A government of the people, by the people, for the people, cannot exist without effective communications on behalf of and about government. Without communication, citizens would not know how to access programs that make lives better, would not know about the services their government provides, or how their elected officials are representing their interests. Government communicators, using the myriad of channels, media and platforms available today, integrate, coordinate and synchronize communications to deliver the right message, to the right audience at the right time. It’s challenging work that requires dedication, creativity and proficiency in the craft of communications. It is also work that largely goes unrecognized during the careers of government communicators.
The National Association of Government Communicators set upon a course 30 years ago to provide a means to recognize and celebrate the superior work of government communicators, leading to the creation of the Blue Pencil and Gold Screen awards.
Local, county, city, and state government communicators earned the lion’s share of awards presented during NAGC’s 2015 Blue Pencil and Gold Screen Awards ceremony, held during NAGC’s 2015 Communications School held in Memphis, Tenn., June 2-4.
Communicators used multiple channels of communication to reach their audiences with creative messages about topics including transportation initiatives, natural resources, festivals, power and energy, wildlife and recreation programs, workforce development and work programs, annual reports, mental health awareness, and many others. The quality and impact of the work submitted for consideration in this year’s awards was stellar, making the ‘best in show’ selection particularly challenging. In the end, the “You only live once” High School Pedestrian Safety Toolkit from Montgomery County, Maryland, showed how creativity and strategy combine to deliver effective messages on behalf of government and to the betterment of the community.
So the next time you watch or listen to a public service announcement, receive a newsletter or annual report from your local or state government, know that you just might be looking at a product produced by an award winning team.