July 22 2023 was a very special Day

July 22, was special because I turned 80. My family came in from Nashville, Atlanta, Minneapolis and New York. We started off with dinner at Chesapeake’s on Parkside drive, my favorite restaurant, then had a picnic in the mountains at a place the family calls “Ye Ole Swimming Hole”. It is called that because that is what my late father-in-law, H.R. Burns called it. It is where my two girls learned to swim and one of the first places that Ken took me when we were dating. The water was cold but everyone had a good time. Everyone is holding up napkins that say “making 80 look good”

On Saturday evening, my daughter, Joy, had planned a part at Copper Cellar on Kingston pk. It was wonderful and so good to celebrate with my family.

42 Years Is Not Nothing

Alcazar de Toledo Spain

When I was in Spain, I ate at a restaurant that had a sign in the window and on their napkins that read “25 anos..no son nade”. It means 25 years is not nothing. I thought about Burns and the 42 years it took to get where we are today and thought that this applies to Burns Mailing & Printing. 42 years is not nothing. It took hard work, great customers and good employees. Of course, Ken Burns, my late husband was the one who started it all and worked at it many years.

I look forward to the future and to where this journey will take us.


Happy 4th of July

Happy 4th of July everyone. Burns Mailing & Printing will be closed July 4th 2023 to enjoy the holidays with our families. One thing we are not celebrating is that on July 9th the postage is going up. A first class stamp with go from 063 to .66, so now is the time to get your Forever stamps. Happy Holliday!!


Although the Postmaster General keynote took place this morning, on Sunday, May 21, attendees were able to attend educational sessions to kickstart their NPF experience. Three USPS officers took the stage for the first session, “Direct Mail in a Digital World.” Tom Foti, VP, product solutions, shared that the direct mail advertising market is expected to grow from $41.7 billion in 2022 to $43.1 billion in 2023 and reach $43.7 billion in 2026, according to the Winterberry Group. He explained that this is because direct mail is holding steady when compared to other advertising channels.

It’s clear that marketers have confidence in direct mail as a channel since, according to the speakers, only 7% of marketers do not already integrate direct mail into their omnichannel strategy. However, the opportunity exists to innovate how direct mail is used.

Shavon Keys, VP, sales, complemented Foti’s statements by adding that one of the opportunities in direct mail exists in personalization. Brands can and should present their customers with relevant products and services “at the right time.”


Pizza Party Send Off For Amy Motsinger

Amy Motsinger and Phyllis Burns in the Mail Room

We had a pizza party send off for Amy at Burns. After 16 years Amy is going off to a new chapter in her life. Amy started as our bookkeeper and when the Mailing Manager’s job became available she asked to be put in that position. She had a lot to learn but because she is a quick learner she caught on fast.

We will miss her but her new position is just two doors down from us. Hope she visits frequently.

Promo Sales Tie Pre-Pandemic Record

Burns is a distributor for Advertising Specialty Institute (ASI). and I got some good news this morning. ASI is reporting that promotional product sales tie pre-pandemic record of $25.8 billion. It is reassuring that some things are coming back to normal. “ASI’s findings tell a remarkable comeback story, driven by the agility, resilience and ingenuity of distributor entrepreneurs who powered through a historic downtime to match record sales in record time”. “ASI research shows sales jumped 11.4% year over year, stoked by demand.”

Here at Burns, our promo sales has continued to grow and demand seems to be increasing. Over the last year, our Promotional Product Manager has set up a company store for a large health care company. We stock the items that they select and store them here until authorized employees go to the company store and order them, we then ship them to the various locations. We stock scrubs, backpacks, pens and various other items that this company has selected.

Our sales at Burns has mirrored the ASI trend, especially in promo items for teams, such as this logo and shirts for this team, the Spuds. Our graphics team can create any logo for your company. We offer apparel, embroidery on name brand shirts and much more. Give our Promotional Manager, Suzanne McCarter a call at 865 584-2265 or email her at suzanne@burnsmp.com.

Phyllis Burns, installed as President of The Knoxville Association of Executive Women For 2023

Alexia Georghiou passes the happy rock to Phyllis Burns at the transition meeting in December 2022. Alexia is the outgoing president.

I consider it an honor to have been selected as President of The Knoxville Association of Executive Women for 2023. Knoxville Association of Women Executive Women (KAWE) provides accomplished women in a variety of professions and businesses with opportunities for social and professional networking, professional support and leadership development. We meet each month at Cherokee Country Club, where we have an accomplished women speak to the group. I have made so many friends in this group and am inspired by their accomplishments.

Mail Theft and Check Fraud is Getting Worse

Recently my Home Owners Association put out an email warning residents of people stealing mail out of the boxes. Early morning walkers discovered mail in people’s yards. The United States Post Office warns that this type of thing is on the rise. Thieves look for flags up in a neighborhood because the mailbox may have out going checks. Thieves will then wash the stolen checks with a basic household chemical that can dissolve many kinds of ink. This allows them to make the check out to whomever they want, change the dollar amount and then forge the signature of the victim.

How do you keep your mail secure? The safest thing is to take your mail to a USPS office or put the mail in the box as close to the time of pick up as possible. The problem with that is the pick up time may not be consistent each day. If you do put mail in the mailbox for pickup, don’t put the flag up. Sign up for Informed Delivery with the USPS as you will know what to expect to be delivered that day. It is free and you can go to USPS.gov to sign up. If the mail that is on your Informed Delivery notice does not show up, report it to your local USPS office. If you are going to be gone use the USPS Hold Mail service and the USPS will hold your mail until the day that you want the mail to start back up. If you don’t do that you may want a trusted neighbor to get your mail while you are gone. Keep a close watch on your bank account to spot for possible fraud and finally when you make out your checks make sure that the line where you are writing the amount goes all the way across the line so that it makes it harder for them to change the amount.and make sure the numeric amount fill the box on the right side of the check.