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Coca-Cola honored by NASCAR

BY Ryan Chavis

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla.— Coca-Cola was honored on Thursday with the 2013 NASCAR Marketing Achievement Award at the NASCAR NMPA Myers Brothers Awards Luncheon, which was held in the Encore Ballroom at Wynn Las Vegas. This makes Coca-Cola a three-time recipient of the award.

Coca-Cola, using an immersive integrated marketing strategy, engaged fans, customers and employees across nearly every facet of NASCAR, including promotions, public relations, online, social media and retail.

“Over the course of our 15-year relationship, Coca-Cola has become one of the most recognized brands in our sport,” Jim O’Connell, NASCAR chief sales officer, said. “Once again, Coca-Cola raised the bar by creating innovative activation and an integrated marketing approach to engage with millions of NASCAR fans, embodying the spirit of the award.”

This year, Coca-Cola released a series of brand spots called “Coca-Cola Racing Family Road Trip,” which featured NASCAR stars Tony Stewart, Danica Patrick, Greg Biffle, Ryan Newman, Denny Hamlin and Joey Logano. The four-part series premiered during the Daytona 500.

“The Coca-Cola partnership with NASCAR is rich in history and passionately multifaceted. We’re honored and humbled to receive this prestigious award from such a valuable partner,” Sharon Byers, senior vice president, sports and entertainment marketing for Coca-Cola North America Group, said. “From our Coca-Cola Racing Family members to decades of supporting local, regional and national activation, together our properties talk to a broad scope of fans. In 2013, the NASCAR partnership extended across 19 tracks, 13 current and alumni drivers, two entitlement races, activation with 36 national retail partners in [more than] 250,000 retail locations, 2.8 million My Coke Rewards entries in NASCAR-themed sweepstakes and nearly 12,000 participants in our Coca-Cola Family Track Walks.”

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Dr Pepper Snapple Group nabs spot on Civic 50

BY Ryan Chavis

PLANO, Tx. — Dr Pepper Snapple Group has been named a member of the Civic 50, an initiative that identifies and recognizes community-focused companies.

“We are proud to be a part of the Civic 50 for the second year in a row,” Vicki Draughn, VP corporate affairs for DPS, said. “It’s a reflection of our commitment to drive positive change in communities and a testament to our employees’ engagement in making a difference in their hometowns.”

One way DPS is making a difference in local communities is through its ACTION National philanthropy program, which targets four areas: fit and active lifestyles, environmental initiatives, emergency relief and hometown giving.

Some highlights from DPS’s many initiatives and partnerships include:

  • Let’s Play, a community partnership led by DPS to get kids and families active. The first Let’s Play initiative was a three-year, $15 million commitment to nonprofit partner KaBOOM! to construct or repair 2,000 playgrounds across the country, benefiting five million children. The commitment will be fulfilled this month;
     
  • United Way – DPS has partnered with United Way since 2008 and has raised close to $8.5 million, including almost $2.2 million this year alone. The company also contributed thousands of volunteer hours to local United Way chapters;
     
  • Keep America Beautiful – DPS donated $300,000 this year to fund placement of recycling binds in public state, regional and city parks; and
     
  • American Red Cross – DPS continues to support relief efforts of the American Red Cross and the Annual Disaster Giving Program through a $1 million, four-year commitment.

DPS was evaluated on several key elements, such as leadership, design, employee civic health, community partnerships and transparency. To learn more about the Civic 50 survey, visit Civic50.org.

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Despite near-elimination of measles in U.S., international travel presents risks, study finds

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK — While a vaccine against measles has been available for 50 years, the disease remains a threat in the United States, particularly when acquired by children entering the country from abroad, according to a new report.

In an article published in the journal JAMA Pediatrics, CDC researcher Mark Papania wrote that measles in the United States had been eliminated through 2011, but that importation continues. American doctors should suspect children have measles if they have a high fever and rash, especially if they have traveled abroad or are visiting from abroad.

Measles was a year-round threat in the country before the vaccination program started in 1963. Today, 430 children die from it worldwide every day, and there were an estimated 158,000 deaths in 2011, while one-in-five children with the disease is hospitalized. There were 175 cases in the United States in 2013, virtually all linked to foreign travel.

"A measles outbreak anywhere is a risk everywhere," CDC director Tom Frieden said. "The steady arrival of measles in the United States is a constant reminder that deadly diseases are testing our health security every day."

 

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