ANNUAL AWARDS RECIPIENTS ANNOUNCED: Marjorie Kalter, Ph.D., Markus Wilhelm, and Merkle to be Awarded at Annual Awards Dinner October 9

Monday, June 28, 2010

New York, NY, — The Direct Marketing Educational Foundation (DMEF) today announced that Dr. Marjorie Kalter, clinical professor, and academic program director, New York University (NYU) Master of Science, integrated marketing program, will receive the DMEF Edward N. Mayer, Jr. Education Leadership Award; Markus Wilhelm, CEO of AKS Marketing & Media and chairman of Strata Solar LLC, will receive the exclusive DMEF Vision Award; and Merkle, a primary customer relationship marketing agency, will be presented with the DMEF Corporate Leadership Award.

This year’s honors will be presented at the DMEF Annual Awards Dinner on Saturday, October 9, 2010, at the Fairmont in San Francisco. This prestigious event presents both marketing professionals and academics the unique opportunity to gather together to celebrate the growth of multichannel marketing, stress the importance of education in the greater community, and help advance cutting-edge direct/interactive marketing education resources.

“DMEF’s Annual Awards Dinner both introduces and reunites the industry’s most successful marketers,” said Gary S. Laben, CEO of KnowledgeBase Marketing, and chairman of DMEF. “Once again, DMEF’s commitment to excellence is embodied in this year’s worthy recipients. I can think of no better way to spend a night in San Francisco than joining my fellow marketers for what is sure to be an unforgettable experience.”

The dinner, which is the Foundation’s premier annual event, will be held during the Direct Marketing Association’s (DMA) DMA2010 Conference & Exhibition, the Global ROI Marketing Event, that will run October 9-14 in San Francisco, California.

Edward N. Mayer, Jr. Award for Education Leadership

The 2010 Edward N. Mayer, Jr. Award for Education Leadership will be presented to Marjorie Kalter, Ph.D., clinical professor and academic program director of NYU’s Master of Science program in integrated marketing; former DMEF Robert B. Clarke Outstanding Educator Award winner.

The Mayer Award, DMEF’s most prominent annual award, honors individuals who demonstrate the highest level of personal commitment to helping create effective programs, concepts, teaching methods or materials for the instruction of college students or professors; providing personal and corporate financial assistance; and executing any other contribution, which effectively assists or promotes the DMEF’s mission and objectives.

Mayer Award nominations are submitted by peers and reviewed by DMEF’s Board of Trustees, which selects the honoree. Previous Mayer recipients include Beth Smith, Smith Browning Direct, Inc.; Jon Roska, Roska Direct Advertising; Tim Litle, Litle & Co.; David W. Florence, Direct Media, Inc.; Dick and Mary Cabela, Cabela’s Inc.; Katie Muldoon, Muldoon & Baer, Inc.; Stephen Polk, Polk & Co.; Markus Wilhelm, past DMA chairman and chief executive officer, Bookspan; and David Shepard, David Shepard Associates, Inc.

Kalter has the experience and knowledge that beginning direct marketers aspire to one day have themselves. Kalter taught Columbia University’s MBA program in direct marketing for nine years before joining the staff of NYU in 2001. She has also served as executive vice president and account managing director at Wunderman (WPP Group) in New York and Paris where she led integrated marketing programs for a numerous internationally known companies.

Kalter’s teaching and marketing experience make her a valuable asset to the field of marketing. Since being awarded the DMEF’s Outstanding Educator Award in 2004, she has been a member of the Board of Trustees for DMEF, a member of DMA’s ECHO Committee, chairman of DMA’s Hall of Fame Committee for 2007, and an active speaker at marketing conferences.

Corporate Leadership Award

The 2010 DMEF Corporate Leadership Award will be presented to Merkle, a leading customer relationship marketing agency. (

This unique and significant award honors businesses that champion education on all levels including internal and external audiences, as they consistently demonstrate a commitment to excellence industry wide. Past DMEF Corporate Leadership Award recipients include companies such as Goodman&Company; Scholastic; Draftfcb; The Martin Agency; and Acxiom.
Merkle believes the best way to succeed in business is to balance both quantitative and qualitative approaches to marketing. Founded in 1971, this customer relationship marketing agency identifies successful marketing as consisting of three critical components: thought leadership and strategy; a well-defined engagement model; and a fully integrated implementation approach. With locations in ten major states, Merkle’s mission is to help clients create and maintain marketing strategies that will influence consumer behavior over time. Merkle is an active marketing educator to younger generations including a major sponsor of DMEF’s re-branded Interactive Marketing Immersion Xperience (I-MIX) program, which will take place early August.

Vision Award

The 2010 Vision Award will be presented to Markus Wilhelm, chief executive officer of AKS Marketing & Media, and chairman of Strata Solar LLC.

This exclusive award recognizes a direct marketer who has made a substantial and sustained lifetime contribution to the growth, development and broad educational scope of direct/interactive marketing. Expressly designed to honor those rare individuals whose visionary hard work and creative insight have forever positively changed the marketing community, the award is given selectively, when a special committee selected by the chairman determines that a recipient is worthy. Past Vision Award recipients include Jerry Shereshewsky in 2009, Stan Rapp in 2005, and Lester Wunderman in 2004.

Wilhelm started his direct marketing career working for Bertlesmann Direct and since then has served as CEO for a series of prestigious companies including Bookspan, Doubleday Canada, and Doubleday Direct. Wilhelm currently serves as CEO of AKS Marketing & Media, a direct marketing consulting agency that provides strategic and operational consulting to clients. He is also chairman of Strata Solar LLC, a recently established solar energy distribution company.

Few have demonstrated an understanding and commitment to education as manifested in Wilhelm’s idea to launch DMEF’s Next Generation Leaders program. This rotating residency for recent graduates is helping to generate attention and interest for careers in direct/interactive marketing. Working closely with both the Boards and staff of DMEF and DMA, he has been instrumental in generating industry support for the Next Generation Leaders initiative. Wilhelm has been a member of DMA’s Board of Directors for the past eight years, serving as its Chairman in 2006 and 2007. He is also a former Trustee of the DMEF Board.

About the DMEF Annual Awards Dinner

The DMEF Annual Awards Dinner will be held Saturday, October 9 at The Fairmont in San Francisco, during the DMA2010 Conference & Exhibition, which takes place October 9 – 14.

Access the Annual Awards Dinner Reservation Form here. For additional information on table sponsorships and tickets to the DMEF Annual Awards Dinner, please contact DMEF Director of Development, Jeanne K. Murphy, 212.768.7277, ext.1371, or email

About DMA2010 Conference & Exhibition

The DMA2010 Annual Conference & Exhibition is the world’s largest gathering of cross-media/channel marketing professionals. DMA2010, which will be held October 9-14 in San Francisco, will feature keynote presentations, educational sessions, roundtables, case studies, white papers, and research reports. DMA2010’s exhibit hall will feature hundreds of exhibiting companies. For additional information, or to register for the six-day multichannel marketing event of the year, please visit

For information about DMA2010 exhibition and sponsorship opportunities, please contact Donna LoPorto at 212.790.1468 or

About Direct Marketing Educational Foundation (DMEF)

Headquartered in New York City, the Direct Marketing Educational Foundation (DMEF) works to attract, educate, and place top college students in the business of direct/interactive marketing and, thereby, expanding and enriching the talent pool of trained, market-ready marketers. Established in 1966 by members of the Direct Marketing Association (DMA) who wanted to give something back to the community, DMEF is today a separate, 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation that is supported solely by tax-deductible contributions from individuals and companies. Tax-deductible contributions are the lifeblood of the DMEF; funds raised support a broad range of world-class educational programs and scholarships.

Since its founding, thousands of students have taken advantage of DMEF’s educational programs, entering the field with the competitive edge of being “workplace-ready.” Many have gone on to become today’s marketing leaders, an indication of the Foundation’s success. In addition, more than 2,000 professors have participated in DMEF programs. Thanks in significant part to the Foundation’s four decades of work, today approximately 255 colleges and universities offer courses in direct/interactive marketing, 31 of which now offer specific direct marketing degrees and certificate programs. For additional information about the DMEF, its mission, and its programs, visit

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Sue R.E. Geramian

Carmela M. Uzzi