Association of Cable Communicators, CPR Facts

March 20, 2009 - About ACC / Membership / FORUM / Beacon Awards

Inside This Issue:

Great American Country Supports Nashville Music School

Great American Country (GAC), a Scripps Networks channel, will present a concert with Phil Vassar at the W.O. Smith Nashville Community Music School in Tennessee on March 31st to benefit the school. This is the second concert in GAC’s series of charity performances. GAC’s concerts pair professional musicians with students from the W.O. Smith School and provide both fundraising and educational opportunities.

“It was a natural fit for both organizations. Helping the young people of Nashville is very important to GAC and W.O. Smith was the best opportunity to do this,” Stephanie Halouma, Public Affairs Manger for GAC, said. “Both organizations are passionate about music and how it can be a positive effect on lives.”

The W.O. Smith School is a non-profit educational institution that provides children from low income families with music instruction for only 50 cents a lesson. To raise awareness of the school, GAC arranges the exclusive concerts and invites potential donors, first-time donors, music industry professionals, and leaders in education and politics to attend.

In addition to raising awareness, the partnership also provides inspiration to the young students by providing them with the opportunity to perform with the artists. “Their whole idea of what it takes to make music changes,” Jonah Rabinowitz, Executive Director of the W.O. Smith School said. Rabinowitz was surprised at the enthusiastic response from the primarily urban student body to the opportunity to perform with country music singer Dierks Bentley last November. Rabinowitz credits the proximity to a professional in the field with inspiring students to perform at their best. The singer was available for questions from students on his career and a student choir sang background vocals on two of his songs. Similarly, fifteen students will form a background choir for the upcoming Phil Vassar concert.

The partnership between the network and W.O. Smith has existed for three years. GAC has contributed to the construction of new practice rooms and design of the student vans. Ed Hardy, president of GAC, is the new Chairman of the W.O. Smith board of directors as well. In the future, the network plans to create new lesson plans and connect area musicians to teaching opportunities. For more information, contact Stephanie Halouma at

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Only 56 Days to the 2009 Beacon Award Final Deadline of May 15

While the 2009 Beacon Awards are easier than ever to enter, it’s time to begin thinking about what projects you want to enter and in which categories.  Over the past year and a half, your organization has probably executed several successful communication campaigns or initiatives.  Carefully review the work your organization has completed between November 16, 2007, and May 15, 2009, to determine which of your projects you would like to submit as a Beacon Award entry.  Remember that the 2009 entries can be as simple as a three-page project summary and a CD or DVD of supporting materials.

Be Strategic About Your Category Choice. A look at the 23 categories listed in the Beacon Award Call for Entries will help you determine where your project fits best.   Some projects may be suitable for more than one category.  Keep in mind when you determine which category to enter that some categories are more competitive than others and your campaign results may be stronger for certain categories.  As you prepare your entry, remember to stress the concerns most important to the particular category being entered.  

It is important that each entry submitted fits appropriately into its designated category.  Beacon Award judges are advised to review the project based on the category the applicant entered it in and not a category the judge feels would be more appropriate.  To help the judges understand why the entrant chose the category he or she did, the entrant must include a justification statement in the three-page summary for the project. 

Entrants can review strong justification statements on ACC’s Web site in the three-page summaries of Beacon Award finalists, available online in the members-only section.  You can log in through the member log in box in the left-hand corner of any page of the ACC Web site.  Your username is your work email address, and the password is your last name all in lowercase letters.  Spend some time reviewing these examples and crafting your justification statement to make sure it clearly addresses all three components of your entry category – target audience, type of initiative or component, and entrant classification. 

The Beacon Awards recognize the best of the best cable communications and public affairs campaigns.  Enter your best work and receive the recognition you deserve.  The early bird deadline is May 1, 2009, and submitting entries by then allows you to save $50 per each entry. The final deadline is May 15. ACC mailed the 2009 Beacon Award Call for Entries to all members this week, and a copy was included in the March 16 issue of Multichannel News.  A pdf of the Call for Entries is also online

ACC will honor the Beacon Award winners during a gala dinner and ceremony that will kick off FORUM 2009, the association’s dynamic, educational conference, the evening of October 26, 2009, in Denver, Colorado.  For more information about the Beacon Awards, visit or contact Michelle Butler at or 202-222-2372.

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C-SPAN Celebrates 30 Years On Air

On March 19, 1979, live television coverage of the U.S. House of Representatives reached homes across the nation for the first time courtesy of C-SPAN, the cable industry-funded news network. Thirty years later, C-SPAN reaches 97 million households and features a media rich Web site, three channels, BookTV, radio programming, and numerous educational resources.

C-SPAN is celebrating the anniversary by launching a Web page devoted to highlighting momentous occasions in the network’s history. A list of thirty milestones, a photo slide show, and the first broadcast from the House floor (including a speech from then Rep. Al Gore Jr.), are featured on the page. The network’s morning call-in show, Washington Journal, hosted a segment asking viewers what C-SPAN has meant to them and what they would like to see included in programming. From Tennessee to Pennsylvania and all over the political spectrum, viewers rang in with their opinions and C-SPAN memories. Many were activists themselves and appreciated C-SPAN’s unfiltered approach to presenting Capitol Hill news. For more information, visit C-SPAN’s 30th Anniversary Web page.

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Join ACC for "Managing Your Career in Today’s Economy"—An ACC Online Chat

2009 is a year of change, challenge and opportunity for the cable industry and the world economy as a whole. How should a savvy cable communicator manage his or her career today? How can you ensure that you are furthering your professional development? Join your fellow members for "Managing Your Career in Today’s Economy," an ACC online chat April 22 at 2 pm EDT. 

ACC has invited Renee Hauch, Senior Vice President, Search Management and Research, of Carlsen Resources and one of the leading experts on the cable job market, and executive coaches Lynn Drake of Drake Consulting & Coaching LLC and Carol Veron of Communications Matters, LLC to offer advice, help you with goal setting and answer any questions you may have.

ACC's Online Chat: "Managing Your Career in Today’s Economy" will be accessible to all on its Web site:  If you have a question that you would like to ask any of the experts, but will not be able to participate in the live chat, please email it to Michelle Butler.  ACC will post a transcript of the chat in the members-only section of its Web site.
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USA’s Character Project Partners with MSOs to Reach Schools

NBC Universal’s USA Network Character Project Campaign has partnered with Comcast, Time Warner Cable, and Charter Communications to create an affiliate community affairs program targeted to aspiring high school-aged artists. The program features a local photography contest, field trips to USA’s local Character Project exhibitions, and classroom curriculum.

High school students are invited to submit digital photos which reflect the characters in their daily surroundings. A representative from Aperture Foundation, an affiliate partner of the campaign, USA, and a professional photographer will judge entries for originality, creativity and presentation. Winners receive a digital camera, an arts education grant for their school, the chance to meet a USA Character Project photographer, and will be featured in their local Character Project exhibition as well as on the campaign’s Web site.

The educational portion of the program includes field trips to local exhibitions and curriculum designed to encourage students to cultivate good character in themselves. The purpose of the curriculum is to encourage kids to take in and appreciate the unique world around them.
USA’s Character Project is an ongoing artistic initiative to capture the spirit of every day American life through photography. Inspired by USA’s “Characters Welcome” brand, the campaign gathered the work of 11 professional photographers in exhibition, book, and multimedia form. The exhibition is co-hosted by Vanity Fair magazine and will visit New York City; Washington, D.C.; Philadelphia; Chicago; St. Louis; San Francisco; and Los Angeles starting March 12. For more information, visit the
Character Project Web site or contact NBC Universal’s Rajul Mistry at

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NCTA and ACC Present Community Ties: The Business Rewards of Making a Difference

In partnership with ACC, NCTA will present "Community Ties: The Business Rewards of Making a Difference" at the 2009 Cable Show. A panel of industry experts will address the relevance and contributions of charitable programs that help them meet business goals, expand markets, engage their employees and address social issues on April 1, 4:30 pm in Room 145 A of the Washington Convention Center.

Victoria (Tori) Clarke, Senior Advisor, Communications & Government Affairs for Comcast, will moderate the panel that includes two former ACC presidents and a current board member. The panel consists of Meredith Wagner, Executive Vice President, Public Affairs & Corporate Communications for Lifetime Television; Necole Merritt, Vice President of Public Affairs for Cox Communications; Bonnie Hathaway, Vice President, Public Affairs for Time Warner Cable; Ken Freitas, Vice President, Corporate Responsibility of Cone Inc.; and Charisse Lillie, Comcast’s Vice President, Community Investments & EVP for the Comcast Foundation. For more information, visit the sessions portion of The Cable Show’s Web site.

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ACC Web Site Features Cable Connection Video

The ACC Web Site homepage now features a video that explains Cable Connection—the consolidation of cable industry events into one week events in the spring and fall. The video includes interviews with cable industry organization leaders, including ACC’s own Executive Director Steve Jones, and explains the educational, networking and cross-fertilization benefits of FORUM 2009 becoming a part of Cable Connection.

Registration for FORUM 2009 is now available online. Join your colleagues for educational sessions and networking opportunities to further your career, October 25-30. Simply visit the Cable Connection registration site for ACC events. From there, you can register for FORUM events as well as book your hotel. Registration is $750 before March 31st for all three days. Beacon Awards ceremony only tickets are priced at $150. This year, FORUM opens with the Beacon Awards on Monday evening, October 26, and continues on Tuesday and Wednesday with a full range of educational sessions. For more information, visit

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Congratulations Nomi Bergman, Annie Howell, Katina Arnold, and Christine Bragan!

To celebrate the 30th anniversary of Women in Cable Television (WICT), CableFax: The Magazine will profile 30 women who have made an impact on the industry. Four ACC Members will be honored in the April issue of the publication. Nomi Bergman is President of Bright House Networks and will also receive an NCTA Vanguard Award at the 2009 Cable Show. ACC Board Member Annie Howell is Senior Vice President, Communications and Public Affairs, for Planet Green. Katina Arnold is Vice President, Communications, Sales & Marketing, International & New Technologies for ESPN and Christine Bragan is Vice President Marketing and Communications for Rainbow Media Holdings.

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The 2009 Mark Awards: “Where Strategy and Creative Meet at the Highest Mark”

The 2009 Mark Awards are in full gear and CTAM has posted the call for entries online .  Recognizing outstanding achievement and excellence in marketing and communications from networks, cable companies, and their agencies, the Mark Awards continues to represent the peak of marketing accomplishment in the cable business for 26 years running.

Yes, it’s not “just for marketers.” The intersect between marketing and communications is included in the Mark Awards competition in a number of categories, such as collaborative marketing, partnership marketing, and press communications.

The Mark Awards committee, led by chair Jennifer Ball, senior vice president, affiliate marketing for Univision Television Group, has been hard at work tweaking the category and media definitions and rules to accurately reflect the current state of cable marketing.  Get up to date on all the changes at the Mark Awards Blog or see the complete list of divisions, categories and media.

Get your entries in by April 7 for a chance to be known throughout the cable and entertainment world as “best in class.”  The early deadline is March 24, providing savings of $75 per each entry.  Entries must consist of marketing and advertising materials first used between February 1, 2008, and February 28, 2009.

A call for judges is also underway with the preliminary round on June 9-10 in Arlington, VA.  Interested volunteers should check out the judging criteria.

CTAM will honor the winners at the Presentation of Awards event during the evening of October 26, 2009 at the CTAM Summit in Denver.  The Beacon awards will follow the Mark Awards, allowing winners of both competitions to celebrate twice in the same night.

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Thank You, Corporate Members!

Join and support ACC by becoming a 2009 corporate member. For more information on how your organization can join ACC as a corporate member, please contact Steve Jones at or 202-222-2373.  For membership details, go to

Golden Benefactors
A&E Television Networks
Bright House Networks
Cablevision Systems Corporation
Charter Communications
Cox Communications
ESPN, Inc.
MTV Networks
NBC Universal TV Networks Distribution
Rainbow Media Holdings
Time Warner Cable
Turner Broadcasting System, Inc.

Lifetime Television

Friends & Associates
Bresnan Communications
Cable ONE
California Cable & Telecommunications Association
Cisco Systems, Inc.
C-SPAN Networks
Discovery Networks
Florida Cable Telecommunications Association
Gospel Music Channel
Hallmark Channel
Insight Communications
Midcontinent Communications
Ohio Cable Telecommunications Association
The Outdoor Channel
Scripps Networks
Showtime Networks
Starz Entertainment
Suddenlink Communications
Texas Cable Association

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