skip to Main Content
Southeast Missouri State University Wins National Advertising Award

Southeast Missouri State University Wins National Advertising Award

On June 10, University Communications and Marketing at Southeast Missouri State University was awarded the National Silver and Mosaic ADDY Awards, presented by the American Advertising Federation (AAF) for its video submission: “The Talking Booth.” The award was accepted by the University at the ADAMERICA 2017 conference in New Orleans, Louisiana.

“The Talking Booth” was produced as part of Southeast’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. 2016 Dinner Celebration and competed at the national level against nearly 39,000 entries nationwide. It was also one of only three entries to receive the Mosaic ADDY Award, recognized for its spirit of diversity and inclusion.

The 14-minute video was edited from over 40 hours of conversations at the Southeast campus in fall 2015. The conversations were the result of talking booths that were set up to invite strangers to ask questions about various ethnic and cultural groups. Over the course of two weeks, the talking booths invited students to stop and “Ask a Muslim,” “Ask an African American,” “Ask a Caucasian,” “Ask an LGBTQ,” “Ask an International Student” and “Ask a Christian.”

[plsc_vimeo url=”″ width=”700″ height=”400″ autoplay=”no” responsive=”yes”]

“It is an amazing honor for our staff to be recognized at the highest level in the industry, and for our advertising peers to distinguish the marketing and technical talents and quality of this video,” said Jeff Harmon, executive director of University Communication and Marketing.

The video advanced to the national competition after it was awarded a District Gold ADDY – and Judges’ Citation by the AAF in March. In February, at the local AAF Awards, the video competed in the public service non-broadcast audio/visual category and earned “Best of Show.” The department also received seven gold and five silver ADDY Awards at the local competition. As of August 10, 2017, the video has received more than 160,000 views and has been shared on social media more than 2,000 times.

“We are overjoyed this project was selected to receive a National American Advertising Award,” said Tonya Wells, Assistant Director of Marketing and Digital Media at Southeast. “This video will always be special to us both for the content discussed and the incredible courage of the students and faculty who participated and were willing to engage in honest and sometimes difficult conversations about race, ethnicity, gender and sexuality. We are so proud of AAF’s recognition.”

“The Talking Booth” video advanced from the district competition among 450 entries. The Judges’ Citation was issued based on the video being one of the competition’s most memorable pieces. The local competition, where the video first competed in February, featured 129 print, digital and multi-media advertising projects, all created, published or aired in the Cape Girardeau, Missouri, Paducah, Kentucky, and Harrisburg, Illinois, markets between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31, 2016.