2013 Winners—Public Relations

Private-Sector Project

Big M Winner: Colehour + Cohen


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TITLE:  Re-Energized by Design: 

Situation: In 2012, Puget Sound Energy was looking for new ways to inspire customers to think beyond utilitarian benefits of efficiency and link efficiency with a beautiful, livable home. With the help of the agency, PSE developed and implemented the Re-Energized by Design campaign in 2013 – a seven episode online series that told the stories of six real PSE customers competing in a series of energy-efficient room makeover challenges.

Execution The Re-Energized by Design series depended on the full range of the agency’s services including media relations, community outreach, video production, advertising, social media promotions and partnership development. The agency worked with PSE to identify and select customers that would bring compelling stories and characters to the campaign. The agency then led the video production effort that followed the six selected Puget Sound Energy customers living in Seattle, Shoreline, Redmond and Bellingham over a 10-week period to capture their projects.

From the footage, PSE and the agency produced weekly “webisodes.” To build a following for the series, the agency implemented a multi-pronged promotional effort including online, TV, print and social media advertising, media relations, and a shareable video app for Facebook and Twitter. The Re-Energized by Design team also developed a media partnership with KING TV that featured the campaign on New Day Northwest and Evening Magazine.

Results Results from the campaign have exceeded all expectations. In total:

  • The webisode series was viewed more than 69,000 times
  • Re-Energized by Design earned 62 media placements with 4,962,306 impressions
  • The Re-Energize Facebook page fan base grew from 450 to 4,022, an increase of 793 percent
  • Blog partnerships resulted in 36 Re-Energized by Design blog posts earning 177,762 impressions
  • Media partnerships resulted in $254,847 in added value and resulted in 48,258,000 impressions
  • Sponsors GE and Electrolux provided $55,000 in cash and product sponsorships

In addition, PSE.com’s Rebates & Offers page that provides efficiency resources for customers saw an 890 percent increase in visits during the campaign compared to same timeframe the previous year.

CLIENT:  Puget Sound Energy

CREDITS: Puget Sound Energy, Colehour + Cohen, Creative Deluxe Video Productions.


Silver M Winner: Tamara Wilson Public Relations


TITLE: Sky View Observatory: Seattle On a Grander Level!: In July 2013, the agency was tasked with promoting the Sky View Observatory, located on Floor 73 of the Columbia Center. Recently redesigned and officially reopened to the public on July 1, 2013, the Observatory offers a 360 degree view of Seattle and the surrounding region. Although the Observatory had been open to the public prior, the new space offers a complete panorama, understated interior, informative floor to ceiling displays highlighting the region and points of interest. When the agency started the campaign one of the key components was the accessibility and affordability of the space. Open seven days a week, the Observatory sits at a height of over 900 feet and is an outstanding value and venue for residents and visitors alike. We immediately knew it was a premier Seattle destination to be promoting locally and nationally. Sitting in one of the country’s prime cities and at the base of some of our country’s best landscapes and waterways for exploring, we knew that SVO would appeal to an array of travel editors. We created a multifaceted approach, utilizing traditional methods and a hit the streets approach. Our press releases, social media, and personal outreach yielded immediate results with placement in local and national publications, such as The Oregonian, The Seattle PI, CNBC, business journals and more. During the summer months, our “street team” targeted the concierge desks at local hotels and disseminated information and answered questions about the destination. A launch party held shortly after opening generated tremendous buzz in the community. Additional national travel coverage is slated and in the works for 2014.

Links to the press releases: Sky View Observatory Features 360 Views at 900 Feet! See Seattle at a Grander LevelHoliday Spirit Soars at Sky View Observatory

Links to the resulting media coverage:: oregonlive.comoregonlive.comseattlepi.comPuget Sound Business Journaltripadvisor.com425 Magazine

CLIENT: Sky View Observatory, Columbia Center

CREDITS: Tamara Wilson, Melissa Trainer, Erin Clark.


Bronze M Winner: BrandQuery

TITLE: Bridge Collapse – the NW Campaign: On May 23, 2013, the I-5 Bridge collapsed into the Skagit River. Given the fact that a lot of business activity stopped, time was of the essence to create and implement a campaign to get traffic moving. In very quick time, the agency developed a campaign to include television, radio, public relations and social media. Starting Monday June 3rd and delivering commercials June 11th. Other campaign components included public relations and social media were delivered all month long and the campaign was completed July 5th. Television and radio ran in Seattle and Vancouver Metro.

CLIENT: Economic Development Assn. of Skagit County

CREDITS: BrandQuery including Jacque Beamer, Matt Fisher, Amy Ferree and Andy Fenstermaker, HandCrank Films


Public-Sector Project

Big M Winner: Pacific Science Center




Click here to view and listen to KUOW coverage.

TITLE: RACE: Are We So Different?: When Pacific Science Center opened the unprecedented exhibit RACE: Are We So Different? in fall 2013, it was imperative to foster and serve as a backdrop for community conversations on race, social equity, and its local implications. Several months in advance of opening, the Science Center collaborated with the City of Seattle Race and Social Justice Initiative (RSJI) to maximize the rare opportunity for broad community engagement presented by this exhibition. Together with RSJI, more than 200 volunteer facilitators were trained to lead over 100 community group workshops across Puget Sound, far exceeding initial expectations. The Science Center worked closely with The Seattle Times to secure extensive, ongoing coverage of the exhibit including several columns by Jerry Large and an in-depth front page story profiling five local experiences of race the Sunday after Thanksgiving; the most circulated issue the Times produces each year. The Seattle Times, Pacific Science Center and students from the University of Washington collaborated on a blog that documented guests’ reactions to the exhibit and their personal experiences with race. Additionally, the Science Center partnered with several community leaders to execute a multi-cultural digital media outreach campaign and collaborated to host “Univision Seattle” day at Pacific Science Center, drawing new audiences to the Science Center. Print and digital educational curriculum was distributed to more than 40,000 students statewide.

The day after the exhibition closed to the public, new Seattle Mayor Ed Murray brought his staff and cabinet to the exhibit for a tour and facilitated workshop, marking the first official meeting of the new administration. Days later, the Seattle Times produced a final article that featured local businesses and organizations that, because of the exhibition and workshops, were implementing organizational initiatives to move closer to racial and social equality in our community. In all more than 127,000 guests visited the Science Center during the run of the RACE exhibition, including more than 13,500 school children. Earned media impressions alone exceeded 22 million.

CLIENT: Pacific Science Center

CREDITS:  Pacific Science Center: Crystal Clarity, Katelyn Del Buco, Diana Johns, Rowe Redick; City of Seattle Race and Social Justice Initiative: Julie Nelson, Diana Falchuk, Glenn Harris


Silver M Winner: Team Soapbox

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TITLE: Chutes & Ladders for Early Learning for MomsRising: MomsRising mobilizes families to support critical investments in early learning programs, a fundamental part of our education system and our children’s academic development. In 2013, MomsRising needed to show grassroots support for the federal early learning and childcare initiative and for state early learning programs across the country. They came to our agency for unusual, high impact media and outreach events that would engage legislators and tell the story that every move they make impacts children’s futures. Why not put smiles on legislator’s faces at the same time? We created a life-size version of the game Chutes & Ladders which was played by moms, kids, and members of the U.S. Senate on the lawn of the capitol building in DC in September.

Six Senators and three Representatives, including the Chair of the Senate Budget Committee; Chair of Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee; and Chief Deputy Whip, joined a big crowd of moms and toddlers from MomsRising on the 40 x 40 foot game board, drawing attention to the need for early learning wins. Families across the country sent in hundreds of personal stories and messages which were delivered to legislators by the MomsRising families.

Media coverage included:

  • Washington Post
  • Washington Post-InPlay TV
  • Time Magazine’s Swapland blog
  • Politico’s Top photos of the day
  • Roll Call’s Photo of the Day
  • News for American Federation of Teachers and National Education Association And others

Additionally, we created smaller, but still huge, 20 ft game boards were created for 5 other states —CA, NM, SC, VT, WA—to hold local events to remind state legislators that giving kids a good start in life is not a game. The agency created a media toolkit for each local MomsRising chapter to help them manage the events and earn media coverage.

CLIENT: MomsRising

CREDITS: Leigh Sims, Christine Stepherson, Nick Hawley


Bronze M Winner: PRR



Click artwork above to view entire Evaluation Report


Click artwork above to view entire Toolkit


Click artwork above to view entire Press-Release

TITLE:  Don’t Drip & Drive. Fix that Leak!: According to Washington Department of Ecology estimates, every year hundreds of tons of oil and other petroleum-related products make their way to our lakes, rivers, streams, and Puget Sound itself. Most of this toxic pollution comes from small oil motor drips from our cars and trucks.

The Stormwater Outreach for Regional Municipalities (STORM) consortium has taken the lead on this issue, selecting ‘fixing vehicle leaks’ as the Best Management Practice (BMP) for a targeted regional education and behavior change campaign. The agency was hired to help the STORM consortium to encourage Puget Sound residents to identify and fix their vehicle leaks by June 2013.

The King County Environmental Behavior Index has determined that 67 percent of vehicle owners will fix their leaks within three months once aware that their vehicle has an oil leak. Therefore, we developed a campaign focusing on three main objectives:

  1. Get vehicle owners to check for leaks
  2. Educate vehicle owners on what kind of leaks they may have
  3. Tell them where they can take their vehicles to get the leaks fixed

The agency brokered an exclusive partnership with the Automotive Service Association (ASA) of Washington to launch a campaign aimed at getting Puget Sound residents to identify and fix vehicle leaks. As program partners, ASA mechanic shops provided free vehicle leak inspections, as well as discounts on vehicle leak repairs of up to 10 percent during the month of April 2013. As a part of the campaign, we conducted focus groups and online surveys and developed a comprehensive evaluation strategy to measure success. The agency also developed a detailed marketing plan and implemented a comprehensive outreach campaign including logo/brand development, in-store signage, advertising, website, social media, and toolkits for partner agencies.

In addition to the ASA partnership, we worked alongside the STORM consortium to partner with the Boeing Company for employee testing events. Boeing conducted “free leak testing” days for their employees to help them identify leaks, and drove those with leaks to ASA member mechanic shops for repairs. The agency also worked alongside partner agencies to run additional testing events at local government locations throughout April 2013, including the Department of Ecology, Snohomish County, and the cities of Bothell and Kirkland.

The campaign was immensely successful, with the ASA partnership and employee testing events combining to test 6,963 cars for leaks in one month. The checks indicated that 2,063 of the cars were leaking oil. Research showed that at least 67 percent of those leaks will be repaired – representing 1,382 cars no longer leaking oil into the Puget Sound and other local bodies of water. Media outreach efforts secured in April resulted in more than 431,000 impressions and 42 stories placed in local newspapers and TV stations, including The Olympian, the News Tribune, and on Fox affiliate KCPQ-TV, among others. The media buy leveraged a tight budget by more than 152 percent through additional spots and added value elements, including on-air contests, interviews, and PSAs. Partner outreach efforts resulted in 470,500 impressions through utility bill inserts, social media, website placements, and advertising that ran from March-May 2013.

CLIENT: Stormwater Outreach for Regional Municipalities (STORM)

CREDITS: Project Manager Katherine Diers, Lynn Hernandez, Mindy Meyring, Denise Walz, Diana Steeble, Leigh-Ann Eng, Bruce Brown, Mike Rosen, Maks Goldenshteyn, Alex Sobie


Public Service Announcement

Big M Winner: Colehour + Cohen

TITLE: Use Compost. It Works.: Harvest Power designs, builds, owns and operates organics management systems and technologies that produce renewable energy and high value compost based soils and fertilizers. In 2013, Harvest produced a series of three PSAs with the goal to educate consumers and landscape professionals about the importance of soil health and how it relates back to the health of their communities, as well as the benefits of using compost and mulch. The videos were hosted on the Harvest Power website and used as content to promote engagement on their social media properties.

CLIENT: Harvest Power

CREDITS: Acct. Mgr. Jan Kleszynski, CD/Writer Vandy Kindred, Producer/Director Liv Faris, Director of Photography/Editor Dee Austin Robertson, Dir. of Photography/Editor Jason Fierst


Silver M Winner: Craters of the Moon


TITLE: Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence: “Felix Hernandez”: The agency and the Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence have worked with the Seattle Mariners and Mariners Care for over 10 years. The work that we’ve developed has raised millions of dollars for victims of domestic violence and has been recognized by Major League Baseball, receiving the prestigious MLB Commissioners Awards for Philanthropic Excellence. This unique campaign was one of the first in the nation that has used players from a professional sports team to lend their voices to the importance of ending domestic violence. A special thanks to this years participants, Cy Young winning pitcher Felix Hernandez, Michael Saunders, Mariners Manager Lloyd McClendon, for contributing their time and their voices to this very important cause.


CREDITS: CD Kevin Nolan; Writer Norman Wassel; AD Kevin Nolan; Designer Becky Newhouse, AE Alyssa Zagorie; Photographer Ben VanHouten; Client: Nan Stoops, Kelly Starr


Bronze M Winner: Craters of the Moon


TITLE: Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence: “Seattle Mariners”: The agency and the Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence have worked with the Seattle Mariners and Mariners Care for over 10 years. The work that we’ve developed has raised millions of dollars for victims of domestic violence and has been recognized by Major League Baseball, receiving the prestigious MLB Commissioners Awards for Philanthropic Excellence. This unique campaign was one of the first in the nation that has used players from a professional sports team to lend their voices to the importance of ending domestic violence. A special thanks to this year’s participants, Cy Young winning pitcher Felix Hernandez, Michael Saunders, and Mariners Lloyd McClendon, for contributing their time and their voices to this very important cause.


CREDITS: CD Kevin Nolan; Writer Vandy Kindred; AD Kevin Nolan; Designer Becky Newhouse, AE Alyssa Zagorie; Photographer Ben VanHouten; Client: Nan Stoops, Kelly Starr



Big M Winner: DCMPR


TITLE: Dan McConnell Blog: A collection of interesting and informative insights by a globe-trotting public relations and crisis-management expert. Click art above to view blog.

CREDITS: Dan MCConnell


Silver M Winner: Okan Arts



TITLE: Okan Arts Blog: Okan Arts Blog, written by Patricia Belyea, tells stories about people and places to inspire quilters and textile lovers. Click art above to view blog.

CREDITS: The Okan Arts website was originally designed by Hansen Belyea


Bronze M Winner: Rod Brooks


TITLE: Seeing The Edge: With a nothing more than the coin that he’d placed in the palm of my hand I was asked what I saw. My responses included everything from the obvious – a quarter – to it’s component parts: president, date, mint, silver, etc. With disappointment in his eyes, my mentor told me I had missed it. I was only seeing what everyone sees. I hadn’t seen the edge. My blog is about looking beyond the obvious to see what others don’t. It’s about becoming a marketer, a strategist, and, most importantly, a merchant. It’s about seeing the edge. Its entries attempt to point them out or share the secrets of finding them. I hope you enjoy the discoveries. Click art above to view blog.

CREDITS: Rod Brooks


Social Media Campaign

Big M Winner: The Fearey Group


Click on image above to view entire clip-book.

TITLE: Historic Flight Foundation: Pilot for a Day: In an effort to generate buzz and community awareness surrounding the 6th Annual Vintage Aircraft Weekend hosted by the Historic Flight Foundation at Paine Field, the agency devised and implemented a “Pilot for a Day” contest. Participants from all ages were invited to enter the contest by submitting a brief explanation on why they should be chosen to become a ‘Pilot for a Day’ via the Historic Flight Foundation’s website or Facebook page. The 12 most original and compelling entries were handpicked to experience a behind the scenes look at the museum, get an under-the-cowl look at some of history’s most magnificent aircraft, learn about the art of aviation, take an exclusive tour of an air traffic control tower and enjoy a view from the cockpit of a real aircraft over Snohomish County with celebrity pilot John Sessions. Participants also had the once in a lifetime opportunity to take the controls of the Historic Flight Foundation’s DC-3, a propeller-driver airliner that made a lasting impact in the world of aviation during the 1930’s and 1940’s.

We utilized Facebook, Twitter and the Historic Flight Foundation’s website as visual methods for sharing details about the contest in addition to a comprehensive media outreach strategy. The community responded with nearly 500 submissions to the contest and a multitude of conversation surrounding the event resulting in increased awareness and support for the Historic Flight Foundation.

The “Pilot for a Day” event took place just days before the 6th Annual Vintage Aircraft Weekend. As a result, we secured more than 35 media placements in the days leading up to the event and immediately following. This heightened exposure totaled over 8,787,426 impressions (clip book provided in supporting materials), in top tier local outlets including The Seattle Times, The Daily Herald, Seattle PI, 425 Magazine and My Northwest. The event also garnered significant social media activity in real-time on Facebook and Twitter. 

CLIENT: Historic Flight Foundation:

CREDITS:  Aaron Blank, Drew Symonds, Anthony Cogswell


Silver M Winner: Curator




TITLE: ThankYouSeahawks.com: The agency’s office is located just a block away from CenturyLink field. As the Seahawks finished off a strong, Super Bowl-winning season this year, the agency wanted to create a place to house the celebrations of Seahawks fans far and wide, so we could share with the team as a token of our appreciation for their amazing Lombardi trophy run. With close ties to Q13’s “Blue Friday” tailgate segment every Friday morning before Seahawks games, the agency partnered with Bill Wixey for the #thankyouseahawks campaign. The idea, launched in time for the Super Bowl parade in downtown Seattle, was simple: share an Instagram photo with the hashtag #thankyouseahawks and it’ll pop up on ThankYouSeahawks.com. Then, the agency and Bill Wixey would create custom-designed books of fan gratitude and present it to the Seahawks players and staff at the start of the 2014 season. In order to spread the word, the agency shared the message strategically with its social networks, directly pinged Seattle influencers via Tweets and emails, and partnered with local blogs and organizations such as 12for12s.com, The Seattle Sports Hub and Numerology of 12, who donated Proceeds to FareStart. The agency also sent an on-the-ground team to distribute #thankyouseawhawks signs, and coordinated announcements by Bill Wixey about the campaign on-air during multiple Q13 newscasts. As a result, ThankYouSeahawks.com accumulated over 515 photos of Seahawks fans in their blue and green showing their love for the team, with enough content to make a special final product to deliver to Pete Carroll’s organization. Go Hawks!

Included in this entry is the following:

  1. The PDF we shared with fans prior to and during the Super Bowl parade for an easy thank you note to Instagram and hashtag
  2. A screen-shot of the site as it lives today to get a view of the photo submissions we received.
  3. A mock-up of what the final book will look like once delivered to the Seahawks.

CREDITS: Scott Battishill, Shawn Herron, Ann Marie Ricard, Jennifer Carroll, Annie Zanin, Paul Balcerak, Matthew Robinson, Chelsey Allodi, Brooke Andersen, Megan Kamitsuka


Bronze M Winner: The Fearey Group




TITLE: MTR Western: Seattle’s Ultimate Sports Fan: In an effort to generate brand awareness for MTR Western and increase attendance to the 79th Annual MTR Sports Star of the Year Awards, the agency devised and implemented “Seattle’s Ultimate Sports Fan” contest. Participants from all ages were invited to enter the contest by uploading their “ultimate Washington sports fan” photos to Facebook, Instagram or Twitter with the hashtag #MTRSportsStar. The ten best photographs were chosen and the winners (plus their guests) were awarded “Seattle’s Ultimate Fan Experience” including traveling on MTR Western’s official Seahawks bus, Hawk 1, a VIP tour of CenturyLink Field and Safeco Field and two tickets to the 79th Annual MTR Western Sports Star of the Year Awards show.

We utilized Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and a splash page on MTR Western’s website as visual methods for sharing details about the contest in addition to a comprehensive media outreach strategy. The Washington sports fan community responded with over 200 submissions to the contest in a two-week timeframe. The contest also sparked a multitude of conversation across MTR Western’s social channels surrounding the contest, the 79th Annual MTR Western Sports Star of the Year Awards and MTR Western’s presence in the Washington professional sports industry.

The “Seattle’s Ultimate Sports Fan Experience” took place just days before the 79th Annual MTR Western Sports Star of the Year Awards. As a result, we grew MTR Western’s Twitter following by 145%, increased MTR Western’s Facebook “Likes” by 440% and added over 200 followers to MTR Western’s Instagram account. Additionally, the 79th Annual MTR Western Sports Star of the Year Awards saw its biggest turnout in several years and received media attention from multiple outlets including Crosscut, KING 5, ESPN Radio and KOMO Radio. The event also garnered significant social media activity in real-time on Facebook and Twitter.


CREDITS: Aaron Blank, Meredith Hickman, Anthony Cogswell