By Gail Dolan
The Southwest Florida Chapter of the Florida Public Relations Association (FPRA) recognized the best public relations, communications, and marketing efforts in Southwest Florida during the past year at the 2012 Local Image Awards ceremony held during its April 17 meeting at Art of the Olympians in Fort Myers.
The Local Image Awards competition is conducted annually to recognize outstanding public relations programs in Southwest Florida and to encourage and promote the development of public relations professionalism in our area. Winners demonstrate the very best examples of innovation, planning, and design.
Three Grand All Image Awards, FPRA’s highest honor, were presented to: Two to Lee County Port Authority for its Base Ops dedication ceremony event and for its Southwest Florida International Airport “Fly Me to the Moon” art exhibit brochure, both of which also won Image Awards; PACE Center for Girls of Lee County, Melissa Simontis, APR, and Irberseder Production for the “Believe in Me” video, which also received an Image Award and a Judges Award.
Other awards were presented, as follows:
Image Awards: Priority Marketing for the Safe Kids Lee/Collier Counties, Lee County Injury Prevention Coalition for public service; Debra Webb, APR, HOPE Clubhouse of Lee County and Susan Bennett, APR, CPRC, Susan Bennett Marketing & Media, L.C. for HOPE Clubhouse: Birth of a Non-Profit; Phyllis K. Ershowsky, APR, CPRC, Alison Drake, and Brittany Maroney for Delivering a Piece of the Pie: Grimaldi’s Pizzeria; Priority Marketing and VIP Realty for news release.
Awards of Distinction: Honorable James H. Seals of the 20th Judicial Circuit in and for Lee County, PACE Center for Girls of Lee County, and Melissa Simontis, APR for the written speech entitled, “Words That Begin with R-E”; Promotional Incentives, Inc. for their PI Gumby specialty item; Samantha Scott, APR and Alex Fernandez for Adventure Naples group online engagement; Mike Haber and Rich Cerrina for the redesign of website; Goodwill Industries of Southwest Florida, Department of Communication & Development, for the Goodwill Industries of Southwest Florida website.
Judge’s Award to Craig Bamberg for Guadalupe Center “239MEN” 30-sec video spot
Image Award and Judges Award to The Lee County Port Authority Public Affairs Team for e-Link, Lee County Port Authority’s business newsletter.
Award of Distinction and Judges Award: The LCEC Public Relations Team for the North Fort Myers Median Project for community relations; PACE Center for Girls of Lee County, Christin Collins, and Melissa Simontis, APR for the “Love That Dress!” special event; PACE Center for Girls of Lee County, Palm Printing, and Red Door Studio for the “Dream BIG” event program.

Established in 1938, FPRA is the oldest public relations organization in the country. FPRA is dedicated to developing public relations practitioners, who, through ethical and standardized practices, enhance the public relations profession in Lee, Collier, Charlotte, Hendry, and Glades counties. For additional information, please visit the Chapter website at