Communications Staff

The Diocese of Erie’s communications staff, as well as Bishop Lawrence Persico, earned several top national honors at the recent Catholic Press Awards sponsored by the Catholic Press Association of the United States & Canada.

The diocese won 15 awards at the CPA’s annual meeting in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Looking over some of their award-winning work from the past
year are,
left to right: Msgr. Edward Lohse, Anne-Marie Welsh,
Bishop Lawrence
Persico, Mary Solberg, Brenda Williams and
Elizabeth Butterfield. Missing
from picture: Rich Papalia and
Erica Erwin.              Photo by Maria Caulfield

“This year was the best showing we’ve ever had at the Catholic Press Awards,” said Anne-Marie Welsh, the director of communications who was presented many awards for her skills in publication design, writing and marketing campaigns. “The recognition is appreciated, but I love knowing that people in our diocese have access to high-quality news, features and inspirational material, all offered in an effort to help them grow in their faith.”

Bishop Persico, publisher of Faith magazine, was recognized for his pastoral message on the opioid crisis, the effectiveness of his Twitter account and for directing coverage of Pennsylvania’s grand jury report on the sex abuse scandal.

Mary Solberg, editor of Faith magazine, was named “Editor of the Year” for her body of work in 2018.

Here is the full list of awards:

First place

  • Editor of the Year: Mary Solberg
  • Best E-newsletter: Erica Erwin, Mary Solberg
  • Best Layout of Article/Column: Matt Watters, Mary Solberg
  • Best Black and White Cover: Lynne Hsu, Anne-Marie Welsh
  • Best Reporting of Social Justice Issues: Anne-Marie Welsh
  • Best Ad Copywriting: Elizabeth Butterfield, Mary Solberg. Anne-Marie Welsh

Second place

  • Best Diocesan Pastoral Message: Bishop Persico, Anne-Marie Welsh
  • Best Ad Copywriting: Mary Solberg, Anne-Marie Welsh, Elizabeth Butterfield
  • Best Twitter Account (Diocesan Bishop): @BishopPersico
  • Best Reporting on a Special Age Group: Mary Solberg

Third place

  • Best Initiative or Campaign: Bishop Persico, Anne-Marie Welsh
  • Best Special Section: Anne-Marie Welsh, Msgr. Edward Lohse, Bishop Lawrence Persico
  • Best Coverage on the Sexual Abuse Crisis: Anne Marie Welsh, Msgr. Edward Lohse and Father Justin Pino

Honorable Mention

  • Best Single-Color Ad: Elizabeth Butterfield, Mary Solberg
  • Most Effective Use of Small Space (FaithLife newspaper): Designer Elizabeth Butterfield; Copywriter Anne-Marie Welsh

Links to the work that was honored can be found at