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Public relations Excalibur Awards given at society's chapter dinner

Fifty-seven gold, silver and bronze Excalibur Awards were awarded Thursday night honoring public relations work in the region at the 21th annual dinner of the Buffalo Niagara chapter of the Public Relations Society of America.

Michael Barone of Fredonia State College and Lynn Casteel, John Pitts and Sharon Linstedt of Travers Collins & Co. received platinum "Best of Show" and gold awards for their work on two campaigns.

Barone helped transform Fredonia State's alumni magazine, the Statement, from a 12-page quarterly newspaper into a four-color magazine.

The Travers Collins & Co. team handled an investor relations strategy for Community Bank System during the recent financial industry crisis.

Judging were public relations professionals from the PRSA Southeastern Wisconsin Chapter, who considered 74 entries from more than 21 organizations.

Beth Donovan, director of public relations and special events with Our Lady of Victory Homes of Charity and Baker Victory Services, was presented the chapter's highest honor, the May C. Randazzo Outstanding Practitioner Award. Michael W. Cropp, M.D., MBA, president and chief executive officer of Independent Health, received the chapter's Outstanding Executive Award. Ronald D. Smith, chairman and professor in the communication department at Buffalo State College, received the chapter's Distinguished Service Award; Jessica Manocchio, communications specialist, Rich Products Corp., received the chapter's Rising Star Award, and Emily Bird, a Fredonia State student, received the Randazzo Memorial Scholarship.

Excalibur Awards in the following categories were presented to:

Community Relations -- silver: Health Association of Niagara County, "Bringing Back the Joy: HANCI Saves the Center for Joy;" Travers Collins & Co., "Catholic Charities of Buffalo -- Appeal 2009" and "First Niagara Financial Group: Corporate Headquarters Relocation and Larkin Investment;" University at Buffalo School of Management, "Free Tax Preparation Service - University at Buffalo School of Management;" bronze: Univera Healthcare, "Univera Healthcare's Green & Clean Initiative."

Institutional Programs -- silver: Health Association of Niagara County, "Putting It All Together: HANCI Re - Brands Three Programs as Volunteer Center;" Rich Products Corporation, "Rebranding Rich's Visual Brand Identity."

Special Events & Observances -- silver: Our Lady of Victory Institutions, "If You Build It, They Will Come;" bronze: Travers Collins & Co. "'Unmasking Generosity in Buffalo' Seneca Diabetes Foundation 2009 Chairman's Venetian Masquerade Ball."

Public Service -- bronze: Health Association of Niagara County "Saving Lives By Preventing Falls: HANCI Teaches Older Adults to Stand on Solid Ground;" Travers Collins & Co., "Face2Face - The Fight Against Adolescent Drug and Alcohol Addiction in Western New York."

Public Affairs -- silver: Travers Collins & Co., "WMH Saves Lives".

Marketing Consumer Services -- silver: Travers Collins & Co., "Caffeine-Fueled Fundraiser;" bronze: Travers Collins & Co., "Recession Means 'Home Sweet Home' for Buffalo Home & Garden Fans."

Marketing Business to Business -- bronze: Curbell Plastics, "Machine Builder Campaign."

Crisis Communications -- gold: Travers Collins & Co., "Simplifying Our Business for the Future."

Internal Communications -- gold: Rich Products Corporation, "Speed To Market: Turning Ideas into Products in 90 Days or Less."

Investor Relations -- gold: Travers Collins & Co., "Disciplined Communications Define a Solid Performance.

Integrated Marketing Campaign -- gold: Travers Collins & Co., "To Market, To Market - Restoring a Buffalo Landmark."

Social Media -- gold: Travers Collins & Co., "TCC Spills It;" silver: Catholic Charities of Buffalo, "Finding a Friend in Social Media - Catholic Charities Kicks Off Social Media Communications."

Projects: Media Relations -- gold: Travers Collins & Co., "Putting Our Best Foot Forward;" silver: Karen Karaszewski and Nancy Cardillo, "An Extreme Makeover for Buffalo and David Homes;" silver: Health Association of Niagara County, "The Experience of a Lifetime: Media Campaign Boosts Volunteerism;" Carr Marketing Communications, "Titan Wrecking & Environmental Pittsburgh High Rise Implosion;" Debra S. Park & Eileen C. Herbert of Canisius College, "Canisius Moves to a Lay Presidency;" silver: Mary Cornwell of Gateway-Longview, "A Christmas Wish Come True."

Newsletters -- gold: Travers Collins & Co., "A Facelift for the Grand Dame of Buffalo Charities;" University at Buffalo School of Management, "Inside Management - Internal Newsletter for the University at Buffalo School of Management;" silver: Paula Witherell of Hilbert College, "Hilbert Weekly."

Magazines -- gold: University at Buffalo School of Management, "Buffalo Business Magazine;" SUNY Fredonia Division of University Advancement, "A Bold, New Statement;" silver: St. Bonaventure University, "Bonaventure: The Magazine of St. Bonaventure University;" bronze: Paula Witherell of Hilbert College, "Hilbert Connections."

Annual Reports -- gold: Travers Collins & Co., "Communicating Strength in a Forest of Mediocrity."

Brochures: gold: Health Association of Niagara County, "Make the Choice: Brochure Boosts Capital Campaign;" Paula Witherell of Hilbert College, "Hilbert College Fast Facts Brochure;" bronze: Cannon Design, "Education Brochures;" Visit Buffalo Niagara, "Handmade in Buffalo."

Special Purpose Publications -- silver: Paula Witherell of Hilbert College, "Hilbert College Christmas Card."

Press/Media Kits -- silver: Cannon Design, "Richmond Olympic Oval Print Media Kit;" bronze: Cannon Design, "Richmond Olympic Oval Electronic Media Kit."

Direct Mail/Direct Response -- gold: Health Association of Niagara County, "Our Favorite Gift: Holiday Card Leads to Successful Grand Reopening."

Internal Video Programs -- silver: Delaware North Companies, "Celebrating Five Years of Creating Special Experiences - One Guest at a Time;" bronze: Travers Collins & Co., "Dr. Cropp's Proactive Health Care Band."

External Video Programs: bronze: Visit Buffalo Niagara, "Buffalo: You'll Eat It Up!" Canisius College Video Institute, "Cradle Beach."

Editorial/Op-Ed Columns -- gold: Travers Collins & Co., "Fixing What Ails Health Care."

Creative Tactics -- gold: Cannon Design, "Cannon Design E-Holiday Card."

Interactive Communications -- silver: Carr Marketing Communications, "AdaptaVan Website Creation;" bronze: Barbara A. Byers and Gina Cali-Misterkiewicz of the University at Buffalo Office of Alumni Relations, "UB Alumni Association Website Redesign;" Travers Collins & Co., "Westfield Memorial Hospital 'Rural No More: Embracing the Power of Social Media.'"

Articles on Public Relations -- gold: Deborah A. Silverman, "A Community Comes Together: The Crash of Continental Flight 3407."

Presentations/Workshops on PR -- silver: Deborah A. Silverman, "The Crash of Continental 3407: A Crisis Communications Case Study;" Health Association of Niagara County, "You Make Me Feel Brand New: Graphic Standards Training Raises the Visual Bar;" Travers Collins & Co., "Lights, Camera, Prepared! Travers Collins & Company Media Training;" Travers Collins & Co., "BFF: Social Media and You."

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