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NAGC Communicator of the Year

Do you know someone who deserves to be recognized as Communicator of the Year?

Government agencies communicate thousands of messages every day. It takes a unique set of skills to be a government communicator, and it takes commitment and mastery of those skills to be the best.

Each year, the National Association of Government Communicators recognizes a single government communicator who has helped instill public trust by effectively presenting accurate, timely and meaningful information, sometimes under exceptional circumstances.

Communicator of the Year is the only award in the nation that recognizes the top communicator from local, state, tribal, or federal government.

We know you know someone who’s particularly great at informing citizens, managing media, and making sure the good work of government is communicated to the public. Nominate her or him for the prestigious Communicator of the Year award.

The 2018 NAGC Communicator of the Year will be honored at the 2018 Communications School, June 19-21, in Ft. Myers, Florida.

For more information about the program, please contact John Verrico, pastpresident@nagc.com,

Nomination Criteria

Eligible nominees must have communicated the message for a government entity’s project/incident during the previous calendar year. Additional criteria include:

  • The individual must have generated substantial media coverage for her/his government entity. Significant community relations or internal communication efforts will also be considered.
  • The individual must have been in compliance with the NAGC Code of Ethics in performing government duties with truth, accuracy, fairness, responsibility and accountability to the public.
  • The individual may be an NAGC member or non-member. (Members of the NAGC Board of Directors are ineligible.)

2017 Communicator of the Year
Chris Poynter

Please join the National Association of Government Communicators in congratulating our 2017 Communicator of the Year, Chris Poynter. Chris is the Director of Communications for the Office of the Mayor of Louisville, Ky. In his nomination letter, Mayor Greg Fischer detailed the leadership and ingenuity Chris used to help the city and the world celebrate the life of the late Muhammad Ali. Over seven days in June 2016, Chris rallied his team to honor Ali, Louisville’s beloved native son. Although they had extremely short notice, Chris and his team organized a flag lowering ceremony outside Metro Hall shortly after the boxing superstar’s death.

Past Winners

Each year, NAGC asks for nominations of outstanding individuals whom you believe to be the most effective in delivering a government organization’s message within the last year. The award recipient will join a long list of past honorees, including:

  • Bob Muir, Manager of the Press Office of the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, for his responsiveness, subject matter expertise, and straight talk in communicating to media and with the public during the 2015 Southern California drought.
  • Jessica Milcetich, Digital Media Strategist, U.S. General Services Administration (GSA), for her management of social media and outreach projects for USA.gov.
  • Kerri Richardson, Director of Communications, Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear’s Office, for her ability to communicate Kentucky’s decision to expand Medicaid and launch their own, state-based ACA Health Benefits Exchange.
  • Carl A. Fillichio, Senior Advisor for Communications and Public Affairs, for improving the security of the print media “lock up” at the U.S. Department of Labor.
  • Judy Gish, California Department of Transportation, for the successful communication of the I-405 freeway closure in Los Angeles, averting “Carmaggedon.”
  • U.S. Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen (Ret.), National Incident Commander during the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
  • Linda Wilson, I-64 Community Relations Manager, Missouri Department of Transportation, for handling the closing down of a major interstate highway to 2.5 million residents of a metropolitan region to replace 10 miles of Interstate 64 in St. Louis.
  • David Walker, former Comptroller General of the United States, for sounding the warning about government finances.
  • Max Mayfield, Director of the National Hurricane Center in Miami, Florida.