Fresno County’s Joshua Dean Receives Inaugural CAPIO Rising Star Award


The California Association of Public Information Officers (CAPIO) has awarded the first Rising Star award to Joshua Dean from the County of Fresno. The Rising Star Award is presented to individuals who have demonstrated exceptional abilities, skills, and talents in growing their skillset in the pursuit of advancing public engagement and outreach for a public agency within the first five years of their career. During Joshua’s first year and a half at the County of Fresno, he has exemplified strong communicator qualities.

“CAPIO is about advancing public-sector communicators across all levels of government. Joshua’s career growth and engaging video production work reflect CAPIO’s mission and the spirit behind the Rising Star Award,” said CAPIO President Lael Wageneck, APR. “We are excited to see where Joshua’s career takes him as he continues his public service work in the Central Valley.”

Joshua began his public sector career as the Communications and Media Production Specialist with the County of Fresno in June 2022. Before joining the team, Joshua produced travel shows aired on HDNet and National Geographic (NatGeo). He was part of top-rated and Emmy Award-winning news teams for Fresno’s local affiliate KSEE 24/CBS 47.

At the County of Fresno, Joshua launched #MonumentMonday to showcase unique landmarks and has developed several “I Lost Someone to Fentanyl” Public Service Announcements. In addition, he has taken spectacular photos and videos of the County that have received significant attention on social media platforms and doubled followers. The County of Fresno has cited that one of his videos, which was used to recruit juvenile correctional officers, garnered more than 150,000 impressions and an 80% increase in applications. His contribution was significant as the County has struggled to recruit for these officer positions.

Joshua’s work has received significant attention from his colleagues and local elected officials. Notably, Fresno County Supervisor/Chair Nathan Magsig, District 5, stated, “Josh has brought a creative approach to telling the County’s story, which can be seen through the social media posts created daily.” While Fresno County Supervisor Steve Brandau, District 2, said bluntly, “…Josh Dean has helped bring Fresno County out of the dark ages.”


CAPIO is the premier professional association for California’s government communicators, serving more than 1,000 professionals across the state.

Established in 2024, the Rising Star award recognizes an individual who demonstrates exceptional abilities, skills and talents in growing their skillset and contributing to the advancement of public engagement and outreach for a public agency in the first five years of their career.

For more information about the Rising Star award or CAPIO, visit