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Dec292017

Communications firm highlights Serena Williams, J.J. Watt as figures with most impactful messages of 2017

Phil Ellsworth/ESPN Images(NEW YORK) -- Communications training and consulting firm Decker Communications Inc. recently released its Top 10 Communications Moments of 2017 list, highlighting how some people made a major impact with their public messages over the past year.

Ben Decker, the firm's CEO, recently spoke with ABC News on how he formulated the list.

The #MeToo hashtag tops the list. Decker explains that the hashtag demonstrates how powerful risking one's livelihood and reputation can be and how impactful this movement became. He argues that the silence breakers are sending "a message of intolerance that will change the game... [and it] might even start a movement."

The rest of the list ranges from Pink's VMA acceptance speech to President Trump's first tweet while taking office. Decker also lists two athletes, Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt (No. 2) and tennis star Serena Williams (No. 7), as figures who shared a powerful, memorable message in 2017.

After the city of Houston was struck by Hurricane Harvey, Watt pleaded to the world to help the city in which he plays football. His appeal raised more than $37 million. Decker argues that Watt's plea--a video appeal on Twitter--was authentic and "less-scripted," yielding great results because it came across as "more real."

Decker pointed to Serena Williams' historic Australian Open victory speech as an example of "championing humble confidence."

Decker notes that Williams' first words were "words of gratitude" in her speech: she thanked her sister and did so with a big smile. Her reaction garnered a large cheer from those in the stands, and Decker explains Williams' "perfect blend of confidence and humility creates likability, attracts fans, enlists supporters and generates support."

Decker writes about each moment in length and what people can learn from them. The list can be found here.

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