Association of Cable Communicators, CPR Facts

March 19, 2010 - About ACC / Membership / FORUM / Beacon Awards

Inside This Issue:

Secrets of the Beacon Award-Winning Three-Page Summary: Past Winners Now Online!

The 2010 Beacon Awards deadline is only 36 days away! The most important step you can take toward Beacon Awards success is to write a strong, three-page project summary of your communications campaigns or tactics. Now you have the chance to see how the 2009 winners and finalists put together their successful summaries. The members-only section of the ACC Web site gives you access to archived winning summaries from 2009 and beyond.

These summaries may serve as a good model when preparing a Beacon Award entry and will show you what it takes to make your entry stand out. Taking note of the structure, word choice, and descriptive elements in past winners’ summaries can help you learn how to describe your project in the most efficient and rewarding manner.

An entry wins or loses based on the quality of the three-page summary. The summary should be no more than three pages and address three key points: planning and strategy, implementation, and results.  Judges spend the most time reviewing this portion of the entry. 


The project summary gives you the chance to show the judges exactly what makes your project worthy of a Beacon Award. Cox’s Carrie Braun, who won in the Community Relations and Education categories for Cable System 2 in 2008, emphasizes recreating the event in the summary. “I tried to imagine the judges reading the Beacon project summaries as people I wanted to invite to my event, but I needed to convince them that it was worth attending,” she said in a
Beacon Awards blog post. “I wanted to show that the event was well thought out and executed, and that they would have had an amazing time if they would have been there. I tried to relive the event and create an atmosphere in the summary.” Peruse the online summaries and take note of how past finalists recreated the event. This is just one way you can use the archived summaries to enhance your own submission.

To view these summaries, visit Members must log in using their e-mail address as the username and their last name as the password, all in lowercase letters.

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 April 9, 2010, and submitting entries by this date allows you to save $50 per each entry. The final deadline is April 23. A PDF of the Call for Entries is available online .

This year’s Beacon Awards will be presented at a luncheon ceremony during ACC’s FORUM 2010, September 15 and 16 at the New York Hilton hotel. For more information, visit the ACC Web site.

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History Launches “America: The Story of Us” Education Initiative

History has launched a new education initiative based on its 12-hour U.S. history series, “America: The Story of Us.” The network will provide free DVDs of “America: The Story of Us” and curriculum materials to schools and libraries across the nation as well as host educational challenges aimed at students and educators.

The curriculum materials will include images, teaching resources and study suggestions as well as video clips designed to equip students with key facts and information regarding U.S. history. Including a full size poster, family viewing guides, and a colorful eight page teacher's guide, the curriculum will be mailed to over 35,000 middle schools and high schools nationwide.

The educational initiative and outreach also includes academic challenges for students and institutions. The Student Video Challenge, in partnership with the President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities and The Institute of Museum and Library Services, asks students to connect their personal stories to the larger narrative of American history, such as their family's immigration story, school's anniversary, or community's Civil War history. They can work in small groups or as individuals, and create a multimedia or video presentation. The Student Challenge will have middle, high school, and college level categories. Students will be encouraged to use the resources of the Library of Congress, the National Archives and local sources with $25,000 in prizes to be awarded.

The Library Contest, with the President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities and The Institute of Museum and Library Services, will be a contest among local libraries throughout the entire U.S. for outstanding cross-platform exhibitions tied to American history. Libraries will be encouraged to develop public programs and community conversations on a variety of topics in American history. A total of $35,000 in prizes will be awarded to winning libraries, and History will also provide participating libraries with copies of “America: The Story of Us.”


Teachers will also be able to participate with the Teacher Contest: Innovation in History Education. Educators will submit their best lesson plan on American history to compete for $25,000 in prizes and resources. Teachers and students will be able to participate in a live webcast on May 6 as well. Produced with the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History, the webcast will focus on innovation in American history and include a panel of historians responding to questions from the audience.

History will also build “America: The Story of Us” content into its existing educational partnerships and resources including Resources for Teachers, with the Library of Congress; exclusive multimedia content and primary source materials on their Web site; The Idea Book for Educators magazine; and Newspapers in Education. For more information, visit the "America: The Story of Us" Web page.

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“Integrating Cable Communications: Partnering Internally for Success” – an ACC Online Chat, March 24

Join ACC for “Integrating Cable Communications: Partnering Internally for Success,” the latest online chat, March 24 at 2pm EST. Many cable communicators partner with other departments in their company in order to achieve business goals that would be much more difficult or even impossible to accomplish without the use of integrated communications.  What challenges and advantages are inherent in these partnerships?  How can the savvy cable communicator ensure that his integrated communications campaigns will succeed?
ACC has lined up three experts and 2009 Beacon Award finalists for integrated communications campaigns to share their ideas, experiences and advice in this area. Amy Pempel, Director of Media Relations, Sun Sports & FOX Sports Florida; Ann Shrewsbury, Vice President, Communications, Time Warner Cable – National; and Brian Craven, Director of Community Relations, Bright House Networks, Central Florida will share their take on making the most of internal partnerships and answer participants questions during the chat.

All cable communicators are encouraged to join this ACC Online Chat and offer tips on how they have used integrated communications to help them succeed in their cable communications efforts. “Integrating Cable Communications: Partnering Internally for Success” will be accessible to all on ACC’s Web site. If you have a question that you would like to ask Amy, Ann or Brian but will not be able to participate in the live chat, please email Michelle Butler your question. ACC will post a transcript of the chat in the members-only section of its Web site.

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Charter Partners with One Economy to Provide Free Internet to Low-Income Families

Charter Communications and One Economy, a nonprofit organization dedicated to using technology to improve lives, have partnered to provide low income families in the St. Louis area with free Internet service, training, and affordable technology. The partnership will work with local community agencies to provide services to up to 1,000 households.



The operator will provide approximately $700,000 in high-speed Internet service, modems and digital literacy training over a 24-month period in collaboration with One Economy and local community partner agencies. Better Family Life, a local community development organization, will help the partners identify households eligible for participation in the pilot program. In addition, Habitat for Humanity, Central Bank of St. Louis and Computer Village have joined the initiative to assist with training, technical support and access to affordable computer equipment. For more information, visit

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Judge the 2010 Beacon Awards!

Want an up close look at what your peers in the industry are accomplishing? Looking for some fresh ideas on how to spice up your campaigns? Curious about how others tackle the same issues you deal with in cable? Judging the Beacon Awards gives you the chance to see the latest in cable communications campaigns while determining what makes the best stand out. The Beacon Awards are evaluated by your fellow members, and ACC invites you to serve as a judge for this year’s competition.

As a Beacon Award judge, you will learn what your cable communications peers across the country are accomplishing and will walk away from the experience with hundreds of new ideas and connections. It’s now easier than ever to judge. For the first round of judging, ACC ships entries to your location for evaluation at your convenience during a two-week period in June.

To serve as a Beacon Awards judge, please fill out the judging form and fax it to Michelle Butler at 202-222-2371.

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Comcast Foundation Awards Literacy Grant to Hartford YWCA

The Comcast Foundation awarded a $1,500 grant to the Elmwood Early Learning Center in West Hartford, CT. The learning center, which is a part of the YWCA Hartford Region, will use the grant to promote literacy.

The grant will be used to create learning packs designed to help parents and children with activities that stimulate children’s learning and reinforce lessons learned in school. Each pack will include books, writing implements, activity prompts, and journals to help parents engage their children in reading at home. Packs will be available in both English and Spanish. For more information,visit


Standing from left to right: Deb Coleman, YWCA site manager Elmwood Early Learning Center; Kristen L. Roberts, Comcast Western New England Region Vice President of Public Relations and Community Investment; Brad E. Palazzo, Comcast Western New England Region Community Relations manager; Jane Barter, parent; and Maggie Sullivan, parent, pictured with children from the center holding a thank you poster they made for Comcast.

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Preview the 2010 Cable Communications Institute Schedule

ACC offers you a sneak peek at the schedule for the 2010 Cable Communications Institute, June 13-16, in New York City. Richard Edelman and Gary Grates of Edelman, as well as Peppercom’s Steve Cody are just a few of the experts expected to present at this exclusive, 2.5 day, educational conference.

The 2010 Institute will review multiple communications techniques that are completely transferable to communications and public affairs professional’s daily work. This graduate-level program is designed for mid to senior level communications executives who would like to expand their knowledge base and advance their capabilities to the next level. Although the program is not finalized at this time, tentative speakers and topics for the academic program include the following:

· “From Public Relations to Public Engagement” with Richard Edelman, president and CEO of Edelman, New York

· “The Role of Communications in Managing Organizational Reputation” with Terry Flynn, PhD, professor of Industry Practice, DeGroote School of Business, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

· “Branding Your Organization” with Carla Lloyd, PhD, professor of Advertising, Newhouse School of Public Communications, Syracuse University

· “Employee Engagement and Communications” with Gary Grates, senior vice president, Edelman, New York

· “Putting the Public Back in Public Relations” with Deidre Breckenridge, president and director, PFS Marketwyse, New Jersey

· “Humor as a Competitive Business Advantage” with Steve Cody, president and co-founder, Peppercom, New York

· “Conflict Resolution Strategies and Skills for Interpersonal and
Team Effectiveness”
with Neil Katz, PhD, professor emeritus,  Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University

· “Why ‘Story’ Matters to You, Your Boss, Your Company” with Thaler Pekar founder and principal, Thaler Pekar and Associates, New Jersey

The 2010 Cable Communications Institute takes place June 13-16, in New York City at Syracuse University’s Lubin House facility adjacent to Central Park on 61st Street. Space is limited to the first 25 qualified applicants. Tuition for the Institute is $2,100 per individual on or before May 15, 2010. May 16 and after the fee is $2,300.  Tuition covers all instructional materials and most meals. Travel and housing expenses are not included in this fee. To apply, complete the application form, found online, and fax to 202-222-2371, ATTN: Steve Jones.

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Elmo Joins FCC Chairman Genachowski to Announce Children’s Agenda for Digital Opportunity

FCC chairman Julius Genachowski was joined by Sesame Street citizen Elmo to explain the Children’s Agenda for Digital Opportunity this week at the National Museum of American History. Gary Knell, president and CEO of Sesame Workshop, and Jim Steyer, founder and CEO of Common Sense Media, also joined the chairman to comment on aspects of the National Broadband Plan that impact children and families.

Elmo and FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski

Following an address that outlined the agenda, Genachowski discussed the merits and drawbacks to the current state of broadband, with Elmo. Though he likes playing educational games and
watching videos on the Internet, the furry red Muppet voiced his concerns about the slow speed of his broadband connection

and his belief that the Internet should be available to all. The discussion took place in front of a guest audience of children.

In his address, Genachowski highlighted recommendations in the National Broadband Plan that would benefit families and announced initiatives that would further the goals of the commission’s Children’s Agenda for Digital Opportunity. The initiatives build on four core pillars: digital access, digital literacy, digital citizenship, and digital safety. The chairman covered recommendations in the plan that ensure all children have access to broadband, allow kids to develop digital literacy skills and benefit from digital learning, promote digital citizenship, and improve online safety.

Specifically, the proposals include modernizing the USF, updating the E-rate program to make it easier for children to get online at schools and libraries, and establishing a National Digital Literacy Program. The commission also plans to hold a series of workshops and roundtables to bring together leaders from the industry, government, academia, and nonprofits to address issues involved with these four core pillars as well as other issues facing children including obesity. For more information, visit
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Mark Awards Call for Entries Underway

Submit your best marketing from the past year by March 30 (or April 13 with late fees) at

This year you’ll save time and money with the all-new digital submission process. No DVDs. No boards. No FedEx fees. Start with a short video tutorial and get on your way to that tower of gold metal. Finalists will be announced in mid-August and awards will be presented at The CTAM Summit, October 18-19, in New Orleans.

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Discovery Communications Partners with UN to Celebrate Biodiversity

Discovery Communications has partnered with the United Nations to celebrate the International Year of Biodiversity (IYB).  Throughout the year, Discovery will work closely with the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) to increase the understanding of the role that biodiversity plays in sustaining life on Earth. To meet the goals of the IYB, Discovery will utilize its education unit, international networks and special programming including LIFE, Discovery Channel’s blockbuster BBC co-production.

The United Nations declared 2010 the International Year of Biodiversity (IYB). Throughout the year countless initiatives will be organized to disseminate information, promote the protection of biodiversity and encourage organizations, institutions, companies and individuals to take direct action to reduce the loss of biological diversity worldwide. The celebrations for the International Year of Biodiversity are led by the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). For more information, visit



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Thank You, Corporate Members!

Join and support ACC by becoming a 2010 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.
Rainbow Media Holdings
Time Warner Cable
Turner Broadcasting System, Inc.

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
NBC Universal TV Networks Distribution
Ohio Cable Telecommunications Association
Scripps Networks
Showtime Networks
Starz Entertainment
Texas Cable Association

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Photo Credits

  • Secrets of the Beacon Award-Winning Three-Page Summary: Past Winners Now Online! (Courtesy ACC)
  • History Provides Free DVDs to Schools in Record-Setting Campaign (Courtesy History)
  • Charter Partners with One Economy to Provide Free Internet to Low-Income Families (Courtesy Charter and One Economy)
  • Judge the 2010 Beacon Awards! (Courtesy ACC)
  • Comcast Foundation Awards Literacy Grant to Hartford YWCA (Courtesy Elmwood Early Learning Center)
  • Elmo Joins FCC Chairman Genachowski to Announce Children’s Agenda for Digital Opportunity (Courtesy FCC)
  • Discovery Communications Partners with UN to Celebrate Biodiversity (Courtesy Discovery Communications)

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