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Episcopal Communicators is the descendant of an informal assembly of diocesan editors who met in New York in May 1971 at the invitation of the Episcopal Church Center's management team. They discussed what then appeared to be a credibility gap between the Church's leadership and its membership, a gap diocesan editors were feeling acutely.

Feeling that their concerns had been heard, their suggestions accepted, and that a new possibility for mutual cooperation in their ministry of communication had been opened up, the 11 editors decided it was important for them to remain in contact as a network, which they named the "Net-11."

The following year, they invited fellow Episcopal communication people to join them for a conference in Chicago. When 35 people came, the group decided it needed to become more serious and to undertake discussion as well as conduct a survey of the state of communication in the various dioceses.

By 1974, the group had grown sufficiently that it was necessary to adopt a name more reflective of the membership, and Episcopal Communicators was born. The organization today includes more than 300 people with communication responsibilities in the Episcopal Church at congregational, diocesan, regional, and national levels in both print and electronic media.

Episcopal Communicators is the link through which grassroots communicators and national staff work together to carry out the ministry of communication. The organization's annual meetings offer members opportunities to upgrade and enhance skills, to draw inspiration from outstanding speakers and theologians, and to support each other in fellowship.

Along the way, Episcopal Communicators has adopted statements that have become guidelines for its members and for the Church.

Richard Anderson - Diocese of Western New York  
Isabel Baumgartner - Diocese of Tennessee (total state, pre-division)
Polly Bond - Diocese of Ohio               
Salome Breck - Diocese of Colorado
The Rev. Benjamin Campbell - Diocese of Virginia
Larry Davidson - Diocese of Oregon
Stanley Gresley - Diocese of Florida       
John Lockerby - Diocese of Olympia
Robert Reagan - Diocese of Los Angeles        
The Rev. Herbert Scott - Diocese of Louisiana (total state, pre-division)     
The Rev. Erwin M. Soukup - Diocese of Chicago

Those who assisted at the first Net-11 meeting in 1971
Margaret (Magee) Andersen
Sonia Francis
Henry McCorkle

Honorary Members
Burtis Dougherty
James R. McDowell

Nancy Davidge

Melodie Woerman


Janette Pierce Award, established April 1988

+ Carol Barnwell, 2019

+ Ann Ball of the Diocese of Louisiana, 2007

+ Jerry Hames Episcopal Life Editor Hames, who retires June 3, 2007

+ Barbara Braver, 2005

+ Sarah Moore, April 2003

+ Revd Harry Crandall, April 1998

+ Dan Crossland, 1997

+ Canon Ruth Nicastro, 1993 retirement

William Ferguson and his late wife, Helen, editors of the New Hampshire Episcopal News,1992

The Rev. Charles Long, Forward Movement Publications in Cincinnati, 1990

Salome Breck, 1989

Start of Polly Bond Awards

Polly Bond Award for Distinguished Service in Communication

+ 1980

Ruth Nicastro, commissioner for communications and editor of the newspaper in the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles, received the first Polly Bond Award for outstanding contribution to church communications on May 14 during the annual meeting of the Episcopal Communicators in Opryland Hotel here.

+ 1981

The entries were judged by members of the University of Southern California journalism school and certificates were awarded in five categories: Editorial, Bishop Robert L. DeWitt of The Witness; Feature, Virginia Adams in Mountain Dayspring of West Virginia; News, Lee Hickling of The Virginia Churchman; Layout, Cathedral Age, Nancy Montgomery, editor, and Episcopal Churchfacts of Western New York, Michael Barwell, editor; and Photography, The Episcopal News of Los Angeles, Ruth Nicastro, editor.

Conference Locations

+ The 1981 sessions will be held June 1-5 with Los Angeles the host diocese.

+ April 25-28, 2007 Virginia Beach, Virginia


Canon Ruth Nicastro 1986-89 president of the church-wide Episcopal Communicators

Bill Slocumb, associate director of Episcopal Camps and Conference Centers Inc., was appointed treasurer. March 22, 2010


Jerry Hames Scholarship for Multicultural Communication in the Episcopal Church. Created in honor of Episcopal Life Editor Hames, who retires June 30 2007


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