LAFCU Earns 3 National Marketing Awards

    LANSING, Mich. — Two LAFCU programs have been recognized in the 19th Annual Service Industry Advertising Awards competition, one earning awards in two categories. Both programs earned a Gold award, the highest in the category.

                The categories and winning LAFCU programs are:

    • Total Public Relations Campaign category
      • Gold­ — LAFCU Listen & Learn Program
      • Silver — LAFCU Act with Love & Equality Art Initiative
    • Equality & Diversity category
      • Gold — LAFCU Act with Love & Equality Art Initiative

    “These unique programs have community outreach and support in common,” said Kelli Ellsworth Etchison, LAFCU chief marketing officer and chief diversity officer. “One was born out of the pandemic and the need to help children develop good reading habits even when they could not physically be in school. The other initiative sprung from racial tensions and unrest surrounding the murder of George Floyd and others.

    “We share these awards with many incredibly talented people and community-minded organizations and businesses that joined our effort to positively impact the people of Michigan.”

    The SIAA competition recognizes advertising excellence of service industry providers. Of the more than 1,200 entries, about 12 percent earned Gold awards. Judges reviewed entries for execution, creativity, quality, consumer appeal and overall breakthrough content. 

    Both programs were supported by strategic public relations campaigns that included member communications materials created by LAFCU and extensive media coverage garnered through a partnership with Publicom Inc., Okemos.

    More about the programs:

    LAFCU Listen & Learn Program is a virtual reading program created to support kids, age 12 and under, and their parents following the shift by schools from in-person to virtual classes.

    The ongoing program encourages reading in fun, interesting and informative ways through live, interactive, online events, each about 30 minutes in length. LAFCU produced the events in-house in partnership with community organizations, groups and businesses, such as libraries, schools, a zoo, a science museum, a dance troupe, a beekeeping business and a reindeer farm.

    Recorded versions are on LAFCU’s YouTube channel at, along with additional readings of children’s books promoted during the live events. The additional readings are also accessible via phone.

    LAFCU Act with Love & Equality Art Initiative is designed to make healing and empathy top-of-mind following the turbulence of 2020 — the pandemic, politics, calls for social justice.

    A call for artistic depictions of 10 “healing” words resulted in 10 powerful pieces of artwork. They have been displayed on billboards across the state — pro bono by three billboard companies — and on digital platforms to spark reflection and conversation, and as a 24/7 reminder of what’s truly important in life. Several organizations, including the Lansing Lugnuts and Eaton Theatre, also shared the images on their platforms. The art can be viewed at