The Consumer Relations Consortium (CRC) announced today that it will be sponsoring Consumer Action’s 2014 fundraising event, the Consumer Excellence Awards. This 43rd annual event will take place on the evening of Oct. 21 at Google’s new  Washington, DC headquarters.

The theme of this year’s Consumer Excellence Awards is “Train the Trainer.” Through the power of small group trainings, each year Consumer Action is able to personally interact with staff members of more than 550 community-based groups among the 7,000 it serves nationwide with free multilingual materials, training downloads and technical assistance. By training these key partners on how to use their extensive educational modules, they reach many thousands of low- and moderate-income consumers with information they can use to improve their finances and their lives. In this way, Consumer Action “teaches one to reach thousands.”

This year’s honorees are the National Endowment for Financial Education (NEFE), which provides financial education and practical information to people at all financial stages; Michelle Singletary, Washington Post “Color of Money” columnist, whose writings empower consumers to make wise money management choices, and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s Consumer Education and Engagement Division, which creates opportunities for consumers to make better choices about money so that they can reach their life goals.

The CRC was formed by a group of industry executives who believe that a reasonable and knowledgeable voice is needed to address both issues and solutions in the collection industry. We firmly believe that communication – “relations” – is the key to respectful resolution of a consumer’s financial situation. The CRC brings a unique approach to the marketplace by proactively engaging with consumer advocacy groups to bridge the gap of understanding and expectations often present between consumers and collectors.

“We’ve been actively engaged with a range of consumer groups for almost a year now and we have seen that when the setting allows people to really listen to each other, there is true common interest and reasonable solutions can be identified,” observed Stephanie Eidelman, a member of the CRC steering committee.

“We are happy to support the great efforts of organizations like Consumer Action, because consumers who are more educated about the process and their options are more likely to engage in resolving financial issues rather than ignoring them.”


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