WT Senior Scores Big at District American Advertising

blake cripps portrait
May 01, 2020
  • Arts
  • Communication

CONTACT: Marcus Melton, 806-651-2790,


CANYON, Texas—A graduating West Texas A&M University student recently won three major awards at the 10th District American Advertising Awards.

Blake Cripps, a 24-year-old senior from Bushland, won two student Silver ADDYs for projects completed in WT graphic design class. He won an additional Bronze ADDY for a project done with Circles Co. Collective, an Amarillo marketing agency.

“It feels unreal,” Cripps said. “It’s cool that homework projects actually won these (silver) awards.”

The district competition is the second of three tiers in the American Advertising Awards competition, pitting local winners against those from other clubs in one of 15 district competitions. Students compete in their own division or can enter work in the professional division, too.

“An Old Silent Pond” and “Australia Is Burning” both were cited for Silver ADDYs in the Elements of Advertising — Illustration category.

“What an honor! Blake continues winning awards because of his hard work, skillset and exceptional talent. We are proud of him,” said Marcus Melton, WT assistant professor of graphic design.

“I’m excited for Blake for this recognition of his phenomenal work,” said Ann Underwood, Assistant Vice President for Communication and Marketing and an adjunct graphics professor. “He’s an extremely talented student with a bright future ahead of him as a graphic designer.”

Cripps thanked his WT instructors for their tutelage.

“A lot of different people influenced me in their own way. They all have something I take to heart,” Cripps said. “I just keep pushing forward and listening to what everyone says. Scott Frish is a really good professor who kept pushing me. Marcus Melton is a great professor, too. Everyone’s been really good to me.”

Cripps plans to graduate in May 9’s virtual commencement ceremony. Following graduation, he’ll work at Circles Co. Collective.

“Blake has been an amazing intern who works hard and is extremely talented,” Circles Co. Collective founder Ismael Burciaga said. “His illustrations are incredible and his eye for design is spot on. We are excited to have Blake join our team in May as a full-time designer & illustrator.”

Cripps won seven awards, including a Best of Show, in the local phase of the awards competition, held Feb. 20. In all, WT students won 19 awards on the local level.

About the Awards

The American Advertising Awards, formerly the ADDYs, is the advertising industry’s largest and most representative competition, attracting over 40,000 entries every year in local AAF Ad Club competitions. The mission of the American Advertising Awards competition is to recognize and reward the creative spirit of excellence in the art of advertising.

A Gold ADDY is recognition of the highest level of creative excellence and is judged to be superior to all other entries in the category. Entries that are also considered outstanding and worthy of recognition receive a Silver ADDY.