Long-time IABC/Chicago volunteer Mary Hills, ABC, is one of two IABC members who will be honored during the 2012 IABC World Conference as winners of the IABC Chairman’s Award. Each year, the IABC chair honors one or more members who have worked selflessly behind the scenes to enhance the association’s image, facilitate member development and benefit the communication profession. Any current IABC member who has belonged to the association for at least five years is eligible for the award.
Adrian Cropley, ABC, the 2011-2012 chair of the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) has selected Claire Watson, ABC, and Mary Hills, ABC, as the recipients of this year’s Chairman’s Award. Watson and Hills are scheduled to accept the award at IABC’s World Conference in Chicago on 24 June 2012.
“I am proud to have Claire and Mary as the 2012 Chairman’s Award winners. They have dedicated themselves to serving IABC at every opportunity and are brilliant communication professionals,” Cropley said. “Mary’s work with the accreditation program from the chapter to the international level, particularly championing new initiatives like the Corporate Accreditation program globally has allowed accreditation to grow and truly be the global standard for Communication professionals. Claire’s work across multiple IABC programs, especially the Gold Quill Awards, accreditation and most recently her work on developing and rolling out certification training for award, has shown staggering results in setting the standard for awards. Both Claire and Mary are tireless leaders for IABC and I look forward to honoring both of them at the World Conference in Chicago in June.”
Claire Watson, a longtime member from the Regina chapter, has been involved in multiple IABC programs during her 19 years as a member of the association. As an accredited member herself, she has been heavily involved with accreditation exam and portfolio reviews. Recently, Watson led the development of a comprehensive training program for Gold Quill Awards volunteers and has implemented several group training sessions. Watson has also spent time on the Regina chapter board in numerous roles, currently serving as Director of National Programs and Sponsorships since 2009.
On learning about her selection for the award, Watson said, “When I think of the thousands of worthy volunteers around the world who contribute to our association and our profession, I’m very grateful and truly humbled to receive this award. It is a great honor, but not a solo accomplishment. The credit is shared with all those I’ve met along the way who opened doors, encouraged me, believed in me, trusted me and stood for my success. Without those special people none of this would be possible.”
As an IABC member, Mary Hills has administered and graded accreditation exams, reviewed portfolios and created many presentations about accreditation at IABC conferences. She has served as Director of Accreditation and Director of Strategy for IABC’s Chicago chapter. Hills started the Accreditation Completion Program for IABC/Chicago in 2003, roping in graduates of the program to serve alongside her. She co-authored the Value of Accreditation Study in 2007 and ensuing Accreditation Toolkit materials in 2008. Hills was Director of Marketing for the Accreditation Council at that time, serving a three-year term before becoming Vice Chair and later the 2010-2011 Chair.
“I am honored and humbled to be included among the group of distinguished professionals who have received this award,” Hills said. “Our industry has seen amazing evolution in the past 30 years. It has been a privilege to work with IABC as we discover the undeniable impact communication has on organizational success.”