CG&A Communications Marks 25 Year Milestone

January 7, 2019 – Today marks 25 years since Chris George and business partner Lisa Hingley (now Lisa George) opened the doors of their government and public relations firm. Today, the couple operates CG&A Communications, providing counsel and support services for advocacy campaigns, stakeholder relations, issue management and government affairs initiatives.

The firm – www.cgacommunications.com – is a full service company, offering discreet, reliable counsel and communications services to support clients’ advocacy and public relations efforts, and their government affairs objectives. Through the years, some clients included the Council of Ministers of Education Canada (CMEC), MADD Canada, and the Ottawa Transition Board (responsible for amalgamating the City of Ottawa). In the Niagara Region, it serviced West Lincoln Memorial Hospital, local Big Brothers and Big Sisters, and the Niagara Parks Commission. In the Ottawa Region, it serviced Hydro Ottawa, Commissionaires, Ottawa International Airport, and the Perley Rideau Veterans’ Health Centre. 

“We’ve had great clients, rewarding work and a lot of fun along the way,” says company president Chris George. “We never imagined back in 1994 that this business would have resulted in a lasting career. Looking back we have to express our deep gratitude to a number of terrific clients, to our network of talented consultants, and to our supportive friends and family.”

Perhaps offering a hint of their enduring success, Chris says, “Our business approach and strong work ethic has carried us through. We’re proud of our efforts, happy with our working relationships and, to this day, enjoy sitting down at our desks in the morning.”

Lisa adds, “It’s our personalized service, our attention to detail, and sweating the small stuff that separates our business from others. We have always worked hard and smart to get the results required for our clients.”  

To mark the milestone for their supporters, Chris and Lisa George have published a few lists of interesting facts:

CG&A Communications is offering a give-away of the By George Treasury (both Book I and Book 2) to those who wish to share comments on the company and its work through the years. Forward your comments to cgacomm@gmail.com with the subject line “Reflecting on CG&A Comm’s 25 years” and receive the complimentary e-book publications.

Through the month of January, CG&A Communications will be posting articles in the By George Journal celebrating the 25 year anniversary. To read more, follow this link: CG&A Comm 25 Years.

CONTACT:

Chris George – (613) 983-0801 / chrisg.george@gmail.com

Chris George provides reliable PR & GR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? Call 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

25 Facts You May Not Know About CG&A Communications

  1. Always a Virtual Corporation – Since inception CG&A Communications has been a virtual corporation – a network of writers, graphic designers, web developers, translators – all working from their own home offices. When the company launched 25 years ago this business model was an oddity that had to be explained… now it’s the norm.
  2. The Business Name – We started as Chris George and Associates and a year later changed the firm’s name to CG&A Communications. Our distinctive “box” logo was first unveiled in 1995. 
  3. First Office Space – The first CG&A office was a second bedroom in a two-bedroom Ottawa apartment overlooking the canal. It was a total of 120 square feet, featuring a blue shag rug. There was a single desk top computer, printer and fax machine, a wall of bookshelves, filing cabinet and a futon for seating.  
  4. No Email to Start – In the beginning the primary mode of office-to-office communications was the fax machine. Email had just been introduced — we were early adopters connecting our freelance subcontractors to collaborate via email.
  5. Office Expenses – Through the years the company’s office expenses have changed. In the beginning, the biggest expenses were cross-City bicycle couriers, thermal-rolled fax paper, and postage for mailouts. Today, the biggest expense is cell phones!
  6. First Client – Gus Zygoumis, owner of Dustmoon Maintenance, gave CG&A their first contract in early 1994 to help with communications and administrative support.
  7. 60-Plus Clients – CG&A has worked for more than 60 clients in 25 years — corporations, small businesses, individual interest, national associations and small volunteer-run organizations, public institutions, government agencies and political initiatives.
  8. North American Service Area – Many CG&A clients are located in Ottawa and Toronto. Through the 25 years, CG&A has served clients in places like Niagara Falls, Hagersville, Mississauga and Halifax — from New Liskeard in northern Ontario through to San Mateo, California.
  9. Lasting Loyalties – Within CG&A’s core group of consultants is the same graphic artist and the same web developer for over 20 years ago. These talented individuals are not only good at what they do, they are great people.   
  10. Landing the Ottawa Airport – CG&A really took off in 1997 when the company defeated more than 120 PR firms in a RFP process for the newly privatized Ottawa International Airport. CG&A served as the public relations agency of record through the formative years of the airport’s growth, helping with its formal opening ceremony, the opening of the first US Preclearance Facility, and supporting the airport authority’s business networking in the National Capital Region.  
  11. Long Work Hours – Chris and Lisa George and their network provide personalized service that, at times, goes around the clock to meet deadlines. Often, at 9 a.m., they have already put in half-a-day preparing for their clients’ offices to open. On many occasions through the 90’s, Chris and Lisa have fallen asleep beside their computers and printers as they worked through nights to meet imposing deadlines.
  12. Long Commutes – In the early days, when it was important to be physically present in clients’ offices, Chris would regularly drive from Ottawa to Toronto for a day of meetings and then get in the car to return, all within a 20-hour period.
  13. Licked Lots of Envelopes – In promoting clients and positioning their interests, Chris and Lisa have managed countless mailouts. They have stuffed well over 30,000 envelopes for one client alone over a course of 8 years. Today, they manage even more mailouts, however, it is much easier emailing to lists rather than stuffing envelops.
  14. Most demanding client: Ottawa Transition Board – Chris George served as the lead counsel to the Ottawa Transition Board and managed the communications office team through the pivotal year of transition activities for the 13 municipalities in the National Capital Region. Results of the 14-months of tireless efforts was the amalgamation on January 1, 2001 of the region’s councils and administrations into the new City of Ottawa.
  15. Most rewarding client: MADD Canada – For 14 years, CG&A worked with Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) Canada managing their national public relations and government affairs programs. This service was very rewarding – helping the families of victims of impaired driving, promoting the organization and its awareness efforts, and launching a multifaceted advocacy program to advance new laws in Ottawa and in numerous provinces.
  16. A Career Accomplishment with Council of Ministers of Education, Canada – For 17 years and counting, CG&A has been the communications company of record to support the activities of provincial and territorial education ministers within the CMEC Copyright Consortium. In 2012, after more than a decade of work, the copyright landscape for the Canadian education sector shifted positively with the passage of a new copyright law and a Supreme Court decision, both validating the ministers’ copyright policy position.
  17. Favourite Meeting Place: Parliament Hill – It is difficult to tire of making the trek to a Member of Parliament’s office for a meeting.  There is something very special about being in a Hill office – something, because of the Centre Block’s renovations, will not happen again for 10 years!  
  18. Political Involvement – Through his career, Chris George has managed electoral campaigns at every level of government – for mayoralty provincial and federal candidates. Lisa George is no stranger to politics either as she has worked on projects in the offices of every level of government. Fortunately, since walking away from their Parliament Hill offices in 1993, neither have ever had to depend on politics for a livelihood. 
  19. The By George Journal – Since 1994, the company has published a newsletter / journal that features quotes, jokes, and political and wordsmith articles. From Fall 2008, CG&A has been producing the By George Journal – and today it is supplemented with both daily Facebook and Twitter social media. This on-line Journal was preceded by an e-newsletter, By George, and, earlier, by a print newsletter called The Parliamentary Monitor.
  20. Published Works – The company has produced a dozen publications through the years. There are still six works in print available as e-books, including the most recent Epic Political Jokes and Quotes. There have been two popular By George Treasury publications that have compiled the best of the By George Journal. Current publications can be found on the Journal’s e-bookshelf.
  21. Two Cross-Province Moves – Over a glass of wine with good friends, Chris and Lisa made the decision in 2002 to pack up home and business and move across the province to the Niagara Region. Eleven years later, over a glass of wine with good friends, they made the decision to move back across the province to the Ottawa area. (They are pleased to note that GG&A lost no clients as a result of the moves.)
  22. Office Location – CG&A currently operates from an addition in Chris and Lisa’s century home in Almonte, Ontario – a small Ottawa Valley town that is 40 minutes from Parliament Hill. Point of interest: the house was built in 1875 for the first school master of Almonte High School, and rumour has it that the inventor of basketball, James Naismith, was tutored on the front porch.
  23. Healthy Living – Lisa George has always been interested in healthy living and a healthy diet. In 2015, she spent a year studying holistic nutrition at the Canadian School of Natural Nutrition and now has her Registered Holistic Nutritionist (RHN) designation. 
  24. Volunteering – Chris George has been involved in numerous volunteer initiatives through the years, but the most memorable ones are the Niagara Child Advocacy Centre where he served as Board Chair, and the Canadian Anaphylaxis Initiative, where he was a founding director.
  25. Love Persists – Chris and Lisa are proud to say that after 25 years of working together, living together, and raising kids together their love persists. The two planned their business in Fall 1993 and it was less than two years later that they married. It was another five years before the birth of their first son. (In many ways, one could say, CG&A Communications has been a labour of love.) 

Chris George provides reliable PR & GR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? Call 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

25 Significant Events of 1994

Here are twenty-five significant events of 1994 (25 years ago), the year CG&A Communications opened its doors.

  1. The world population reaches 5,670,000,000 (today it is 2 billion more)
  2. Jean Chretien is Prime Minister of Canada and Bob Rae Premier of Ontario
  3. OJ Simpson’s white Bronco is chased by police LIVE on international news
  4. TV series ER and Friends debuts
  5. Yahoo is founded
  6. Amazon is founded with a goal to change the way we shop
  7. PlayStation is first introduced
  8. The computer Zip Drive is introduced
  9. The Whitehouse launches its website
  10. Bill Clinton is US President; former US President Ronald Reagan announces he has Alzheimer’s
  11. First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis dies of cancer at age 64
  12. Nelson Mandela is inaugurated as South Africa President
  13. Rwandan genocide begins in Kigali, Rwanda
  14. The Channel Tunnel is opened to connect Britain with France
  15. Time Magazine’s Man of the Year is Pope John Paul II
  16. The George Foreman Grill is released
  17. Michael Jackson and Lisa Maria Presley are briefly married
  18. Singer/Songwriter Kurt Cobain commits suicide at age 27
  19. Canadian singer/songwriter Justin Bieber is born and comedian John Candy dies of a heart attack at age 43
  20. Song of the Year is “A Whole New World” (Theme From Aladdin)
  21. The Lion King movie is released, the biggest hit of the Disney Renaissance era
  22. The blockbuster movie of ‘94 is Forrest Gump
  23. Schlinder’s List wins a number of Oscars
  24. For the first time in history, chain bookstores outsell independent stores
  25. Brazil wins the World Cup, Dallas Cowboys win the Super Bowl championship, and NY Rangers win the Stanley Cup

Chris George provides reliable PR & GR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? Call 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

 

Top 3 Facebook posts of 2018

This week, By George counted down the top 10 posts to be highlighted in 2018 on the By George Facebook Page. Here are the top three selected from last year:

#3

#2

The #1 By George Facebook post of 2018…

 

Chris George provides reliable PR & GR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? Call 613-983-0801 @CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

New Year’s Toasts, Quotes and Verse

From the By George scribes at CG&A COMMUNICATIONS here’s to a happy and prosperous 2019! Cheers!

Our bons mots to cheer in the New Year.

NEW YEAR TOASTS

– Here’s to a bright New Year and a fond farewell to the old; here’s to things that are yet to come and to the memories that we hold.
– As we start the New Year, let’s get down on our knees to thank God we’re on our feet.
– May all your troubles in the coming year be as short as your New Year’s resolutions.
– May your troubles be less and your blessings be more, and nothing but happiness come through your door.
– May the road rise up before you, and the wind be always at your back, and the good Lord hold you in the hollow of his hands.
– May your neighbors respect you, trouble neglect you, the angels protect you, and heaven accept you.
– Dance as if no one were watching, sing as if no one were listening, and live every day as if it were your last.
– Welcome are those that are here; welcome all, and make good cheer; welcome all, another year.

NEW YEAR QUOTES

– No one ever regarded the First of January with indifference. It is that from which all date their time, and count upon what is left. It is the nativity of our common Adam. – Charles Lamb
– Many people look forward to the New Year for a new start on old habits.
– A New Year’s resolution is something that goes in one year and out the other.
– The new year begins in a snow-storm of white vows.– George William Curtis
– New Year’s Day is every man’s birthday. – Charles Lamb
– Each age has deemed the new-born year, the fittest time for festal cheer — Sir Walter Scott
– The merry year is born, like the bright berry from the naked thorn. — Hartley Coleridge
– Drop the last year into the silent limbo of the past. Let it go, for it was imperfect, and thank God that it can go. — Brooks Atkinson
– Time has no divisions to mark its passage, there is never a thunder-storm or blare of trumpets to announce the beginning of a new month or year. Even when a new century begins it is only we mortals who ring bells and fire off pistols. — Thomas Mann
– An optimist stays up until midnight to see the new year in; a pessimist stays up to make sure the old year leaves. – Bill Vaughan
– Youth is when you’re allowed to stay up late on New Year’s Eve – middle age is when you’re forced to. – Bill Vaughn

OOOny02

NEW YEAR VERSE

– We meet today
To thank Thee for the era done,
And Thee for the opening one.
– John Greenleaf Whittier

– Then sing, young hearts that are full of cheer,
With never a thought of sorrow;
The old goes out, but the glad young year
Comes merrily in tomorrow.
– Emily Miller

– New Year’s eve is like every other night; there is no pause in the march of the universe, no breathless moment of silence among created things that the passage of another twelve months may be noted; and yet no man has quite the same thoughts this evening that come with the coming of darkness on other nights. – Hamilton Wright Mabie

– Every man should be born again on the first day of January. Start with a fresh page. Take up one hole more in the buckle if necessary, or let down one, according to circumstances; but on the first of January let every man gird himself once more, with his face to the front, and take no interest in the things that were and are past. – Henry Ward Beecher

– Ring out the old, ring in the new,
Ring, happy bells, across the snow:
The year is going, let him go;
Ring out the false, ring in the true
– Alfred, Lord Tennyson, 1850

 

 

Chris George provides reliable PR & GR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? Call 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.