News & Views

Nine Awards for Economic Developers



While national rankings can be difficult to influence, awards are one area where economic developers have a chance to raise the profile of their organization, city, state or region.

Earlier this month, the City-County Communications and Marketing Association (3CMA) announced their Savvy Award winners, and next week the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) will reveal its prestigious Excellence in Economic Development Award winners, October 6.

If you are looking to showcase your community’s biggest accomplishments – from a marketing campaign or major deal to a unique city program – we’ve compiled a list of nine awards for you to consider. For tips on how to win, check out “Do’s and Don’ts for a Stellar Economic Development Industry Award Entry.”

Consider these awards if…

Your marketing efforts rival those of a big brand:

MarCom Awards: Highly respected in the communications industry, these awards cater to individuals or companies involved in the concept, writing and design of visual, audio, print and web materials and programs. Marcom receives about 6,000 entries per year, so consider entering if you have an ultra-creative brochure, infographic, advertisement, website or other marketing materials.

Deadline: October 9, 2015

Recent winners: Click here and scroll down

Pixel Awards: Founded by a husband and wife team in 2006, this international awards program honors exceptional design and technology. The award is open to all companies, organizations and individuals involved in cutting-edge digital work. While these awards do not cater to economic development specifically, they are a good fit for EDOs that have launched truly innovative websites.

Call for entries: October 2015

Recent Winners

Bulldog Reporter’s Bulldog Awards: The Bulldog Awards recognize excellence in multiple categories including corporate social responsibility, media relations, digital and social marketing, not-for-profit and overall outstanding professional performance. It is the only awards programs in PR and communications whose winners are chosen by working journalists, including a Pulitzer Prize winner. Economic development organizations with strong media relations results could enter the not-for-profit or media relations category.

Call for entries: Spring 2016

Past winners: Not for profit; media relations

You just landed a really big deal:

Business Facilities Magazine, Deal of the Year: Each year, the magazine chooses the best economic development deals – whether it is a project that resulted in a relocation/expansion of a new business or the retention of a local company. Showcasing strong economic impact numbers is critical to winning this award.

Deadline: October 15, 2015

2014 winners

Your ground-breaking city initiatives are improving quality of life:

National Civic League’s All-America City Award: Since 1949, more than 500 cities have won this award – which honors the “best in American civic innovation” and showcases a community’s efforts to tackle the most pressing local issues. In 2016, the award will focus on innovative community efforts that help support children in school and life.

Deadline: Early bird letter of intent due by November 4, 2015; final deadline is March 9, 2016

Previous winners

The Conference of Mayors’ City Livability Awards: Established in 1979, this award recognizes mayors and their city governments for creating programs that improve the quality of life in urban areas. Every municipality in the United States is eligible to nominate one or more city government programs in any policy area.

Call for entries: To be announced for 2016; stay tuned in January

2015 finalists

The National Association of Development Organizations (NADO) Innovation Awards: Since 1986, the annual program has recognized innovative approaches to regional community and economic development – honoring more than 1,500 projects. Check out the planning and economic development category and be prepared to address criteria such as your project’s uniqueness and level of innovation, regional impact, or long-term viability and significance. Applicants must be members of NADO.

Call for entries: To be announced for 2016

2015 winners

Your economic development initiatives deserve peer recognition:

IEDC’s Excellence in Economic Development Awards: Well-known and highly-regarded in the economic development world, these awards honor the world’s best economic development programs and partnerships, marketing materials, and the year’s most influential leaders from urban, suburban, and rural communities.

Call for entries: To be announced for 2016

Previous winners

3CMA Savvy Awards: From special events and branding to videos and a variety of economic development marketing tools, the awards recognize outstanding local government achievements in communications, public-sector marketing and citizen-government relationships. 3CMA judges entries in several different population groups to accommodate local government organizations of all sizes and budget classes.

Call for entries: Click here to be notified about next year’s awards

2015 winners


Written By

Rachel Deloffre

Rachel Deloffre is an Account Director at DCI. Since joining the company in 2011, she has carried out strategic media relations and marketing campaigns for clients ranging from the country of Colombia, to the city of Calgary, Alberta, to the Port of Long Beach. She has also assisted in executing a talent attraction campaign for the Research Triangle region of North Carolina.

More Articles by Rachel Deloffre

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