JSU Recognized with Highest Honors in University Communications


The JSU Office of Communications and Marketing has been recognized with the highest honors bestowed in university advancement, the Council for the Advancement of Schools and Education (CASE) awards. 

The department picked up nine awards in the Southeast district, which is comprised of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia. Two entries will go on to compete at the national level. 

Grand Award for Communications and Marketing: “When the Storm Hits: How PR Can Pick Up the Pieces When the Sky Falls.” 

Honorees: Buffy Lockette, Sydney Jones, Sebastian Mendez and Chris Newsome

The top award in the Southeast for all of communications and marketing, this award recognizes exemplary programs, projects and initiatives in communications and marketing that serve as models for other institutions, provide a successful solution to overcoming challenges, reflect strategic use of resources, achieve significant results and/or utilize innovative practices. Entries include a variety of areas, including public relations, media relations, internal communications, crisis communications, branding and integrated marketing. 

JSU’s Office of Public Relations, with the assistance of colleagues in interactive and web, was honored for its crisis communication response following the March 19, 2018 tornado. By comparison, second place Awards of Excellence went to Duke University and the University of Virginia and third place Special Merits to the University of North Carolina, the University of South Carolina and North Carolina State University. JSU is one of 12 universities in the US now under consideration for the national CASE Platinum Award in Communications and Marketing, to be announced in June. 

JSU Public Relations received a total of five CASE Awards for their tornado response. In addition to the above award, JSU PR also received: 

Grand Award in Online Innovation/Experimentation for “When the Storm Hits: How Facebook LIVE Can Pick Up the Pieces When the Sky Falls.” Award Winners Sydney Jones and Buffy Lockette were recognized with the highest award in online innovation for their creative use of Facebook LIVE in the days following the March 19, 2018 tornado. 

Award of Excellence in Crisis/Issues Management for the updated crisis communication plan created in the aftermath of the March 19 tornado. Honorees included Buffy Lockette and Sydney Jones, with the support of Dr. Jeff Ryan and Officer Elizabeth Morrow.

Special Merit for Social Media Strategy and Execution, for the creative use of Facebook LIVE following the March 19 tornado. Honorees include Sydney Jones and Buffy Lockette.

Special Merit in Publication Writing, for the Fall GEM magazine, “JSU Strong,” written by Buffy Lockette and Brett Buckner.

Grand Award for Excellence in Photography: Matthew Reynolds Portfolio

The Excellence in Photography Award recognizes the best black-and-white and/or color photography produced by a single staff or freelance photographer for use in an institutional publication, periodical, website, exhibition or advertisement. JSU Director of Photography Matt Reynolds was recognized as the best university photographer in the Southeast and will go on to compete for the national CASE Platinum Award, honoring the top 12 university photographers in the nation, to be announced in June.  

JSU’s graphic design team also took home top honors. Designer Emily Lankford and illustrator Trevor Grimes were recognized for three admissions and recruitment pieces. The Undergraduate Viewbook was presented an Award of Excellence in Graphic Design for Recruitment Publications and a Special Merit in Graphic Design for a Single-Page Publication or Flier. The “You Are In” admissions postcard was presented an Award of Excellence in Graphic Design for a Single-Page Publication or Flier.

The honorees will be recognized at awards celebration at the CASE District III conference in Atlanta on Feb. 25. View a complete list of winners here

Founded in 1974, the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) is one of the world’s largest nonprofit educational associations and includes more than 3,670 colleges and universities, primary and secondary independent and international schools, and nonprofit organizations in more than 82 countries around the globe. It maintains headquarters in Washington DC, with offices in London, Singapore and Mexico City. Learn more at www.case.org