According to John McKay, president and founder, “October 2020 would have been the setting for our 10th annual in-person meeting. But with the pandemic came the need to quickly pivot and provide valuable market and business content and continuous networking for our organization. While we missed the one-on-one connections, the Virtual Summit provided a means to help our members stay on a growth trajectory – more critical now than ever before.”
The FLAG Virtual Summit included keynote presentations from Alex Chausovsky, director, Speaking Services at ITR Economics, Curt Steinhorst, best-selling author on ways to reduce distractions and improve communications in the workplace, Greg Hrinya, editor, Label & Narrow Web, Brian Van de Water, Lean expert, SPL Consulting, Inc, and Paul Reilly, partner, New Direction Partners.
The summit also included three technical panels that covered ISO, Prepress and HR challenges during a pandemic. The challenge of building personal relationships was accomplished by a series of virtual roundtables. FLAG also launched a peer group dedicated to discussing the challenges and opportunities of “next generation” leaders.
Another highlight of the FLAG Virtual Summit was a Virtual Trade Show, where members could interact with vendor partners and learn more about their new products and services. The Virtual Trade Show will remain open through the remainder of the year.
FLAG distributed 13 prestigious awards during the closing afternoon FLAG 2020 Awards Reception. They were:
FLAG Gold Member Awards
The long-term success of FLAG is based on engagement, involvement and purchasing at high levels from all members. In 2020, 10 member companies received Gold Awards for the highest level of purchasing from FLAG vendor partners. They are: Apogee Industries (West Chester, PA), Disc (Hauppague, NY), Grace Label, Inc (Des Moines, IA), Graphics Universal, Inc (Greencastle, PA), Integrated Label Corporation (Rockford, IL), International Label & Printing Co, Inc (Elk Grove, IL), Niagara Label Co. Inc (Akron, NY), STICK2 Labels (Dorval, Quebec), Universal Tag, Inc (Dudley, MA) and Walco Label (Erie, PA).
FLAG Vendor Partner of the Year Award - 2020: HYBRID Software
This award is based on exceptional support, proactive communication and commitment to FLAG and its members by a participating vendor. This year’s recipient was HYBRID Software.
McKay notes, “Every year one of our vendor partners is recognized as a company who really excelled at teamwork and support of our members. HYBRID's efforts to help grow FLAG and its Members in 2020 certainly stood out.”
Brad Brown Strategic Partner Award: Brian Van de Water, CEO, SPL Consulting, LLC.
The Brad Brown Strategic Partner Award is an individual award presented annually to one person who has exemplified commitment, creativity and excellence in their support of the FLAG organization. This year’s winner is Brian Van De Water, CEO, SPL Consulting, LLC.
McKay adds that the efforts “Brian made with FLAG and our members were exceptional. Every project he worked on was extremely positive. His creativity in adapting to changing needs of our group and their overall challenges was excellent.”
Lifetime Achievement Award: Don Sinkin, former CEO, DISC Graphics
This prestigious award is presented to an individual who has had a profound effect on John McKay personally and on the FLAG organization as a whole. A Lifetime Achievement Award winner has experienced significant success in their business life. This award was created to recognize mentors and leaders of our industry.
According to McKay, “Don Sinkin’s leadership and ability to inspire his team to reach incredible goals together is proven by the company’s growth and has led to Disc Graphics receiving the Printing Industries of America 'Best Workplaces in America Award' at least 16 times. He is an example of someone in our industry who does it right and cares about the success of others.”