The Stevie Awards Blog

Education Program Helps Struggling Students Turn the Page

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Tue, Jun 27, 2017 @ 12:41 PM

Thanks to growing charter school and homeschooling movements in the U.S., parents have more options than ever when it comes to their children’s education. Selecting the right school for one’s child ‒ and helping them succeed in that environment ‒ has become more of a process than it was in the past.

Stevie Award-winning Founder / Director of New Heights Educational Group, Pamela Clark, experienced this first-hand when she was deciding where to enroll her young children. Clark home-schooled her children before finding the right charter school for them.

NHEG-Logo-with-Banner.jpg

At the local charter school, Clark took on leadership and mentoring roles. Despite her affinity for these independently-controlled schools, she noticed that certain students were falling behind. Those with learning and emotional difficulties, like autism and ADHD, had a particularly tough time getting through the curriculum.

What those students needed, she thought, was a place they could go for additional support. And so, in 2006, New Heights Educational Group was born.

Filling in the Educational Gaps

The organization became a single destination where families could get help deciding where to educate their children, improve their literacy skills and find a library of reading materials for dealing with challenges.

At its core, New Heights Educational Group is a one-on-one tutoring program that focuses in on areas where the student needs extra attention. Teachers and students are required to meet three hours a week over a three-day period.

“We found that fill-in-the-gap type tutoring is necessary in order to reach students that have been left behind in traditional settings,” Clark says.

This focused approach has yielded dramatic results, she notes. Several students who were on the verge of dropping out of high school before they received tutoring from NHEG have now graduated. One student who suffered from seizures at a young age was able to jump three grade levels in science and four grade levels in math in a little over a year.

Parents with children facing learning disabilities found an environment where they could explore new strategies and share their experiences with others.

“In addition to successful, child-focused learning techniques, families are able to cope with their children’s struggles better because of increased social support,” she says.

If anyone could empathize with someone struggling because of a lack of outside help, it was Clark. Neither her father nor her two brothers ever graduated from high school and her mom wasn’t always there to help with her studies. She had also faced numerous health ailments throughout her life, in large part from  being malnourished as a child.

Thanks to New Heights, she’s making sure other students don’t have to deal with those same hardships. The organization recently won the Silver Stevie in The American Business Awards for Organization of the Year in the Small Nonprofit or Government category, which was awarded during a June 20 gala at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in New York.

“This is such an honor,” Clark said afterward. “Every day our team of 81 volunteers work to promote our work in bettering education for all families, regardless of school choice, background or beliefs.”

Continuing to Grow

Eleven years after starting the venture, Clark continues to grow New Heights. It currently draws students from several states, thanks in part to its flourishing online solutions.

With help from Kathryn Stout, author of Natural Speller, the organization has created a free online version of the book for students learning to read and spell. Clark and her team also developed a free financial literacy course to help youths make wiser decisions with their money.

The journey into the digital realm has proven to be a fruitful one. New Heights garnered a second Silver Stevie this year in the New Product or Service of the Year category for its PK-12 Personalized Learning Solution.

In addition to helping students advance in school, Clark has also positioned the organization as a leading voice in educational strategies. On top of the monthly educational magazine it recently launched, New Heights started an Internet radio program that now boasts more than 24,000 listeners a year.

Clark and company published a book entitled One Nonprofit’s Journey to Success in 2015 and released a second, Unraveling Reading, late last year.

Even as she faces ongoing health issues, Clark continues to serve as the engine for the program. She oversees the dozens of volunteers who provide tutoring through New Heights, offers training to teachers and continually researches new strategies for helping students reach their potential.

“Educational changes are slow moving and very little improvements are ever made,” says Clark. “So the work that nonprofits do are very important and normally don't receive the attention they deserve.”

Tags: new product awards, new product of the year, best new product or service, education awards

Women's Awards Opportunities for Entrepreneurs, Executives, and Innovators

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Thu, Jun 15, 2017 @ 10:27 AM

The 14th annual Stevie® Awards for Women in Business, the world’s top honors for women entrepreneurs, executives, employees, and the organizations they run, is now accepting entries. All organizations and individuals worldwide are eligible to submit nominations.

The early-bird entry deadline, with discounted entry fees, is July 19. The final deadline is August 23, but late entries will be accepted through September 20 with payment of a late fee.

REVIEW THE ENTRY KIT HERE

Women in Business 2016 2.jpgLearn about what’s new and different in the 2017 edition of the awards.

The Stevie Awards for Women in Business offers categories for every aspect of the women-run workplace.

Today we will feature the Individual Awards categories

These categories will recognize the achievements since July 1, 2016 of individual female entrepreneurs, executives and employees.

Entries to these categories require the following:
1. An essay of up to 525 words describing the nominated individual's achievements in the category since July 1, 2016
2. A biography of up to 125 words of the nominee
3. Optional (but highly recommended), a collection of supporting files and web addresses that you may upload to our server to support your entry and provide more background information to the judges.

The entrepreneur categories are for women who founded their organizations. The executive categories are for women who run all or some part organizations founded by others. Employee totals are for the entire organization.

1. Female Entrepreneur of the Year – Business Products –10 or Less Employees
2. Female Entrepreneur of the Year – Business Products –11 to 2,500 Employees
3. Female Entrepreneur of the Year – Business Products –More Than 2,500 Employees
4. Female Entrepreneur of the Year – Business Services –10 or Less Employees
5. Female Entrepreneur of the Year – Business Services –11 to 2,500 Employees
6. Female Entrepreneur of the Year – Business Services –More Than 2,500 Employees
7. Female Entrepreneur of the Year – Consumer Products –10 or Less Employees
8. Female Entrepreneur of the Year – Consumer Products –11 to 2,500 Employees
9. Female Entrepreneur of the Year– Consumer Products –More Than 2,500 Employees
10. Female Entrepreneur of the Year – Consumer Services –10 or Less Employees
11. Female Entrepreneur of the Year – Consumer Services –11 to 2,500 Employees
12. Female Entrepreneur of the Year – Consumer Services –More Than 2,500 Employees
13. Female Solo Entrepreneur of the Year: new category for 2017
This category will recognize the achievements of women business owners who work alone.
14. Female Innovator of the Year – Government or Non-Profit –10 or Less Employees (this category has no entry fee)
15. Female Innovator of the Year – Government or Non-Profit –11 to 2,500 Employees (this category has no entry fee)
16. Female Innovator of the Year – Government or Non-Profit –More Than 2,500 Employees (this category has no entry fee)
17. Female Executive of the Year – Business Products –10 or Less Employees
18. Female Executive of the Year – Business Products –11 to 2,500 Employees
19. Female Executive of the Year – Business Products –More Than 2,500 Employees
20. Female Executive of the Year – Business Services –10 or Less Employees
21. Female Executive of the Year – Business Services –11 to 2,500 Employees
22. Female Executive of the Year – Business Services –More Than 2,500 Employees
23. Female Executive of the Year – Consumer Products –10 or Less Employees
24 .Female Executive of the Year – Consumer Products –11 to 2,500 Employees
25. Female Executive of the Year– Consumer Products –More Than 2,500 Employees
26. Female Executive of the Year – Consumer Services –10 or Less Employees
27. Female Executive of the Year – Consumer Services –11 to 2,500 Employees
28. Female Executive of the Year – Consumer Services –More Than 2,500 Employees
29. Female Executive of the Year – Government or Non-Profit –10 or Less Employees (this category has no entry fee)

30. Female Executive of the Year – Government or Non-Profit –11 to 2,500 Employees (this category has no entry fee)
31. Female Executive of the Year – Government or Non-Profit –More Than 2,500 Employees
(this category has no entry fee)

32. Female Entrepreneur of the Year in Asia, Australia or New Zealand
33. Female Executive of the Year in Asia, Australia or New Zealand
34. Female Entrepreneur of the Year in Canada
35. Female Executive of the Year in Canada
36. Female Entrepreneur of the Year in Europe, the Middle East & Africa
37. Female Executive of the Year in Europe, the Middle East & Africa
38. Female Entrepreneur or Executive of the Year in Mexico, Central & South America

39. Most Innovative Woman of the Year: new categories for 2017.  These categories will recognize individual women for the innovations they initiated, developed, or launched since the beginning of July 2016.  Choose the category that corresponds to your nominee's industry, not her job function.
       a. Advertising, Marketing & Public Relations
       b. Business Services
       c. Franchising
       d. Industry
       e. Government or Non-Profit
       f. Manufacturing
       g. Technology


40. Young Female Entrepreneur of the Year: This category will recognize the achievements of female entrepreneurs under the age of 30.

41. Maverick of the Year: This category will recognize the achievements of female individuals who have affected positive change on their companies and/or industries. 

42. Lifetime Achievement – Business
43. Lifetime Achievement – Government or Non-Profit

These categories will recognize individual executives and entrepreneurs who have achieved accomplishments of significance over their entire careers. There is no eligibility period requirement for these categories.

44. Mentor or Coach of the Year – Business
45. Mentor or Coach of the Year – Government or Non-Profit

These categories will recognize the achievements of women who provided support and guidance to other women in the workplace.

46. Women Helping Women – Business
47. Women Helping Women – Government or Non-Profit

These categories will recognize the achievements of women who provided support and assistance to women in their communities.

48. Female Employee of the Year: This category will recognize the achievements of non-executive female employees. There is no entry fee for this category.
       a. Business
       b. Government or Non-Profit

49. Woman of the Year: These categories will recognize individual women, regardless of their titles, positions, or entrepreneurial or executive status, for their achievements since July 1, 2016, in the following industry sectors.  Choose the category that corresponds to your nominee's industry, not her job function.
       a. Advertising, Marketing & Public Relations
       b. Business Services
       c. Franchising
       d. Industry
       e. Government or Non-Profit
       f. Manufacturing
       g. Technology

Tags: women awards, Female Entrepreneur of the Year, Awards for Women in Business, executive awards

International Business Awards Extends Final Deadline through July 12

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Thu, Jun 15, 2017 @ 10:01 AM

The Stevie® Awards, organizer of The International Business Awards, announced today that the final entry deadline for the 14th annual IBAs has been extended to Wednesday, July 12. Recognized as the world’s premier business awards program, The IBAs attract nominations from organizations in more than 50 nations and territories each year.

 IBA group photo 2016-1.jpg“We’ve received so many requests for individual deadline extensions that we’ve decided to extend the deadline for everyone,” said Stevie Awards president Michael Gallagher. The original final deadline was June 14. Gallagher emphasizes that no additional late fees will be charged for entries submitted through July 12, and late entries will not be penalized in any way in the judging process. All organizations now have an additional four weeks to prepare and submit their entries.

Review the entry kit here.

All individuals and organizations worldwide -- public and private, for-profit and non-profit, large and small -- may submit nominations to The International Business Awards. The 2017 awards will honor achievements since the beginning of 2016.  Entry details are available at http://www.StevieAwards.com/IBA.

The International Business Awards recognize achievement in every facet of the workplace. Categories include:

  • Management Awards
  • Company of the Year Awards
  • Customer Service Awards
  • Human Resources Awards
  • Information Technology Awards
  • Marketing Awards
    •New Product Awards
  • Public Relations Awards
  • Website Awards, Smartphone and Tablet Apps, and other Media Awards

A variety of new categories were introduced for the 2017 competition including Mobile Site & App Awards in recognition of the many organizations that deploy specially-designed mobile websites in lieu of apps. New website categories include Best User Experience and Best User Interface. Executive of the Year has been expanded to include Apparel, Beauty & Fashion and Consumer Services.

Stevie Award winners will be selected during the judging process by more than 150 professionals worldwide. Winners will be announced on August 10, and the awards will be presented at a gala awards ceremony at the W Hotel in Barcelona, Spain on October 21. 

Tags: hr awards, marketing awards, it awards, International Awards

Innovation and Safety Take Flight at Hilton Software

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Wed, Jun 14, 2017 @ 01:55 PM

Over a decade ago and before the explosion of mobile devices, Hilton Goldstein, an air flight enthusiast, combined his passion of flying with his systems architecture talents to build a software company focused on innovation and safety. He developed an app that quickly grew in sales and revenue, and Hilton Software was born.

Today, Hilton Software is responsible for a $17.5 million government contract enabling military pilots worldwide to fly paperless, saving money, fuel, time, and most importantly, safer missions. This has lead Hilton Software to win the Gold Stevie Award in The 2017 American Business Awards for Executive of the Year in Aerospace and Defense.

From Ground to Air

Dr. Goldstein’s humanitarian efforts when he flew as an Angel Pilot was the inspiration for his first app. Although only motivated for his eagerness to serve the people he flew, his path lead him to unexpected destinations.

Hilton Goldstein.jpg“Hilton Software’s first patent enabled airport diagrams to be very accurately geo-referenced irrespective of their runway layout, making aviation safer and avoiding runway incursions.” According to Company Representative Cristina Alvarez, “Our second patent application allows pilots to simply draw their route on the map with a finger on the mobile device, possibly deviating around water, weather, or terrain.”

Today, Dr. Goldstein supports a number of worthwhile organizations, including Semper Fi Fund, Make a Wish America, and Children’s Charities.

Innovative Turns

Everything new is interesting and stimulating to Hilton Software. This dedication to continual innovation and commercialization has led to many patented and patent-pending technologies being introduced into their commercial products.

“We strive to be ahead of the curve or at the very least jump on top of emerging technologies and advances as they occur.”

Always Looking Beyond The Horizon

Team Hilton Software as a whole has shown a variety of interests. Seven of its members are currently advancing their higher education in different fields, while many are actively studying to pass the pilot ground test. The company’s Project Executive is currently training as a pilot and soon will be able to perform her first solo flight in her own Piper aircraft. Because everyone is highly motivated and very active, they all contribute to the company’s pervading and bustling winner’s culture.

“Hilton Software strives to reach a plateau where each person is vested, satisfied, motivated, and rewarded. It is no small feat to accept that a great workplace outweighs the expense and effort of maintaining a nurturing environment.” Alvarez concluded, “And that, in a nutshell, has greatly contributed to the company’s success.”

Tags: company awards, executive awards, aerospace awards

Winners Announced in 2017 People's Choice Stevie® Awards for Favorite New Products

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Wed, Jun 07, 2017 @ 10:32 AM

Awards to Be Presented at Gala Ceremony on June 20 in NYC

Cirkled in is the top winner in the 2017 People's Choice Stevie® Awards for Favorite New Products, a feature of The American Business Awards, the U.S.A.’s top business awards program, which are now in their 15th year.

The nationwide public vote was conducted last month, with the highest number of votes deciding the winners in a variety of product categories. More than 38,000 votes were cast.  To win, a category’s leading vote-getter had to have received at least 100 votes.

ABA peoples choice-2.jpgCirkled in, the Redmond, WA based company won the most People’s Choice Stevie Awards in two categories, Education - Classroom Mgmt and Education - Cloud-Based. 4LifeTransform Burn collected the most votes of any nominee.

The crystal People’s Choice Stevie Awards will be presented to winners at The American Business Awards’ banquet on Tuesday, June 20 at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in New York, NY. Tickets for the event are now on sale. There, the winners of peer-adjudicated Gold, Silver and Bronze Stevie Awards will also be presented their awards. More than 550 nominees and their guests are expected to attend.

All new products and services recognized as winners in the new product awards categories of this year’s American Business Awards were eligible to be included in voting for the people’s choice awards.

The winners of the 2017 People’s Choice Stevie Awards for Favorite New Products are:

B2B Products: Qstream's Coaching Hub
B2B Services: Arise Starmatic Scheduling System
Computer Hardware: IGEL UD Pocket
Consumer Electronics: Anki's Cozmo
Consumer Products & Services: 4LifeTransform Burn
Content - Content Marketing: Thomson Reuters' Checkpoint Marketing Social Media Solutions
Content - Other: AT&T Global Video Player
Content - Reference/Legal: Enquiron
Content - Sales/Marketing Intel: Ignite Sales Customer Engagement Management Platform
Education - Classroom Mgmt: Cirkled in School Offering
Education - Cloud-Based: Cirkled in School Offering
Education - Game/Virtual/Other Curric: Advantexe Learning Solutions Drivers of Business Performance Business Simulation
Education - Other: United Way Worldwide, NFL, Verizon and Everfi: Character Playbook
Health & Pharmaceuticals: Makers Nutrition's Private Label Product Line
Industrial: Magline LiftPlus
Software - Big Data: CareerBuilder's Customer Health Score Tool
Software - Cloud App/Service: FieldEdge
Software - Cloud Backup/Storage: Quest Rapid Recovery v6.1
Software - Cloud ERP: Intacct Contract and Revenue Management
Software - Cloud Infrastructure: Wind River Titanium Control
Software - Content Mgmt: Built.io Contentstack
Software - Data Visualization: Lucky Orange Dynamic Heatmaps
Software - Ecommerce: Ve Interactive VePanel
Software - Endpoint Security Mgmt: Dell Data Guardian
Software - FinTech: Ingo Instant Payments
Software - Human Capital Mgmt: RiseSmart Insight
Software - Identity/Access Security: IdentityForce's UltraSecure+Credit (Version 5.1)
Software - Infrastructure/Platform AAS: FIS Merchant Processing System
Software - Integration Solution: West Video Meeting Gateway
Software - Learning/Workforce Dev: Articulate 360
Software - Marketing/PR: Digital Air Strike's Mission Control
Software - Mobile On-Demand App: Equo by Runzheimer
Software - Network Security: Cisco Stealthwatch 6.8
Software - Other: MindTickle
Software - Payments: BluePay?s Premier Payment Gateway
Software - Relationship Mgmt: Vlocity Communications
Software - Supply Chain Mgmt: PRO Unlimited's Wand VMS
Telecommunications - Product: Nextivity's Cel-Fi GO

Tags: new product awards, best new product or service, best new products, new service awards

Taking Aim At Student Debt With a Social Conscience

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Thu, Jun 01, 2017 @ 02:42 AM

Making student finances more affordable and easier to manage in a sea of “loan sharks” is no easy task, but Stevie Award-winner CommonBond does it sucessfully. CommonBond is a reimagined student loan experience offering low interest rates with great customer service. Their customer satisfaction rates have been overtly positive, which is one of the many reasons why they received $1 billion in funding this year. Learn more about CommonBond to see how they won customer service awards in the 2017 Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service.

Crunching Numbers That Don’t Crunch Students

commonbond.jpgOver 40 million Americans are affected by student loan debt. On average, CommonBond members save $24,046 by refinancing their student loans. They also cover MBA student loans, and recently launched student loan benefits for today’s workforce – giving their partners the resources to stand apart from the competition, and giving their employees the tools to achieve financial wellness.

Senior Communications Manager Bethany Hill gave us the CommonBond perspective, “We’re creators, movers, shakers, numbers geeks, and finance freaks. We’re people just like you, who were frustrated by the high rates and poor service that came with our student loans. We knew there had to be a better way. So we created one.”

More Than Just Student Loans

CommonBond helps their community gain access to complimentary tickets to CommonBond-sponsored events, dinners, panel discussions with entrepreneurs and other companies. This is most apparent in their industry-first program called “CommonBridge.” It’s a service that matches members in between jobs with a consulting opportunity at CommonBond, making it easier to earn money, gain experience and spend a little more time on the job hunt.

A Social Promise

CommonBond has been committed to giving since they funded their very first loan – and it's still a driving force behind everything they do. Here's how their “Social Promise” program works:

  • 1-for-1: For every loan funded, they also fund the education of a child in need.
  • Education for all: Loans give kids unprecedented access to schools, teachers, and technology
  • Pencils of Promise: Ensures that funds go to those who need them most

CommonBond is constantly finding ways to fill a void in the student lending space. David Klein, Co-Founder and CEO believes their success is best explained by what they’re always taking aim at.

“We strongly believe that business can - and should - be a positive force for change”

Tags: customer service awards, Customer Service, top customer service

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