2018 Territory Days
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Sky Sox mascot Sox the Fox gives out high fives at Territory Days in Old Colorado City on Saturday, May 26, 2018. (Lisa Walton, The Gazette)

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Samantha Briggs, director of communication for Widefield School District 3, is being recognized Wednesday by the Pikes Peak Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America for “extraordinary public relations performance.”

Briggs is receiving a “Caught in the Act” award, which acknowledges exceptional professionals in the execution of day-to-day public relations duties, at the chapter’s luncheon Wednesday in Colorado Springs.

After the Feb. 14 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., Briggs recognized that local parents and students had concerns about school safety and needed information and reassurance.

So, she took the initiative to plan, coordinate and promote a school safety town hall with KOAA News 5, local school districts and local law enforcement, according to the association.

Hosted by KOAA-TV and the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, the March 12 “School Threats: a Community Action Plan” event attracted an in-person audience of 200 and was live-streamed to thousands of online participants.

Briggs was nominated by Allison Cortez, who works as Academy School District 20’s communications director, who said, “Sam was proactive in recognizing a communication need and finding a unique way to meet it by leveraging the power of her communications network, relationships and contacts.”

Following the town hall, smaller events have been held at schools and in local communities, allowing each school and school district to build off of that event’s momentum and lessons.

Briggs has worked for Widefield School District 3 for five years. Prior to that, she spent eight years as a television reporter and anchor for TV news stations, including KREX in Grand Junction and KRDO in Colorado Springs.

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