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  • February 07, 2022 11:44 AM | Donna-Jean Plante

    From Maine to Chesapeake and NYC to Harrisburg we had you covered!  The Chesapeake Promotional Products Association (CPPA), New England Promotional Products Association (NEPPA), Philadelphia Area Promotional Products Association (PAPPA), and Specialty Advertising Association of Greater New York (SAAGNY) are proud to announce the success of their first annual Power of District “1” Shows collaboration which was held January 24-27 with over 500 distributor attendees.

    CPPA, NEPPA, PAPPA, and SAAGNY, all members of District 1’s regional association community, have worked together to foster communication and cooperation between their associations and their community of members. Each day of the week a different regional hosted a thought-provoking educational component which featured Cliff Quicksell, MAS+.  Cliff was able to share his expertise and enthusiasm for the Promotional Product industry with over 200 attendees throughout the week.  One distributor remarked, "As always, Cliff brings an amazing level of energy and insight to his topic.  Very enjoyable and thought provoking!"  

    NEPPA began the week hosting its first ever Winter Expo in Rocky Hill, CT.  Loren Cayer, CAS, NEPPA President and Show Chair, was very pleased with the turnout, stating, “This first ever show was extremely well supported and a tremendous success.  The energy was spectacular, and it was clear people were happy to be back together again rekindling those Distributor/Supplier partnerships and friendships.”

    Adding to the show experience, NEPPA Cares held a Winter Warm-up Food Drive and was thrilled to make a generous donation along with several boxes of food and helpful items to the Connecticut Food Bank.

    Cayer further noted, “Being part of the Power of District “1” Shows week was a terrific experience.  2022 stands to be a tremendous year for Regionals and we’re excited to continue our partnership.  Uniting to ensure our future is secure will be a priority and in the best interest of current and future members.”

    Dan Edge, SAAGNY Director, remarked “These regional shows, whether ours or others, are truly the best way to get in front of people right now (speaking from a supplier’s point of view).  And I have to imagine from a distributors view, it’s a great way to see and touch products, which is so valuable. With fewer people in offices and doing in person meetings, these smaller shows are a safe and inviting environment to meet.” 

    SAAGNY President, Rachel Levin, further noted, “Since the beginning term of my position as the President of SAAGNY, it has always been a mission to work closely, collaborate, and connect with our fellow regionals. We all share the same goals which are focused on our members. The first annual Power of District “1” Shows is just the beginning where we combine resources, values, and communities that will allow us to connect and share best practices amongst the Northeast geographical region of our industry.”       

    PAPPA was very pleased to take part in the Power of District “1” Show week. Celebrating our 50th Anniversary this year, PAPPA past presidents and members attended a pre-show Cocktail Reception on January 25. According to PAPPA President Staci Whittington, “The show was busy from the “get go” on January 26 with a line of distributors checking in when the doors opened and staying for the whole show.” There were 141 distributors in attendance and several prizes were given away in recognition of the 50th Anniversary.  Staci also noted, “PAPPA shifted to a three-hour show model from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. in 2021 and this has kept the shows busy from beginning to end.”

    In the spirit of giving back, PAPPA members also provided a van-full of product and clothing donations to the Mitzvah Circle Foundation to help those in need in the Philadelphia area.         

    “I was delighted to be part of this great collaboration on two fronts, one as President of CPPA, and second, the traveling speaker at each of the four shows. The excitement of ALL the attendees, suppliers and marketing professionals was so encouraging to see. People are so ready to back to business and it showed by the high-attendance rates and positive engagement. I am so proud of ALL the Executive Directors and fellow presidents who had the foresight to put this great event together. Job Well-Done”, noted Cliff Quicksell, MAS+.        

    Stay tuned for the dates for the 2023 Power of District “1” Shows Tour!


  • February 04, 2022 10:30 AM | Donna-Jean Plante

    Did you know that according to a recent LinkedIn Survey - 80% said having a mentor was important, but only 20% actually had a mentor at one point in their career?

    SAAGNY is pleased to announce the launch of a new program, SAAGNY Mentoring Circles. Mentoring has always been a prominent, yet informal, aspect of what SAAGNY does, through networking events, committee participation and engagement, and our trade shows.  In light of how the Promotional Products industry has pivoted in the face of the COVID pandemic, SAAGNY has developed a more comprehensive mentoring framework that fits the needs of ALL of our Members during these changing times.

    What Are Mentoring Circles?

    Mentoring circles are a form of group mentoring that encourages participants from all employment levels of SAAGNY to propose and own a topic of interest. This unique setup gives members an avenue to grow within their profession to find or create a circle that motivates them. These circles can occur virtually or in person depending on the participants and Covid restrictions.

    With the growth of Sheryl Sandberg’s lean-in philosophy and community meet ups, mentoring circles have become an increasingly popular way for individuals to grow within their profession. Leading a mentoring circle is a great way to grow as a leader because you learn and practice influencing and facilitation skills.

    What Are the Benefits of Mentoring Circles?

    With mentoring circles, participants can build more robust networks and connections they can turn to for support in new roles, projects, and future activities.  Participants can learn about various skills and tools that can help them grow in their current roles and advance within their career.  From management skills and customer relationship management best practices to handling customer conflict and ethics, mentoring circles can impart knowledge to participants through others’ experiences and lessons learned.

    The group style of mentoring circles elevates accountability for all involved. This type of interaction builds trust between members, which allows them to come together in support of each other’s goals while seeking to achieve their own. It also relies on participants to show up and interact. This group commitment keeps members engaged.  These connections can create and build a more productive path to collaboration, and eventually greater innovation within the participants and industry.

    Mentoring Goals

    Everyone has their own but below are a few that SAAGNY will suggest for the mentoring circles.

    • ·        Leadership skills
    • ·        Confidence skills
    • ·        Public speaking/presentation skills
    • ·        Life/work balance
    • ·        Becoming a better manager/working with teams
    • ·        Career trajectories/next steps/5-year plans
    • ·        People skills
    • ·        Short-term and long-term goals 
    • ·        Accountability

    Tell Me About SAAGNY Mentoring Circles.
    Each SAAGNY Mentoring Circle will be comprised of 5-7 people, led by a single mentor matched with 4-6 mentees. The Mentoring Circle will become a small community, in which mentors and mentees will develop individual mentorship relationships and the Circle as a whole will function to address a larger need for community, connection, and professional development.
    SAAGNY does not intend for groups to grow much larger, as participants speak up less and provide fewer individual contributions.

    It is SAAGNY’s hope that there will be occasions where everyone in the program will gather together virtually and in-person, to allow cross-Circle interactions and leverage the knowledge-base and relationships of all our mentors. Mentoring circles will meet once every two months, or more frequently at the discretion of each Circle. In addition, mentors will be asked to have at least one one-on-one meeting with each of their mentees during each two-month period.

    Mentoring circles allow industry colleagues to learn from one another in a supportive format, and also drive knowledge transfer and engagement. It’s a new spin on a long-valued learning technique. And whether groups want to come together to provide mutual support, build professional networks, or develop specific skills, SAAGNY’s mentoring circles program is a creative new addition to our member benefits.

    Click here for the application.

  • January 13, 2022 7:43 AM | Donna-Jean Plante

    John Joseph Kelly, 70, of Jamison, passed away in his sleep on Sunday January 9, 2022. He was the husband of Gloria (Cap) Kelly.  Born in Philadelphia in March of 1951, he was the son of the late Joseph and Veronica (McGarry) Kelly.

    John was a proud alumnus of Saint Cecilia School and Cardinal Dougherty High School.

    John and Cap met on a blind date and were married in 1978. The couple resided in Jamison where they raised their sons, Ryan and Grady.

    John was Manager of Team Sales for Gold Medal Sporting Goods Stores and most recently John worked as a sales rep for MV Sport. In the 80s and 90s John volunteered as a soccer coach for Buckingham AA and baseball and basketball coach for DAA. He also volunteered his time with Redeemer Lutheran Cub Scouts as well as Troop 52 at Our Lady of Mount Carmel.

    In recent years John enjoyed playing in two softball leagues and during the pandemic, John enjoyed many long walks on local trails with his wife and sons. Above all else, John enjoyed time spent with his beloved family and friends.

    He was preceded in death by his parents, his brother: Joe Kelly of Philadelphia, his sister: Betty Anne Forte of Warminster as well as his pets: Chance, Oliver, Milo and Otis.

    In addition to his wife, he is survived by sons: Ryan Kelly of California and Grady Kelly of New York; siblings: Frank Kelly of Philadelphia; Bill (Pat) Kelly of New Jersey; Tom (Bobbie) Kelly of New Jersey; Ronnie (John) McKenna of Huntington Valley along with numerous nieces and nephews.

    Relatives and friends are invited to his visitation from 10-11 a.m. Friday January 14, 2022 at Reed and Steinbach Funeral Home, 2335 Lower State Road, Doylestown. Services and interment will be private.  In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in John's name may be made to: Kin Wellness and Support Center, 2325 Heritage Center, Suite 113, Furlong, PA 18925 or

  • January 12, 2022 1:41 PM | Donna-Jean Plante

    Promotions East is back.  Click here for more information.

  • December 09, 2021 10:10 AM | Donna-Jean Plante

    The Specialty Advertising Association of Greater New York (SAAGNY) announced the winners of the association’s annual awards during its Holiday Party, held this past evening at the Glen Island Harbour Club in New Rochelle, NY.  Supplier, Distributor, John J. Pagano Multiline Representative, Customer Service Representative, Humanitarian of the Year, and more were among the awards presented.  The Diamond Award Winners were also announced and the 2021 40 Under 40 Recipients recognized. 

    The SAAGNY Board of Directors established these awards to recognize those companies and individuals that best represent the ideals of the promotional advertising industry.  The winners of these awards were all nominated and voted on by the association’s members in balloting conducted in September and October.  A selection committee determined the winners of the SAAGNY Diamond Awards and the 40 Under 40 Recipients.  The winners were:

    Company Awards

    Supplier of the Year (less than $40 million In Sales)                      Starline                      

    Supplier of the Year (more than $40 million In Sales)                  Tekweld

    Distributor of the Year (smaller)                                                       JP Scar

    Distributor of the Year (larger)                                                         Stackable Sensations

    Supplier Technology Award                                                               PCNA

    Distributor Technology Award                                                          HALO

    Decorator of the Year                                                                         Insane Apparel

    Individual Awards

    John J. Pagano Multiline Rep. of the Year                                       Josh Brooks, Brooks & Brooks

    Customer Service Rep of the Year                                                      Will Flores, Tekweld

    Supplier Representative of the Year                                                  John R. B. Cudahy, MAS

    Humanitarian of the Year                                                                      Gail Deutchman, Distinctive Promotions

    Diamond Awards

    Diamond Award – Goodwill/Non-Profit/Fundraising                        Beth Silverman, The Vernon Company

    Diamond Award – Internal Self Promotion/Employee Incentive Program   Stackable Sensations

    Some of our deserving award recipients.

    40 Under 40 Recipients
    Anthony Abatzis
    Chris Barlow
    Amy Bennedict
    Chris Bloomer
    Jon Borowka
    Adam Brown
    Mike Cardin
    Dino Ciccarelli
    John R. B. Cudahy, MAS
    Brian Deissroth
    Thomas Deissroth
    Ethan Dowie
    Sean Dwyer
    Chelsea Fishman
    Will Flores
    David Goldfarb
    Scott Gordon
    Donald Grant
    Jeff Hinds
    Tim Howe
    Sean Kurtzman
    Jenna Larned
    Zach LeBlanc
    Elyssa Maryasis
    Marissa Mattessich
    Kevin McLaughlin
    Anthony McNally
    Mike Newman
    Chim Olisemeka
    Brendan Pigott
    James Przybyszewski
    Robert Russell
    Amy Serrano
    Dylan Sullivan
    Rich Susi
    Cristina Tarantino
    Brittany Tiringer
    Nick     Valentini
    Alexis Wahl
    Keith Zasowski

    Some of our fantastic 40 Under 40 Recipients

    Thank you Orrefors Kosta Boda for donating the SAAGNY awards.

    Rachel Levin, CAS, SAAGNY President, remarked, “So many faces both old and new, gathered together to honor and celebrate success! Seeing everyone out of the office and onto the dance floor was a great reminder of how important the SAAGNY community is.  It was a night to remember!!!!” 

    In addition, The SAAGNY Foundation honored Harvey Mackler, MAS+, by installing him into The SAAGNY Foundation Hall of Fame. Harvey who was unable to be in person to accept his award noted in his prepared remarks, “It is an honor to be inducted into The SAAGNY Foundation Hall of Fame, and it is also an acknowledgement of the many industry colleagues who worked tirelessly alongside me.  It was easy to follow the leadership paths blazed by the previous Chairs, Bill Lazarus and Joel Schaffer.  There were countless volunteers and committed hours. We need to continue to “do good.” 

    Lynn Millinger and Chris Bloomer, Co-Chairs, The SAAGNY Foundation, noted “Harvey was instrumental in actively fundraising and integral to growth of the Foundation.  The Foundation also wants to express our appreciation to Foundation Past President Melissa Casey for the gracious donation of the award created by Pacesetter Awards.”

  • December 09, 2021 9:04 AM | Donna-Jean Plante

    The December SAAGNY Life 
    Has Arrived


      Click here to get the latest from SAAGNY.        

  • November 10, 2021 8:43 AM | Donna-Jean Plante

    SAAGNY Supplier Promo Sales Pitch

    At each of the three SAAGNY Fall Shows - SAAGNY videotaped and professionally edited its supplier exhibitors to bring the Promo Sales Pitch to YOU! 

    These videos are for distributors who couldn’t make it to the show or a distributor who wants a second look!

    Another WAY is SAAGNY is Providing Value to its Members.

    Here is a sneak peek of Mark from AAA Innovations.

    Want to see more - 40+ videos are on the SAAGNY website. 

    Click here to watch.

  • November 08, 2021 3:02 PM | Donna-Jean Plante

    YOU have the expertise – we want YOU to share it with
    SAAGNY members.

    Do you want to get someone from YOUR company in
    front of SAAGNY members? Yes you do!

    If you have a success story, cautionary tale, innovation, or point of view to share, submit to be a speaker at one or more SAAGNY shows or networking events - virtual and in-person opportunities.

    It is easy to get on the list:  email your name or someone in your company’s name, phone and email, and check off below all that is of interest or pitch an idea of your own.

    Possible Topics:

    Supply chain                     □

    Purchase Orders               □

    End Users                          □

    Sales Strategy                   □

    Compliance                       □

    Merchandising                  □

    Inventory                           □


    Written                              □

    Virtual                               □

    In-person                          □

    Panel Discussion            □

    Technical                          □

    Case Studies –                                          
     successes and failures

    Emerging Issues              □

    Benefits of Speaking:

    SAAGNY is a leading provider of community, advocacy, and education in the promotional products industry. Speakers associated with SAAGNY educational events are recognized as industry leaders.

    Speakers and their companies are included in all marketing information sent to the SAAGNY community via emails and other marketing material, the SAAGNY web site, press releases, and social media. All this - AND you get in front of SAAGNY members at no charge.

    Speakers can prove their value, expertise, knowledge and acumen by presenting relevant and timely subjects in an effective manner, often leading to business development within the SAAGNY community.

    Another Great Reason to Be a SAAGNY Member.

  • October 25, 2021 7:50 AM | Donna-Jean Plante

    The Specialty Advertising Association of Greater New York (SAAGNY) Board of Directors, in accordance with the association bylaws, elected three Directors to serve as officers in 2022.   All terms begin on January 1, 2022.

    The 2022 Executive Committee will include Rachel Levin, CAS, distributor Stran Promotional Solutions will continue as President; Michael Reisbaum, of supplier Blue Generation will continue as Vice President; and Jeff Depalma of Geiger as Secretary/Treasurer.  Paul Sprunk of MLR-Paul Sprunk Associates will remain on the board and Executive Committee as Immediate Past President. 

    SAAGNY President Rachel Levin, CAS, remarked, “The organization requires the very best that SAAGNY has to offer, and we are constantly striving to come up with ways we can innovate and lead. I am beyond honored to lead a board that includes the caliber of professionals our members deserve. With that, I am proud to begin working with the new executive committee, Jeff, Michael, and Paul in 2022.  I want to personally thank each and every member of the SAAGNY Board for their contributions, time, and continued professionalism that allows us to better our organization as a whole.”

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