ADOT communication campaigns win six national awards

‘Pull Aside-Stay Alive’ and US 89 landslide efforts honored

PHOENIX – The Arizona Department of Transportation has been recognized for its communications efforts with six national awards, winning first-place honors in every skills contest the agency entered.

The awards included ADOT’s “Pull Aside-Stay Alive” public education campaign that was featured in more than 600 media clips worldwide, and the agency’s crisis communications work in response to the US 89 landslide that closed a highway in northern Arizona in February.

The honors came from the annual meeting of the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials’ Subcommittee on Transportation Communications, where transportation communication professionals exchange ideas in the transportation industry’s premier competition.

The awards were announced Thursday from Grand Rapids, Mich.

“Communicating with the public is vital to our mission at ADOT,” said ADOT Director John Halikowski. “We constantly work to communicate transportation issues in an easy-to-understand and timely fashion because of their importance to Arizona’s economy and quality of life. And our safety campaigns like the Haboob Haiku contest demonstrate innovative approaches to engaging the public.”

ADOT received the following awards:

  • Excel Award (without a consultant) for the Pull Aside-Stay Alive public education program. This represents the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials’ highest award for public relations programs and campaigns. The award recognizes the specific techniques that made a pivotal contribution to the overall success of a broad-based communication endeavor using two or more public relations tools.
  • Best Television Commercial or Public Service Announcement for the Pull Aside-Stay Alive 30-second video. In only 30 seconds, this impactful video shows viewers the very real danger of driving in a dust storm.
  • Issues/Crisis Management Communication for the communications program in response to the US 89 landslide. This award recognizes a program or actions undertaken to deal specifically with a public relations crisis or other event that has an extraordinary impact on the organization.
  • Best Micro-Blog for the ADOT Twitter account. This award recognizes the use of a social media platform to inform and engage the public.
  • Best Use of Social Media in a Campaign for the Pull Aside-Stay Alive Haboob Haiku Challenge. This award recognizes the use of social media as part of a communications campaign. The initial five-day launch of the campaign was featured in more than 600 news stories worldwide, including CNN, the Weather Channel, The New York Times and the BBC.
  • Best Display for the 20 Years of Partnering trade show display used at the American Council of Engineering Companies of Arizona Roads and Streets Conference and other industry events. This award recognizes the effectiveness and innovation for a large scale presentation or trade show booth.