Co-op employee wins national communications award

Claiborne Electric Communications and Marketing Specialist EmmaLee Tingle has been honored as the 2019 Michael Graznak award recipient by the Cooperative Communicators Association (CCA).

CCA is an organization of nearly 300 members across the spectrum of cooperative businesses, including electricity, agriculture, finance, food, oil, and housing who communicate professionally for cooperatives throughout the United States and Canada. 

The Michael Graznak award is presented each year during the Institute banquet to a communications professional age 35 or younger who has excelled in his or her career so far. The award symbolizes accomplishments, contributions, competence, and promise of young cooperative communicators, and recognizes their sustained excellence, creativity, insight, and performance. The honor’s namesake was a young communications professional who died suddenly while on assignment. 

“In the realm of cooperative communications, the Michael Graznak award is truly a top-shelf highlight of any career,” said Claiborne Electric Manager of Marketing and Member Service Joey White. “This places EmmaLee in an elite group of communicators.”

Tingle said she was surprised and honored by the award.

“I was shocked at the announcement,” Tingle said. “To be recognized by my professional peers and counted among the recipients of this award is a privilege. The Michael Graznak plaque is one that will live on my wall and in my heart for the rest of my life.”

Tingle is a member of Claiborne Electric’s management team. She is responsible for marketing, writing, photography, graphic design, website and social media management, member and employee communications, campaign planning, event planning, member incentive programs, and media relations. She represents Claiborne Electric by participating in community, civic, and governmental organizations. Tingle also helps manage Annual Membership Meetings, Operation Round Up, Member Advisory Committees, the Rural Electric Youth Tour, and Claiborne Electric’s scholarship program.

“We could not be more proud of her,” said Claiborne Electric General Manager and CEO Mark Brown. “Many of our members have come to know her and are probably not surprised that she would be given such a high honor. Her high-quality work and her winning personality stand out, even among competition from much larger companies.”

Tingle has been employed in Claiborne Electric’s communications department since 2006 and has been a member of CCA since 2007.