News from AAF-Akron

AAF-Akron Names Dennis Kleidon 2019 Silver Medal Winner

AAF-Akron Names Dennis Kleidon
2019 Silver Medal Winner

Honored for his outstanding lifetime contribution to the advertising field

The Akron chapter of the American Advertising Federation (AAF-Akron) is pleased to announce that Dennis Kleidon, founder and CEO of Kleidon & Associates, is the 2019 recipient of its distinguished Silver Medal award.

The American Advertising Federation (AAF) Silver Medal program was established in 1959 to recognize men and women who have made outstanding contributions to advertising and have been active in furthering the industry’s standards, creative excellence and responsibility in areas of social concern. This local award is the highest level of recognition given by the Akron chapter of AAF and is akin to a lifetime achievement award in advertising.

Kleidon’s support of the Akron advertising and marketing community goes back 50 years. From 1969 to the early 2000s, he served as a professor of art at The University of Akron, where he inspired students pursuing careers in the expanding multidisciplinary field of visual communication design. Kleidon also is responsible for launching the school’s graphic design program – the largest program within the Mary Schiller Myers School of Art today.

“Dennis is deserving of this award because of the undeniable impact he has had on graphic designers for decades in Akron,” said Kurt Kleidon, president of Kleidon & Associates, award nominator, and son of award winner. “Countless former students credit his influence as a teacher for opening their eyes to the possibilities of graphic design.”

In 1975, Dennis and Rose Kleidon founded Kleidon & Associates, an Akron-based marketing communications agency and public relations firm. Throughout his 43 years at the agency, Kleidon has guided the marketing efforts of thousands of organizations and businesses, from Holmes County Chamber of Tourism and Coleman Professional Services to Decker Manufacturing and Rockwood Door. What’s more, Kleidon is a past president of the AAF-Akron organization, and his support continues through his employees, many of which have served on AAF-Akron committees and in leadership roles within the local and national organization.

Since semi-retirement from Kleidon & Associates, Kleidon has renewed his focus on fine arts. He has participated in solo and group exhibitions, as well as was featured in the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation magazine in 2018. Kleidon’s recent Unleashed Series explores illusions of scale, perspective and color, grace and power. He gives depth to these textures through the application of 12 to 18 layers of paint.

The AAF-Akron special selection committee chose Kleidon during a closed session vote in late December 2018. Kleidon will be presented the Silver Medal at the AAF-Akron American Advertising Awards (formerly called the ADDYs) on Friday, Feb. 22, at the Akron Civic Theatre. Event tickets and details are available at

Kleidon joins a distinguished list of recently awarded AAF-Akron Silver Medal winners, including Janet VonGunten, retired business development representative at Veritiv Corp.; Doug Smiley, founding partner of former Smiley/Hanchulak Marketing Communications; and Jack DeLeo, retired president/CEO of Hitchcock Fleming & Associates, Inc. (hfa). For a complete list of winners, go to

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