Cassie Nominations Announced!

By Kat Liendgens — Thursday, July 16th, 2015 at 11:00am

Cassie winners from 2014

The coveted Cassie Awards ceremony is one of the most aniticpated events at our annual Cascade User Conference, even for our staff! As with every award, being nominated is an honor in itself, which makes us happy to finally announce the nominees for each 2015 category.  

Voting and conference registration will close on Friday, August 14th at midnight. Anyone can vote so be sure to share the survey link with your colleagues. After all, you want to take home the trophy and be recognized for all your hard work, innovation, collaboration, and creativity.


Which new customer since the last user conference has been the quickest to roll out a new site using Cascade Server?

  • University of Missouri St.Louis: Extremly fast QuickStart to launch process.
  • Geneva College: In addition to implementation and migration from a CMS that was being sunset, Mike Duncan set up intricate news, podcast, image gallery, athletics, and calendar abilities in Cascade. Ultimately launching a few months after initial purchase, Mike also rebuilt Geneva College forms using Spectate and custom CSS.
  • Indiana Wesleyan University: Rolled out Cascade Server in less than 2 months!
  • University of Nebraska at Kearney: Started development of a new site in January and launched May 11
  • Westminster College Missouri: The College went live with Cascade within 60 days


Which Cascade Server customer has been the most helpful to other customers on the listserv, support site, social media, etc.?

  • Wing Ming Chan (SUNY Upstate Medical University): Wrote an entire Web Services library for Cascade. Then he created documentation, responded to web services questions, on both the listserv and support site, explaining how they could leverage the library to resolve their issues. Most helpful on the support forum, by a landslide!
  • Eric Epps (Sauk Valley Community College): Always seems very active on the listserv and willing to help!
  • Trevor Thomas (University of New Brunswick): Trevor continues to do a great job answering technical questions on listservs and discussion forums
  • Erik Espana (Union College): Erik has been very helpful answering questions and explaining how certain use cases were implemented at Union College.
  • Eric Palmer (University of Richmond): Eric has always responded to questions on the listserv, and he provided a wealth of information during the web governance talk.

HANNON HILL MVP - voted on exclusively by clients

Which Hannon Hill team member has been the most helpful in answering your questions, participating on the support forum, engaging on social media, and providing ridiculously good customer service?

  • Lisa McWilliams
  • Ryan Griffith
  • Penny Kronz
  • Bradley Wagner
  • Tim Reilly

BIGGEST FAN OF CASCADE SERVER - voted on exclusively by Hannon Hillers

Which individual client loves Cascade Server so much they've tried to get their mother to buy it? In other words, who is our biggest customer advocate?

  • Bill White (HCCMIS): Bill loves Cascade Server with all his heart. He always strives to do things that haven't been done before and has been a great promoter of the flexibility that Cascade offers.
  • Graham Lewis (Jacksonville State University): Loves Cascade so much he went to work for Hannon Hill 
  • Jayson Ferguson (Texas A&M Texarkana): Great advocate for Cascade Server and for Hannon Hill. He is very enthusiastic about the product and provides excellent feedback. 
  • Sarah Li Johnson (Rollins College): Sarah has been an outspoken advocate of Cascade Server for many years, so this is a life time achievement nomination.
  • Berta Roebuck (University of San Diego): Berta tells everybody about how much she loves the product and the customer service provided by Hannon Hill.


Which new Cascade Server client has been the quickest in getting up to speed in learning and using Cascade Server?

  • Salisbury University (Todd Smith and David Razin): With only a team of two and a 2 day training, they required no implementation assistance and built out their site in Cascade, including using code passthroughs.
  • Geneva College (Mike Duncan): Mike really wanted to learn how everything worked in Cascade Server. He even created custom diagrams and began making recommendations on interface improvements within his first weeks of using the system.
  • Indiana Wesleyan University (Evan Eikenberry and Nathan Childers): Evan and Nate got training on Cascade Server before IWU even purchased the CMS. They immediately picked it up, which allowed them to roll out their site in just a couple of months.
  • Nova Scotia Community College: leveraged the Hannon Hill QuickStart to get off the ground and implemented everything else on their own.


Which customer rolled out the best new site since the last conference? This can be based on the design, the content, the technical functionality, or any other subjective measure.


What is the most innovative thing that a client has implemented this year using Cascade Server?

  • Jennifer Goodwin Schaffer Library's Q & A color-coded cards with category toggle. Each Q & A card is created by a data definition block in which the Cascade user fills out specific information from a question / comment submitted by a student from either online or the physical bulletin board in the library building. The data fields are formatted with xslt to automatically assign the corresponding librarian's photo, the CSS style/color the card should be based on which category is chosen from a radio button, whether it is a popular question, and sorts all of the results in order by the date in which the question was asked. In some cases, the answer on the card involves referring to a specific website. We wanted the website link to be clickable and this wasn't possible just inputting the URL along within the answer field. We used separate smart fields asking the user "Have a link? How many?" and they can choose up to 3 links. You'll see we also created an asset factory to make creating a new Q & A card super simple for the user. Please refer to this screen shot to see the backend. Javascript is used for the toggle function between choosing the color coded categories. Certain CSS rules were applied via Cascade formatting and this is what's responsible for having the cards stagger nicely despite having varying heights and sizes. On top of it all, the page is responsive! At full width, there are 3 columns of Q & A cards, then 2 rows, and then down to one at a small screen size for easy readability on smaller devices.
  • Tarleton State University is in the process of completing a Degrees Site, an inventory of our degrees and programs which will include, in the final implementation, search functionality on the homepage and search box based on interest, job, degree name, location, etc. (with a summer implementation expected, currently seen below the slideshow on draft. Information for the search mechanism is pulled from Cascade Server via a customized XML file that collects custom metadata from each degree program page. Search results on the results page can be filtered to improve the shopping experience.
  • Chapman University used Cascade to create an admission tool they call "Discover Chapman". The tool is aimed at providing prospective students with a self-guided experience they map by answering a series of questions. The pay-off for their answers is content from Chapman videos, social media and blogs related to the answers the prospect selects. Within the site, the user can easily access any content previously selected for them through previous answer sets. The content is related to the prospective student on an individual level, right down to using geo-location technology to allow the student insight on how many other students from their area are already in attendance at Chapman. The geolocation tool is located here. The end result is meant to create an atmosphere where prospective students feel they're welcomed and there are other people attending "like them". The tool is responsive and built as a microsite of their larger website. 
  • University of Richmond: The University uses Cascade Server to interface with many different systems, such as Banner. They also completely replaced their printed course catalogs by managing all course information in Cascade Server. Other creative uses of the CMS include Faculty Profiles, expert directories, calendars, blogs, and email marketing.


Which Cascade Server-powered site has been the most successful? Success could be measured in search engine rankings, increased traffic, conversion rates for prospects, or any other quantifiable metric.

  • Emory news site: Clients are always asking about it from the Services team
  • Tarleton State University is in the process of completing a Degrees Site, an inventory of our degrees and programs which will include, in the final implementation, search functionality on the homepage and search box based on interest, job, degree name, location, etc. As the second phase of our responsive redesign, we have been highlighting each degree we gain content for on the slideshow of our homepage in order to encourage other departments to submit their content as well. We’ve included metadata to improve our SEO on each degree page before our search feature is fully implemented. We’ve already been receiving nearly double the page views on these new degree pages versus the old ones hidden deep on their departmental sites. Just having them on the homepage has garnered interest from various departments whom we are working with to pull more content in order to post them to the homepage as well. Our Provost has seen the work and the results, so she is asking us to post more of our underachieving degree programs. Example Degree Pages Currently Implemented: M.M. in Music EducationM.S. in Human Resources ManagementB.S. in Environmental ScienceEd.D. in Educational Leadership 
  • Chapman University: Chapman's websites continue to win industry awards, including 8 Higher Ed Marketing awards and 5 Certificates of Excellence from the 2015 American Inhouse Design Competition.
  • William Woods University- The University went through a complete rebranding while implementing Cascade Server, and to date, they've seen an increase of web traffic of over 120% and an increase of impressions of over 300%.


What organization has made the most extensive use of COPE (Create Once. Publish Everywhere.)? This could be reusing content across pages and sites in the system or reusing content across applications. What external applications have you integrated with Cascade Server? How are you making creative use of the API?

  • Washoe County: They received a publish trigger sending out their announcements through spectate in the most complex implementation I've ever seen. They also have a complex FAQ reuse system that weaves through multiple sites, as well as tying different site board meetings into a calendar merged with events. Lastly they have a php includes site implemented with a dozen includes that when published will change the content on all of their pages.
  • Tarleton State University is in the process of completing a Degrees Site, an inventory of our degrees and programs which will include, in the final implementation, search functionality on the homepage and search box based on interest, job, degree name, location, etc. (See draft here). We felt it was important to implement this site in the second phase of our responsive redesign as it will greatly affect what content we push out on our academic department and outreach program pages. Currently, we have multiple areas posting similar information about the same degrees, which means multiple web maintainers have to update the content and it makes for confusing search results for prospective students. We wanted to place the promotional content (the meat) for each degree program in one spot and link to that from all academic departments without worrying about duplication or incorrect information. Given the catalog is our main source of information for what is a degree we can promote, Web Services will sort through the requests for additional degrees or removal of degrees such that we are always in line with what we publish in the catalog. No more confusing information! Our full implementation for the entire inventory is expected to be at the end of the summer.
  • Syracuse University College of Arts and Sciences: The College is leveraging content on directory pages to populate faculty lists in department and academic areas of our websites, using Cascade's page chooser.
  • Jacksonville State University's Digital Signage: The University uses a system called Rise Vision, which is a free digital signage solution that can pull in webpages. A template was implemented in Cascade with different content options that non-technical users can choose. One region is shared to all signs and one region is department specific. There is also global weather and time. As a result of using Cascade compared to the other proposed solution, JSU was able to save over $60,000 and only had to pay the cost of the displays and the player.
  • Georgia Tech Scheller School of Business: The School made extensive use of COPE. In order to let content contributors focus on the creation of new content rather than content sharing or styling, the web team leveraged a tagging system. Whenever content contributors create or edit a page, they can check relevant tags and also add tags on an ad hoc basis. Note that these tags are not only used in Cascade Server, but also by other tools, such as Scheller’s CRM. Tags made for an easy integration with other systems.

Remember, voting closes Friday, August 14th at midnight so don't delay! Vote today!


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