2011 Barton A. Cummings Gold Medal Award

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2011 Barton A. Cummings Gold Medal Award Recipient: Mike Kelly


Mike Kelly

Mike Kelly is an extraordinarily active and committed member of the American Advertising Federation, and has played a key leadership role in some of the Federation’s greatest successes in recent years.

As the AAF's Vice Chair for Corporate Development in the Eastern U.S., Kelly has been instrumental in bringing on many new national corporate members.  His dedication to the corporate development of AAF is demonstrated by the fact that as he has progressed in his career, AAF has remained a constant. In fact, when he joined The Weather Channel Companies, he brought them into AAF membership.

Kelly served as Chairman of the AAF Advertising Hall of Fame and led that program through some of the most monumental changes in its history: including the acceptance of international nominees, the induction of corporate members, the creation of the President's Award for Special Lifetime Contributions to Advertising, and moving the induction ceremonies from a luncheon to a dinner.  Combined, these changes have led to record revenues and greatly increased the stature and visibility of the Hall of Fame brand.

Kelly served as Chairman of the highly successful 2010 AAF National Conference in Orlando.  He has hosted and led webinars on Social Media and Advertising for the AAF’s general membership.  Through his initiative, The Weather Channel Companies hosted a Thought Leadership Series session in Atlanta, Georgia.

Kelly is currently president and chief executive officer of The Weather Channel Companies, which consists of The Weather Channel television network, The Weather Channel digital properties (weather.com and The Weather Channel mobile), and Weather Services International.  With nearly 30 years of experience in the media industry, he most recently served as senior advisor to Veronis Suhler Stevenson, a $3 billion media-focused private equity firm.  Kelly was president of AOL Media Networks from 2004-2007, where he was responsible for all of AOL's advertising properties globally.  Prior to that Kelly served as president of global marketing at Time Warner.  Kelly began his media career in 1980 at the Chicago Tribune.  In 1983 he began a 17 year run at Time Inc., first at Fortune magazine then as part of the launch team of Entertainment Weekly, eventually becoming EW's publisher.

Kelly continues to serve on the Board of Directors and Executive Committee of the AAF, and we look forward to the benefits of his involvement and leadership in the years to come.