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The Pele Awards has been bringing our industry together for over 40 years. A showcase of creativity, a melting pot of ideas, an expression of community—the Pele Awards is back once again to elevate us, inspire us, unify us.

This year, we've implemented some new ideas to adjust the entry process and awards show to reflect the current challenging landscapes.



1. 100% Online Entry Submissions Only

2. No Physical Entry and/or Official Entry Envelope needs to be turned in

3. Buy 1, Get 1 Free Entry Promotion for all Professional and College Entrants 

4. No Late Fees 


1. New Category

     •  Political Advertising

2. Deleted from 2020-2021

     •  Locals Only: Retail Advertising

     •  Locals Only: Travel & Tourism


1. Online Virtual Judging at both the Local and National levels 

     • Judging will be done online using digital content provided that was uploaded during the entry process and or URL


1. 2021 Pele Awards Facebook Live Virtual Awards Show*

     •  Scheduled for June 5, 2021 (Sat.) from 6pm—7:30pm

     •  Web Posting of Winners

     • TBD “By Appointment Only Scheduled” Awards Pick Up & Picture Taking

*The possibility of an in-person event may be evaluated as the date of the show gets closer



Each year, AAF Hawaii and District 13 take an opportunity to recognize and celebrate exceptional professionals of Hawaii’s advertising and design industry who rise above and make an impact in our community. We are pleased to announce our 2020 People of the Year winners!



Vice President of Communications, PBS Hawaiʻi


Jody Shiroma brings more than 16 years of professional experience, most recently serving as PBS Hawai’i’s Vice President of Communications. In this position, she is responsible for increasing opportunities for community access, engagement and partnerships and brand messaging for the organization.

Upon joining PBS Hawaiʻi, she successfully helped launch the stationʻs GET CAUGHT READING program through an integrated, multimedia campaign. She was part of a team that nurtured and launched PBS KIDS 24/7, the first-of-its-kind streaming channel with an integrated games feature that allows keiki to extend their learning through education activities, all in a seamless digital experience. She led the stationʻs recent brand refresh with a cross-departmental group of team members.

Prior to that Jody served as Aloha United Way’s Vice President of Marketing and Communications for 12 years.  There she oversaw a team responsible for reinvigorating, reshaping and refreshing the brand image of Aloha United Way. This included creative development, web marketing, social media, media outreach and relations, strategic alliances and event coordination. 

She was at the helm of award-winning broadcast strategies and is recognized for initiating the establishment, development and creation of two affinity groups that helped galvanize engagement of Millennial and Generation X donors, advocates and volunteers across the island.

Prior to that, she was Editor-in-Chief for Sassy and G Magazine, a local youth publication with over 25,000 in distribution.

Jody grew up in Hawai`i and is a graduate of the University of Hawai`i at Mānoa with a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism with an emphasis in Ethnic Studies. She is a recipient of numerous business awards, including the Hawai`i Kai Jaycees’ Outstanding Young Person of the Year; Pacific Business News’ 40 under 40; Pacific Business News’ Women Who Mean Business; and the FBI Honolulu Division Director of Community Leadership Award.  She served as a United Way Fellow in 2013.



President, Montaj 9


Twice a monitor award finalist and recipient of multiple Peles, Tellys, and Andys, Jay has been cutting Hawaii’s favorite spots for decades. In 1987, Dennis Burns (of Pacific Focus) lured him away from Los Angeles where he was finishing MTV projects with the likes of Devo and Lou Reed. Jay brought with him a big personality, a tough love attitude and a commitment to perfection. His reputation quickly spread as he helped raise the quality of advertising in Hawaii. In 1998, he started out on his own creating JumpCut. Then in 2003, Montaj 9 was formed and where he coined the phrase, “I can’t edit what you didn’t shoot!”  

All along Jay has been helping numerous nonprofit and volunteer organizations tell their stories. To name a few; The Aloha United Way, YMCA, The Sexual Abuse Treatment Center, The Nature Conservancy, and Surfrider Foundation. He’s lent his creative talents to the Hawaii International Film Festival year after year. Outside of the edit bay, Jay often volunteers with the DANA project, being a companion for the elderly in hospice care. Jay is currently on the board of the co-op Kokua Market. He is very conscious to support local businesses, fair trade products, conscious about transportation and a veritable proponent for the environment.

Whether you find him opinionated or passionate, there is no denying Jay has made a profound impact on broadcast advertising in Hawaii.



Marketing Manager, HOCU


Khrystyn is a graduate of Loyola University Chicago in Advertising and PR. She got her start in the industry back in 2012 at MVNP where she worked on the Hawaiian Telcom, HVCB and McDonald's accounts. She then moved from agency to client side and worked at Servco Pacific Inc. where she was on the Toyota, Lexus and Scion brand teams. She proved her versatility when she transitioned over to corporate communications and worked on Servco's Home and Appliance Distribution, Insurance and Capital divisions, and most notably helped brand and launch the Hui Car Share Program. Khrystyn is currently the marketing manager for HOCU, where she is the "one-woman" department for the entire credit union.

Khrystyn joined Ad 2 Hawaii (formerly Ad 2 Honolulu) back in 2016 and jumped right in the fire as the Public Service Co-Chair. That year, Ad 2 Hawaii competed at Admerica in New Orleans and won 1st place at the conference for the Re-use Hawaii campaign. She continued to serve on the board as Vice President from 2018-2019 and then President from 2019-2020 with Ad 2 Hawaii winning Division V National Club of the Year and Khrystyn being recognized as Ad 2 President of the Year. In addition to her involvement with Ad 2, she is an avid volunteer in the community. She's a Wish Granter for Make-A-Wish Hawaii and recently volunteers for the Hawaiian Humane Society with her son, caring for the cats at Petco. If her work, volunteering, and keeping up with her husband and three kids weren't enough, Khrystyn also writes on her blog.


All “Professional” work entered in the 2021 Pele Awards Competition must have first appeared in media between January 1, 2020, and December 31, 2020. 

All “College” work entered in the 2021 Pele Awards Competition must have been created between January 1, 2020, and February 28, 2021.

Please see 2021 Pele Information Guide for specific entry rules, guidelines, and categories.

New for 2021:  Political Advertising

*any COVID Pivot Communications should be entered in the appropriate category.

Deleted for 2020: Retail Advertising & Travel & Tourism

*any Retail Advertising and Travel & Tourism should be entered in the appropriate category.

JANUARY 1, 2021 11:59PM HST
MARCH 15, 2021 11:59PM HST
MARCH 17, 2021 4PM HST to HonBlue
MARCH 24, 2021 to APRIL 4, 2021

This section is for the Professional and College Division.


2021 Pele Judges

Mary Knight

Partner & Executive Creative Director

Hydrogen, Seattle


After years as a writer and creative director in Dallas, Chicago and Seattle, what is Mary’s first word of advice to clients? Beware the sea of sameness. You know, those all-too-common, forgettable “me too” ideas that fail to capture people’s attention. Much less their hearts, minds and wallets. She is a firm believer in the power of simple emotional connections—be it laughter, empathy, wit or even heartstrings. The true test, she says, comes in understanding which emotion will best resonate with a brand. And delivering on that connection in an authentic, respectful way. She knows it’s not always the easy answer. But it is the answer for brands that want to truly strand out.

Like DiGiorno Pizza. Under Mary’s creative watch at FCB Chicago, DiGiorno passed the coveted billion-dollar sales mark. And the Tabasco® Brand Jalapeño Sauce launch she worked on while at DDB was so successful, the work had to be pulled due to a global jalapeño mash shortage. 

Creatively, Mary’s work has been honored by Cannes, The One Show, Clio, D&AD, ADDYs and Effie. She has been featured in Communication Arts, ARCHIVE, Print, Best Spots, Creativity Pick of the Day, Adweek Creative All-Stars and The Wall Street Journal. In 2020, Mary received the Seattle American Advertising Federation chapter’s prestigious Silver Medal Award for her contribution to the Seattle advertising community. Her work for Group Health Cooperative (a Northwest closed healthcare system) was lauded in The Seattle Times two years in a row as one of Seattle’s favorite advertising campaigns by popular vote and was awarded in D&AD.  Recently, Mary’s work was shortlisted in Communication Arts and won an Obie award for outdoor effectiveness.

Mary is often asked to speak at industry events and has served on several prestigious juries including The One Show, Communication Arts, Effie, The Mercury Awards and the National ADDYs. In addition, Mary is a member of the invitation-only International Women’s Forum, a global group of over 7,000 female leaders that includes artists, activists, business owners and sports figures.

 She lives on an island in the Puget Sound with her family, which includes two kids (at college), three dogs and six or seven chickens at last count.

Hydrogen Advertising | Seattle Ad Agency | Branding, Digital Marketing

Amy Hood

Designer, Principal & Co-Founder–HOODZPAH, INC

Orange County, California


Amy Hood is a designer and co-founder of Hoodzpah, Inc, a brand identity studio in Southern California that has worked with companies like Disney, 20thCentury, Nike, The Lakers, Target, and Red Bull. Amy's logo and identity work centers around custom lettering solutions. She is the font designer behind Palm Canyon Drive, Beale, and Beverly Drive. When she's not spewing Lakers stats at the local watering hole, Amy can be found driving up PCH – wailing along to honkytonk love songs – looking for the closest In-N-Out. She co-authored the book “Freelance, and Business, and Stuff: A Guide for Creatives” (and it's related online course) with her sister Jennifer based on the Professional Practices class they taught at Laguna College of Art & Design. The FABAS course is open for enrollment now!
Instagram: @hoodzpahdesign

Roz Romney

Freelance Art Director & Creative Director

San Francisco


Roz Romney is a freelance art director and creative director based in San Francisco. She has created advertising for a broad range of clients including Levi's, Microsoft, The Gap, HP, Google, Samsung and Busch Beer.

Most recently, she had the cathartic pleasure of creating ads for The Lincoln Project. Here are 2 favorites.

Fairy Tale: 

Covey Spreader: 

Covey Spreader is an homage to the Honey Badger and we tracked down the original narrator ("Randall") who is now my new best friend.

Roz has been freelancing forever and has worked with many agencies like BBDO, DDB, Ogilvy, Argonaut, 72andSunny, Goodby Silverstein & Partners, Butler Shine – to name a few. She's also consulted directly with companies like Amazon and Nest. The constant variety of clients, projects, subject matter, talented collaborators and creative challenges is something Roz really enjoys. She does not, however, enjoy writing about herself in the third person.

Jeremy Wirth

Senior Creative Director for Apple, TBWA/Media Arts Lab

Los Angeles


My name is Jeremy, pronounced Jérémy with a French accent.
That’s because I was born and raised in the South of France (Marseille to be exact). I grew up eating brioche, staying up late to watch Celtics games, and dreaming of living in the States.

I currently live in LA and work for TBWA/MediaArts Lab as a Senior Creative Director for Apple.

Lately I’ve worked on the launch of the iPhone12, the Privacy campaign for iPhone, Behind the Mac, Apple’s Holiday campaign etc..

TBWA\Media Arts Lab

Fabian Herrmann

Communication Design Director, IDEO

San Francisco


Fabian is a Communication Design Director at IDEO in San Francisco. His focus is on challenges at the intersection of business and brand – where shaping a business, product or service go hand in hand with its expression and communication. He enjoys passionate strategic discussions just as much as detailed typographic tweaking, and is motivated by the opportunity to influence an organization strategically and to bring that strategy to life through design.

At IDEO, Fabian has helped Los Angeles win the 2028 Olympic Games, envisioned the future of pet care for a national veterinary organization, and helped numerous startups define how their brand shows up in the world. With over a decade of experience, he came to IDEO from design consultancy Pentagram in London, where as an Associate Partner he led projects ranging from global rebrands and packaging solutions to wayfinding systems and editorial design.

Fabian’s work has received awards from numerous industry organizations, including the Tokyo Type Directors Club, the British D&AD, and the American Art Directors Club.