Events are an important way to engage the community and elevate/recognize the value internal stakeholders bring to a brand. Each event below includes strong support from internal and external teams.

The Braille Challenge

This is a signature international annual event for Braille Institute. It is a two stage competition that emphasizes the study of braille. Any school-age child who is legally blind and reads braille can participate in regional events held around the United States and Canada. The top participants are invited to The Braille Challenge Finals hosted by Braille Institute in Los Angeles.

My team was responsible for:

While The Braille Challenge was in its 17 year, this year, the event moved from Braille Institute headquarters to the campus of the University of Southern California. Inasmuch, we were challenged to shift the messaging from braille literacy to the importance of braille and expectations after high school. A main goal was to demystify college education for children who are blind or visually impaired and their parents.

The Braille Institute Laguna Hills Neighborhood Center

Laguna Hills Center

The introduction of the Braille Institute Laguna Hills Neighborhood Center was a marked departure from traditional service delivery models for the organization. Instead of a large center, it was a small storefront location. Our challenge was to name the center, and establish internal/external marketing efforts that would differentiate it as something new and unique. In doing that, we renamed our Orange County Center to Anaheim Center, created material to support the Neighborhood Center as a subset of our Orange County Services and borrowed the concept of Learning Studios for the smaller, more intimate feel of the new location. We opened it with a grand opening event attended by the Mayor, key City Council and community leaders.  Traffic the first year ramped up at a pace that exceeded our other centers and now, we have moved into a maintenance mode to ensure traffic continues for the Laguna Hills team.

  The Rose Parade

I had an opportunity to work with a small city-wide committee to development the 124th City of Glendale Rose Float. The float was awarded the “Living the Good Life” prize and integrated health, entertainment, transportation, the arts and historic areas of Glendale, CA. Prior to the event, we hosted philanthropic and community events to celebrate everyone involved in the float creation.

Downtown Dash

runners at the downtown dash

This 5K event came out of a community collaboration between the Glendale Downtown Merchants Association and Glendale Adventist Medical Center. The Merchants Association was looking to bring more visitors to its downtown corridor and Glendale Adventist Medical Center was focused on increasing awareness of its newly accredited stroke center. The Glendale Downtown Dash was borne from many conversations between the two groups – and other Glendale city departments including the City Council. The 5K wound its way up and down Brand Blvd. (and a few other streets). All proceeds from the event went to support the Glendale Adventist Medical Center Stroke Center. Hospital staff created support committees and staff were invited to many, many community organizations to talk about the event and stroke awareness. We could not have done this event without getting the support of the Glendale Police Department and the Glendale City Council. We even got involvement from other competing hospitals!  From when it first started with only approximately 500 people, the event grew to nearly 1,500 people. Here is a fun, media account of the event.

Army of Pink logo

This was an award winning campaign to raise awareness of breast cancer and associated services in the community. Rather than traditional messaging avenues, we selected 8-10 key male public figures in Glendale, CA. Involvement was secured from the City Police Chief and Fire Chief, Mayor, local TV figures and many others. After securing their involvement, staff from around the hospital were carefully selected to act as campaign managers for each ‘candidate’. Each campaign manager, helped their candidate run the best awareness campaign possible. Campaign support was measured through an online voting process that ran through the month of October. Each candidate got key messages, a campaign video, and campaign giveaways. They were challenged to talk about their involvement in their meetings and public appearances. The annual event was a resounding success every year with fun media coverage and general conversations in the community. One thing we didn’t expect was that it turned into a fundraising tool as our candidates often took it upon themselves to include fundraising for the cancer program as well as an awareness effort (ie: the police department sold police badge lapel pins which ended up encouraging the fire department to follow suit and we coordinated a Rose Float activity with our 2012 Army of Pink candidates).