Our History

The history of associations formed for the mutual benefit of printers probably begins with Ben Franklin in the early days of our nation. In Ohio, there were once five separate printing trade associations in the cities of Ohio: Cleveland, Cincinnati, Columbus, Dayton, and Toledo.

The genesis of a statewide organization may have been precipitated by the enactment of an Ohio state sales tax, in the early 1900’s. The Printing Industry of Ohio was formed in an effort to influence this sales tax legislation, and soon expanded into other areas of statewide interests, such as compensation surveys and an annual management conference. The five regional associations were affiliated with Printing Industry of Ohio, as well as the national trade association, The Printing Industries of America, Inc.

The first merger between Ohio’s regional Printing Associations occurred in the later 1980’s, when Dayton merged with Cincinnati to form Printing Industries Association of Southern Ohio. Shortly thereafter, the affiliates in Cleveland and Toledo joined forces as the Printing Industries Association of Northern Ohio.

There was much cooperation among the regional Associations, and the subject of consolidation frequently was discussed. In early 1990, the managers of the regional associations pursued the possibilities with their respective boards of directors. A “Reorganization Committee” was formed with representatives of the regional associations, chaired by the Printing Industry of Ohio.

This committee worked tirelessly for over three years, developing objectives, organizational structure, and by-laws and a constitution for a proposed, statewide Printing Association. The president of PIA, and printers with merger experience, made presentations at a combined meeting of all boards, PIO, and subsidiaries. A resolution recommending a merger was passed.

This recommendation was then presented to the entire membership of all of the associations, and was ratified. On January 1, 1998, PIANKO became the unified association for all printers and associate members in Ohio and Northern Kentucky. The three geographic regions of Ohio (North, Central, and South), are each guided by a local advisory council. Each has maintained its rich individual culture, while all enjoy the synergies of consolidation. The overall Association operates under the authority of a 20-25 member Board of Directors made up equally of members from the four regional advisory councils.

To maintain consistency with the national association, Printing Industries of America, the official name of the Association was changed to Printing Industries of Ohio • N.Kentucky in 2009. The Association continued to grow in 2019, expanding to include Michigan, establishing our fourth region. Our name was changed to Graphic Media Alliance, Inc. to encompass changes in the industry and our membership and keep us open to new opportunities. The name change and re-branding fell just ahead of our 100th year of operation in late February 2020.

The Association is now a strong partnership of graphic arts companies and suppliers located throughout Ohio, northern Kentucky and Michigan. The Association has dedicated itself to helping members improve and expand their businesses. A broad spectrum of specialized services, educational programs, individual member partnerships, and legislative monitoring provides member companies with the guidance to plan for and attain profitable growth.

 July 2020 

Leadership Conference

September 14, 2020

Golf Tournament

September 21, 2020
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