Creators Wanted Campaign Wins Top Advocacy Award

In a significant acknowledgment of its impact on shaping the future of manufacturing in the United States, the Creators Wanted campaign, an initiative of the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) and the Manufacturing Institute (MI), clinched the “Best Advocacy Campaign” Gold award at the 44th annual Salute to Association Excellence. The award, presented on February 27, 2024, by Association Trends, heralds the campaign as the foremost advocacy initiative by an association or nonprofit organization across the nation.

The Big Picture: The accolade comes in the wake of the Creators Wanted Tour’s notable success. Despite a pandemic-related delay in rolling out the immersive experience, the tour embarked on a mission to transform perceptions of modern manufacturing. Between October 2021 and its conclusion, the campaign made 20 stops and traveled more than 25,000 miles, making a historic impact by reshaping career outlooks and enhancing lives across the country.

By the Numbers:

  • Perception Shift: Research by MI and Deloitte revealed a significant rise in parental approval of manufacturing careers, growing from 27% to 40%.
  • Community Engagement: The campaign achieved over 1.5 million email signups from students and mentors, marking the creation of the largest network of its kind.
  • Active Participation: More than 13,000 students and 3,800 career mentors participated in the initiative.
  • Career Outlook Improvement: A striking 84% of participants reported more favorable views of manufacturing careers following their involvement.
  • Opportunity Expansion: now lists over 400,000 job and training opportunities, offering vast prospects for interested individuals.
  • Media Impact: The campaign generated $5.6 million in positive earned media, reflecting its widespread recognition and approval.

The Bottom Line: “The Creators Wanted campaign’s success not only underscores the critical role of manufacturing in the nation’s economy but also showcases the power of strategic advocacy in driving change and fostering a more positive image of manufacturing careers among the American public,” said Chrys Kefalas, Managing Vice President of Brand Strategy at the NAM and the creator of the initiative.

What’s Next: The tour’s work continues online with an interactive game, career resources and job listings at, as well as through continued initiatives to build the workforce of the future at the Manufacturing Institute, including MFG Day.