The Vikings Public Relations Department has been named the winner of the 2018 Pete Rozelle Award, the Pro Football Writers of America (PFWA) announced Monday.
The award is presented annually in honor of the late Rozelle, who was Commissioner of the NFL from 1960-89. Prior to that role, Rozelle worked in public relations at Compton (California) Junior College and the University of San Francisco before his hire as PR Director of the Los Angeles Rams (1952-55).
The award recognizes the public relations staff that "constantly strives for excellence in its dealings and relationships with the media."
The Vikings PR staff, overseen by Executive Vice President of Public Affairs Lester Bagley, includes:
Executive Director of Public Relations Bob Hagan
Director of Public Relations Tom West
Executive Director of Communications Jeff Anderson
Public Relations Manager Jon Ekstrom
Football Communications Manager Sam Newton
Public Relations Interns Carly Bonk, Danielle Burns and Walt Scher
The other teams nominated from the 2017 season were the Dolphins, Rams, Broncos and Bills.
Star Tribune writer Mark Craig said in a press release from the PFWA that the Vikings PR staff is "one of the more accommodating and diligent departments I've experienced since I started covering the NFL in 1991."
"At a time when it's easy for teams to steer all player access to the podium to be captured by their own entertainment networks, I've found that the Vikings PR department does a consistently excellent job setting up one-on-one access with players, coaches and front office executives," Craig said. "That, to me, is invaluable in today's overcrowded media environment."
Pete Rozelle Award Winners
(Year indicates when award was presented for previous season)
1990 – Denver Broncos
1991 – Pittsburgh Steelers
1992 – Seattle Seahawks
1993 – Miami Dolphins
1994 – Houston Oilers
1995 – New York Giants
1996 – Indianapolis Colts
1997 – St. Louis Rams
1998 – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
1999 – Miami Dolphins
2000 – Tennessee Titans
2001 – New York Giants
2002 – Philadelphia Eagles
2003 – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
2004 – Houston Texans
2005 – Philadelphia Eagles
2006 – Cincinnati Bengals
2007 – Houston Texans
2008 – Seattle Seahawks
2009 – Arizona Cardinals
2010 – Houston Texans
2011 – Baltimore Ravens
2012 – Houston Texans
2013 – Baltimore Ravens
2014 – Denver Broncos
2015 – Pittsburgh Steelers
2016 – Denver Broncos
2017 – Baltimore Ravens & Houston Texans *2018* – Minnesota Vikings
About the PFWA
The Professional Football Writers of America (PFWA) is the official voice of pro football writers, promoting and fighting for access to NFL personnel to best serve the public. The PFWA is made up of accredited writers who cover the NFL and the 32 teams daily. Bob Glauber, the national football columnist for Newsday, is the organization's president for the 2018 season, while Bleacher Report national columnist Dan Pompei is the PFWA's first vice-president. Follow the PFWA at ProFootballWriters.org and on Twitter at @PFWAwriters.