This year's Franklin Event offered abundant proof that printers in New York City can still pack a hall to honor the best and the brightest among them.
The September 17 celebration, hosted for 375 attendees by Printing Industries Alliance at The Lighthouse at Chelsea Piers, featured the presentation of Power of Communications Awards to outstanding performers in advertising, publishing, and printing. Also conferred were the John Peter Zenger Medal for individual excellence and the Franklin Award for Distinguished Service, a celebrity recognition.
Staged annually for decades by trade associations representing New York City graphics firms, the event surrounding the presentation of the awards continues to be the emblem of industry solidarity and fellowship throughout the metro region. The honors, says Printing Industries Alliance, “are awards through which the graphics industry, as a vital force in American society, takes pause and recognizes great leaders who have helped to preserve, strengthen or broaden the frontiers of liberty.”
Exceptional effort in support of these ideals has keynoted the careers of all recipients of the Power of Communications Award, presented for the first time more than 40 years ago to the legendary Henry Luce III of Time Inc. Last week’s recipients were praised for leaving their own records of positive influence, creative excellence, and outstanding achievement in the graphics industry segments they represent.
Honored for advertising was Jeanette Rivera-Ramos, manager of sourcing and procurement for Verizon. A self-described “kid from the South Bronx” who went on to become a senior print production and procurement manager for a long list of high-profile businesses, she currently oversees Verizon’s national print advertising production expenditures. Rivera-Ramos received a Luminaire Award from IDEAlliance in 2008.
Accepting the Power of Communications Award for Advertising, she spoke of the “whole new vernacular” that graphics professionals must become fluent in as the definition of what they do expands to include QR codes, augmented reality, mobile marketing, and other advancements in content creation and management. For graphic communicators, said Rivera-Ramos, it is no longer just about printing—the objective should be to ensure that printing is “the first step” in an integrated, multichannel sequence of marketing events.
Praising her parents for encouraging her education, she urged everyone in attendance “to take a chance on someone—to be the extraordinary person who makes a difference in someone’s life.”
Anthony Cenname, the publisher of WSJ Magazine, is this year’s recipient of the Power of Communications Award for Publishing. His 25-year career in magazine publishing includes stints as a sales and marketing executive for Travel + Leisure, Details, and Condé Nast properties.
Travel to close a deal kept Cenname from attending the Franklin Event, leaving Stephanie Arnold, sales director of WSJ Magazine, to accept the Power of Communications Award on his behalf. She said that under Cenname’s leadership, “we have turned the notion that print is dead on its head” by proving that a luxury-oriented title can do well in a shrinking market for magazines of all kinds. Arnold said that WSJ Magazine, launched six weeks before the financial meltdown of 2008, now has five U.S. and international editions with a circulation of 1.5 million.