CONTACT: Maggie Tilley, founder/president, 828-268-0073,

For Immediate Release


Powerful partnership receives international recognition

BOONE, N.C.  (April 6, 2021) — Blue Ridge Energy and local public relations and advertising firm G&T Communications have been named finalists for the prestigious Silver Anvil. The Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) Silver Anvil Awards are awarded annually to organizations that have successfully addressed challenging issues with exemplary professional skill, creativity and resourcefulness.

This award recognizes communication of the In This Together Relief Fund, which helped 2,389 families pay their energy bills during the pandemic. After Blue Ridge Energy staff developed the fund and intiative, the cooperative’s public relations staff worked with the G&T Communications team to brand and help promote the initiative.

Together, they planned a two-pronged awareness campaign to raise awareness of the need and motivate people to donate to the fund. Blue Ridge members and employees, including those at G&T Communications, even donated their capital credits financial returns to help other members.

“These are the people we serve,” said Renee Whitener, director of public relations for Blue Ridge Energy and Maggie G. Tilley, president of G&T, in a joint statement. “We feel a responsbility to do our best to take care of our cooperative family.”

Through their combined efforts, Blue Ridge Energy exceeded their goal of $225,000 and was able to raise more than $268,000.

Projects for other business named finalists include FedX, General Motors, Duke Energy, Home Depot and Mazda. Among the competing international public relations firms are Edelman, FleishmanHillard, Hill+Knowlton and Ketchum.

“This achievement shines the spotlight on western North Carolina,” said Whitener and Tilley. “It just goes to show what can happen when people work together to improve the lives of others.”

About Blue Ridge Energy
Blue Ridge Energy is a member-owned electric cooperative, serving close to 78,000 members in Caldwell, Watauga, Ashe, Alleghany, Alexander, Avery and Wilkes counties. The cooperative’s subsidiary, Blue Ridge Energy Propane and Fuels, provides residential and commercial services in the cooperative’s service area, Catawba and Burke counties as well as Grayson County, Va. Learn more at

About G&T Communications
G&T Communications, now in its 25th year, has a long list of communication awards, including 13 Telly awards for TV and animation ads and five utility campaigns honored with the coveted Edgar F. Chesnutt Award. The Chesnutt recognizes the “best of the best” in public relations and advertising programs among the nearly 900 electric cooperatives across the nation. The firm has offices in Boone and Asheville, N.C.



Photo to come.

© G&T Communications, Inc.