The Automobile License Plate Collectors Association (ALPCA, Inc.) has overwhelmingly voted that Arizona has the best license plate in the United States. Last year, Arizona introduced a beautiful Centennial plate to honor the 100th anniversary of statehood in 2012.  Since 1970, ALPCA recognizes a state with the best license plate design of the year. This year marks the 41st anniversary of the award and the second award for Arizona after winning in 1996 for its general issue plate.

“I am pleased to announce that the Great State of Arizona is this year’s recipient of ALPCA’s Best Plate Award,” said ALPCA President Greg Gibson. “Arizona’s outstanding Centennial plate topped plates from nine other states.”  ALPCA members worldwide were asked to vote based on two judging criteria: the overall attractiveness of the license plate design and its legibility as a tool for public safety and law enforcement.  “Congratulations to the residents of the Grand Canyon State, Governor Jan Brewer and to the license plate design team in Phoenix,” stated Gibson.  ALPCA’s Best Plate Award Coordinator Gus Oliver said “Many of the members commented about the combination of boldness and simplicity of this plate.  I knew it had an excellent chance of winning the moment I first saw it.”

“The Centennial license plate commemorates an historic milestone for the State of Arizona. To see our emblem receive national recognition on the heels of our 100th anniversary is both an honor and a glowing source of pride for Arizonans,” said Governor Jan Brewer. “I thank the Arizona Centennial Commission, the Department of Transportation and the Department of Public Safety for advocating and seeing to fruition this very special plate.”

Arizona became our nation’s 48th and last of the contiguous states on February 14, 1912. Beginning in 2011 and continuing throughout 2012, more than 425 events and projects hosted by organizations and communities across Arizona are commemorating 100 years of statehood, telling the stories of the past while envisioning the states next 100 years.

“We are honored to receive this award for a license plate that commemorates our historic Centennial and distinctively represents Arizona,” said Karen Churchard, executive director, Arizona Centennial Commission and 2012 Foundation.  “Arizona has one of the best state flags, and we wanted to be sure to incorporate its colors and design into the theme of the Centennial plate.”

Since the Centennial Plate was introduced last fall, thousands of Arizona motorists have bought them. The popular specialty license plate was designed by P.S. Studios of Phoenix and required approval from the Arizona Department of Transportation and Arizona Department of Public Safety.

Ironically, the colorful design of New Mexico’s Centennial Plate won the contest last year. Although Arizona and its neighbor are both celebrating their centennials this year, the contest is based on the year the plate was first introduced, which was 2010 for New Mexico and 2011 for Arizona.  Finishing as runner-up and third place to Arizona were new general issue plates from Nebraska and Louisiana, respectively.

A special awards ceremony is being planned in the coming weeks. ALPCA’s President will travel to Arizona to present State officials with award plaques.

For more information on ALPCA, visit their website at