name. A picture may be worth a thousand words to most, but without captions, they say nothing to our vision-impaired friends. You must provide context.
  • Review the award categories, criteria and full requirements here prior to submission. Connect with your servicing Public Affairs office for help or to ask any questions.

We look forward to seeing all your submissions and wish you the best of luck in the competition!