FORT MYERS, Florida, June 5, 2019 — The American Advertising Federation-Southwest Florida (AAF-SWFL) will reactivate effective July 1, 2019. AAF-SWFL is a professional advertising club and political action organization devoted to the protection and promotion of advertising in Southwest Florida. Now accepting membership applications, AAF-SWFL is open to advertisers, agencies, media companies and advertising service providers in Lee, Collier, Charlotte, Glades and Hendry Counties. In addition, the relaunch officially brings back to the region the American Advertising Awards®, home of The ADDY®, which is the nation’s oldest and largest advertising competition honoring creative excellence.

Incoming President Tim Hennessy explained, “AAF is an important voice for our industry. It is charged with protecting advertising and showcasing great creative and talent. Southwest Florida needed a place at the table and now is the time.” Hennessy further expressed, “Because of the considerable growth in population, advertising spend, and new business growth, there was demand to reactivate the local club.”

“We are thrilled to have the collective, creative talent of the Southwest Florida market as part of the American Advertising Federation. To have received such a tremendous response from so many new members, agencies and more in this market is a direct reflection of their commitment to further the community and industry while reaping the benefits of membership within our organization,” said Dawn Reeves, AAF national vice president of member services. 

AAF-SWFL was first recognized by the State of Florida as a 501(c)6 in 1981. Southwest Florida ad industry veterans, all Past-Presidents, make up the new organization’s Board of Trustees. Wendy Payton will serve as Chair; other members include Christopher Spiro, Stephen Gray-Blancett, Gary Firestone, Kerri Goldsmith, Lee Susdorf, and Steve Hagewood.


Established in 1905, the American Advertising Federation (AAF), acts as the “Unifying Voice for Advertising.” Its membership is comprised of the nation’s leading advertisers, agencies, and media companies; a national network of local clubs representing 40,000 advertising professionals; and more than 200 college chapters with 5,000 student members.

AAF-SWFL is comprised of a passionate group of advertising industry leaders serving Lee, Collier, Charlotte, Hendry, and Glades Counties through community service, support, and education; industry advocacy; and knowledge sharing. AAF-SWFL hosts a number of programs and initiatives that support its membership through government relations, professional development, advertising education, mentorships, workplace diversity and inclusion, and recognition of excellence. To become a member, please email the AAF-SWFL membership team at or visit our website at .

Tim Hennessy, Incoming President | 239-671-7984

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *