For years the Public Relations Society of America – National Capital Chapter (PRSA-NCC) has been head and shoulders above other communications professional societies in executing a first class sponsorship program. It was evident to me again last Wednesday at their 45thannual Thoth Awards Gala in the Pavilion Room of the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center.
The gala attracted nearly 200 people, and it was gratifying to see PRofessional Solutions, LLC’s name on signage and the program, and mentioned by chapter president Samantha Villegas from the podium as a sponsor. My name tag included a sponsor ribbon, and PRSA members acknowledged the company’s support during a relaxed and enjoyable cocktail reception.
PHOTO: Newly accredited PRSA member Sabrina Kidwai with PRofessional Solutions, LLC CEO Kate Perrin.
But as sometimes happens with a new format, too much was crammed into the evening. In fact, the first part of the evening saluting two new inductees into the PRSA-NCC Hall of Fame was in danger of eclipsing the very award recipients the evening was designed to honor – Washington, DC area professionals who created outstanding public relations campaigns and initiatives.
It took an hour for Bill Novelli, a member of the Hall of Fame and one of the original founders of Porter Novelli to introduce the inductees Judy Phair, a former of president of PRSA National and president of PhairAdvantage Communications, LLC and William Oliver, former Senior Vice President ications for AT&T now operating Bill Oliver Public Affairs, and hear their remarks. That meant the actual Thoth Awards recognition — and dinner! — wasn’t begun until almost 9:00 p.m.
It’s likely that the planners have reached the same conclusion along with some of the audience and in future will celebrate the Hall of Fame inductions apart from Thoth. The split could benefit PRSA by differentiating the two awards programs and offer a chance to create programs with appeal to two different audiences.
PHOTO: A terrific turnout of past PRSA-NCC chapter presidents at the 2013 Thoth Awards!