November 9, 2010 - Glastonbury, CT – The Marketing Research Association (MRA) recognized several industry leaders for service to the association and its members at an awards luncheon during MRA's First Outlook Conference on November 4, 2010 in Orlando.

Award recipients included:

  • Marketing Systems Group, which received the Celebrated Company Award
  • Paul Posluszny of Marketing Systems Group, who received the Rising Star Award
  • Debby Schlesinger Hellman, PRC, of Schlesinger Associates, Inc., who  received the Shining Star Award
  • Southwest Chapter of MRA, which received the Best Chapter Education Event Award for their 2009 Educational Forum: Feeling the Heat – New Insights into Today's Research Topics

The Celebrated Company Award is presented to an MRA member company that is instrumental in MRA's success. In order to be eligible for this award, a member company donates staff time and energy through participation on national committees, task forces, Boards and events.

Marketing Systems Group (MSG) promotes the culture of volunteering within industry organizations. The company supports their employees by allowing them to work on MRA projects and committees during the work day, and allowing their employees to travel to local and national events. MSG exhibits at all MRA conferences and supports the Association through sponsorships on the national and local levels. The company currently has three employees on Chapter Boards, and others who have held Board positions in the past. For the past six years, MSG also has generously donated the phone sample for MRA's Member/Non-Member Needs Assessment study.

The Rising Star Award is presented each year to one or more MRA members who have provided outstanding volunteer efforts on the National level for less than five years.

This year's winner, Paul Poluszny, has been involved with the Philadelphia and Greater New York Chapters. He also has served on the Membership & Chapter Workshop for the past few years. He currently is a Director at Large for the Philadelphia Chapter and serves as Director of the Membership committee for the Membership Committee Group.

The Shining Star Award recognizes an MRA member who has provided time, effort and enthusiasm at the National level for more than five years.

Debby Schlesinger Hellman has been a terrific supporter of MRA, both on the local and National levels. She served on the Board of the Southern California Chapter, spent many years on the Education Review Committee, also serving as Chair, dedicated her time to PRC committees for the past five years, and currently services as Chair of the Review Committee and as a Director at Large and a member of the Executive Committee of the MRA Board of Directors. 

The Best Chapter Education Event Award was developed to recognize the efforts, determination and commitment of Chapter volunteers to host and manage the best possible educational offering.

The Southwest Chapter's educational forum explored ways for social media to be used in a business setting, the state of technology, how social media has been used in market research, and how it is likely to impact the market research environment in the future. The event was held in Phoenix, and all the sessions were certified for PRC credit.