New Hanover County earns national award for communications during Hurricane Florence

Posted October 2, 2019 at 12:24 pm     Category: Communications & OutreachNews Release

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC – New Hanover County’s Communications & Outreach Department recently earned a first-place Savvy Award through the City-County Communications & Marketing Association (3CMA) for social media communications during Hurricane Florence.

The award was received in the “Social Media – Best Use of Facebook” category and highlights the proactive work of the county’s communications team in using social media to distribute more than 80 news releases, 13 live media briefings and hundreds of original posts with life safety information before, during and after Hurricane Florence. The county reached more than 2 million people through social media during the hurricane, and more than 101,457 people tuned into the live video briefings.

“During times of emergency, it is essential that our community is informed and aware so they can take proactive steps to stay safe,” said Chief Communications Officer Jessica Loeper. “I am proud that our team and the many county employees who staffed our Joint Information Center during Hurricane Florence are being recognized for their incredible work. They worked 24/7 to inform our residents with the best and most up-to-date information, responded to thousands of questions, monitored rumors, and put the public’s needs at the forefront.”

The Savvy Awards recognize outstanding local government achievements in communications, public-sector marketing and citizen-government relationships. Over 700 entries in 40 categories were received for this year’s Savvy Awards.

According to one of the 3CMA judges, “No one can ever completely plan for a disaster, which is what makes this response impressive…It’s never easy to manage the communications surrounding a sweeping and quickly evolving event such as a hurricane. Yet [New Hanover County’s] social media response leading up to, during and after Hurricane Florence was comprehensive, timely and superbly executed under pressure.”

The public is encouraged to follow @NewHanoverCo on social media to receive information throughout the year, and especially during emergencies. You can find us on: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Flickr.

For information about emergency preparedness and to sign up for the county’s emergency news and alerts, visit


Release Contact:
Jessica Loeper
(910) 798-7461

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Communications and Outreach: 230 Government Center Drive, Suite 195 • Wilmington, NC 28403 • Phone 910-798-7461 • Fax 910-798-7277
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