January would not be complete without our annual PR Services & Products Buyer’s Guide and special issue on Crisis Communications. We examine 2017’s biggest winners and as well as the top PR blunders of the past year.
O'Dwyer's magazine, now in its 32nd year, is the #1 publication for PR and marketing communications pros.
Profiles of Crisis Communications Firms:
5W Public Relations
The Helmsley Building
230 Park Ave., 32nd Flr.
New York, NY 10169
Ronn Torossian, Founder & CEO
5W Public Relations, a Top 20 Public Relations firm based in New York City, specializes in high profile issues and crisis management for companies and individuals faced with the unanticipated challenges in the marketplace.
5WPR has worked across the spectrum of crisis issues from IPO’s to business and personal litigation, from product recalls and trade disputes to environmental problems, warranty and product liability claims, executive related scandals, misinformed publics, sexual harassment and sexual discrimination cases, labor issues, criminal indictments and a variety of sensitive domestic and international political issues.
In addition to traditional crisis communications, we are also skilled at navigating a digital crisis. Leveraging our experience in Online Reputation Management, we can craft a comprehensive SEO rich program to positively impact your reputation to quickly mitigate a negative story’s impact on Google search results.
Our crisis clients trust our expert counsel, as well as the confidential way in which we handle their communications.
40 Gold Street
San Francisco, CA 94133
Matthew Della Croce, Partner and President, Corporate + Europe
Our clients’ reputations are our first priority. The landscape for issues management and crisis communications has changed dramatically, driven by an always-on news cycle and the ability for information — and misinformation — to be spread globally within minutes.
When a crisis hits, Allison+Partners is the team you want in your corner. Our senior crisis team brings an integrated approach to helping achieve successful outcomes. We’ve managed crises and reputational issues for some of the world’s largest companies and most high-profile individuals. From high-visibility litigation, product recalls and labor issues to C-suite changeovers, airline disasters and corporate malfeasance, our experienced team has supported nearly every industry in nearly every geographic location.
With 29 offices around the world, our integrated crisis team is available 24/7 to ensure our clients have the support they need, when they need it most.
Bishoff Communications LLC
75 Second Avenue, Suite 605
Needham, MA 02494
Janey Bishoff, CEO
Bishoff Communications LLC is a highly respected and recognized crisis resource with more than 25 years of successfully managing a wide variety of crises and negative situations. These have ranged from high profile accidents, crimes, and fatalities to litigation, lay-offs, data breaches, food safety, recalls, sexual harassment, leadership termination, sexual abuse, bankruptcies and dozens of other negative incidents and circumstances which threatened the organization’s reputation, financial value, or existence.
Today’s world demands nearly instantaneous action. We move quickly to provide both strategic counsel and hands-on assistance to mitigate, contain, or ameliorate a negative situation and protect reputation.
Working in close collaboration with our clients and their professional advisors — including legal, financial, and others, we are available to our clients twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.
Our crisis management expertise also enables us to provide all of our clients with a valuable perspective on both pro-active public relations and risk management and readiness planning. Preparation for a negative, unexpected situation is not only desirable, but far more cost-effective. We offer audits of existing plans and collaborate with our clients and their advisors to both develop and enhance comprehensive plans.
Blink OnDemand Crisis PR™ Planning Software
210 E. Pearson, Suite 4A
Chicago, IL 60611
Blink OnDemand Crisis PR™ is the world’s first — and only —crisis PR planning and response software. It’s an OnDemand, cloud-based system that enables companies to create and implement a crisis plan 24/7, at their own pace, with their own people, from anywhere with an Internet connection, at a fraction of traditional agency pricing.
Designed so even communications novices can follow the model, complete templates and end up with a comprehensive crisis PR plan. The 9 Step crisis response system coaches users through the plan, explaining the why, what and how of crisis planning and response with plenty of examples. The software includes features like an Hour One Checklist, threat assessment tool, and minute-by-minute agenda for a team training workshop.
Boardroom Communications Inc.
1776 N. Pine Island Road, Suite 320
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33322
Orlando-Tampa-Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach-Aspen
Don Silver, Chief Operating Officer
Todd Templin, Executive Vice President
Crisis Management: Preventing and Preparing for Potential Problems
BoardroomPR is one of Florida’s top PR agencies offering statewide coverage. The firm’s experienced staff of public relations and crisis management professionals routinely handle high-profile crisis projects and public affairs campaigns each year. Examples include: investigations, hostile takeovers, litigation, product recalls, criminal charges, safety compliance issues, accidental deaths, project approvals, bid objections and legislative campaigns.
Whether you’re pre-developing a crisis communications plan or responding to an urgent threat, Boardroom’s trusted and respected team will help you evaluate the situation, mitigate the risks and deal with your most important audiences, including media, social media, employees, stakeholders, customers, government and others. We immediately consult with your executives to assess the situation and develop an appropriate strategy and plan. Out team monitors traditional media, blogs and social networking sites and handles all inquiries. Call or email us if you are faced with a situation where a capable, seasoned crisis management team can help guide you to a satisfactory resolution.
150 Post Street, #620
San Francisco, CA 94108
Consistently recognized as one of the nation’s top public relations firms, Fineman PR — founded in 1988 and headquartered in San Francisco — specializes in crisis communications, brand messaging, community relations and multicultural communications.
Fineman PR’s high-profile crisis communications work is nationally renowned. In today’s fast-paced culture of instant media exposure, online defamation and quick-draw lawsuits, the agency’s battle-tested team and strategic resourcefulness guide clients through rough waters. Agency President Michael Fineman is ranked among the nation’s top crisis counselors.
Fineman PR works extensively on reputation building, crisis preparedness, crisis communications and reputation recovery with a wide range of organizations, from law firms, schools and government agencies to food companies, Fortune 500 corporations and startups.
Fineman PR’s successful, high-profile crisis work includes helping our client respond to and recover from a national public health crisis, managing consequences from charges of sexual harassment and discrimination; initiating client-community relations after a tragic fire; putting a juice company on firm public footing immediately after an E. coli crisis; setting the record straight after media slander of packaged salads; addressing labor disputes; and working for so many other clients whose names were successfully kept out of the news.
FTI Consulting Strategic Communications
88 Pine Street, 32nd Floor
New York, NY 10005
Mark McCall, Global Segment Leader
Crises and issues create highly volatile communications challenges for management teams whose principal focus must be dedicated to marshaling an effective operational and financial response. At such moments, FTI Consulting’s crisis communications experts help our clients prevent or minimize exposure, maintain license to operate, and protect enterprise value.
Our approach is grounded in foundational message development and disciplined and nimble scenario-based planning — drawing on our prior experience to ensure various contingencies and potential outcomes are analyzed to ensure coordinated and consistent communications. Our broad-ranging experience includes litigation, disaster response, activist defense, labor relations, accounting irregularities and financial disclosures, leadership transitions (planned and unplanned), regulatory/legislative scrutiny, product recalls, and privacy/data issues.
50 Public Square, Suite 3200
Cleveland, Ohio 44113
Bruce Hennes, Managing Partner
Nora Jacobs, APR
Howard Fencl, APR
Stephanie York, J.D.
Hennes Communications is one of the few firms in the U.S. focused exclusively on crisis management and crisis communications. Founded in 1989, the firm serves public and private companies, educational institutions, healthcare providers, government agencies and nonprofit organizations “on trial” in the Court of Public Opinion. Ancillary services include crisis communication plans and drills, litigation communications and media training.
Bruce Hennes, recently named one of 50 “Game-Changers of PR for 2017” by PRNews, is one of the region’s best-known crisis specialists and an in-demand speaker at law firms, bar and trade associations and county emergency management agencies on the subject of crisis management. Nora Jacobs, a three-time Silver Anvil winner, has decades of agency experience creating and carrying out strategic communications plans for clients making consumer and industrial products, and those in healthcare, biotechnology, education, chemicals and plastics. Thom Fladung was managing editor of The Plain Dealer, the Detroit Free Press, Akron Beacon Journal and St. Paul Pioneer Press. Howard Fencl has significant experience in crisis communications, media training and digital distribution of news, having spent many years managing broadcast newsrooms. And Stephanie York was assistant law director and chief communications officer for the City of Akron, Ohio before joining the firm.
For six consecutive years, Hennes Communications won the Gold Award from the Public Relations Society of America — Greater Cleveland Chapter for its crisis-related work and its Crisis Management Today newsletter. The crisis work included helping a public health system navigate criminal prosecution of a member of its management team and a program for an Australian forestry company facing sensational media reports about threats to wildlife caused by its logging operations. In 2009, Hennes Paynter won the PRSA Cleveland Chapter’s coveted “Best of Show” award for its work with another agency on the national peanut butter recall and in 2013, the firm again won “Best of Show” for its response when a passenger ferry accident in New York City’s Financial District injured more than 60 passengers. In 2017, the firm shared two Silver Anvils with other agencies for their crisis work on behalf of the non-partisan Host Committee for the 2016 Republican Convention held in Cleveland.
685 Third Ave., 2nd Floor
New York, NY 10017
Thomas Ryan, CEO
Don Duffy, President
Established in 1998, ICR partners with companies to develop and execute strategic communications programs and advisory services that achieve business goals, build credibility, and enhance the long-term value of the enterprise. The firm’s highly differentiated service model, which pairs capital markets veterans with senior communications professionals, brings deep sector knowledge and relationships to clients in more than 20 industries. Today, ICR is one of the largest and most experienced independent advisory firms in the world maintaining offices in Boston, Connecticut, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Hong Kong and Beijing.
Clients: Boot Barn, Chunghwa Telecom Co. Ltd., Cobalt Int’l Energy, Dave & Busters, FleetCor Technologies, Inc., Fossil, Inc., Freshpet, Genuine Parts Co., Gildan Activewear, Harman, Herbalife Ltd., HubSpot, lAC, Jarden Corp., Lazard Freres & Co. LLC, La Quinta Holdings, Inc., Legg Mason & Co. LLC, lululemon athletica, Mobileye, Michaels, Michael Kors, New Relic, Ocwen Financial Corp., Pandora Media Inc., Paramount Group Inc., Planet Fitness Inc., Red Hat Inc., Shake Shack, Starwood Property Trust, VF Corp., Williams-Sonoma, Inc., Wingstop, Workiva and Zoës Kitchen.
Joele Frank, Wilkinson Brimmer Katcher
622 Third Avenue, 36th Floor
New York, NY 10017
One Sansome Street, Suite 2800
San Francisco, CA 94104
Joele Frank, Managing Partner
Matthew Sherman, President
When an unexpected, out-of-the-ordinary event threatens a company’s operations or reputation, a fast and intensive response is essential to prevent or mitigate serious damage. We have extensive experience in delivering unique solutions for unique situations, including earnings surprises; short attacks; accounting irregularities; regulatory actions and government investigations; management changes; facility closures and workforce reductions; labor disputes; facility disasters and workplace violence; data security breaches; sensitive workplace issues, including accusations of discrimination and sexual misconduct; consumer boycotts; and product recalls.
We are immediately available to our clients during all phases of crisis planning and response. And when a client is in the spotlight, we help determine how best to control the dialogue, take the initiative, fix what’s broken and gather support. We give our clients the training and tools necessary to hit the ground running when a crisis strikes.
437 Madison Avenue, 37th Floor
New York, NY 10022
James Fingeroth, Chairman
Jeremy Fielding, President & CEO
Many companies or institutions will confront unforeseen events that could alter their future, pose unprecedented challenges and potentially set them on a new course that will redefine the organization and significantly impact key stakeholders. What is required in these circumstances is an expert, experienced strategic communications partner to work with senior management and a Board of Directors to: articulate a new business strategy and a vision for success; explain an enterprise-transforming event and its significance; successfully navigate complex business challenges or crises; build trust and support among key stakeholders; and strengthen the organization’s credibility, reputation, and brand.
Successful execution requires superior counsel, judgment and expertise, broad experience, and a comprehensive, effective and intelligent approach for communicating to all stakeholders. For over 45 years companies and institutions around the world have selected and relied on Kekst to provide that counsel and support across a wide range of disciplines including: corporate & financial communications; specialized investor relations; mergers & acquisitions, shareholders activism & corporate governance; IPOs & spinoffs; crisis communications; bankruptcy and restructurings; and litigation and regulatory support.
1460 Broadway, 1st Floor
New York, NY 10036
Los Angeles Headquarters
Lindsey Carnett, CEO & President
Natalie Rucker, Director of Business Development
Based in their NYC office, Frank Tortorici leads Marketing Maven’s business communications practice.
Bicoastal integrated marketing and strategic communications firm, Marketing Maven, focuses on media relations, investor relations, issues management, crisis communications and public affairs. We are in constant communication with key financial media, analysts, shareholders and influencers on behalf of our clients. From traditional earned media to new forms of social engagement, Marketing Maven drives conversations while maintaining a positive reputation for clients by delivering newsworthy messages to key audiences, using a range of platforms.
From high profile litigation, bankruptcy or restructuring announcements, analyst calls with media, public affairs issues with utilities companies, law enforcement association communications, mergers and acquisition stakeholder communications to reputation management for educational institutions, our strategic execution is core to the success of our campaigns for financial and professional services clients.
Marketing Maven is 8(a) certified by the U.S. Small Business Administration, Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE), has WOSB status with the government and DBE, CUCP and CPUC certification.
31420 Northwestern Hwy., #100
Farmington Hills, MI 48334
248/855-6777 Ext. 105
Michael Layne, Managing Partner
Marx Layne professionals have years of experience handling crisis communications issues. We are frequently retained by leading national law firms to help them guide their clients through the media frenzy that often erupts during a company’s most trying times.
Critical issues from industrial accidents, death on the premises, food-borne illness and environmental pollution, to boycotts, strikes and corporate fraud have all been expertly handled by our senior executives.
During crisis events, Marx Layne crisis counselors are oncall 24/7/365. Our team members are experienced in working with legal advisors, police departments and municipalities while keeping company executives apprised at all times of the crisis situation as it unfolds.
We also train company spokespersons in the development of key speaking points and delivery of messaging. Using the latest media technology, our executives tap into the power of social media to monitor sentiment and provide direction on how to protect and manage the client’s brand. Additionally, we understand how to leverage social media tools as part of an arsenal to respond rapidly, whether the crisis occurs in Detroit or in any other region of the nation.
From privately held entities to Fortune 500 companies, Marx Layne has a 20-year history of successfully developing proactive, comprehensive crisis communications plans that are in place before, during and after a crisis.
Montieth & Company
12 East 49th Street, 11th Floor
New York, NY 10017
Montieth M. Illingworth, President
Bob Schulman, Senior Advisor
Howard Tom, Senior Advisor
Peter Firestein, Senior Advisor
Montieth & Company is a global specialist communications consultancy.
With offices in New York, London, and Frankfurt, and named to the New York Observer’s 2017 Power 50 PR list, the firm provides counsel on marketing communications, corporate and financial communications, investor relations, issues and crisis management, and litigation, civil and criminal.
The firm’s clients represent an array of industry sectors across multiple global markets and jurisdictions. Montieth & Company has advised on a wide variety of matters, including securities fraud, Nazi-looted art, minority shareholder activism, CEO transitions, restructurings, regulatory and law enforcement issues and actions, investigations, employment matters, and M&A.
We provide a full set of crisis management solutions, including threat assessment, strategic planning, stakeholder communications and media relations. With our model of working across borders, sectors, and media markets, our executives speak five languages, and help our clients find important and innovative ways to meet their biggest challenges.
304 Park Avenue South
New York, NY 10010
Carreen Winters, Chairman of Reputation and Chief Strategy Officer
Richard Tauberman, Senior Vice President
When trouble befalls an organization, reputations can be made or broken in minutes. A company can protect or enhance its standing with its key stakeholders, or it can cause damage that is widespread and long-lasting. Clients across industries and around the globe rely on the exceptional depth of expertise and experience at MWWPR. We help clients with vulnerability assessments, crisis plan development/updates, crisis simulation/media training, communications counsel and on-site support during incidents. Just as important, our team manages the aftermath of a crisis to restore trust and reputation in a company.
Using MWWPR’s proprietary Crisis Action Protocol, we thoroughly and meticulously prepare for any potential crisis. Our planning carefully considers the impact on all audiences including customers, employees, vendors, shareholders, and more. When a crisis hits, we can react immediately with an omnichannel approach that addresses the diverse needs of each critical constituency, helping you when you need it most.
1101 West River Pkwy, Suite 400 (Headquarters)
Minneapolis, MN 55415
Brian Ellis, Executive Vice President
Bob McNaney, Senior Vice President
Padilla is a top 10 independent public relations and communications company comprised of 240 employee-owners. Padilla builds, grows and protects brands worldwide by creating purposeful connections with the people who matter most through public relations, advertising, digital and social marketing, investor relations and brand strategy. Padilla includes the brand consultancy of Joe Smith, the food and nutrition experts at Food-Minds and the research authorities at SMS.
The worst time to plan for a crisis is during one. When faced with an emergency, the right response is crucial to help protect your reputation — and often, your bottom line. Padilla’s highly experienced Crisis + Critical Issues team is prepared to navigate any worst-case scenario. And if trouble strikes, we’re just a phone call away. We help tell clients’ stories clearly, coherently and credibly, whether they are speaking to the media, employees, shareholders or government officials.
We understand the urgency of a crisis. That’s why you can contact the Padilla Crisis + Critical Issues team anytime — day, night and weekends — by calling 1-877.PR.ER.911.
Is your company or organization prepared to manage a crisis? Padilla’s Crisis IQ quiz helps to answer that question. This tool is based on proven crisis-response methodologies. Want to know more? Visit PadillaCo.com/Crisis-Critical-Issues.
470 Park Ave. South
4th flr. North
New York, NY 10016
Steve Cody, Co-CEO and Co-Founder
Ed Moed, Co-CEO & Co-Founder
Ted Birkhahn, Partner & President
Ann Barlow, Partner & President, West Coast
Deborah Brown, Partner & Managing director
Jacqueline Kolek, Partner & Managing director
Maggie O’Neill, Partner & Managing Director
Mike Friedin, Chief Digital Officer
Peppercomm is an award-winning strategic, integrated communications and marketing agency headquartered in New York City with offices in San Francisco and London. The firm connects brands, messages and people through -data-driven insights, cross-channel communications and brilliant customer experience. Employing an omni-channel approach, the company uses customer insights to determine the right mix of tools and platforms to help clients reach, engage and influence customers along their path to purchase.
Founded in 1995, Peppercomm has received numerous accolades, including The Holmes Report’s North American Corporate/B2B Agency of the Year and Bulldog Reporter’s Midsized Agency of the Year. The agency has been listed as one of Fortune’s 10 Best Workplaces in Advertising and Marketing, 100 Best Workplaces for Women, 50 Best Small and Medium Workplaces and 50 Best Workplaces for New College Grads.
Services include Branding, Content Strategy & Development, Creative Services, Crisis Management, Digital Solutions, Experiential, Insights & Strategy, Licensing, Public Relations & Social Media and Research & Measurement.
For more information, visit www.peppercomm.com.
Public Communications Inc.
One East Wacker Drive, 24th Floor
Chicago, IL 60601
Jill Allread, APR, CEO
Pamela Oettel, CFO & COO
Craig Pugh, President
Protesters are attracting media crews outside your gates, your board chair has been accused of harassment, a new study questions you company’s miracle drug, you have been hacked, business is halted due to a cyber security incident. Each situation could be your organization’s undoing.
With experienced, senior counsel Public Communications Inc. helps clients manage crises online, in the news, on the air and in the C-suite. The core principles remain the same. Assess the situation. Communicate clearly and honestly. And do it quickly to protect the client’s reputation. Those first few hours can make the difference between a crisis that is contained and soon forgotten, and one that becomes part of your media boilerplate. Our counselors bring strategies and calm. And we continually adapt crisis management principles to a world in which good news and bad, fact and rumor, travel at lightning speed, disseminated by anyone with a laptop, cell phone, blog or Twitter account.
We are always on call to counsel clients in crisis. And, when things are calm, we help our clients avoid, anticipate and prepare, so that if a crisis does strike, it becomes the type that is soon forgotten. We can help. Let’s talk.
Sachs Media Group
114 S. Duval St.
Tallahassee, FL 32301
Michelle Ubben, Sachs Media Group Partner and President; and Ron Sachs, Sachs Media Group Founder and CEO.
Sachs Media Group is renowned for helping clients successfully navigate disaster. The key priority is to positively respond to a crisis — preventing inaction, or the wrong action, from becoming a “crisis within a crisis.”
Calm, candor and class — our choice to enhance, not just maintain, a client’s reputation. We take a client from defense to offense —leading the way to higher ground, where a foundation for the future is established.
Our senior team comes from the ranks of the media and government, giving the firm outstanding relationships to draw upon and excellent news judgment in crafting effective messages. We are skilled in devising and executing quick response plans to help our clients avoid crisis — but to effectively handle them when they arise.
The difference is results at Sachs Media Group.
Sard Verbinnen & Co (SVC)
630 Third Ave., 9th fl.
New York, NY 10017
George Sard, Chairman & CEO
Paul Verbinnen, President
How companies prepare for and manage through crises makes the difference between long-term success and failure. We apply our deep experience, global platform and full breadth of communications services to help companies anticipate and navigate all types of crises, including cyber-attacks, natural disasters, accusations of misconduct, regulatory actions, government investigations, labor disputes, workplace disasters and violence, product recalls, management terminations, and more.
With 25 years of experience, SVC is the leading strategic crisis communications consulting firm. We have counselled and supported hundreds of companies and high profile individuals through crises around the world. From high caliber media and investor relations to cutting-edge digital communications and research-based reputation assessment, we customize our services to each situation and provide 24/7 support for clients globally.
Office Locations: New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles, London, Houston, Hong Kong
Member of the Worldcom Public Relations Group
2 Oliver Street, Suite 402
Boston, MA 02109
Joan Schneider, Chief Executive Officer & Founder
Phil Pennellatore, President
A hallmark of Schneider Associates’ 36-year history is our ability to counsel companies and individuals during a crisis situation. While we hope our clients never face a crisis, we stand ready when a major issue threatens a company’s growth or reputation.
SA has been relied upon to handle communications for everything from white-collar crime, product recalls, fires, accidental on-the-job deaths, securities fraud, sexual harassment, legal issues, social or digital media issues, community relations, website hacks, user data breaches, organized labor issues, and other business situations requiring a prompt response. Through the years, we have been successful in averting crises through preparation and creating solid, actionable plans prior to any crisis occurring.
Schneider Associates is a full-service public relations and integrated marketing communications agency specializing in Launch Public Relations®, a proprietary method of launching new and revitalizing iconic products, services, companies, institutions and communities to build awareness, excitement, and sales. Visit www.schneiderpr.com.
Sitrick And Company
Los Angeles 310/788-2850
New York 212/573-6100
San Francisco 415/369-8470
Washington, D.C. 443/977-7215
Michael S. Sitrick, Chairman and CEO
Tom Becker, Head, New York Office
Mark Veverka, Head, San Francisco Office
Lt. Gen. H. Steven Blum, (USA Ret.), Managing Director and Practice Lead, Washington, DC
Sitrick And Company is widely regarded as one of North America’s leading strategic and crisis communications firms. While it has substantial practices in corporate, financial, transactional, reputational and crisis communications, Sitrick is best known for representing clients facing sensitive issues, including reputation management, complex litigation, problems emanating from short-sellers, mergers and acquisitions and restructurings.
The New York Times called Sitrick “The City’s Most Prominent Crisis Management Firm.” BusinessWeek said, the “firm is known for going atomic on opponents, using ‘truth squads,’ ‘wheel-of-pain’ tactics and high-profile journalists (who write profiles).” The general counsel of a major publicly-traded company wrote simply in an email, “You saved the company, literally.” The firm’s senior executives include former reporters, editors and correspondents from such media organizations as Barron’s, Bloomberg, CBS Television, CNBC, Forbes, Fox Business News, NBC Television, Los Angeles Times, New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle and Wall Street Journal.
Please visit www.sitrick.com for more information on the firm including a list of current and former clients for which its work has been public.
Sloane & Company
7 Times Square, 17th flr.
New York, NY 10036
Whit Clay, Darren Brandt,
John Hartz, Josh Hochberg, Nevin Reilly, Dan Zacchei, Mng. Dirs.
Sloane & Company is a leading strategic communications firm that provides a range of crisis-focused services including: corporate and financial public relations; transaction support; strategic insights; messaging, analytics and measurement; public affairs; litigation support; and investor relations — to public and private companies as well as investors, associations and individuals.
We work rapidly to understand and assess the issues, provide strategic advice and counsel and act as an extension of communications teams to implement tactics that mitigate reputational damage. Our firm is recognized for our ability to determine the business risks to our clients and deliver candid advice to management teams, boards, executives and organizations. We work as partners, providing additional minds, arms and legs to manage crises through their ultimate resolution or conclusion.
Beyond specific crisis situations, we develop effective and actionable contingency plans in close coordination with a client’s legal, financial, marketing, communications and government relations/lobbying advisors. Our approach provides best-practices and enhances client procedures and appropriate training of personnel before and during a crisis. When the unexpected happens, we actively manage and support implementing the appropriate communications tactics. After the crisis subsides, we help clients restore their credibility and reputations in the marketplace.
Our experience in crisis situations includes handling the communications elements around class action litigation, management team and board issues, shareholder lawsuits, shareholder activism, regulatory actions, downsizings, restructurings, bankruptcies, employee issues, labor disputes, consumer boycotts as well as physical crises such as natural disasters.
Solomon McCown & Company, Inc.
177 Milk Street, Suite 610
Boston, MA 02109
205 Hudson Street
New York, NY 10013
Helene Solomon, CEO
Ashley McCown, President
Solomon McCown President Ashley McCown
With offices in Boston and New York, Solomon McCown (SM&) supports clients that face complex, mission-critical issues at the intersection of public policy and business. The firm works within education, healthcare and real estate and with corporations and non-profit organizations to deliver integrated communications strategies that include: messaging, media relations & training, government relations, digital and social campaigns, and development of creative content that help clients achieve their goals.
We believe that at the core of advancing an organization’s mission is protecting it. Crisis planning and management is a defining strength of our organization. Our nationally-recognized senior team of crisis managers comes from journalism and politics. We have developed crisis plans for corporations, institutions, and mission-focused organizations, and have played a key role in many sensitive and complex issues including data breaches, public health issues, labor negotiations and strikes, bankruptcies and business failures, accusations of sexual harassment and abuse, Title IX, state and federal investigations, and workplace violence. We excel at working with in-house and outside legal counsel and corporate communications teams to devise communications strategies to dovetail with the legal strategy.
880 Third Ave.
New York, NY 10022
Alex Stanton, CEO
Tom Faust, Charlyn Lusk, Pat Harden, Managing Directors
George Sopko, Katrin Lieberwirth, Liam Collopy, VPs
Stanton provides a full range of senior-level counsel to protect corporate reputations before, during and after a crisis hits, when critical issues arise and through major transitions. Our expertise helps clients prevent crises through thoughtful planning and oversight. In the event a crisis does occur, we help contain the situation by managing media coverage and executing proactive communications to offset reputational damage and repair relationships with key constituents.
Stanton works with senior leadership teams, corporate task forces, outside counsel and other advisors to develop comprehensive communications strategies that ensure our clients are fully prepared. We apply our decades of experience to create the right strategy and put the right support behind it to control the narrative from the start and stay focused on your priorities.
Our experience spans a variety of situations including corporate litigation, executive changes, consumer and special interest boycotts, workplace violence, employee misconduct, financial improprieties, environmental issues, product tampering and many others. Stanton’s efforts help clients minimize negative attention and prevent escalation of vulnerabilities during crisis situations. That’s why you’ve never heard of some of our best crisis work.
Clients: 3i, Aberdeen Asset Management, ACL, Albright Capital Management, Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty, Assurant, Bain Capital, Carl Marks Advisors, Conning Asset Management, CVC Capital Partners, Donnelley Financial Solutions, FFL Partners, FilBen Group, HGGC, Lovell Minnick Partners, Makena Capital, One Equity Partners, Pine Brook, Sun Capital, Tanenbaum Center for Interreligious Understanding, TD Ameritrade, and Vertical Bridge.
Stanton Communications Inc.
1875 Connecticut Ave., NW 10th Fl.
Washington, DC 20009
Peter V. Stanton, CEO
Lori A. Russo, President
The way companies act in the first minutes of a crisis can make or break reputations.
Stanton Communications understands and helps clients navigate complex contingencies. Our Crisis GPS service provides guidance, positioning and strategy that establishes a strong course for prudent decisions and constructive action.
As a strategic communications firm, we provide crisis management, counsel, and sophisticated reputation enhancement programs among other services. Our offices in Washington, D.C., New York and Baltimore are led by professionals with proven expertise in addressing challenging circumstances across a variety of industries. We provide round-the clock support and effective management of delicate and difficult situations.
Tellem Grody PR
30745 PCH, Suite 243
Malibu, CA 90265
Tellem Grody Public Relations, Inc., (TGPR) a global public relations and social media agency, has expanded its crisis management practice to include homeland threats, terrorism and cyber-crime. The team is led by Susan M. Tellem, APR, RN, BSN, the agency’s senior partner. TGPR helps companies, law enforcement and citizens manage terror-related crises. Her diverse crisis team includes a seasoned private investigator with Israeli military training, a veteran food safety expert and a photo/video news journalist who worked daily with the LAPD.
Tellem’s 35 years of crisis preparedness and management expertise includes counsel to the DA prosecuting the Michael Jackson case; Pope John Paul II’s visit to Los Angeles where she led a media advance team, credentialing more than 3,000. She recently completed two FBI courses on terrorism, including an intensive program on “ISIS and Social Media.” She herself survived an active shooter situation; the gunman was killed by police. Tellem is a LAPD Reserve Officer Specialist (retired); a registered nurse (retired); and a member of the FBI’s InfraGard team. She served as a Malibu Public Safety Commissioner and is trained and frequently drills as a Malibu Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) member. She speaks frequently on crisis management, most recently to the Orange County Coroners Association and at the Orange County Sheriff’s Department Leadership Retreat.
The Vandiver Group
Partner, PROI Worldwide
16052 Swingley Ridge Road, Suite 210
Chesterfield, MO 63017
Donna Vandiver, President & CEO
Andy Likes, Senior Vice President
Time is everything in a crisis! The faster you respond and the more information you give, the better the potential outcome for your client, your company or your brand. You can spend years building your brand and establishing a good name, but, that can all change in a matter of minutes. Fires, employee death, theft, IT breaches accidents and other issues can damage corporate reputation. The Vandiver Group helps clients prepare for a potential crisis and handle all types of crisis situations.
The TVG team is uniquely qualified to guide clients through each stage of a crisis. Andy Likes, Sr. VP leads TVG’s crisis communications group.
• Andy Likes, Sr. Vice President & Chair of the PROI Worldwide Americas Crisis Group
• Crisis Communications Speakers and Training Seminars
• Author crisis communications chapter in PR News book
TVG is a diverse team of thinkers, creators, storytellers and visionaries. As a strategic communications agency, we partner with our clients to successfully deliver communication solutions. We are committed to building brands, reputations and relationships.
909 Third Avenue
New York, NY 10022
Micho Spring, Chair, Global Corporate Practice 617/520-7075
Peter Duda, EVP/Mgmt. Supervisor,
Co-Head Global Crisis & Issues
Lance Morgan, Chief Communications Strategist
Rod Clayton, EVP, Co-Head Global Crisis and Issues
The current media environment is a perfect storm of polarization and perceived truths, creating global anxiety and real risk for corporations. In our digital and globally interconnected world, the immediacy of events, and discussion of those events, can have a far-reaching and lasting impact. Media, citizen journalists, bots or content aggregators can share the way that people perceive stories in the moment, meaning brand reputations are more vulnerable than ever.
Weber Shandwick’s global crisis practice is a team of senior professionals who understand that protecting corporate and brand reputations are among our clients’ highest priorities. Whether it’s creating bespoke predictive analytics and listening systems for our clients to stay ahead of issues, or embedding issues personnel across all day-to-day client activities, our team is always a step ahead to preserve the integrity of our clients’ brands. -Weber Shandwick leverages the latest resources and a deep expertise to offer a full cycle of issues and crisis management support from proactively mitigating potential issues to real-time crisis response. We have provided counsel to many Fortune 500 companies, and we meet their needs with unparalleled expertise in social, digital and traditional media.
We have successfully managed a vast variety of crises, including fake news, environmental and safety issues, litigation, activist campaigns, political pressure at all levels, regulatory actions, operational crises, and negative press. We have significant experience with environmental disasters and product recalls, proxy battles, federal investigations, investigative media reports and board disputes.
Additionally, Weber Shandwick offers tools and trainings to prepare clients for potential crises. Since 2010 we have conducted interactive, multimedia crisis simulations with Firebell, our award-winning proprietary simulation offering, which allows clients the opportunity to stress-test plans and messaging in an environment that mimics the pressures of a live crisis in real-time. All of our crisis response trainings are paired with discussions about proactive steps that can mitigate risk and minimize damage in event of a crisis.
Building on our digital crisis management leadership, Weber Shandwick has also developed Mobile Command: a web and -mobile application that serves as a common source for all crisis protocols and live project management across an organization. It’s a common platform for communications that can be easily accessed anywhere at any time.
Weiss PR, Inc.
1101 East 33rd Street, Suite C303
Baltimore, MD 21218
Founded in 2008, Weiss PR, Inc. helps businesses and non-profit organizations reach, engage, and influence the right audiences in order to achieve their communications and business objectives.
Staffing accounts exclusively with senior-level executives who have a minimum of 10 years of public relations experience, Weiss PR has developed a strong reputation for getting positive results for its clients by using an integrated approach to communications that typically includes media and influencer relations, social media, marketing services, and issues management — all anchored by strategic communications planning.
Weiss PR’s clients are concentrated in five industry sectors: commercial real estate (including architecture, construction, development, and engineering); healthcare and employee benefits; technology; professional services (including law, accounting, and professional staffing); and non-profits.
In addition, the firm has extensive experience in crisis communications, including strategy development and rapid response implementation for both corporations and individual executives. Our background features work on crises for government agencies, nationally recognized corporations, commercial real estate firms, and healthcare organizations, among others.
In spite of its rapid growth and assignments throughout the U.S. and internationally (including clients in New Zealand, Australia, Canada, and Iceland, and work throughout Europe and the Middle East), Weiss PR has stayed true to its vision to provide clients with ideas built on strategy — not egos — from a team of senior public relations professionals who are committed to providing exceptional service, great work, and measurable results.