Telly Award recognizes CEA’s Because of a Teacher campaign and the educators who make every profession possible
Connecticut’s education community is celebrating after receiving national recognition for CEA’s public awareness advertising campaign, which highlights the enduring, positive influence teachers have on their students’ personal, academic, and professional achievements. The campaign—Because of a Teacher, Every Profession is Possible—won a prestigious Telly Award.
“The ad campaign resonates with everyone, because we can all identify an educator who played a critical role in our lives, inspired us to be the best we can be, and made a lasting impact on who we are today,” said CEA President Kate Dias. “It showcases how our dedicated educators leave an indelible mark through their passion for teaching, their encouragement, their expertise, and the relationships they form with their students. They do so much more than teach; they inspire, connect, help students reach their full potential, and make them successful adults.”
The Telly Awards, the world’s largest honor for excellence in video and television across all screens, are judged by national leaders in the industry, including those from Adobe, Netflix, Dow Jones, Hearst Media, Nickelodeon, National Geographic Society, and ESPN.
CEA was recognized among nearly 13,000 entries across the world and joins the ranks of such prominent brands as Airbnb, Audible, Disney, Netflix, Paramount, and NASA.
“Every day, we hear the stories of teachers who have made a profound difference for their students in so many ways, and Because of a Teacher is a vehicle for sharing those stories,” said CEA Communications Director Nancy Andrews. “We are so proud to take home a Telly this year, and even prouder that the award shines a spotlight on our members. They are the real stars.”
CEA’s ad campaign features inspiring interviews with Connecticut residents representing a variety of professions, each telling the story of an educator who believed in them, lit a spark, and helped them on their path to success.
“When I became the town’s youngest councilman,” says Shamar Mahon.
“When I help a child take those first steps after an injury,” says pediatric physical therapist Danielle Novak.
“When I invest millions to secure people’s futures,” says former State Treasurer Shawn Wooden.
“It’s because teachers make every profession possible,” says nurse practitioner Marina Creed.
The commercial’s closing shot emphasizes the vital role of educators, with the message, “Connecticut public school teachers: dedicated professionals making every profession possible.”
Crediting their own teachers for inspiring them to enter the profession, Connecticut teachers featured in the TV ad are Michael Fiorello, an English teacher at Stratford High School; Glastonbury physics teacher Kristen Basiaga; Mikeya Stovall, a third-grade teacher at Read Elementary School in Bridgeport; Kristen Record, a physics teacher at Bunnell High School in Stratford; and Mary Kay Rendock, a fifth-grade teacher at Carmen Arace Middle School in Bloomfield.
Motion Inc., which produced and submitted the ad, has been working with CEA and its members for many years, creating numerous ad campaigns showcasing the important work of Connecticut’s dedicated educators.
“We are honored and grateful for the strong, meaningful partnership with CEA that allows us to visually capture the significant impact of Connecticut educators,” said Todd Sanderson, president of Motion Inc. “We are excited to be recognized by the Telly Awards judges, who, like the rest of us, recognize teachers for shaping the trajectory of so many lives. Congratulations to CEA and all its members!”
“The caliber of the work this season coming from creators such as CEA and Motion Inc., truly has reflected the theme of breaking out and standing out,” said Tellys Executive Director Sabrina Dridje. “Our industry is experimenting with new technologies like never before, crafting truly compelling stories to draw attention to some of the world’s most pressing issues.”
Connecticut residents featured in the ad campaign are tax manager Christopher Bortolan, of Newington; attorney Michael Brown, of Wethersfield; nurse practitioner Marina Creed, of West Hartford; diversity, equity, inclusion, and engagement coordinator Jackie Davis, of Portland; photographer’s assistant Noelle Esposito, of Northford; paralegal Melissa Janick, of Suffield; nurse Alice Lam, of West Haven; town councilman and auto sales general manager Shamar Mahon, of Bloomfield; pediatric physical therapist Danielle Novak, of Southington; sports account executive Anthony Sanders, of West Hartford; real estate agent Jessica Starr, of Simsbury; and State Treasurer Shawn Wooden.
Also featured in the ad are current students attending public schools in East Haddam, Glastonbury, Hartford, Marlborough, Stamford, Suffield, West Hartford, and West Haven.
“Winning the Telly award has brought national recognition and respect for Connecticut’s educators at a time when it is so badly needed,” said Dias. “With a worsening teacher shortage and attacks against them, the emphasis on celebrating educators and enhancing the teaching profession is more important than ever.”
View the campaign at cea.org/becauseofateacher/.