The deadline for 2024 grant applications has passed.

The Doug Pensinger Photography Fund supports emerging and early-career sports photographers.

An open call for entries is held each spring: check back in January 2025 for more information.


  • The 2024 application period has ended.
  • Submissions were hosted on Picter
  • Entry deadline was midnight PDT on May 1.
  • Winners will be announced by July 1.


The Doug Pensinger Photography Fund supports emerging and early-career sports photographers.

Photographers with more than 3 years cumulative paid professional sports photography experience are considered beyond the scope of the DPPF’s programs. Previous DPPF grant recipients are not eligible to apply.

The DPPF is committed to promoting inclusivity and diversity and to providing free merit-based access to its programs.

The application process is not limited to U.S. citizens, although international candidates should be aware that the DPPF is not able to provide support that is prohibited under U.S. law.


  • Resume
    • A resume is required for consideration. Please note that in addition to demonstrating that you are a serious aspiring sports photographer, the CV is also the tool that the DPPF uses to determine that your level of experience does not exceed the limits of eligibility (see above).
  • Short Bio (max 2,000 characters)
  • Portfolio
    • Quantity: 20 sports photographs (action and portrait both accepted)
    • File: jpg only, minimum 1,500 px on the long edge
    • Timeframe (metadata for each image must include the date it was taken):
      • A minimum of 15 of the required 20 images must be current and taken on or after 1/1/2022.
      • The remaining 5 required images must be taken on or after 1/1/2020.
  • Optional Mentorship Essay: Candidates applying for an optional mentorship opportunity must submit a short (1,500-character maximum) essay describing how they would benefit from a mentorship with members of the DPPF’s Advisory Board.


Submissions will be judged on the basis of merit and overall quality. Only complete submissions will be considered, and all decisions by the judges are binding.

Submissions will be judged by members of the DPPF Advisory Board.


7 photographers will each receive

  • A $5,000 grant, to be spent on career development
  • Expenses-paid trip to the 2024 DPPF Sports Photography Gathering (scheduled for September 2024; see details below.)

In addition to the main grants program, the DPPF also awards Development Grants supporting sports photographers of great potential whose current portfolio quality may be affected by severe economic and/or geographic or cultural limitations. After the seven winners of the $5,000 grants are chosen, the panel will select deserving candidates from the remaining pool of applicants as recipients of Development Grants.


Up to 3 of the 7 grant winners will be chosen to receive a year-long mentorship opportunity with leading industry professionals on the  DPPF Advisory Board.

  • Mentorship recipients will be chosen based on current profiles and mentorship essay.
  • Applying for a mentorship is not required in order to compete for a DPPF grant.

The 2024-2025 mentors are Advisory Board members Nate Gordon, Sean Haffey, and Maddie Meyer.


All grant winners receive an expenses-paid trip to the next DPPF Sports Photography Gathering. This event will be led by top working professionals in the business and will include:

  • Multiple individual portfolio feedback sessions
  • Small and large group sessions on issues critical to the world of sports photojournalism

The Gathering is not a workshop. It is designed to provide career advice, access to leading professionals, and individual feedback on the attendees’ body of work. This dynamic informal gathering will give unprecedented access to high-level working professionals in the business. It will honor Doug Pensinger’s generosity of spirit, strong work ethic, sense of camaraderie, and spirited approach to life and work.

International applicants should be aware that the DPPF is not able to provide support for procuring a visa for attendance at the Gathering.