ECPA's Rush To Press

ECPA Announces Best Book Designs of 2015

winnersContact: Stan Jantz, Interim Executive Director, ECPA, 480-966-3998

October 20, 2015, Wheaton Ill. – The cover designs of ten books and one Bible were named the industry’s best of the year at the opening session of the industry’s Publishing University (PUBu) being held at Wheaton College, October 19-20.  The Top Shelf Book Cover Awards are presented each year by ECPA to honor superb book design in Christian publishing. Eleven covers were chosen as the “stand out” designs of the year from a large pool of strong contenders, submitted by a broad representation of industry publishers.

“They say you can’t judge a book by its cover, but we all know cover design has become a more important part of publishing than ever before,” states ECPA Executive Director Stan Jantz.  “ECPA congratulates the designers and publishers that collaborated to produce these outstanding covers.”

The 2015 Top Shelf Book Cover Award winners are:
(click on the title link to see a larger cover image) 

The Accidental Feminist: Restoring Our Delight in God’s Good Design

Author: Courtney Reissig

Publisher: Crossway

Designer: Connie Gabbert

All I Really Want: Readings for a Modern Christmas

Author: Quinn G. Caldwell

Publisher: Abingdon Press

Designer: David Carlson, Studio Gearbox 

The Biggest Story: How the Snake Crusher Brings Us Back to the Garden

Author: Kevin DeYoung

Publisher: Crossway

Cover Design and Illustration: Don Clark 

Blind Spots: Becoming a Courageous, Compassionate, and Commissioned Church

Author: Collin Hansen

Publisher: Crossway

Designer: Josh Dennis 

Every Bitter Thing Is Sweet

Author: Sara Hagerty

Publisher: Zondervan

Designer: James Hall
Art Director: Curt Diepenhorst

The Hiding Place Young Reader’s Edition

Author: Corrie ten Boom with Elizabeth & John Sherrill

Publisher: Chosen/ Baker Publishing Group

Designer: Kirk DouPonce, DogEared Design

Art Director: Daniel Pitts

If I Plug My Ears, God Can’t Tell Me What To Do

Author: Jessie Clemence

Publisher: Discovery House Publishers

Designer: Tim Green, Faceout Studio

Art Director: Amy Cerra 

Onward: Engaging the Culture Without Losing the Gospel

Author: Russell Moore

Publisher: B&H Publishing Group

Designer: Cory Wasnewsky, Hatch Show Print
Art Director: Jeff Godby

The Reformation Study Bible (2015), ESV

Author: R.C. Sproul, General Editor

Publisher: Reformation Trust Publishing

Designer: Metaleap Creative
Design director: 
José Reyes
Art director: 
Matt Mantooth


Author: Shauna Niequist

Publisher: Zondervan

Designer: Connie Gabbert

Simply Tuesday: Small-Moment Living in a Fast-Moving World

Author: Emily P. Freeman

Publisher: Revell/ Baker Publishing Group

Designer: Greg Jackson, Thinkpen Design
Art Director: Cheryl Van Andel

“One of the hallmarks of the Top Shelf program is the caliber and reputation of the judges, who represent respected award-winning book designers,” continues Jantz.  “We appreciate the time and expertise they invest in recognizing design excellence in our industry.” 

Winning book covers, along with judge comments, are featured at and in a print annual printed by Color House Graphics and distributed to the industry.  Contact ECPA for copies.

Program information, including judge bios and future submission information, can be found on the ECPA website. The submission period for the 2016 Top Shelf Design Awards will open in November 2015.


ECPA  | The Top Shelf Award program is managed by the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association (ECPA) in order to recognize design excellence in the Christian publishing industry. The membership of ECPA is made up of Christian publishers and companies providing services to the Christian publishing industry. Since 1974, ECPA has strengthened Christian publishing by building Networking, Information, and Advocacy opportunities within the industry and across multiple channels so that our members can more effectively produce and deliver transformational Christian content.  Through programs, events, communications, recognition and research, ECPA strengthens publishing communities within the industry.  The ECPA Design E-Community, PUBu Design training sessions, and Top Shelf Awards are among several ECPA-driven opportunities that designers have to network, stay informed, and be recognized within the industry. For more information on ECPA programs and membership, visit or contact us at  

Color House Graphics | Color House Graphics is a book manufacturing company that exists to help publishers, authors and companies create and deliver great books. CHG has been servicing the Christian publishing industry for many years. We combine craftsmanship with technology to help our customers create, print and publish great books. Explore our website or contact us and discover how we can provide you with superior service and quality from your first contact to delivery of your books. For more information about Color House Graphics, you can find us at or contact us at


Kimberly Glyder is currently principal at Kimberly Glyder Design. Her work has been recognized by the AIGA in their 50 Books/50 Covers Show, the biennial AIGA 50 design competition for the DC area, the AIGA Philadelphia Design Awards, the AAUP Book Jacket and Journal Show, the New England Book Show, the New York Book Show, and in PRINT’s Regional Design Annual. A graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design, Kimberly has given lectures at various colleges and at the National Museum of Women in the Arts. 

Charlotte Strick spent 14 years as a designer and Art Director at Faber & Faber, Inc and the paperback line at Farrar, Straus and Giroux. Her work has been featured in the AIGA 50 Books/50 Covers show, the TDC Annual Exhibition, Print magazine, the Book Binder’s Guild Annual Awards Show, and many books about cover design. The proud owner of a coveted Silver Cube from The Art Director’s Club, Charlotte is also designer and Art Editor of the distinguished Paris Review magazine. Her writings on art and design have been published by The Paris ReviewThe Atlantic and The Huffington Post

David Carlson is a graphic designer based in Central Oregon. He has been a partner in Studio Gearbox since 2004. His work has been recognized by Graphis, Communication Arts Design Annual and the Print Regional Design Annual, among others.  

As per Top Shelf program policy, if a judge’s work is submitted by the publisher to the program, then that judge is recused from the judging process on that work, and the remaining judge scores are used.