FreeState Electric Cooperative received recognition in the national 2022 Spotlight on Excellence Awards program, sponsored by the Council of Rural Electric Communicators (CREC) and the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA). FreeState received a Gold Award in the Best Event category for “Crew at the Zoo.” Public Relations and Marketing Director SARAH FARLEE coordinated the award-winning event at the Topeka Zoo.
“We are honored to have this event and excited that this now award-winning event is returning in 2022,” commented CHRIS PARR, CEO. “When we rolled out this event last year, we weren’t sure what to expect following a pandemic, and changing our focus on how we organized member events, and it exceeded all of our expectations.”
“We are so excited to be able to bring the event back and provide our members the opportunity to experience a great local facility in the Topeka Zoo while learning about cooperatives, energy savings and safety, ” Parr said.
The event held in August 2021, was a huge success with over 1,000 attendees. This year, Parr said the cooperative is ready for a bigger event to be held on Saturday, Aug. 27.
“Now that we know how popular it was with our members, and how well-received it was at the national level, we’re ready to produce an even better event than last year,” added Parr.
Spotlight on Excellence Award winners were recognized during the CONNECT conference, a national conference for communications and marketing professionals, held in Seattle this year.
The annual Spotlight on Excellence Awards program recognizes the best communications and marketing efforts by electric cooperatives and related organizations. Entrants competed with electric cooperatives of similar size in 18 categories. Electric cooperative communicators and marketing professionals submitted nearly 600 entries in the Spotlight on Excellence program. Faculty members from the University of Missouri — Columbia, and the University of South Carolina, as well as noted professionals in the fields of marketing, web design and digital communications, and newspapers judged the event, which uses a finite scoring system to determine the winners.
The CREC was organized in 1982 and seeks to advance the recognition, education, and professionalism of electric cooperative communicators and their affiliated organizations. This volunteer association works on behalf of more than 4,000 electric cooperative communicators across the United States.