Division of External Relations rakes in more hardware, accolades

CSU’s Division of External Relations collected more honors this spring from professional organizations in the industry, including six Telly Awards for the country’s best film and video as well as six awards from the Colorado chapter of the Public Relations Society of America.

In addition, Director of Social and Digital Media Kimberly Stern was named “Mentor of the Year” by PRSA Colorado at its annual awards ceremony in Denver on May 4.

Stern accepts her award on May 4 in Denver

“She’s award-winning, she’s nationally recognized,” emcee and FOX 31 television host Kathie J said as she invited Stern to the podium for her acceptance speech. “In fact, CSU’s Instagram account was named the number one college Instagram account in the world. It’s so important that she spends her time as a mentor to help others as they begin their careers and learn the field.”

PRSA service

The co-host of Colorado’s Everyday Show added that Stern has served on the PRSA Colorado Student Outreach Committee and co-chairs the chapter’s annual shadow day, where college students are paired with PR professionals.

“Over the past 10 years, she’s paired hundreds of students with Colorado PR pros — some of them in this room tonight — in an event that she herself participated in as a student,” she said. “A mentor to many and an inspiration to all, Kimberly’s tireless work has helped many budding professionals in the industry advance and learn.”

Stern was nominated by CSU alumna Jane Dvorak, owner of Denver-based public relations firm JKD & Company and 2017 chair of the Public Relations Society of America’s national board of directors.

PRSA Award winners pose for group photo
Some of the PRSA award winners posed for a photo at the May 4 event in Denver.

Other awardees

CSU videographer Jason Russell won a Silver Telly Award for his video on CSU veterinary student Bernard Dime, and Bronze Tellys were awarded to Brian Buss for “Community for Excellence: Ernan’s Story,” and Ron Bend for “Tyler Schott, CSU Mechanical Engineering Master’s Student.”

The video team also took home bronze Tellys for its work on the National Park Service’s webisode series in honor of its centennial year, “Outside Science (inside parks).” The awards went to journalism master’s student Weston Dockter for “Ready Set Bloom: Cape Cod Algal Blooms” and to Bend for “Underwater Conservation With Whales: Glacier Bay National Park” and “Teens and Turtles: Gulf Islands National Seashore.”

In the Colorado PRSA competition, CSU won two Gold Pick Awards: Kris Browning-Blas won for “The Sky’s the Limit for CSU’s First Paraplegic Veterinary Student,” and Jennifer Dimas won for “Anticipatory Stress of After-Hours Email Exhausting Employees.”

Silver Pick Awards went to the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences communication team for “Astronaut Alumnus Kjell Lindgren Brings the Right Stuff to Campus,” Jeff Dodge for “Study Finds Troubling New Evidence of Teens’ Lack of Physical Activity,” Kate Jeracki for “The Conversation Charm Offensive” and Anne Manning and Jen Smith for “No Longer Lost in Translation.”

CSU’s social media team was also a finalist for a Shorty Award, which honors the best of social media, for its #RamGrad commencement campaign in 2016.

“These honors are a nice affirmation of all our hard work to build a strong, effective and compelling brand for CSU,” said Vice President for External Relations Tom Milligan. “It’s a testament to our team and all our communications partners across campus that we are continually recognized by our peers in the industry.”

Recent recognitions

In addition, this spring Director of Denver Public Relations and Outreach Tiana Nelson was named one of the Denver Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 for 2017. And last fall, the Division of External Relations received six awards from the Council for Advancement and Support of Education District VI for its communication and fundraising efforts, including Grand Gold for “State Your Purpose — The Campaign for Colorado State University.”

The division was named Colorado PR Team of the Year by PRSA Colorado last year. In addition, in September the division’s Creative Services team won the Judge’s Choice award at the 2016 University and College Designers Association Design Competition for best in-house design team.

Photo of DER team

CSU’s Division of External Relations