Chamber captures national bronze

Communication is key to everything the Greater Aiken Chamber of Commerce does - and the organization's efforts have paid off.  The Chamber has been ranked among the top three chambers of its size nationwide for communications excellence.

The award for special publications, presented by the American Chamber of Commerce Executives (ACCE), recognizes the Aiken Chamber and the Welcome Aiken magazine for meeting and exceeding the fundamental standards and criteria for communications excellence.  It is the first national communications award bestowed upon the Aiken Chamber.

 "This was the first time we ever applied for such an award and to receive national recognition on our first try is significant," said Chamber President J. David Jameson.   

"Our goal has been to produce a community magazine at a professional, award winning level, and this national award validates this.  Hats off to Cindy Delaney on our professional staff for her due diligence and commitment to excellence on Welcome Aiken," he said.

 "Effective communications is paramount to all we do here at the Chamber.  It is our number one priority to our members, to the community, and to numerous other entities," Jameson added.

 Chamber Chair Frank Thomas, Security Federal Bank, agreed.  "Effective communications is about delivering quality information in a timely manner.  It is part of the Chamber's commitment to being a model chamber.  I commend the Chamber leadership and professional staff on this award and on their dedication to our members and the community," Thomas said.

"Welcome Aiken is one of our flagship publications. There is not a harder working, more responsive publishing partner than the Aiken Chamber, and it shows in the quality of the publication," said Richard Barry, president of Atlantic Publication Group, the publisher of the magazine.  

"We were extremely pleased to learn that our collective work, along with support from advertisers and various sponsors, resulted in an award-winning effort.   These types of publications make a big difference in shaping the perception of those considering a move to the area.   Everyone should be proud of what you have going on in Aiken, South Carolina," Barry said.

 This year's Awards for Communications Excellence drew entries from large and small chambers throughout the U.S.  The Aiken Chamber submitted its 2010 Welcome Aiken under the Special Publications category.

 The 2010 publication was written and designed to complement the City of Aiken's 175th anniversary.  The keepsake issue honors the city with an in-depth look at its 175-year history.  The publication also looks to Aiken's future with a feature on the young professionals and a feature on the equine industry that highlights its economic impact and importance. 

 More than 8,000 copies of Welcome Aiken are distributed to newcomers, visitors, potential business/industry, and current and potential residents each year.

 The Awards for Communication Excellence is an annual competition that recognizes excellence in all areas of communications.  It provides a vehicle for the chamber community to promote effective chamber communications, as well as highlight initiatives, introduce events and inform members.

 "There is truly exceptional communications work being done in the chamber profession, and the American Chamber of Commerce Executives is proud to recognize these achievements," said ACCE President Mick Fleming.

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