Edition, July 24, 2002, Page 1
GRUBMAN HIRES KLORES
Celebrity PR pro Lizzie
Grubman, who backed her Mercedes SUV into 16 people at a
Hamptons nightspot more than a year ago, has hired Dan Klores
Communications, New York, for PR. Joe DePlasco, a DKC executive
VP, says he and Dan Klores are handling the case.
A sobbing Grubman apologized
before a throng of reporters on July 18 outside a Riverhead,
N.Y. courthouse to the "innocent people" that
she injured outside the Conscience Point Inn on July 7,
New York tabloids slapped
unflattering photos of Grubman on their front pages. The
Daily News speculated the sobs were orchestrated by
DKC as an effort to soften her image. Grubman had turned
to Howard Rubenstein, CEO of Rubenstein Assocs., immediately
following her crisis, but an RA spokesperson said "We
don't represent her anymore."
Grubman pleaded 'not
guilty' to the 26-count indictment related to that night.
She faces up to eight years in jail. A trial date will be
set on Aug. 16.
PWC GETS INTO PA GAME
PricewaterhouseCoopers is providing government relations
services to Uzbekistan, the Central Asian country that is
a prime ally in President Bush's "War on Terror."
It is giving "strategic advice and assistance"
to Uzbekistan about dealing with the U.S. Congress and Executive
Branch on economic and trade relations, according to PWC's
"engagement letter." The firm is receiving $300K
a year for its counsel.
Former Congressman Bill Archer is heading the work. The
Texas Republican had chaired the powerful House Ways and
Means Committee before joining PWC as a senior policy analyst
in January 2001. Archer is based in PWC's National Tax Services
practice in Washington, D.C.
Uzbekistan, which has neither a free press nor a democracy,
is viewed by the State Dept. as a "stable, moderate
force in a turbulent region."
The country agreed to the Defense Dept.'s request for
access to its military bases promptly after 9/11. Uzbekistan
received $100 million from the U.S. in January for its role
in overthrowing the Taliban in neighboring Afghanistan.
President Bush met with Uzbek leader Islam Karimov in
QORVIS JOINS WILLIAMS' TEAM
Qorvis Communications partner Judy Smith is providing
crisis PR work for former New Jersey Nets basketball star
Jayson Williams, who faces manslaughter charges and a potential
45 years in prison.
Williams has been charged in the Valentine's Day shooting
death of limousine driver Costas Christofi at the athlete's
New Jersey estate. The 34-year-old forward claims Chistofi's
death was an accident, and has entered a non-guilty charge.
He is free on $270,000 bond.
Smith has represented ex-Washington, D.C., Mayor Marion
Berry in his drug charge, Supreme Court Justice Clarence
Thomas during the confirmation hearings, Monica Lewinsky
and the Clinton impeachment case, and the family of Chandra
Levy. She also works on Qorvis' Saudi Arabia account.
Smith worked in the first Bush White House, was a senior
VP-corporate communications at NBC, and ran JAS Communications
before joining Qorvis, which is affiliated with Patton Boggs.
MAGNET LANDS ALLIED DOMECQ
Magnet Communications has been tapped to handle a "lucrative"
six-figure account for Allied Domecq Wines USA, ADW's PR
director, George Rose, told this NL.
Magnet's San Francisco office will provide media relations,
events support and PR for AD's champagne lines Perrier Jouet
and Champagne Mumm, along with sparkling wine maker Mumm
Rose said ADW "zeroed in on MC" rather than
hearing a series of pitches for the work. He said MC was
"well-versed in the world of wine" and singled
out senior VP Kimberly Charles for being "well-known
in the world of wine."
Other MC clients include Fetzer Vineyards, Remy Martin
and The Macallan.
PRSA IN HISTORIC DEBATE ABOUT
The Assembly of PR Society of America, all of whose members
are accredited, will debate in November whether or not APR
should be removed as a requirement for membership in the
group, which makes bylaws for PRSA, elects officers, and
National officers and directors would still have to be
APR. The Assembly has about 250 members including one for
each 100 of its 19,000 members
(continued on page 7)
Edition, July 24, 2002, Page 2
PR SPENDING TRIES TO CATCH
U.S. PR revenues are
expected to show modest growth this year, compared to a
disastrous 2001 when spending came to a screeching halt
following the Sept. 11 attack, said participants at a Council
of PR Firms press conference on July 18.
The Council released
its initial Economic Annual Report that forecasts PR revenues
to rise from four to six percent this year. That compares
to a seven percent drop to $2.9 billion for 2001. The EAR
projects spending to rise from eight to 10 percent during
Kathy Cripps, Council
President, said the EAR is designed to bolster the profile
of PR on Wall Street and in the media. PR firms, said Cripps,
are currently operating in "unusual times." Clients
are slow to commit to PR budgets, while the intense focus
on corporate scandals has crimped PR spending, she said.
For The 'Sweet Spot'
PR merger and acquisition
activity 'hit the wall' following 9/11, but Abe Jones, founder
of AdMedia Partners, said he is experiencing a pickup in
inquiries, and requests for valuation work from principals
at firms. Deals must hit the sweet spot. They must be a
more "strategic need to have, rather than nice to have"
transactions," he said.
Jones noted that it is
taking longer to hammer out an acquisition. For instance,
he spent 18 months with Maura FitzGerald advising her on
the sale of her Boston firm to Omnicom's Brodeur Worldwide.
AdMedia has been working on a pending deal for two and a
Of changes in deal structures,
Jones said valuation multiples have plummeted to four-to-six
times pretax profits (he had sold a company for a 12-13x
multiple), closing payments are smaller, more cash than
stock is involved (Jones said ad holding companies view
their shares as undervalued), earnouts are stretched from
three to five years, and non-compete clauses are much tougher.
The aggressive accounting
used by serial acquirers such as Omnicom is a wildcard in
the acquisition game. Jones said investors must be confident
that accounting for acquisitions is fully transparent.
He predicted the rise
of two new players on the acquisition trail: U.K.'s Chime
Comms., which acquired Boston's LNS Communications in 2001,
and Huntsworth Marketing Communication, the shop of Shandwick
founder Peter (Chadlington) Gummer.
KC BUILDS GRASSROOT SUPPORT
Kessler Communications is organizing and promoting a 72-hour
"whirlwind tour" from the U.S. to Jerusalem in
August, part of a grassroots effort to rally support for
Israel's citizens. KC's Robert Miller told this NL the "Rally
for Israel" tour is a "Herculean task," noting
that via its website (rallyinisrael.org)
the group has received 3,000 inquiries from 22 countries.
Miller said KC has been in contact with Rubenstein Assocs.
to coordinate the rally with the Israeli government, and
with the country's tourism department.
WEPR FOUNDATION HONORS OSTROWSKI
Helen Ostrowski, who earlier this year was named CEO of
Porter Novelli International, was honored by the Foundation
of Women Executives in PR July 15 for being the first woman
to head a top ten PR operation.
More than 130 members and guests attended the dinner at
the 3 West Club, New York, raising $17,000 for the Foundation.
Harold Burson, founder of Burson-Marsteller, who was among
the speakers, said he expected more women to follow her
lead to the top of a major PR firm.
He recalled that there were few women in PR when B-M was
founded in 1953. The firm added 30 women employees in 1970
when it acquired the Theodore Sills Co., which specialized
in food PR.
Ostrowski, who joined PNI in 1993 to head the healthcare
division, recalled that as a newcomer to PR she applied
for a job at B-M but did not obtain one.
B-M had asked her to write a press release on the introduction
of a paper clip as a test of her creativity.
She said that she never thought that being female was any
hindrance to her getting ahead in the field.
She said she was helped early in her career by groups
such as WEPR, Women in Communications and the Healthcare
"There were few of us in professional positions,"
she recalled, "let alone in managerial or leadership
roles. Not only did we have to work harder to prove ourselves,
but we also wasted huge amounts of emotional energy figuring
out how to act like men, as that appeared to be the way
to get ahead. We were even expected to dress like men, although
I admit, I never looked particularly well in a suit and
She feels that the "different viewpoints, approaches
and styles (of men and women) are what make for more vibrant
Ostrowski would like the senior leadership of the PR industry
to be more reflective of the population overall.
"Think how much richer we can be through the diversity
of opinions, viewpoints and styles of people of different
color, creed and race," she added, and said the PR
industry "still has much to do on this front."
PD WINS $3M PEAK 'BRANDING'
Peak Wines International awarded its $3 million ad/PR
account to Publicis Dialog because of the firm's "integrated
approach to brand building," says Stephen Brauer, VP
at the winery.
Peak markets premium California wines such as Geyser Peak,
Geyser Peak Reserve, Canyon Road and Barwang wines. It is
owned by a joint venture between Jim Beam Brands and Absolut
PD's San Francisco office, which is headed by Stacey Paynter,
is responsible for the Peak business.
Edition, July 24, 2002, Page 3
ARE LOSING ALLURE
may find it a tougher sell to get editors to put their celebrity
clients on magazine covers.
years of chasing celebrities up and down the red carpet,
magazine editors have been left wondering whether the sexy,
familiar faces are losing some of their newsstand magnetism,"
according to David Carr, who covers the magazine beat for
The New York Times.
publicists are another reason celebrity articles have lost
allure. Celebrity agents control not only access to their
client, but frequently input into the pictures and articles
about them, he said.
process results in a generally bland ritual, in which the
star gives up nothing vaguely personal while the reporter
does fawning psychoanalysis based on a 15-minute interview
over cappuccino," Carr wrote in his article that was
published in the July 15 edition of the newspaper.
in the case of the multiple Tom Cruise covers-is part of
the problem, too, said Carr, who reveals Pat Kingsley, CEO
of PMK/HBH, got Cruise on one magazine cover in May (Esquire)
and four more in June (Premiere, W, Time,
and Entertainment Weekly).
While the "all-Tom, all-the-time blitzkreig seemed
to help Cruise," whose new film, "Minority Report"
broke the $100 million box-office barrier three weeks after
it opened, the benefits for magazine editors were less clear,
to Source Interlink Cover Analyzer, a program that samples
magazine sales, Carr said Cruise gave Esquire a boost
in May but by the time the four new covers rolled around
in June, only Premiere magazine experienced a significant
bump from his presence.
alternatives to the celebrity chase are not that exciting,"
said Carr. "Both men's and women's magazines can return
to running 'how to' advice and lifestyle information, or
choose people who are great-looking but not household names."
many magazines, especially young men's magazines like Maxim,
Stuff and FHM, have had success using photos
of scantily clad women who are not yet famous, but might
be on their way.
editors have decided that it is mega-movies, not megastars
that will set their magazine apart," said Carr.
the managing editor of Time magazine, said the industry's
increased emphasis on franchise films, like Star Wars, that
are bigger than any one star, have been a boon to his magazine.
jobs are listed on the Editorial Freelancers Assn.'s
and click on "Need a Freelancer").
The service, started in 1985, is available to PR firms
and corporate communications departments.
The National Academy Press, based in Washington, D.C.,
recently posted the 3,000th job for a writer to create an
eight-page consumer-oriented informational booklet.
Sheila Buff is chair of the EFAJobList. She can be reached
at EFA's headquarters in New York at 71 W. 23rd st. 212/929-5400.
a monthly newspaper, has been changed to focus on
more useful news for its readers, who are members of the
Washington, D.C.-based senior citizens lobbying group.
"We didn't want to create an ornament for the coffee
table," said Elliot Carlson, who has been editor of
the monthly paper for the past 15 years. "We wanted
a paper you could use to make your life better," he
Focus group interviews found Bulletin readers are not
interested in celebrities or soft features, nor are they
interested in inspiration or an uplift of any kind. Readers
are looking for something that would make them better off
at the end of the day.
There are regular departments, including "News &
Trends," "Your Health," and "Your Money,"
plus new columns such as "Scam Alert" and "Congressional
Carlson said the paper will let "readers know there's
a sea change happening in American politics and make them
feel the same passion we do about these issues. Then maybe
we can stir them into action."
7th on Sixth,
the New York-based production company that handles press
registrations for the two Mercedes-Benz-sponsored Fashion
Weeks that are held each September and February in New York,
is selling its press list.
Each book, which lists all of the press people whose registration
applications have been accepted, will sell for $650 for
one season, and $1,100 for both.
The books are divided into five sections: national print;
national magazine; broadcast; freelance, and foreign.
The directory is edited by Margaux DelCollo, who oversees
press registrations. She can be reached at 212/253-2692
for more information, or at www.mbfwnyc.com.
"The Larry Elder
Show," on KABC-AM in Los Angeles since 1994,
is going national.
Starting Aug. 12, Elder's show will be syndicated through
ABC Radio Networks, broadcasting live from 6 to 9 p.m. (ET).
A self-described "fiscally conservative libertarian,"
Elder discusses current events with guests and listener
a new magazine that is being spun off from the cable
channel owned by Hearst Corp. and Walt Disney, will begin
publishing in March 2003.
news continued on next page)
Edition, July 24, 2002, Page 4
SALVATORE REPLACES BLYTH AT
Diane Salvatore took over as editor of the Ladies Home
Journal July 22, replacing Myrna Blyth.
Salvatore, who had been director of editorial operations
for all 15 Hearst magazines, has also been editor of YM,
executive director of Marie Claire, executive editor
of Good Housekeeping and senior editor of Redbook.
Blyth, who has edited LHJ for more than 20 years,
will continue as editorial director of More magazine,
a title aimed at women over 40, and oversee the development
of new products, including Living Room, a new shelter
magazine, which is in development, for women between the
ages of 25 and 35.
'MEET THE PRESS' GETS NEW
"Meet the Press" senior producer Betsy Fischer
has been promoted to executive producer of NBC's Sunday
morning news show.
Fischer, who started this week, replaces Nancy Nathan,
who is leaving to become executive producer of Chris Matthew's
new weekend news program syndicated by NBC and starting
in the fall.
Nathan has been with Meet the Press since 1997, when she
joined as senior producer.
Fischer began her career at MTP as a college intern before
becoming the show's political researcher in 1992. She was
named senior producer in 1998.
This fall, the Tim Russert-hosted program, which has placed
first for the past 19 quarters among Sunday morning news
shows, will face a revamped "This Week" on ABC,
hosted by George Stephanopoulos. Russert was a press secretary
to ex-Gov. Cuomo (D-N.Y.) and Stephanopoulos was a press
aide to former President Clinton.
TECH TV EXPANDS TIES WITH
Tech TV, a 24-hour cable TV network, will provide technology-related
content for ABC's overnight show, "World News Now."
Leo Laporte, who is co-host of Tech TV's daily live variety
show, "The Screen Savers," will appear regularly
on World News Now, which airs weekdays from 2 a.m. to 3:30
Laporte will provide feature segments on the latest developments
in the world of technology, from product reviews to biotech
to the latest in digital music.
Sharon Newman is executive producer of WNN.
Tech TV segments featured on WNN can be viewed online at
MEDIA PRO LEADS INTEL BOYCOTT
Columnist/Internet/radio broadcaster Andy Martin is mounting
a world boycott of Intel products because of Intel's alleged
links to war crimes in Israel.
"Intel built a fabrication plant in Israel, on land
stolen by Israel from Palestinians after express, written
guarantees by Israel that it would protect the Palestinians
and respect their property. Israel then violated its agreement,
stole the land, and later sold it to Intel," Martin
said at a July 16 news conference.
"I am announcing a world boycott of Intel products.
When Intel is hit in the pocketbook it will think twice
about dealing with nations that have manifested contempt
for human life such as Israel. Computer consumers can boycott
Intel," said Martin, who is host of "Andy Martin's
America," and a columnist for Out2.com.
COVERAGE OF NATIVE AMERICANS
The Native American Journalists Assn., headquartered in
Minneapolis, said a study of coverage shows a need for "more
in-depth, balanced, and broader stories about Indian country."
"The Reading Report" examined news coverage of
Native Americans by nine of the largest newspapers in the
U.S. (The Chicago Sun-Times, Houston Chronicle,
Los Angeles Times, New York Daily News, Newsday,
The New York Times, USA Today, The Wall
Street Journal and The Washington Post).
Mary Annette Pember, who is president of the NAJA, said
the report cites more than 1,000 articles published during
the past three years. As expected, a number of stories were
focused on Indian gaming and Native American mascots.
The N.Y. Times published 519 stories on Native
Americans during this time period, while the Wall Street
Journal published 43 articles.
was named executive producer for "The Mike Gallagher
Show," a nationally syndicated radio show, based in
Irving, Tex., with an estimated audience of 2.75 million
Watkins had been producer of "The Michael Savage
Show" as well as operations manager for Talk Radio
a Chicago-based PR consultant and close friend of Oprah
Winfrey, has joined Peter Montoya's Personal Branding
magazine as senior editor. He will write a column called
"The Cult of Celebrity," which will look at some
of the methods famous individuals use to build personal
Montoya, who runs a Santa Ana-based ad agency, can be
pitched at 866/288-9300; e-mail: [email protected],
will write a new column covering entertainment, fashion,
and media for The New York Daily News.
previously deputy managing editor at People, is replacing
as editor of Rosie: The Magazine.
has joined Seventeen as sr. fashion editor; Nicole
Vecchiarelli-sr. editor, entertainment, and Suzanne
D'Amato-fashion news editor.
Edition, July 24, 2002, Page 7
from page 1)
50 members from the national board or who are heads of the
sections and districts.
A memo July
17 from Joann Killeen, PRSA president, said chapters and
sections have been complaining for years that not enough
of their members are APR and they are being denied representation
in the Assembly.
"has resulted in empty seats at the Assembly, has precluded
chapters from sending current chapter leaders as delegates
(because they are not APR), or has forced chapters to rely
on the same members as delegates," said Killeen.
said the 2002 board is "fully committed to the APR
have blocked attempts even to bring the issue of "decoupling"
(APR from office-holding) to the floor of the Assembly,
which will meet this year on Nov. 16 in San Francisco.
the subsidy to the APR program from $441,467 in 2000 to
$135,511 in 2001. The program has lost more than $2 million
in the past 11 years. The subsidy per new PRSA APR reached
$1,800 in recent years before the budget chop in 2001.
are expected to put up a fierce fight to save the APR rule.
any retreat from APR as hurtful to attempts to establish
PR as a profession like law, medicine and accounting, and
support requiring practitioners to take a specific set of
courses in college and graduate school.
rule has resulted in charges that PRSA is undemocratic since
less than 20% of its members are APR, a percentage that
has been declining in recent years.
two percent of eligible members show up for the APR test,
which is given twice a year.
PRSA has had a website for many years, it provides no easy
way for a member to send an e-mail to all 250 Assembly members.
wishing to do so would have to send 250 separate e-mails.
There is no Yahoo!-type bulletin board on its website where
members can post their opinions anonymously.
members face paying $225 in dues, a $65 application fee,
and $285 more for the APR test if they wish to join the
Assembly or hold national office.
is in a financial crunch. It lost $1.1 million in 1999-2000
but broke even in 2001. It had cash and investments of $1,517,193
as of Dec. 31, 2001. Projected expenses in 2002 were $9M
+. It once supplied quarterly financial statements to members
but the current board refuses to do this.
Martin, who handled media relations for IABC and
was associate VP of United Way, has written a murder mystery
novel, The Wrong Place to Die. $17 from Publishamerica.com.
OMC, IPG, WPP
CALLED RIPE FOR BREAKUP
Interpublic and WPP may face shareholder pressure to break
themselves up because their conglomerate-style business
model is driving down their stock prices, according to a
"Comment & Analysis" piece written by Richard
Tomkins for a recent issue of Financial Times.
notes that Saatchi & Saatchi created the idea of one-stop
shopping for communications services during the late `80s,
which survived until the recession of the early `90s exposed
its weak financial underpinnings.
current Big Three are much stronger than S&S ever was,
Wall Street is in a deconsolidation mood, and investors
are putting the accounting practices by "voracious
acquirers" under close scrutiny, wrote Tomkins.
Three rely on "serial acquisitions" to spur growth.
WPP, during the past two years, spent $6 billion for 77
acquisitions, IPG made 116 deals for $3.4B, and OMC acquired
73 companies for $1.7B.
The supergroups could slow their acquisition pace, but that
would hurt revenue growth. Tomkins doesn't expect much pickup
in the growth of the ad market. Advertising enjoyed an "extraordinary
upsurge" in the `90s that was triggered by liberalization
of global trade, privatization, deregulation, technology
growth and a booming U.S.
downplays the Big Three argument that they must offer a
full array of services to global clients. The biggest problem:
who will do the integrating? The parent companies are little
more than financial shells with "no relevant skills,"
according to Tomkins. If the individual agency is given
the task,it will award itself the biggest chunk of the budget.
Stephen Jones, Coca-Cola's chief marketing officer, who
says Interpublic understands its needs, but hasn't yet figured
out how to put together an integrated plan for the soft
Sorrell told Tomkins as long as operating companies retain
separate identities, "They cannot all be absorbed into
one single uni-branded, full-service agency called WPP."
USA GOES WITH
Weber Shandwick is handling the United Seniors Assn., a
1.5 million member grassroots group, that has lined up behind
the prescription drug bill that was passed by the House
on June 28.
is backed by the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers
of America, which has made "educational grants"
to USA. PhRMA supports the House measure because it bans
the government from setting prices for prescription drugs.
It is against a more expansive drug plan that is being introduced
in the Democrat-controlled Senate.
a former PhRMA staffer, is the WS executive in charge of
the USA account. He said WS created ads in support of the
House measure, but would not go into detail about overall
Edition, July 24, 2002, Page 8
What should PR's role be
in the stockmarket slide and possible double-dip recession?
The press is having a
field day writing about corporate scandals--blasting CEOs,
CFOs, CPAs, the SEC, security analysts and investment bankers,
among others. There seems to be a definite edge to the stories
of business reporters as they rail against hype, obfuscation
A seminar sponsored by
the National IR Institute a couple of years ago found that
editors from top business media such as Bloomberg and the
wire services felt they were getting the short end of the
stick as far as information goes. Analysts, they complained,
were getting much better information. IR pros, it was said,
did not deal with the reporters. Corporate PR, on the other
hand, knew little of what was going on in the company, especially
its finances. Ex-NIRI chair Tim Cost famously told a NIRI
conference that "corporate PR experiences a press call
as a drive-by shooting."
IR people take over financial communications has been a
disaster for companies. Analysts who had lost their
jobs in the 1970s when fixed commissions ended flooded into
IR and set up a culture in which companies mainly talked
to Wall Street. The press was frozen out as IR pushed pro
forma earnings, EBITDA, a host of "exceptionals"
impacting earnings and many other reporting abuses. Working
analysts readily consumed this garbage since they had turned
into shills for their investment banking owners.
NIRI, dominated by companies
and allowing only two or three agencies on its board, became
virulently pro-corporate. Almost all its board members,
including its elected chair, put out the misleading "pro
forma" reports which NIRI itself has condemned.
people must take back the financial reporting function from
IR. Companies, surveying the current disaster, may
be ripe for this proposal. Corporate communications depts.,
a euphemism for integrated marketing, must revert to PR,
meaning relations with the public. PR people can show the
way in communicating financials in language the public can
understand. They can ask their bosses to regularly face
presidential-type press conferences. They can ask that insider
trades be immediately announced. They can promote a culture
of openness rather than the current press-averse, jargon-laden,
and secretive culture. Only if these and other things happen
will investor confidence return. Corporate PR has been short-changed
for too many years. Rarely is there a helpful voice at major
companies when a reporter calls the PR unit. In many cases,
you get a recorded message or an "aide" will pick
up the phone and submit the reporter to a series of questions
attempting to divine (A) if the reporter is important enough
to deal with, and (B) whether the reporter knows anything
that is new and important.
We see almost no PR spokespeople
on TV talk shows preaching a gospel of candor and openness.
The only ones who ever appear are author Fraser Seitel and
Washington, D.C., agency head Vic Kamber. No one shows up
from the big PR firms, corporate PR units, or trade associations.
has taken two British publications, the Economist
and the Financial Times, to make an assault
on the very nature of the ad/PR giants. Calling Omnicom,
Interpublic and WPP "among the world's most voracious
acquirers," the FT on July 15 said the conglomerates
work when it comes to buying ad space and time in bulk (knocking
down media rates) but not when it comes to creativity. "Corporate
bureaucracy" can have a "stifling effect"
on "independent-minded creative businesses," it
said. FT also doubts there is much "integration"
of services going on as is claimed by the giants. Saddled
by debt and facing a poor ad climate, the giants are under
heavy pressure, says FT. The Economist on June 20 said the
behemoths are good at obtaining lower media rates but it
is "less clear" there are benefits on the creative
side. Almost no U.S. media, except for the Wall Street
Journal, have dared to take up this topic.
item: PRSA may allow non-accredited Assembly members.
The Society must be in dire financial straits to do this.
It only had cash and investments of $1.5 million on Dec.
31, 2001 and faced costs of $9.9 million in 2002. It slashed
the APR loss last year to $135,511 after losing $441,467
on this sacred cow in the previous year. Attempts to have
APRs themselves fund the program must have failed. The renewal
rate has been running at 70%, meaning the loss of up to
6,000 members in a year. The current membership figure is
given as 19,373 but this is false. It includes members who
are three-months past their renewal date. The true membership
is probably around 17,000. The Society claimed 19,623 members
in 1998, meaning there has been no growth for at least four
years. New members face $225 in dues, a $65 initiation fee,
and payment of $285 more (not to mention loss of a day's
work) to take an APR test in order to be able to vote or
hold national office. As with the famous companies whose
phony financials have now been outed, there are plenty of
red flags flying at PRSA. No. 1 is that the Society will
not allow members to work at h.q. Only three of the current
48 staffers are members. Second red flag is that PRSA refuses
to provide any current financials. No. 3 is that it does
not have a CPA on staff as it once promised always to have.