Submissions for the 2023 PPAI Pyramid Award competition are officially open. The PPAI Pyramid Awards, which are sponsored by Pacesetter Awards Co., honor creative excellence in the promotional products industry as well as the outstanding promotions, creative campaigns and exceptional craftsmanship of Association members.

PBB Newslink is highlighting some of 2022’s Pyramid Award winners, sharing their stories and showing what goes into and comes with being a PPAI Pyramid Award winner. This issue spotlights Team Iowa (PPAI 456035, D2), which won a Gold Pyramid in the category of Internal Communication for their work with a producer of baking ingredients.

“I highly recommend everyone to [submit] at least once,” says Darrell McChesney, the Vice President of Sales for Team Iowa. “Why not try it? I don’t feel winning an award validates my success, but I do feel that it builds credibility with my client that the award program was with and with other clients that hear about our success, and if we decide to promote it with new prospective clients it tends to be a talking point with who we are in the industry.”

Team Iowa’s client would typically invite their employees to experience the company’s test kitchens during the holiday season. But the pandemic made such an event impossible, so Team Iowa created a custom box that would allow the company’s employees to have everything they needed to replicate the experience at home with their families.

Winning the award is something that McChesney says Team Iowa can be proud of and use as an example of what they’re capable of.

“We share the success of our Pyramids with all of our clients through our website and social media,” McChesney says. “For the client that we won the award with, we get that client a gift to commemorate the accomplishment and to thank them for allowing us to be their source for marketing collateral, promotional materials and apparel.”

According to McChesney, everything starts with the initial meeting with the client. Multiple meetings and continued collaboration lead to a point where ideas start to take form and “then you can see if the project fell into one of the [PPAI Pyramid] categories and go from there.”

The 2023 Pyramid Award competition will open for entries April 4 through May 14. For more information and to enter the competition, go to If you need assistance or have additional questions email