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GOLD COAST PR COUNCIL Announces Winners of This Year’s Bernays Awards
Posted on Wednesday, July 22nd, 11:01am

(Boca Raton, FL – July 22, 2020) Debbie Abrams, president of the Gold Coast PR Council (GCPRC), South Florida’s largest independent association of public relations, communications and marketing professionals, today announced this year’s Bernays Awards winners. GCPRC has given out these annual awards since 2005 honoring excellence in local public relations campaigns, marketing programs, and media coverage.


The honors were presented yesterday via Zoom, with more than 60 local PR professionals participating online. The online awards ceremony was hosted by T.A. Walker, WPTV’s Taste & See Entertainment Reporter.


GCPRC’s prestigious Presidents Award, which goes to a person or organization for truly outstanding performance, was given to Sandy Collier of Hey Sandy! PR & Communications in Wellington for her amazing work on behalf of evacuees from The Islands Of The Bahamas following the deadly and destructive ravages of Hurricane Dorian, including organizing a special dinner and breakfast to help ease their agonizing stress.


Previous winners of this award include the South Florida Sun-Sentinel for its brilliant and sensitive coverage of the Parkland school shooting and the ongoing aftermath/2019; Elizabeth Kelley Grace and Julie Mullen of The Buzz Agency/2017; cultural reporters Rod Hagwood (Sun-Sentinel), Jan Sjostrom (Palm Beach Daily News), and Leslie Streeter (Palm Beach Post)/2016; publishers John & Margaret Mary Shuff (Boca Magazine)/2015; Florida Weekly and The Coastal Star/2014, etc.


The various Bernays Award categories and this year’s winners include:


PR Campaign/Large Company or Firm

The Moore Agency – Vision Zero/City of WPB


PR Campaign/Small Company or Firm 

Katnip Marketing – Susan Goldfein Awards


Crisis Communications 

Loggerhead Marinelife CenterProtecting LMC Against Hurricane Dorian


Nonprofit Project or Campaign

The Buzz Agency – Boca Helping Hands + The Old Truck


Social Media Campaign/Nonprofit

Florida Atlantic University – Tyler Cameron, Will You Accept This Rose: A Social Media Campaign Highlighting FAU’s Most Popular Bachelor


Social Media Campaign/Corporate

Mugsy PR – BD You for Body Details


Special Event

Food For The PoorAnnual Rafe Cochran Golf Classic


Marketing Material/Print

Clerk & Comptroller, Palm Beach County – Your Guide to County Finances, Fiscal Year 2018


Marketing Material/Digital

Clerk & Comptroller, Palm Beach County – ‘Don’t Click That’


PR Star Award

Which goes to a person or organization that made an extraordinary splash last year

Scott Benarde

For the reopening of the Norton Museum of Art following a $100-million renovation


Founders Award

Which goes to a person or organization that has made a lasting contribution to GCPRC

Debbie Abrams

President of the Gold Coast PR Council

Senior Vice President, The Buzz Agency


Judges Awards

Selected by the 2020 judging panel

BlueIvy Communications

Labor Finders International


At the start of this year’s Bernays Awards, GCPRC paid special tribute to two previous award winners who recently passed:

+ John Shuff of JES Media, publisher of Boca Magazine, who was remembered by Group Editor-in-Chief Marie Speed.

+ Jay Van Vechten, founder of The Boating and Beach Bash in Boca Raton, a four-time Bernays Award recipient, who was eulogized by his widow Lowell Van Vechten.


The next monthly Zoom meeting of the Gold Coast PR Council will be Tuesday, August 18, at 4 pm. It will  be a free webinar on The Power of Video with Digital Marketing: How to Effectively Promote Any Business Online, presented by Karen Lustgarten and Scott Eagle of Multi-Media Works.


For more information about the Gold Coast PR Council and its monthly meetings, please visit www.goldcoastprcouncil.com.


Attached Jpegs:

1.   Sandy Collier, GCPRC Presidents Award Winner 2020

2.   Scott Benarde, GCPRC’s PR Star Award Winner 2020

3.   Debbie Abrams, GCPRC’s Founders Award Winner 2020


Media Contact:

Gary Schweikhart

GCPRC Co-Founder & Secretary




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