Town of Matthews Communications Director and Assistant to the Manager Annette Privette-Keller received the top North Carolina City & County Communicators’ (NC3C) award during an award ceremony on March 29 at the Carolina Inn.

The top NC3C award is the Chris Coulson Memorial Award and it is presented to one individual who demonstrates a passion for making a difference in the profession and in the lives of citizens and whose character, career and service represent the highest standards and who excels in the practice of local government communications and/or has accomplished an outstanding one-time achievement. It is also presented to a person for displaying the leadership and values that Chris practiced during her years of dedicated service. Chris
dedicated 10 years of service to Henderson County Government, and was instrumental in forming NC3C and lost her battle with cancer in 2008.

“Annette is beyond passionate when it comes to communicating with the public, as well as in all areas of her life,” said Mandy Pitts, NC3C President and Communications Director and Brand Manager for the City of Hickory. “She has spent 13 years in government communications, and several years in school communications, so she is one of the expert communicators across the state and nation.”

Privette-Keller is one of the founders of NC3C, and served as the NC3C President for the organization’s first two years (2007 – 2008, 2008-2009). She continues to be instrumental in the organization and continues to work on projects and programs that will benefit government communicators across the state, most recently keeping communicators up to date with NC legislative issues. She received her undergraduate degree in English from UNC-Greensboro and her masters in public administration degree from UNC-C. She actively serves on a number of boards and committees for various non-profits.

“Annette has been and continues to be a great asset to the Town of Matthews,” said Town of Matthews Manager Hazen Blodgett. “She has put us on the cutting-edge of branding- website design, town mobile application, and Wayfinding. Communications with our citizenry has improved dramatically and she is also the driving force behind our service excellence efforts.”

“I have known Annette for more than a dozen years and I continue to learn new ideas and gain different perspectives in government communications and I am thankful for her guidance. Chris was a good friend of mine, as well as Annette’s, and I feel confident that Chris would be overjoyed with Annette receiving the most prestigious award from NC3C ….. it is very well deserved,” said Pitts.

The Town of Matthews also earned two First Place awards under Privette-Keller’s leadership in the 2012 ‘Excellence in Communications’ Annual Award Ceremony. The categories listed below:

• Communication Technology
1st Town of Matthews (MyMatthews App)

• Service Delivery
1st Town of Matthews (Biweekly Recycling PR Campaign)

“We have a great number of talented and innovative government communication professionals in North Carolina and it is an honor to work side by side with them as we are dedicated to keeping citizens informed and engaged in our respective communities,” added Pitts. “This year’s award ceremony showcased the best of the best in communications in North Carolina from special events to videos to projects that were creative but did not cost much money or anything at all.”

Categories included TV & Videos, Communication Technology, Special Events, Printed Publications, Most Creative Project for the Least Amount of Funds, Service Delivery, Marketing Tools, and Communications Plan.

Judges for the NC3C Excellence in Communications Awards were government communication professionals from California, Florida, Texas, Virginia, Colorado and Georgia. Each judge had previously won first or second-place in the national Savvy Awards, presented annually by the City-County Communications and Marketing Association.
The mission of NC3C is to encourage professional development and networking among local governmental communications professionals. The organization was formed in March, 2007 by 27 professional communicators from around the state. Since then, the organization has grown to more than 80 members.
For more information about NC3C, visit the website, or contact NC3C President Mandy Pitts, City of Hickory, 828-781-2384.