BYU communications alumni Jeanette and Matt Bennett, the creators of Utah Valley Magazine, were recently awarded the Utah Society of Professional Journalists (USPJ) award for Best Magazine.
Each year the USPJ presents four different major magazine awards: best cover, best design, best feature article, and the most prestigious of the four, best magazine. The Bennetts’ journey has been a long and grueling one that started more than 16 years ago. In 1998, they started their own publishing company, Bennett Communications (BC), and began publishing an educational newsletter. Then in 2000, they started the UVM and it quickly gained a large readership.
“When the magazine launched it became our livelihood and after that people started becoming more familiar with Bennett Communications,” Jeanette said. “From there, we launched Utah Valley Bride magazine in 2002 and in 2003, we came up with the idea to create Utah Valley Business Quarterly.”
Both Matt and Jeanette play major roles for BC. Matt is the genius behind the original business plan. He serves as the company’s publisher but is primarily focused with their online publication UtahValley360.com. He also secures contracts for custom publishing projects.
Jeanette, on the other hand, is the creativity behind the BC while also serving as the CFO. Despite their busy schedules, Matt and Jeanette are both always able to find time for their children.
“We have been lucky to own our business. We do a lot of switching around. For example, some days my husband is home with the kids and other days I’m with them,” Jeanette said. “It can get pretty crazy, but we make it work.”
The Bennetts are grateful for the recognition UVM has received and they are excited about what the future holds for BC.
“Winning the SPJ for best magazine has been an amazing experience and this is a very exciting time for us,” Jeanette said. “We’re going to continue to strive for excellence and build around our core competencies of good writing, creativity and smart business sense.”