THE ESOP ASSOCIATION

The AACE Awards

Annual Awards for Communications Excellence (AACE)

The Annual Awards for Communications Excellence (AACE) competition identifies companies that excel at communicating with employee owners and the larger community about ESOPs. Categories include Video, Printed Materials, Intranet, Employee Ownership Marketing, One Special Event, Series of Special Events, and Total Communications. 

A panel of five judges representing The ESOP Association's membership evaluates all AACE entries. Winners are announced at an awards banquet in May at The ESOP Association's National Conference in Washington, DC.

Now Accepting Submissions for AACE 2020  

Don't miss your chance to enter The ESOP Association's most prestigious competition. Whether you win an award or not, the entry process alone is incredibly valuable. 

Members tell us that gathering materials and reviewing their communication efforts to enter the Annual Award for Communication Excellence (AACE) is helps them assess and improve their communications efforts. 

Get started on your submission today! To enter the AACE and EOM Poster competitions: 

Be sure to read the 2020 AACE and EOM Poster Entry Rules because there are three changes to the entry process that you will want to be aware of.

To generate an entry for the Employee Ownership Month (EOM) Poster competition, some members create an internal contest that is both fun and educational for the entire organization.  

AACE Competition Questions?  

Contact Patrick Mirza, (202) 293-2971, pmirza@esopassociation.org  

Want to know what it takes to win one of the coveted AACE prizes? See below for a list of past winners and runners up, along with comments from the judges about these entries. This can be a tremendous help in figuring out how to win your own award.

 

Other AACE Resources

Jeff Mounts, 2019 Employee Owner of the Year

Want to know what it takes to win one of the coveted AACE prizes? See below for a list of past winners and runners up, along with comments from the judges about these entries. This can be a tremendous help in figuring out how to win your own award.

Less Than 250 Employee Owners

2018 Winner, Wiley Wilson

Judges' Comments: Concise video with excellent production values. Strong message about corporate culture is effectively conveyed by showing the employee annual retreat in action. Employees are featured prominently and clearly identified. The video taps a good mix of people and shows the company’s involvement with The ESOP Association at the chapter and national level. 

2018 Runners Up, Padilla

Judges' Comments: Effective use of humor, music, cinematography, graphics, and a mix of color and black and white footage all combine to provide a very good explanation of this company’s culture.

250 or More Employee Owners

2018 Winner, ITA

Judges' Comments: This video does a great job of explaining the ESOP and expressing the company culture. Provides a very positive message about employee ownership, collaboration, and teamwork. A good mix of employees is individually identified. Emotional impact is achieved through good production values, lighting, and cinematography. 

2018 Runner Up, The Greenery

Judges' Comments: This video has very good energy—ably matched with upbeat music—and communicates in English and Spanish. Messages include how long the company has been in business, how long it has been 100 percent employee owned, and how it has grown—even during the recession. The founders and many employees are featured; including multiple locations shows an inclusive culture. 

What is the EOM (Employee Ownership Month) Poster Competition?

Every October, The ESOP Association and its member companies celebrate Employee Ownership Month (EOM). This is a terrific celebration of the spirit of employee ownership and an invaluable opportunity to educate employee owners, elected officials, the media, and the public at large about the benefits of ESOPs. 

A big part of Employee Ownership Month is the annual poster competition, which highlights the poster that best embodies and exemplifies employee ownership and ESOP culture.  

The five-person panel of ESOP Association members that judges the AACE competition also selects a winner for the EOM poster competition. The winner is announced in May at the National Conference in Washington, D.C. and posters are available for purchase before EOM.  

 

Entries are judged based on:  

•   How clearly, powerfully, and effectively they convey employee ownership and the ESOP concept.  

•   How involved employee owners were in creating and executing the poster design.  

•   The technical quality of the communication.  

•   Creativity and originality.