Communicator of the Year (Smitty Award)

Each year, the Dayton Chapter PRSA presents an award to the Communications Professional of the Year, an individual who has demostrated communications excellence and community service over a long career. Some refer to this award as the Smitty Award, an homage  to the late Rex Smith, a highly regarded public relations practitioner in Dayton for more than 40 years and a former chapter member.

 Past Smitty Winners

2020 Alexis Larsen, Dayton Art Institute
Cathy Petersen, Dayton Convention & Visitors Bureau
Jamie Kenny, Kenmy Consulting Group
2017 Beth Ling, CareSource
Holly Michael, Fahlgren Mortine
Natasha Baker, Dayton Magazine and freelancer
2014 Kelly Kavanaugh, Dayton Children's Hospital
2013 Jenny Michael, CareSource
2012 Nancy Thickel
Teri Rizvi, University of Dayton
Bill Wharton, Public Information at Public Health - Dayton & Montgomery County
2009 Vicki Giambrone, Children's Medical Center
2008 Patty Sorrell, MeadWestvaco
2007 Karen Baxter, Time Warner Cable
2006 Beth Mehlberth Whelley, Fahlgren Mortine
2005 Shelley Bird, NCR
2004 no recipient
2003 Sharon Sears, Dayton International Airport
2002 Paul Guthrie, Reynolds & Reynolds
2001 Sandra Gudorf, Downtown Dayton Partnership
2000 Gary Honnert, Sinclair Community College
1999 no recipient
1998 no recipient
1997 Carl Day, WDTN
1996 Patricia Soloman, Kids Voting
1995 Dr. David Ponitz, Sinclair Community College
1994 Willie Walker, Dayton Urban League
1993 Laurence Harkness, Children's Medical Center
1992 David Holmes, Reynolds and Reynolds
1991 Frank Winslow, Winslow-Chappel, Inc.
1990 Sharon Fair, WDTN
1989 Dr. Franklin Smith, Dayton Public Schools
1988 Rex Smith and Johnny Walker, WKEF
1987 Mike Peters, Dayton Newspapers
1986 Dale Huffman, Dayton Newspapers
1985 Don Wayne, WHIO - TV
1984 no recipient
1983 Si Burick, Dayton Newspapers
1982 Kris Long