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June 21, 2010


By Greg Hazley

Edelman and Lucas Public Affairs have won a competitive bid to provide PR and PA counsel to the $118B California teachers’ pension system known as CalSTRS.

The second-largest public pension fund in the country issued an RFP in March to handle work like media relations, speakers’ bureau, internal communications and member outreach, as well as representation in Sacramento, where both of the winning firms have offices.

Lucas is led by Porter Novelli vet Donna Lucas, who was a deputy to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and his wife, Maria Shriver.

A two-year contract was up for grabs. While there is no incumbent for the work outlined, CalSTRS told O’Dwyer’s that Runyon, Saltzman & Einhorn has recently handled PR work.

Ogilvy PR teamed with Lincoln Crow Strategic Communications were the only other firm/combo pitching the account.

CalSTRS was roughed up in the so-called Great Recession with one estimate of its losses at more than $130 billion. Its portfolio in 2009 was pegged at $118 billion, down from $172B in ’07.

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