ABHMS garners 9 awards from Religion Communicators Council

VALLEY FORGE, PA (ABNS 4/6/18)—At a dinner last night during its 2018 conference in Atlanta, the Religion Communicators Council (RCC) presented American Baptist Home Mission Societies (ABHMS) with nine awards for projects completed in 2017.

“Best of Class” was awarded for the webcast series “6,100 miles, Seven Days: On the Road with ABHMS Disaster Response,” for which Susan Gottshall, associate executive director of Communications, documented the sights and sounds encountered as ABHMS Disaster-response Ministries assessed the damage and connected with survivors and first responders on the ground in hurricanes Harvey-, Irma- and Maria-ravaged areas from Louisiana and Texas to Florida and Puerto Rico.

For “Best of Class” awards, one piece of work from each category is judged to be the best of all submissions in that category. In addition to Gottshall, the award recognized each member of the department for their contribution to the project: Joshua Kagi, social media specialist; Danny Ellison, creative designer; Nadine Hasenecz, senior writer/editor; and Sue Peterman, administrative assistant.

In the “E-magazine” category, Curtis Ramsey-Lucas, editor of The Christian Citizen, received an “Award of Merit” for The Christian Citizen online. In the “E-newsletter” category, Gottshall, Ellison, Hasenecz and Kagi garnered an “Award of Excellence” for the “News and Notes” monthly electronic newsletter.

Graphic Design, Art and Photography
In the “Photography, Digital, Series” category, Gottshall received an “Award of Merit” for the series of photographs published with the hurricane damage-assessment travelogue.

Digital Media
In addition to winning “Best of Class,” the webcast series “6100 Miles, Seven Days: On the Road with ABHMS Disaster Response” received an “Award of Excellence” that recognized Gottshall, Kagi, Ellison, Hasenecz and Peterman.

Gottshall and Kagi won an “Award of Excellence” for a single webcast interview with Jack Cobb, national relief coordinator for American Baptist Men, who was leading a group of volunteers in post-Hurricane Harvey cleanup in Lake Charles, La. The pair also received an “Award of Merit” for a single webcast interview in which the Rev. Laura Ayala, pastor of First Baptist Church of Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico, spoke of the devastation wrought by Hurricane Maria.

In the “Individual Blog Entry” category, Ramsey-Lucas received an “Award of Excellence” for “Sauntering in Jordan: Finding Peace and Purpose from Amman to Aqaba,” while Gottshall garnered an “Award of Merit” for “Pieces of Debris, Pieces of Lives,” also about hurricane devastation.

With more than 400 members in professional print and electronic communications, advertising and public relations across the United States, RCC has been promoting faith perspectives in public discourse since 1929.

 American Baptist Home Mission Societies partners with American Baptists to promote Christian faith, cultivate Christ-centered leaders and disciples, and bring healing and transformation to communities across the United States and Puerto Rico.

American Baptist Churches USA is one of the most diverse Christian denominations today, with approximately 5,000 congregations comprised of 1.3 million members, across the United States and Puerto Rico, all engaged in God’s mission around the world.