City of Carrollton Wins Eight State & National Communications Awards
Four state awards were given at the annual Texas Association of Municipal Information Officers (TAMIO) conference on Tuesday, August 31, and four national awards were given at the City-County Communications & Marketing Association (3CMA) annual conference on Thursday, September 9.
The state TAMI awards recognize outstanding communications in a variety of categories and are judged by non-members with communications and municipal government expertise.
The City of Carrollton received a coveted first place TAMI Award for its “Safe to Work and Shop” small business kits in TAMIO’s new COVID-19 – External Communication category. The free kits were a way to help small business owners open safely during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic and included information from the CDC, masks, hand sanitizer, as well vinyl floor clings designed by the City in three languages: English, Spanish, and Korean. These floor clings promoted social distancing while also including a friendly URL to the City’s Coronavirus page for additional information.
The 2020 Carrollton Pet Photo Calendar earned a first place TAMI Award in the category of Special Publication and a third place TAMI Award of Honor in the Most Creative With Least Dollars Spent category. Residents paid to submit photos of their pets as a fundraiser, and the winning photos were then printed on the pages of the calendar for the community to enjoy all year long.
Photo submission earnings, discounts from the printing vendor, and calendar sales netted more than $1,180, with all proceeds benefiting the Carrollton Animal Services & Adoption Center for resources such as food, medicine, cleaning supplies, and treatment of sick or injured animals.
Carrollton’s 10th annual signature event, the Festival at the Switchyard, received the TAMI Award of Excellence for the Best Recurring Event category, having drawn more than 30,000 people to Historic Downtown Carrollton in November 2019. The annual Festival impressed the judges with its various offerings such as free rides and games, free concerts by nationally-known artists, free children’s entertainment, and numerous food and craft vendors.
The national 3CMA Savvy awards utilize judges from across the United States and recognize outstanding local government achievements in communications, public-sector marketing, citizen-government relationships, and salute skilled and effective city, county, agency, and district professionals who have creatively planned and carried out successful innovations in communications and marketing. More than 800 entries in 40 categories were judged.
The poster for the Festival earned a second place 3CMA Silver Circle Award for the category of Graphic Design – Other Marketing Tools and echoes the style of the headliners, neo-psychedelic pop-rock band Tripping Daisy and alt-country band the Old 97s.
“Way to go City of Carrollton!” one 3CMA judge said. “A great way to showcase an award-winning festival!”
The poster design was also applied as a custom wrap on two guitars given to winners of social media and survey contests, and the guitars were signed by the members of the headlining bands. The wrapped guitars received a 3CMA Silver Circle Award in the category of Marketing and Tools – Best Use of a Promotional Item.
In 3CMA’s Digital Interactive – COVID-19 PR Campaign, Carrollton brought home the 3CMA Silver Circle Award for the Clean Hands Carrollton campaign, an extension of Carrollton’s “Safe to Work and Shop” initiative. The Clean Hands Carrollton campaign involved the purchase of 30,000 bottles of hand sanitizer for distribution at City facilities in conjunction with a drive-through event in June 2020, where City Councilmembers handed them out for free.
Judges remarked it was clearly a successful campaign for the community. The use of graphic elements and logo was a great way to address one facet of COVID while also including local community leaders’ involvement in the handout.
In addition to the Festival and COVID-19 awards, the City brought home a third-place 3CMA Award of Excellence for the Public Works Apprentice Program Video in the One-Time Special Programming category. The powerful recruitment video featured a call to cultivate pride and rise to the challenge of public service, encouraging potential applicants for the program and effectively decreased the department’s total vacancies. Judges praised the use of real footage that made Public Works look great.
City projects require input from all City departments. Recognition among dynamic communications professionals on a national stage further solidifies Carrollton’s capabilities, teamwork, and high quality of service to its residents.
“One of Carrollton City Council’s goals is for staff to be empowered and trusted to work as a team to deliver exceptional service. I am proud of this state and national recognition for the team’s exceptional service and dedication to keep the Carrollton community informed,” Marketing Director Kelli Lewis said. “It is an honor to be recognized for the work toward City Council’s vision to be the community that families and businesses want to call home.”
Effective public information offices are vital to local governments throughout the nation. Messages, programs, and campaigns link citizens to the essential information they need to access services and remain a part of the democratic process. Maintaining a shared vision for the community and ensuring the transparency of municipal government are demanding and constant requirements for successful public communicators.
For more information on Carrollton’s achievements, visit cityofcarrollton.com/awards-accolades.