DMEF Honors Allstate

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The Direct Marketing Educational Foundation said yesterday that its annual Corporate Leadership Award will be presented to Allstate Insurance Co.

The award recognizes Allstate's commitment, support and continuous development of community and national direct marketing education. Allstate is the nation's largest publicly held personal lines insurer, providing insurance products to more than 14 million households.

The award will be presented Oct. 19 at the foundation's annual awards dinner in San Francisco. The dinner and award presentation are part of The DMA's 85th Annual Conference & Exhibition.

Allstate's history with the foundation dates to 1979, when the company helped underwrite and teach the first DMEF Collegiate Institute. The institute is a direct marketing training program for undergraduate college students.

"At least 1,000 graduates of the Collegiate Institutes now have solid backgrounds in direct marketing, and many have chosen careers in our field," said Tom Stoneback, DMEF president.

Scheduled to accept the award for Allstate is Steve Groot, its president of direct distribution and e-commerce.

Allstate's role in direct marketing education includes recognizing that more students could be reached by "teaching the teachers" and encouraging programs for educators. Allstate co-sponsored the first DMEF Professors' Institute, designed to give educators the knowledge and resources to teach direct marketing.

Professors since have developed a number of courses in direct and interactive marketing. Allstate's leadership was crucial in raising the money to establish what has become a top-ranking master's degree program at Northwestern University. The Midwest leads the nation in the number of certificate, undergraduate and graduate degree programs in direct and interactive marketing.

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