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PRSA-NY Announces 2014 Big Apple Award Winners

Award Presentations by Local New York City Broadcasters and PR Industry Executives Underscore 27th Annual Gala Celebration; An Acoustical Performance by LeAnn Rimes, Keynote Address by Roy Sekoff of HuffPost Live and The Huffington Post, and Innovative Sp

NEW YORK, NY -- (Marketwired) -- 05/27/14 -- The New York Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA-NY) held its 27th annual Big Apple Awards Gala last week at the Mandarin Oriental New York, awarding 73 finalists with top honors for a broad range of 2013 PR campaigns. The evening highlighted the campaigns' outstanding research, strategies, tactics and results, including non-media results. Several deserving individuals were also honored for their contributions to both the public relations field and the Chapter.

Hunter Public Relations took home the Best of the Best Big Apple Award, representing the best work produced by the industry in 2013, for its work with McNeil Consumer Healthcare, the makers of ZYRTEC®, and their campaign titled "A Case of ALLERGY FACE™: ZYRTEC® Helps Beauty Bloom for Allergy Sufferers." The Big Apple Award for Best Business/Campaign Outcomes, new for 2014, went to Feintuch Communications for its work with Convene and their campaign titled "Reinventing the Off-Site Meetings Industry through the Use of Human-Centered Design." The award for Best Use of Research, Measurement and Evaluation, sponsored by the Institute for Public Relations, was presented to Ketchum and Zoetis for their "Zoetis Rings the Bell for Animal Health" campaign.

Individual chapter award recipients included: Bill Doescher, president & CEO, Doescher Group, winner of the John W. Hill Award, a lifetime achievement award; Harry Zlokower, founder, Zlokower Company, winner of the Philip Dorf Award for mentoring, sponsored by the Dorf family; and Deborah Radman, APR, Fellow PRSA, principal, Radman Communications, winner of the PRSA-NY President's Award for her contributions to PRSA and the Chapter.

For a complete list of the 2014 Big Apple Award Winners (52) and Honorable Mentions (36), click here.

Not Your Father's Awards Presentation
More than 200 public relations professionals arrived at the 2014 Big Apple Awards Gala in style thanks to promotional partner Uber. There were a number of surprises in store for them, as the event played homage to various forms of media old and new. Attendees checked in to find typewriters at the registration desk, newsprint tablecloths, an old-school press photographer living statue (from Shirdance New York) waiting to greet them, as well as a whiskey tasting table and "Big Apple Manhattan" signature cocktail a la Mad Men compliments of WhistlePig Whiskey. Event photos, shared on Instagram and Twitter throughout the night with the hashtag #BigAppleAwards, were later streamed on-screen during the dessert reception thanks to a custom portal developed by Chute.

PRSA-NY President Henry Feintuch and president of Feintuch Communications, welcomed guests as his speech scrolled from a new iPad teleprompter app. "Tonight is a celebration of excellence in the public relations industry. It is where the New York PR community comes together to honor the best of what we do. And you all did it in a big way this year by submitting 230 entries through our new electronic contest portal -- 43 more than last year and a new chapter record! Our distinguished panel of 88 judges narrowed down the entries to arrive at 73 unique finalist campaigns submitted by 40 different companies."

Roy Sekoff, president & co-creator of HuffPost Live and founding editor of The Huffington Post, kicked off the evening with a keynote address on "Disruption in Media," including a nod to the newly popular six-second video. Kirstin Cole, reporter, PIX11 News and Lynda Baquero, consumer reporter, NBC 4 New York, opened the awards presentation with a tongue-and-cheek inside look at the stories they are "working on" and how PR pros could tailor their pitches, including Elevated Alert: How to Defend Yourself Against Elevator Attacks (following Jay Z and Solange's recent stunt at The Standard Hotel). Brigitte Quinn, anchor, WCBS Newsradio 880, lent her distinguished voice for voiced-over portions of the program.

Guests were also entertained by an intimate acoustical performance by Grammy Award-winning pop/country recording artist LeAnn Rimes, who hosted a private meet & greet session for sponsors and other VIPs earlier in the evening. Rimes dazzled the crowd with live renditions of "Blue," a Janis Joplin version of "Summertime" and "Spitfire," a single off her recent hit country album with the same name. The performance was presented by entertainment sponsors: Affect; Crenshaw Communications; Germinder & Associates, Inc.; Kite Hill PR; LKPR, Inc.; StevensGouldPincus; and Smyth TriBeCa, a Thompson Hotel.

During the second half of the program, Big Apple and Honorable Mention winners were announced by special industry guest presenters, Jon Paul Buchmeyer, senior vice president, M Booth; Mike Doyle, partner and director, Ketchum New York; Patrice Tanaka, chief counselor & creative strategist, PadillaCRT; and Joe Cohen, APR, 2014 PRSA National Chair and senior vice president, MWW. A surprise guest, New York Giant John Conner (aka "The Terminator") joined Tanaka on stage to present the New Media/Social Media Campaign category.

"The Big Apple Awards Gala brings together the best of the best in the PR industry to celebrate, network and be inspired by the incredible work product that we collectively produce year in and year out," said Linda Krebs, president-elect and 2014 Big Apple Awards Chair, PRSA-NY and founder & CEO, LKPR, Inc. "Each year, we try to raise the bar and create more value for our attendees and our sponsors. This year, we changed the program format to a more relaxed cabaret style seating with wine service thanks to wineries from the Rioja region; we utilized multimedia assets and voiced-over copy to show off more of our finalists' work; and, thanks to Creative Artists Agency and our entertainment sponsors, we even added a performance from a Grammy Award-winning artist."

2014 sponsors included: Platinum- D S Simon Productions; Silver- Edelman; Hunter Public Relations; Ketchum; Prudential; and RF|Binder; Bronze- Anchin, Block & Anchin, LLP; Feintuch Communications; Germinder & Associates, Inc.; Makovsky; PadillaCRT; Ruder Finn, Inc.; SHIFT Communications; Spong; and Stanton Public Relations & Marketing; and PRSSA Student Benefactors- Doescher Group; and Germinder & Associates, Inc.

The Public Relations Society of America, New York City chapter is one of the founding chapters of the Public Relations Society of America, the world's largest professional organization for public relations practitioners. Founded in 1948, PRSA-NY is the third largest PRSA local chapter in the U.S. The chapter serves the interests of public relations professionals working in business and industry, counseling firms, government, associations, hospitals, schools, professional services firms and nonprofit organizations. Chapter board and committee members are volunteer public relations professionals who work in the New York metropolitan area. For more information, please visit; and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

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