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Leading Lights Awards

General Information and FAQs

Got a question about the awards? Please check this frequently asked questions section for answers.

General FAQS

// What are the Light Reading Leading Lights Awards?

The Leading Lights are Light Reading's annual awards program to recognize innovation and achievement in the global communications industry. 

The Leading Lights began in 2004 to honor the companies and people carrying the industry forward. From the beginning, Light Reading’s editorial independence makes the Leading Lights a credible, authoritative awards program; finalists and winners can use that hard-won recognition to evangelize their expertise and success. 

The entry process, judging and final decisions are completely independent of any other program or process run by or associated with Light Reading. Every entry is judged on its own merits.

//  When and where are the Leading Lights Finalists announced?

The Leading Lights Finalists will be announced on Friday, July 28. 

Winners will be announced on Monday, September 25. 

//  When and where are the Leading Lights Winners announced?

The Leading Lights Winners will be announced via an online ceremony. You can register here

//   What do I need to submit in my entry?

All entries must be written in English and submitted via our online form.

  • Please read the entire entry form before you start answering questions. The information required is pretty straightforward and the "big question" – Why should you win? – has a 500-word limit

  • You may provide up to 3 links with additional information to support your entry. One of those links can be to a Dropbox or Google Drive folder that contains additional articles, charts, data and research supporting your entry.     

// Where do I submit my entry?

The link for submitting entries can be found here

//   What is the cost to enter the Leading Lights Awards?

Early-bird entries will cost $299. Early-bird submissions will start on Monday, April 17.

After Sunday, June 4, Leading Lights entries will cost $399. Credit card payments can be made online when entering. Entries will close on Friday, June 30.

//   How do we make payment for our entry?

You can make a payment via a debit or credit card when you complete your submission. You can save and edit your entry at any point up until submission and payment is complete.

//  Who judges the awards entries?

Light Reading’s editors are the primary judges, and each editor oversees a panel of independent contributors and analyst colleagues to help them judge categories where specific expertise is needed. The decision of the judges is final.

The process is overseen by Phil Harvey, Light Reading's chief editor, who has been a reporter and editor at the publication for over 17 years. The first-round judges include Iain Morris, Kelsey Ziser, Nicole Ferraro, Jeff Baumgartner, Mike Dano and Tereza Krásová. 

//  Who won in 2022?

Here's a complete recap of what happened in last year's contest. 

Here are the finalists and the winners from the 2022 Leading Lights Awards.

//  What advice would you give to anyone entering the awards?

Keep your awards entries clear, concise, accurate and interesting. Focus on why you think your company should win, be specific and, when you make a claim to greatness, back it up with evidence. Having customers or partners who will vouch for your claims definitely helps, too.

Category FAQs

//   What are the awards categories?

The 2023 awards categories can be found here

//   What submissions qualify for the product, solution and services categories?

Our contest period for this edition of the Leading Lights will focus on the 12 months between Q2 2022 and Q2 2023. Your product or service must have been introduced on or after April 1, 2022, to qualify for the 2023 Leading Lights Awards. 

In general, we're looking for the very best from the industry during the past 12 months, so if you're worried about missing the cutoff by a week or two, please let us know and we can help you sort it out.

If your product or service was eligible both last year and this year, but wasn't shortlisted, feel free to enter again but please highlight changes and advancements that happened during the eligibility period.

If your entry is for Best Public-Private Partnership or Digital Equity All-Star, we understand that the work underpinning your efforts may not align with our contest's eligibility period. Don't worry; you're still eligible. We encourage you to enter and highlight what significant steps forward your partnership or digital equity efforts made during our contest period. If you have any questions about those entries, let us know.

Additional Questions

//   What information from my awards entry will be released to the public?

We will not publish the awards entries. 

However, we reserve the right to use any of the information disclosed, especially product claims and verifiable market share and sales statistics, in our reporting. Rest assured, we will be respectful of your company and responsible to our readers. We will contact you to verify anything we aim to report that's not readily available in the public domain. 

Any financial details provided by private companies will remain confidential and not published/released to the public domain unless approved by the submitting company.

//   Does my company have to be a Light Reading sponsor to win a Leading Light award?

No, the awards are editorially independent. If we could only pick from a pool of advertisers and sponsors, some of our most remarkable and controversial picks would never have seen the light of day. 

That said, contact sales@lightreading.com if you’d like to learn about how you can make the most of your Leading Lights efforts in advertising, paid media and custom programming.

//   Wait! You haven’t answered my question!

Sorry about that. Please send an email with the subject line “Leading Lights Question” to  marketing@lightreading.com and we’ll respond as soon as we can think of an answer. Please DO NOT email Light Reading's editors.