Four Alumni Review issues on display.

Alumni Review recognized among Canada's best magazines

The Queen’s Alumni Review is vying for some of the top honours in Canadian magazines, having been nominated in two of the country’s most prestigious competitions.

In the National Magazine Awards B2B contest, the premier competition for Canadian and professional magazines, the Alumni Review was honoured with 17 nominations in multiple categories, receiving nods for its design, photography, and writing. And in the National Magazine Awards, which accepts submissions from all Canadian magazines, including newsstand publications, it received five nominations in four categories.

In both programs it was lauded for overall excellence, receiving a nomination for Best Magazine in the B2B contest and Best Magazine (Special Interest) in the National Magazine Awards.

The juries of both contests praised the magazine for the quality of its content and design.

“The Queen’s Alumni Review sets an impressive standard for telling the stories of people and innovations that matter to a university community,” the jury from the National Magazine Awards said. “The mix of stories and design presentation made it an engaging read from start to finish.”

The jury in the National Magazine Awards B2B contest noted the magazine “clearly dedicates itself to building and maintaining a sense of community. The magazine is so beautifully layered, rich in content with design and bold visuals to back it up.”

The magazine was recognized repeatedly for excellence in photography, receiving five nominations across both contests, and in design, with in-house graphic designer Wendy Treverton named a finalist four times in a field of eight nominees in the B2B’s Best Art Direction of a Single Article or Opening Spread. Alumni Review writers were also recognized – two alumni, Carly Weeks, Artsci’03, and Tka Pinnock, Artsci’07, were named finalists in the B2B contest’s Feature category for stories they wrote in the Spring 2023 issue.

The magazine’s covers, all designed by Treverton, were also finalists – its unique fold-out cover featuring the Black Studies program, the magazine’s first such cover in nearly seven years, was a finalist in the Cover Grand Prix category in the National Magazine Awards, putting it up against covers from Toronto Life, Report on Business, The Walrus, Maissoneuve, and the Literary Review of Canada. It was also a finalist for Best Cover in the B2B competition.

The magazine’s spring and summer issues were finalists in both the Best Art Direction of a Complete Issue category and the Best Issue categories in the National Magazine Awards B2B contest.

“We are so proud of the team that pulls together each issue of the Alumni Review,” said Karen Bertrand, Vice-Principal (Advancement), Artsci’94. “They have elevated the content of the magazine, making it a source of pride for our alumni and demonstrating the impact of Queen’s around the world.”

Ruth Dunley, who became editor of the Alumni Review in 2021, was also named a finalist in the Editor Grand Prix category, along with the editors of Chatelaine and The Walrus.

The jury noted that she impressed them “with her exceptional leadership in making an alumni magazine a fresh and engaging forum for celebrating and understanding the world of the Queen’s University campus and beyond.”

Alex Beshara, Director of Marketing and Publications, oversaw a full redesign of the Alumni Review in 2021, and noted that the contest results reflected the input of colleagues across Advancement and a roster of exceptional contributors – including many alumni.

“Since we reimagined the magazine three years ago, we have really tried to bring in as many voices and perspectives as possible,” he said. “Not just in the content we’re presenting, but in the contributors who produce that content, and we’re proud to have been able to work with some of the best in the business.”

These honours follow three Merit wins from the Society of Publication Designers in April – two for Treverton’s designs and one for a video created by multimedia producer Callum Linden to promote the summer 2023 cover story. These awards put the Alumni Review in the company of The Economist, Rolling Stone, and Vanity Fair, who were also declared Merit winners.