The Big Apple Awards are the gold standard of excellence for 
PR practitioners in the New York area. 

Come network and celebrate with
the best of the best in public relations in NYC and discover the future of PR!
Register today for the 2015 Big Apple Awards Gala 
Thursday, May 28 - Mandarin Oriental, New York

PRSA-NY is excited to honor three distinguished
PR leaders at the Big Apple Awards on May 28.
We hope you join us in honoring:

Barri Friedman Rafferty
Senior Partner & CEO North America, Ketchum
will receive the John W. Hill Award. 

Michael P. Rinaldo
Executive Vice President & General Manager, dna Communications
will receive the Philip Dorf Award.  Read more... 

Lynn Appelbaum, APR, Fellow PRSA
Professor/Director for the Advertising/PR program at
The City College of New York (CCNY)
will receive the President’s Award. 

Congratulations & Thanks
to our 2015 Big Apple chapter award recipientsfinalists and sponsors!


Sponsorships - 2015 Sponsorship Packages are now available. Visit the Sponsorship page for more information.

Registration for the 2015 Big Apple Awards Gala - visit the gala registration page or contact the PRSA-NY office at 212-228-7228 or email or 



360PR:  ShopAdvisor Scales the App Store Heights

360PR:  VO5 National Anti-Frizz Month

Affect:  Standing Out in an Overcrowded Space: Story Hijacking and Trend Intervention

Alcoa Foundation:  Manufacture Your Future

Bankrate, Inc.:  Educating Consumers About Personal Finance

Burson-Marsteller & Ruder Finn:  Our Voice in Song

Cohn & Wolfe:  Reigniting America's "Do-It-Yourself" Spirit: The Valvoline Reinvention Project

Cohn & Wolfe:  The Future is Now: Launching a Game-Changing Helmet

CooperKatz & Company:  What’s Your Home Worth? Coldwell Banker Real Estate Goes Local with Home Listing Report

Coyne PR: Stepping Up and Stepping Out

Coyne PR:  Discover What You Love: The Future of Beauty with Mary Kay

Coyne PR:  From Easter Basket Essential to Christmas Stocking Surprise: the Evolving Story of PEEPS®

Coyne PR:  Goodyear and Ice Cube Spread the Word to Make it a ‘Good Day’

Coyne PR:  Humana Hits the Road to Assist Uninsured Mississippians

Coyne PR:  Humana Raises the Stakes for Corporate Philanthropy Program to Improve Community Health

Coyne PR:  In the Line of Fire: National Canine Research Council Helps Police Reduce Dog Shootings in Local Communities

Coyne PR:  Pennzoil® Breaks Barriers

Coyne PR:  The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation Sparks a Movement for Paralysis

Coyne PR:  VTech: A Year in the Blogosphere

dna Communications:  The Value of Medical Innovation: Changing the Conversation from Cost to Value

Emanate:  Philips SlimStyle LED Light Bulb Launch


FleishmanHillard:  Connecticut’s Fan-Favorite Town Program

GCI Health:  Desafiando La Diabetes: Logra Tus Metas

Girl Scouts of the USA:  Girl Scouts Adds a ‘Byte’ to Its Iconic Cookie Program

Global Strategy Group:  Our Food, Our Politics

Global Strategy Group:  Positioning Connecticut as a National Leader in Health Care Reform

Golin:  Good Humor Summer of Joy

Havas PR:  #GivingTuesday: The Day the World Gave Back

Havas PR:  A Global Collaboration Wins the Day for Climate Science

Kellen Communications:  Serving up Science: A Scientific Research-Based Public Affairs Program for the Juice Products Association

Ketchum:  MasterCard and Stand Up To Cancer #GetTogether for a Priceless Cause

Ketchum:  MasterCard Bites into Apple Pay, Gets to the Core of Safe & Secure Contactless Payments

M Booth:  Bejeweled: A Little Bling Gives Vaseline Beauty Cache

M Booth:  Getting America Ready for Re-engineered Meat

M Booth:  Tapping Bartenders’ Creativity for Sales and Charity

Makovsky:  First & Goal: Tackling America’s #1 Killer

Marina Maher Communications:  U by Kotex Taps into a Universal Female Truth, Connects with Young Women Everywhere and Saves the Undies

Matter, Inc.:  Johnson & Johnson Care Inspires Care

MSLGROUP:  "Be The Customer" Sparks PayPal Growth Surge

MSLGROUP:  Always #LikeAGirl: Turning an Insult into a Confidence Movement

MWW:  Saving the Daytime Emmy® Awards from Becoming a Daytime TV Rerun

Ogilvy Public Relations:  Reigniting Women's Rights Through Men

Ogilvy Public Relations:  Selling the Story of the “Land of Dreams”

Ogilvy Public Relations:  Successfully Executing the Largest Financial IPO Since the Financial Crisis

Ogilvy Public Relations:  Telling the Story of Citizens Financial Group’s Transformation From a Regional Bank to a National Player

PadillaCRT:  Be The Match Walk+Runs: Inspiring Local Communities to Step Up and Save Lives

PadillaCRT:  It’s On You: Inspiring the African-American Community to Step Up and Save Lives

Peppercomm:  Missing the Mark: Global Content Survey of Brand Marketers and their B2B Audiences

Reputation Architects Inc.:  ArchCare: Transforming a Healthcare Ministry

Reputation Architects Inc.:  Enhancing Lives, Transforming Care: ArchCare 2013 Report to Stakeholders

RF|Binder:  EdX: the Not-for-Profit Bringing World-Class Education to the Masses, for Free

Ruder Finn, Inc.:  Novartis Reinvigorates Corporate Reputation with Industry-Leading Portfolio Transformation

Ruder Finn, Inc.:  Partners in Parkinson's

Ruder Finn, Inc.:  The RETHINK D Excellence Awards: Fostering a Culture of Innovation and Collaboration across a Global Organization

Shared Voice Public Relations:  Teens 4 Pink

SHIFT Communications:  Scoring All-Star Investment Press for The Whistle Sports Network

Skyya Communications:  Polaris Slingshot: Launch of mind-blowing, 3-wheeled roadster marks the future of driving exhilaration

Spong:  From Meat Snack to Mainstream Brand

Spong:  H&R Block Dollars & Sense for Teens

Spong:  Jack Link’s National Jerky Day: A Monumental Achievement in Meat

Spong:  Overnight Coffee Challenge Heats Up Genuine Thermos Brand

Tartaglia Communications LLC:  SPARK: Branding a New Science Competition

The TASC Group:  The Principle 6 Campaign to Change the Way the International Olympic Committee Selects Future Sites and Protects LGBT Rights at the Winter Games in Sochi, Russia

The TASC Group:  Tricked: A Documentary on Sex Trafficking in the U.S. and a Campaign to Educate the American Public and Law Enforcement Officials

Waggener Edstrom:  Bing in the Classroom

Weill Cornell Medical College:  Salute to Scholarship – Showing true impact of financial aid on Weill Cornell Medical College students

PRSA-NY Honors Top Leaders - 2015 Chapter Individual Award Recipients

PRSA-NY is excited to honor three distinguished PR leaders at the Big Apple Awards on May 28. We hope you join us in honoring:

  •        Barri Friedman Rafferty, Senior Partner & CEO North America, Ketchum will receive the John W. Hill Award. The Hill award is presented to a member that exemplifies leadership, integrity, service and who promotes communication and understanding. In her current role, Barri Friedman Rafferty leads Ketchum’s nine offices in North America as well as Ketchum Digital and Ketchum Sports and Entertainment (KSE). Outside of Ketchum, Rafferty participates in a number of groups, such as the sustainability taskforce for the World Economic Forum and is a member of Arthur W. Page Society Page Up program. Barri also sits on the board of StepUp, an organization with the mission of empowering girls from under-resourced communities to become confident, college-bound, and career focused. She is also active in PRSA-NY and is a former chapter president. In 2012, she received the President’s Award for her many contributions. 

  •        Michael P. Rinaldo, Executive Vice President & General Manager, dna Communications will receive the Philip Dorf Award for his work guiding and inspiring the careers of young PR professionals and his selflessness as a mentor. Michael has led large agency teams where one-on-one mentoring and the performance and growth of individuals is critically important. Beyond in-office mentoring, Michael has been a guest lecturer at several local schools and universities including NYU, CUNY and CW Post and routinely conducts informational interviews for people starting out in the business or those looking to redirect their career paths. Rinaldo currently serves on the PRSA-NY Chapter Board as Chair of the Mentoring Committee and is a former member of the PRSA Foundation Board of Trustees. Michael has also been honored with PRSA-NY President’s Award for contributions to the PR industry and service to the chapter, where he once served as president.

  •        Lynn Appelbaum, APR, Fellow PRSA, Professor/Director for the Advertising/PR program at The City College of New York (CCNY) will receive the President’s Award for her unwavering service to PRSA-NY. Lynn organized CCNY’s first PRSSA chapter in 1996 and continues to serve as its faculty advisor. Appelbaum currently serves on the PRSA NY Board of Directors, where she chairs the committee for metro-area PRSSA chapters. She is a member of the PRSA Foundation Board of Directors, served on PRSA’s national board and was Diversity Chair of PRSA-NY, which was honored for its student diversity outreach program in 2007 by PRSA. In 1999, Lynn was awarded PRSA-NY’s Dorf Mentoring Award, one of the highest awards bestowed by the chapter.

Purchase tickets for the Big Apple Awards Gala to celebrate these leaders and the best PR campaigns. See you May 28 at the Mandarin Oriental New York! 



The New York Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America established the Big Apple Awards program in 1988 to encourage excellence in public relations. Today, a Big Apple Award is recognized as one of the highest honors in public relations. Over the years, more than 1,000 winning programs have solved problems, changed opinions and created business opportunities.

The 2015 Big Apple Awards competition is open to all public relations professionals in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut for programs created in 2014 and implemented anywhere in the world. Most or all of the strategic work on the programs should have been performed by professionals in the tri-state area. Professionals located outside the tri-state area are eligible to submit programs, if, and only if, their program was implemented primarily in the tri-state area. 


Entries will be judged on the basis of research, planning, execution and results. Bonus points will be awarded for entries that not only have impressive media results, but also clearly can point to direct business or other campaign outcomes.  A panel of judges, representing a broad range of disciplines and expertise, will be selected from the most senior-level and experienced representatives of the public relations industry. The judges may award multiple winners as they see fit. However, they will not designate a winner in a category they feel contains no entries of award-winning caliber.

Finalists in each category will be notified following the judging of the Big Apple entries. From these finalists, the Big Apple Award winners and runners-up (if selected) will be announced on May 28, 2015 at the Big Apple Awards presentation.


Big Apple Award winners in each campaign category will be considered for a special “Best of the Best Big Apple Award” presenting the best program in 2014, also announced at the May 28 awards presentation.


The Institute for Public Relations, an independent foundation dedicated to The Science Beneath the Art of Public Relations™, will present a “Best Use of Research, Measurement and Evaluation Award.”  Big Apple Award winners in each campaign category will be eligible for this additional award.


Perhaps your program helped secure a new customer or business lead, increased sales or met another broad goal? Bonus points will be awarded for entries that not only have impressive media results, but also clearly can point to direct business or other campaign outcomes.    


All entrants can now choose to enter a campaign with a budget of $100,000 or less in any one of the Campaign Divisions where subcategories are listed.   These entries will also be judged on the additional criteria of creative use of a limited budget. As with the other categories, judges will not be obligated to award a Big Apple in the “budget of $100,000 or less” subcategory where they do not deem the entry/entries deserving of the award. 



John W. Hill Award - To be considered for this award you must meet the following criteria:          

  • Leadership in the development of the practice of public relations
  • Demonstration of the highest standards of integrity
  • Fostering and promoting understanding among people
  • Service to the public beyond the scope of the nominee's regular public relations duties
  • Promoting communications and understanding through education and the exchange of people and ideas

Nominees may not be the current PRSA-NY president or a recipient within the past 10 years of the PRSA Gold Anvil or similar award.

Philip Dorf Award - To be considered for this award, the candidate must meet the following criteria:

  • Leadership in guiding and inspiring the careers of entry level and other young PR professionals.
  • Demonstration of the highest standards of the profession in a selfless role as a mentor.
  • Service to young professionals beyond the scope of the nominee's professional duties.

Nominees may not be the current PRSA-NY president or a recipient within the past 10 years of the PRSA Gold Anvil or similar award.

PRSA-NY President’s Award - Established in 2003, this award honors the contributions of public relations practitioners to PRSA-NY itself. To be considered, each year’s candidate must meet the following criteria:

  • Past or current membership in PRSA-NY
  • Adherence to the highest standards of ethical conduct
  • Service to PRSA generally and the New York Chapter in particular.
  • Nominated by a PRSA member

The President's Award is selected by the chapter president.

For questions on the chapter awards for individuals, please contact the PRSA-NY chapter office at


Hill Award

2014     Bill Doescher
2013     Paul J. Gennaro
2012     Margi Booth
2011     E. Ronald Culp
2010     James E. Lukaszewski
2009     Valerie Di Maria
2008     James E. Murphy
2007     Kenneth D. Makovsky
2006     David Finn
2005     Howard J. Rubenstein
2004     Richard Edelman
2003     Thomas Hoog
2002     Art Stevens
2001     Joan Capelin
2000     Philip G. Ryan
1999     Helen I. Ostrowski
1998     Jeannette Paladino
1997     David Drobis
1996     P. Michael McDermott
1995     David M. Bicofsky
1994     Denny Griswold
1993     Harold Burson
1992     Jerry Danzig
1991     John Sattler
1990     Phyllis H. Berlowe
1989     Joel Strasser    
1988     Charlotte Klein
1987     Bert Hochman
1986     Barbara W. Hunter
1985     Sid Gross
1984     Richard Weiner
1983     Lloyd N. Newman
1982     John H. Paluszek
1981     Sondra K. Gorney
1980     Chester Burger
1979     Lee Bieringer    
1978     Elaine Pitts
1977     George Hammond

Dorf Award

2014     Harry R. Zlokower
2013     David M. Grant   
2012     Maria P. Russell
2011     Leslie E. Gottlieb
2010     Deborah Radman
2009     William F. Doescher
2008     Roberta Elins
2007     Emmanuel Tchividjian
2006     John L. Paluszek
2005     Bob Stone
2004     Alex Stanton
2003     Helio Fred Garcia
2002     Don Bates
2001     Michael Greece
2000     Edward J. Menninger
1999     Lynn Appelbaum
1998     Robert M. Weintraub
1997     Art Stevens
1996     Anthony J. Russo
1995     Terrie Williams

President’s Award

2014     Deborah Radman
2013     Emmanuel Tchividjian
2012     Barri Rafferty
2011     Karen J. Arthur
2010     Grace T. Leong
2009     Sandra Fathi
2008     Michael P. Rinaldo
2007     Jeanne M. Salvatore
2006     Linda Krebs
2005     Liz Beck
2004     Christopher Guidette
2003     Don Bates