Association of Cable Communicators, CPR Facts

January 3, 2014 - About ACC / Membership / FORUM / Beacon Awards


Inside This Issue: 

  2014 Beacon Awards® Entry Deadline is March 21 

ACC recently announced the 2014 entry deadline for the Beacon Awards® is March 21, 2014. The Beacon Awards have been cable’s highest recognition of communications and public affairs excellence since 1989. The Awards Ceremony will be one of the highlights of ACC’s annual conference, FORUM 2014, June 3-5 in Atlanta at the Omni Hotel at CNN Center.

"Cable communicators make vital contributions to the bottom line of their companies and industry by telling cable's story, building constructive relationships with stakeholders, promoting products and services, and improving the quality of life for the customers and the communities they serve," said Pete Abel, 2014 Beacon Awards chair and senior vice president, corporate communications, Suddenlink Communications. "The Beacon Awards recognize the best of this work."

The 2014 Beacon Awards continue the ease-of-entry format first introduced in 2011. Entries may be submitted via email and have been designed to cut down on the amount of time to complete the entry process. Entrants need only to submit a project summary of up to two pages, a completed entry form and payment. However, individuals may continue to submit their entries by mail or via a delivery service or send hard copies of supplemental supporting materials.

All Beacon Award entries must represent work executed and results achieved between March 23, 2013, and March 21, 2014. More information may be found at
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  Time Warner Funds Grant for Five AFI Fellowships 

Time Warner’s foundation presented the American Film Institute (AFI) with a grant to fund five Time Warner Foundation Fellowships to the AFI Conservatory. The full-tuition awards are intended for applicants from communities traditionally under-represented in the film and television industries.  Aspiring artists accepted into the AFI Conservatory are mentored by film and television professionals in a hands-on environment. The program places a strong emphasis on storytelling and personal expression, and classes are designed to mirror a real production environment.

The first fellowship funded by the Time Warner grant was awarded to Adriana González-Vega, currently a first-year Directing Fellow at the AFI Conservatory. In college, González-Vega studied filmmaking and was chosen for a study abroad program at the Film and TV School of Academy of Performing Arts in the Czech Republic prior to graduating from Syracuse University. She then began a film and entertainment career, which included time with the Mandalay Entertainment Group, the sitcom Rules of Engagement, and the film Fast and Furious: Fast Five.

Today González-Vega is focused on the projects for her AFI Conservatory program, as well as polishing her skills as a director. “(I’m) learning the techniques and the tools that every great director knows how to use…and making sure that I’m telling stories that are more focused, and in an effective way, she said.”  González-Vega is also editing her film, Junito, based on a story with the same name from the book Mundo Cruel: Stories by Puerto Rican author Luis Negrón.

Through its New Works/New Voices initiatives, the Time Warner Foundation aims to partner with nonprofit groups, like AFI, to find innovative and powerful ways to discover, nurture and celebrate the next generation of storytellers.  For additional information, contact Summer Wilkie at or 212-484-8000.
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  Mark Your Calendar: FORUM 2014 in Atlanta June 3-5 

ACC will hold the annual educational conference, FORUM 2014, in Atlanta June 3-5 at the Omni Hotel at CNN Center in the heart of downtown. Two Atlanta-based communications professionals will co-chair the conference: Misty Skedgell, senior vice president of corporate communications, Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., and Mallard Holliday, executive director of public affairs, Cox Communications, Inc.

“Atlanta is a great hub for Cable operations, programming and technology and thus the ideal location for our industry’s communications professionals to gather for our annual conference,” said Association of Cable Communicators president Anthony Surratt, group vice president of corporate communications at Time Warner Cable.

Cisco, Cox, Turner, Weather, Comcast, Up and ARRIS are a few of the companies serving the cable industry that are based in or have significant operations in the Atlanta area. Other factors influencing the association’s choice of Atlanta were its flexible and frequent air travel options and convenient access to other major cities in the South and along the East Coast that are home to a large portion of the membership.

Downtown Atlanta offers visitors a wide range of diversions just steps away from the Omni Hotel including world class restaurants, World of Coca-Cola, Georgia Aquarium, CNN studios, College Football Hall of Fame, Skyview Atlanta and the Center for Civil and Human Rights. Additionally, by June 2014 the city’s new street car system will provide easy and fast access throughout downtown.

The Omni Hotel at CNN Center, 190 Marietta St NW, Atlanta, GA 30303, is holding a block of rooms for FORUM 2014. Reservations may be made by contacting the Omni at 800-962-6664 and reference: Association of Cable Communicators. Room rates are $159/night plus tax for up to four individuals sharing a single room. All members are encouraged to join Omni’s Select Guest program (free) prior to your stay to enjoy complementary Internet access, morning beverage, pressing (up to two items), shoe shine, newspaper and customized room preferences.

FORUM is ACC's redesigned national conference for cable communications and public affairs professionals who have responsibilities in corporate communications, government affairs, public relations, customer communications, social media, publicity and other communications disciplines. FORUM also includes ACC’s annual Beacon Awards® Gala. FORUM attracts cable industry professionals ranging from entry-level communicators to senior executives. For additional information, go to
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  Time Warner Cable Supports Research on Broadband Adoption 

Time Warner Cable in late December announced their most recent stipend of $20,000 for the company’s Research Program on Digital Communications, which engages scholars to increase the understanding of the benefits and challenges facing digital technologies in the home, office, classroom and community.

The money will support the research initiative, Older Adults and Broadband Adoption: Where Do We Go From Here?, by Debra R. Berlyn of The Project to Get Older Adults onLine (GOAL) and John B. Horrigan, Senior Fellow at the Joint Center of Political & Economic studies. The project will examine current trends in broadband and technology adoption among older adults, with the aim of identifying successful initiatives that demonstrate the value of staying connected while bolstering digital skills and literacy.

Fernando Laguarda, director of the research program and vice president for external affairs and policy counselor, Time Warner Cable, said, “We are excited to contribute to a deeper understanding of broadband and digital communications policy with respect to older adults. We look forward to learning from this work and promoting best practices to advance technological inclusion.”

“While this study will examine current broadband adoption trends, it will also address the more critical question of ‘where do we go from here,’ to ensure the utilization of the innovative services broadband technology delivers to older adults,” said Debra Berlyn, executive director, Project GOAL.

This stipend is the latest of awards made during the 2013 cycle. Awards were also made in 2010, 2011 and 2012. To date, the program has made 22 awards to 30 leading researchers. The recently published papers and more information about the program may be found at
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  Successful 12 Days of Giving Provides $100,000 to Charities 

During the holiday season, Bright House Networks again held its 12 Days of Giving program to lend a hand to the different charitable organizations in the community that provide help with food for the hungry, shelter for the homeless, companionship and assistance for seniors, military personnel deployed overseas and families in need.

More than 150 organizations were invited to participate from Bright House’s five state service areas.  Nearly 60 organizations accepted the invitation to participate with 58 organizations sharing $100,000. To help as many charities as possible, the service area was divided into ten regions with local prizes for the greatest number of votes in each area.

Charities were awarded first ($3,000), second ($2,000) and third ($1,000) place awards in each region. The five charities with the most votes went on to compete in a second round of voting for additional dollars at $1 per vote.  In total, 27 charities earned one of the major awards plus every charity that participated received a donation of $685. For more information contact Reinaldo Llano at or 407-210-3178.
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  Volunteers Wanted for FORUM and Beacon Committees 

Are you interested in connecting with your fellow cable communicators? ACC needs volunteers for the FORUM 2014 and 2014 Beacon Award Committees. Get involved and help put your stamp on ACC programs to meet the needs of cable communicators.

FORUM Committee Members will help determine the agenda and promote FORUM 2014 to the industry. Beacon Award volunteers manage the complete entry process from promotion to judging to the Beacon Awards ceremony.

For more information on the committees, go to ACC’s Web site. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact ACC by emailing or calling 202-222-2373. You can also print out a volunteer form and fax it to ACC at 202-222-2371.
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  We Decide Our America PSA Initiative 

NUVOtv recently announced a public service initiative that highlights the importance of passing comprehensive immigration reform and encourages viewers to make their voices heard by their Congressional representatives. The PSA series features well known celebrities including Mario Lopez, Gina Rodriguez, Claudia Jordan, Tami Roman and Tatyana Ali. The 30-second PSAs were created with exclusive footage provided by the Immigrant Archive Project. To help support the PSA initiative, NUVOtv created a two-minute call-to-action spot with spoken word poet and performer Mayda Del Valle.

The We Decide Our America initiative further facilitates direct engagement in the political process by assisting visitors to petition their Congressional representatives to take action on comprehensive immigration reform. Viewers may broaden the impact of their involvement through their social media circles with straightforward messaging for both Facebook and Twitter, all available from

NUVOtv CEO Michael Schwimmer said, “While the need for comprehensive immigration reform is a national issue affecting Latinos and non-Latinos alike, it is a leading social issue particularly among Latinos in this country. Through the We Decide Our America campaign, NUVOtv highlights to viewers that their voices matter and play an important role in promoting the critical need for legislators to act with urgency and fairness.”

For additional information on the We Decide Our America PSA initiative or the Immigrant Archive Project, contact Cheryl Torres Lynch at or 323-256-8900.
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  ACC White Paper: Maximizing Returns on Local Events  

The recently published the ACC Brief, Maximizing Returns on Local Events through Smart PR Planning is available on the ACC Web site. All members may download a free copy of the white paper by going to the “Resources” tab on the ACC Web site and then clicking on Knowledge Center on the drop down menu. You may then access the white paper by clicking on the link, ACC Briefs.

The paper outlines the important role local events play in communications plans and how to maximize the return on every local event dollar. Local events serve the dual-purpose of distinguishing your company from the competition while reinforcing your image as a leader. The challenge is to ensure every event clearly supports the organization’s strategic objectives. The paper outlines step-by-step planning and examines every aspect of preparing for a local event, including check lists before, during and after the event. This Brief addresses the strategy, tactics and details that go into creating a smart, results-oriented PR plan for local events.

On November 13 the paper’s author, Kimberly Elek, co-founder and chief communications strategist, McReynolds Elek Communications, held a webinar to highlight key areas of the paper addressing strategy, tactics, and nitty-gritty details that go into creating a results driven PR plan for local events. ACC members may view a recorded version of the webinar by going to the Online Educational Portal and clicking on Live Webinars and Self-Paced Programs. A copy of the paper may also be downloaded from this portal as well. For additional information contact Steve Jones at or 202-222-2373.
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  Thank You Corporate Members! 

For information on how your organization can join ACC as a 2014 corporate member, please contact Steve Jones at or 202-222-2373. For membership details, go to

Golden Benefactors
A+E Networks
AMC Networks Inc.
Bright House Networks
Cablevision Systems Corporation
Charter Communications
Cox Communications
Discovery Communications
ESPN, Inc.
Time Warner Cable
Turner Broadcasting System, Inc.

Friends & Associates
Cisco Systems, Inc.
Crown Media Family Networks
C-SPAN Networks
Midcontinent Communications
National Cable & Telecommunications Association
NBC Universal TV Networks Distribution
Scripps Networks
Showtime Networks
Starz Entertainment
Suddenlink Communications

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PO Box 75007 Washington DC 20013 · Phone 800.210.3396 or 202.222.2370 · Fax 202.222.2371