Social Media Collaboration With Chancellor Wins Top CASE Award

Students take selfie with Chancellor May
Chancellor Gary S. May posed for numerous selfies with students at the Moonlight Breakfast in late 2021. (Gregory Urquiaga/UC Davis)

The Council for Advancement and Support of Education, or CASE, recently presented its highest Circle of Excellence award, a Grand Gold, to the Office of Strategic Communications for its role in “Building Trust in the Administration Using Social Media.”

UC Davis won 14 awards in the 2022 Circle of Excellence competition: one Grand Gold, four golds, three silvers and six bronze, for projects including new graphics at the Welcome Center, alumni relations initiatives, marketing and a podcast.

Screenshot of Instagram post with Chancellor May in dunk tank
From Chancellor May's Instagram, @Chancellor.May.

The Grand Gold came in the Digital Campaigns category for work done behind the scenes of Chancellor Gary S. May’s institutional accounts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, managed by Strategic Communications’ social media team. (Chancellor May also has a personal Facebook account, which he maintains himself.)

“Our team is humbled and honored that our work supporting Chancellor May’s use of social media to listen, engage and build real relationships with the campus community was recognized by CASE,” said Sallie Poggi, director of social media for Strategic Communications. “Our team takes great pride in bringing his vibrant personality to social media and connecting him with the community he serves.”

CASE reserves its Grand Gold awards for entries “that are considered game-changing,” and only one can be awarded in each category.

The judges praised the way Chancellor May’s accounts show him as a real human being, and the level of interaction from members of the Aggie community, especially students.

“The approach to sharing an insight into the day-to-day life of senior leadership and as a way to share important messages is fresh, creative, innovative, and certainly something that other institutions could be inspired by,” the judges wrote.

UC Davis won more Circle of Excellence awards than any other UC campus or the UC Office of the President. Only Boston University, with 15, won more awards than UC Davis.

UC Davis’ award-winning entries:

Grand Gold


Blue wall wrap graphics on the Conference Center


Cover of the School of Medicine’s Year in Review publication


  • The Admissions Blog in the category Digital Campaigns (student-oriented), by the Office of Strategic Communications
  • Outgrow the Expected” Digital Ad Campaign in the category Marketing: Advertising (online), by the Office of Strategic Communications
  • UC Davis Homesite in the category Marketing: Websites (institutional), by the Office of Strategic Communications
  • In Greater Focus in the category Design (publications), by the Office of Development and Alumni Relations
  • School of Medicine Year in Review in the category Publications: President's Reports and Annual Reports, by the School of Medicine Dean’s Office and UC Davis Health Public Affairs and Marketing
  • Alumni 101 in the category Student Engagement, by the Office of Development and Alumni Relations

Media Resources

Cody Kitaura is a News and Media Relations Specialist in the Office of Strategic Communications, and can be reached by email or at 530-752-1932.

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