News Articles

Letter from AAF President

April 2020,

Dear AAF Cincinnati Members,

By now you've probably heard the phrase "in these challenging times" about a million times, and have mastered the Zoom/Skype/RingCentral/GoToMeeting/WebEx/Google Hangout way of doing business. Therefore, we thought we'd let you know that your Ad Club is thinking about you and hoping that you are staying safe and finding creative ways to deal with the stay-at-home directive.

We have obviously put our spring events on hold, but we are still planning events to inspire us whenever we get back to what our new normal may be.

Until then, we wanted to give you some news.

Silver Medal

Every year, we honor one of our members with the lifetime achievement Silver Medal Award. We are thrilled to announce that Steve Kissing has been chosen for this recognition this year. 

Steve Kissing is a fixture in Cincinnati’s marketing community where he has made significant contributions to communications in our region. Over his 30-year career spanning advertising and public relations, Steve may be the only person in the country who has been a PR director and an advertising creative director at major agencies.

Steve is currently a partner and Chief Creative Officer at Wordsworth, a firm he helped start in 1989 and to which he returned in 2013. At Wordsworth, Steve drives the agency’s key strength: delivering clever strategies that are a combination of smart and creative ideas and effective tactics for agency clients. Steve has won more than 100 advertising awards, including his fourth national ADDY in 2019.

 Throughout his career, Steve has been a cheerleader for local talent and a positive, encouraging force in the careers of many who have worked with him. Countless individuals have been influenced by Steve’s strength-based leadership style. There is a long line of talented creatives he has mentored, taught and developed—the same people who have furthered Cincinnati’s reputation as a thriving agency center with a strong creative class.

We look forward to hosting this annual celebratory event as soon as possible after we are given the green like to gather in numbers. Invitations will be forthcoming when we finalize date/time/place, at this point hoping for an early summer window! 

District 5 ADDY Awards

We are also happy to report that Cincinnati rocked the District ADDYs, winning more awards than any other club in our district. With 17 total awards, we beat out Cleveland, Columbus, Louisville, Lexington, Akron, Toledo, and West Virginia. Our five Gold awards went to Grey Midwest, Lightborne, and Douglas Gautraud. Our twelve Silver awards winners were from Curiosity, Leap Group, Fairview Agency, Douglas Gautraud and Grey Midwest. In addition, Douglas Gautraud received a Judge's Choice award for his "What's an Armitron?" video.  

In addition, we had two Student District ADDY winners. Katy Koetting (University of Cincinnati) won a Silver Student ADDY for her The Palace project, as well a Judge's Choice Award.  Julie Kennedy (Cincinnati State) won a Silver Student ADDY for her California Wildlife poster. 

For more details, go here:

New Board Members

We are also thrilled to announce that several people have recently joined us as Board Members. Please join me in welcoming Jim Browning, Marsh Ideas; Katy Martinez, Grey Midwest; Jeff Eberlein, Brand It For Good; and Jackie Rau, Game Day Communications. 

We know this is a difficult time for everyone, and the marketing, advertising and media industries are usually particularly impacted heavily during economic downturns. Please be supportive of each other during this time. The AdClub of Cincinnati has seen its share of challenging economic times from the very beginning of the club which was started just 14 years before (1904) the huge Spanish Flu epidemic (1918) in the United States. Through World Wars, The Great Depression, and numerous Bull and Bear markets, our industry has had the resilience and fortitude to come out of each of these periods stronger and bolder than ever. We look forward to when we can all get together again to celebrate each other and our amazing field of ingenuity, creativity, and unbound energy that we have here in Cincinnati.

Charlie Martin
AAF Cincinnati