Committee Updates

Workshop & Retreat Committee

Our committee is hard at work planning this year's virtual Workshop & Retreat. It will be a two-day virtual event on September 22nd and 23rd. This year’s theme, Many Voices, One Community speaks to what’s at the heart of the greeting card and social expression industry. Each maker has their own story, vibe, and authentically creates content to put out in the marketplace  that’s our “Many Voices.” Yet, we are an amazing industry that comes together to celebrate (Louies), learn from each other (Workshop & Retreat, Town Hall), and collaborate (*Noted)  that’s our “One Community.” 

This year’s Workshop & Retreat will be an energizing and interactive 2-day virtual gathering filled with inspiring keynote speakers, informative sessions for growth-minded makers, and engaging breakout sessions. As with our previous Workshops & Retreats, we believe the range our audience of founders and makers at small independent publishers to the leaders of global companies with thousands of employees, bring a diverse perspective on the art and business of making greeting cards from across the country. 

Registration is open now! Register here.

Alexandra Burrow
Workshop & Retreat Committee Chair



Thinking of You Week Committee

Thinking of You Week will be here before you know it! We've already started promoting for this year, including having a card-writing station at *Noted and once again getting cards and posters for you to share with your wholesale accounts.
Ways to get involved:
  1. If you didn't grab your postcards and posters at *Noted, be sure to sign up to get them! They are free, we just ask that you cover shipping. Request yours here ASAP.
  2. We are putting together a giveaway package and we are looking for product donations. This year, we're not just looking for cards but if you have stickers, pencils, or other items that encourage writing and sending cards, and you're willing to donate a couple, email [email protected].
  3. The committee is also looking for 7 companies to take over the Thinking of You Week Instagram account later this summer! Sign up here.
Ashleigh Pritchard
Thinking of You Week Committee Chair

Noted Committee

After years of planning, we were finally able to get the community together in San Francisco! *Noted 2022 was such a great event that we have decided to go back to San Francisco for another year. Thank you to everyone in the community that made Noted 2022 a success and please join us as we plan for Noted 2023! 

Dave Phipps and John Smyth
Noted Committee Co-Chairs  


Louie Award Committee

Just about ten months until the next Louie Awards celebration!

But seriously, we’ve got a lot of work to prepare for next year’s awards and celebration so the Louie committee has transitioned to meeting year round every two weeks. 

We’re hard at work revamping both the submissions process as well as the judging. Next year’s judging will still include in person hubs and I can’t wait until I can start announcing them! I’m legitimately having a hard time deciding which location to volunteer to judge. If you’ve got ideas on how to streamline the submission process, organize a nation wide judging hub system, or just love to plan a good party, then you should definitely join us.  

We’re looking to make this year’s Louies even more exciting, fun, and rewarding. Every little bit helps so sign up, volunteer and I hope to see you on Zoom. 

Best summer wishes,  

Kate Murray
Louie Award Committee Chair



Postal Affairs Committee

Postal Reform is Done but the Work to Protect Greeting Card Mailers Continues

By Tom Shoaf, Chairman, Public Affairs for the Greeting Card Association

The enactment of postal reform legislation was a watershed moment and looks more remarkable by the day as we see Congress gripped with gridlock heading into the mid-term elections.  It has provided an incredible benefit for USPS finances but sadly one that USPS management is failing to use to make any effort to secure the health of its customer base.  The very day the bill was signed the USPS announced a large rate increase that will impact every mailer.  For greeting card senders, the price of a regular Forever Stamp will increase 2-cents to $.60.  The cost of an extra ounce will rise 4-cents to $.24 and the charge for a square card covered by the Butterfly Stamp will grow by a whopping 9-cents to $.39.  All of these increases go into effect on July 10, 2022, and it looks like more of this is on the way.

Early in May, Postmaster General Louis DeJoy put his customers on notice that they must prepare for “uncomfortable rate increases” for the foreseeable future and suggested that the price cap in the 2006 law was to blame.  This is a marked departure from his earlier statements that the USPS would operate on a break-even basis and ignores the massive benefit from the passage of the Postal Service Reform Act.  It is also a false interpretation of the 2006 law that created a price cap that USPS leadership fully supported and that provided significant pricing flexibility in exchange for a cap that would offer predictability and certainty for ratepayers who gave up the ability to challenge each increase. It also overlooks the failure of DeJoy’s predecessors to constrain costs to live within the price cap and the boon of billions in COVID relief and better-than-expected revenue performance coupled with major postal reform that has left the USPS in the strongest financial position in decades. 

If anyone should be feeling uncomfortable, it is USPS management who continues to fail to consider the health of its customers and perhaps Congress which having just passed the most significant postal legislation in more than a decade and only the third major reform bill in more than half a century, is seeing little to show for it from USPS leadership.  The GCA continues to work to secure a better outcome on rates. We have kept up the pressure on lawmakers and outreach from our industry has secured a new request from Sen. Jerry Moran (R-KS) for an on the record review of rate limits by the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) in the FY2023 FSGG appropriations bill that follows identical requests at the end of April by Representatives Gerry Connolly (D-VA), Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO), Sam Graves (R-MO), and Jake La Turner (R-KS).  Rep. Connolly is especially notable as he chairs the House subcommittee that oversees the USPS.

Then at the end of the month, the PRC announced a request for consultation from stakeholders on a study on the impact of USPS rate increases.  This is a direct consequence of efforts in the FY2022 appropriations cycle even as the final votes on postal reform were being taken to add a rate review requirement that was not able to be part of the reform bill.  Ultimately the Appropriations Committee elected to include non-binding report language.  While it is short of the full review we need, it opens the door for us to make the case to the PRC and Congress that the enactment of postal reform and the earlier pandemic grant and revenue surge justify a full review of rate limits.  With the August congressional recess and mid-term gridlock looming, June will be a critical month to keep the momentum going and GCA will stay on task until the ultimate goal of ensuring that postal reform translates into more affordable postage for greeting card mailers is reached.


Membership Committee

Membership Committee Chair