Register for the Founders Gala HERE.

    The 2019 Founders Awards


    The SMPS SFBAC Founders’ Awards Program began in 2001 as a forum to recognize excellence in Marketing Communications in the built environment and to recognize an individual Marketer of the Year whose extraordinary expertise and achievements serve as a model for A/E/C marketing professionals. The Founders’ Awards Program is named to pay homage to a group of marketers who came together in the 1970s and called themselves BD Anonymous until the San Francisco Bay Area Chapter of SMPS was incorporated in 1982.

    Held every two years, this prestigious awards program culminates at a networking-filled gala with more than 100 people in downtown San Francisco. The 2019 Founders Awards will recognize individuals for their strategic excellence and the teams who create outstanding communication vehicles for architectural, engineering, design, and construction firms.

    This is the only Bay Area awards program that highlights the critical role and immense value marketing professionals bring to the design and building industry. The award winners will be announced that evening.

    AWARDS Ceremony

    Purchase tickets now for the 2019 Founders Awards Gala! Award winners will be announced at the 2019 Founders Awards Gala, a formal presentation and dinner gala, to be held the evening of March 14, 2019 at the Hyatt Regency San Francisco.

    Emcees for the evening's festivities will be Heidi Bilodeau, Associate Principal and Director of Marketing and Business Development at Ratcliff, and Sam Fajner, Principal, Executive Vice President at TEECOM. Celebrities in the Bay Area A/E/C industry, Sam and Heidi have some of the most connected networks and the sharpest wits in the business! 


    January 25, 2019 February 1, 2019: Submission is now closed!

    March 7, 2019: Submittal boards are due, and will be displayed the evening of the event so that attendees can vote for the Peoples’ Choice Award.

    March 14, 2019: Founders Awards Gala at Hyatt Regency San Francisco 

    Reception: 6 pm
    Dinner/Founders Awards Program: 7 pm
    Attire: Cocktail Attire

    Interested in sponsoring the Founders Awards? Contact our Financial Development Director Melissa Moulton ( Visit our Sponsorship Opportunities Page for more information. 

    2017 AWARDS winners

    Lifetime Achievement Award

    Alethea O’Dell, Global Director of Marketing Communications for Northland Control Systems, Inc.

    Volunteer of the Year

    Bianca Flores, Marketing Specialist for Turner Construction Company

    Best of Show

    Enovity for Corporate Identity

    People’s Choice

    Charles M. Salter Associates for Holiday Piece Digital 

    Advertising Program

    An individual ad or advertising campaign placed in a business, trade, or general interest publication.

    Award of Honor  – DES Architects + Engineers


    A complete, originally printed or digital publication that addresses an issue of relevance to the A/E/C industry or features the work of a firm. The publication must have an unlimited shelf life and be professionally produced for mass distribution. A monograph is a single-authored, one-time publication on a specific, often limited subject

    Award of Honor  – Studios Architecture

    Direct Mail Program (Print or Digital)

    A multi-phase promotional program that may include a combination of media sent at specific time periods and/or is targeted to a specific audience on technical or market-specific topics and projects. Sample media types may include electronic or print pamphlets, brochures, postcards, announcements, or branded promotional items.

    Direct-Mail Program Print:
    Award of Excellence – BKF Engineers
    Award of Honor – BKF Engineers

    Direct-Mail Program Digital:
    Award of Honor – Degenkolb Engineers

    Corporate Identity

    A consistent graphic image applied to a firm’s print and collateral materials used to promote firm branding in the marketplace.

    Award of Excellence – Enovity
    Award of Honor – HLB Lighting Design

    Holiday Piece (Print or Digital)

    A piece such as a card, holiday party invitation, client appreciation gift, calendar etc. produced for one-time use during a specific holiday.

    Holiday Piece Print:
    Award of Excellence – Skyline Construction
    Award of Honor – Degenkolb Engineers

    Holiday Piece Digital:
    Award of Excellence – Charles M. Salter Associates
    Award of Honor – HLB Lighting Design

    Inbound Digital Marketing Program

    A series of whitepapers, emails, blog posts, webinars, web pages, or other digital content that includes prospect activity tracking for the purpose of converting leads to sales.

    Award of Excellence – Skyline Construction

    Internal Communications

    Any print or digital communications vehicle intended for an employee audience, including but not limited to a recognition program, awards program, or communications associated with mergers, acquisitions, or new business-line initiatives. Employee newsletters should be entered in the Newsletter–Internal category.

    Award of Excellence – SmithGroup JJR
    Award of Honor – Degenkolb Engineers

    Media Relations Campaign

    A strategic communications effort that uses media relations tactics and outreach—including but not limited to media releases, feature articles, backgrounders, opinion/editorial (op-ed) pieces, editorial meetings—to achieve a specific marketing, business development, or corporate image goal. This category focuses solely on outreach and success with the media and may include print and/or digital components.

    Award of Excellence – DES Architects + Engineers
    Award of Honor – Blattel Communications

    Mobile App

    An application created for your firm specifically for viewing on a mobile device. This does not include a responsive corporate website or intranet.

    Award of Honor – TEECOM


    Ongoing external or internal publication, in a printed or digital format, that provides firm or field related news and/or information for a targeted audience at specific time periods.

    Award of Excellence – Skyline Construction
    Award of Honor – Swinerton Builders

    Recruitment Campaign

    A program designed to recruit potential and retain current employees through print and/or electronic communications, including but not limited to ads, brochures, form letters, pamphlets, postcards, announcements, and email promotions.

    Award of Honor – Gordon Prill

    Special Event

    A print or electronic piece produced for one-time use to promote a special event such as an anniversary, new name, office opening, dedication, party, or ground breaking.

    Award of Excellence – TEECOM
    Award of Honor – SmithGroupJJR

    Specific Project Marketing (Print Or Digital)

    An item or series of items developed in support of winning one specific project. Materials may include qualification packages, proposals, PowerPoint presentations, leave-behinds, blog, or any print or digital piece that contributed to the total effort to win a specific project.

    Award of Excellence – SmithGroupJJR

    Social Media

    Any marketing effort that uses online social media tools to provide a platform for thought leadership, collaboration, and user interaction. Can be one platform or a combination of platforms.

    Award of Honor – Swinerton Builders

    Video (Internal or External)

    External: A video created for external communication purposes.

    Award of Honor – Charles M. Salter Associates

    Internal: A video created for internal communication purposes.

    Website (Internal or External)

    External: An external, public website that either promotes your firm or has been launched by your firm for a specific project.

    Award of Excellence – Leddy Maytum Stacy Architects
    Award of Honor – Enovity

    Internal: Internal websites or intranets that have been launched for the purposes your firm’s internal communications 

    Award of Honor – Skyline Construction

    Read more about the winning entries in our Founders Awards Shortlist issue.