Edition, June 16, 2004, Page 1
NIH PLANS PR RFP.
The federal government's
top research and education agency for neurological disorders
plans to issue an RFP for a five-year PR contract in support
of its research on the brain and nervous system.
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke,
part of the National Institutes of Health and the U.S. Public
Health Service, wants a firm to develop and plan its public
and professional education outreach and seek out partnerships
with medical institutions and other entities. That work
will be alongside of its own Office of Communications and
hopes to award a contract by early August and will begin
collecting proposals from PR agencies in the next 15 days.
It plans to tack on an incentive clause that could mean
two additional years for a "superior performance,"
according to a pre-solicitation notice to PR firms issued
RFP is slated to be posted on the agency's website. Mary
Landi-O Leary is contracting officer (301/435-3807).
OGILVY TUNES INTO LG.
LG Electronics North American unit has consolidated its
PR account for its four main divisions with Ogilvy PR Worldwide,
following a review among its three firms. Cohn & Wolfe
had handled its digital appliances and Bender/Helper Impact
oversaw LG's mobile phones unit.
had been handling LG's consumer electronics division since
September and the company heard from all three firms after
starting a review in December, said Barby Siegel, managing
director of Ogilvy's global consumer marketing practice.
Korea-based LG bailed Zenith out of Chapter 11 in 1999.
CLARK BUILDS PR AT MDC.
Harry Clark, a former partner at Omnicom's Clark & Weinstock,
is joining MDC Partners to build a PR/PA network for the
Toronto-based holding company.
owns cutting-edge creative ad shops in the U.S., such as
Crispin Porter & Bogusky, Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners
and Cliff Freeman & Partners.
Clark on board, the company is now training its sights on
acquiring PR firms/talent.
MDC, which chalked up $320M in `03 revenues, already owns
Bratskeir & Co., which has counseled Chiquita Brands,
Hasbro, Maybelline and Prada Beauty.
WAL-MART CHECKS OUT CASSIDY.
Cassidy & Assocs. has been hired by Wal-Mart Stores
as the image of the world's largest retailer has been battered
by charges of unfair labor practices and gender discrimination.
executives and directors at its June 4 annual meeting admitted
that the company has a major image problem and vowed to
fix the situation.
an Interpublic unit, was hired for general public policy
issues. Its COO Gregg Hartley, a former aide to Republican
Whip Roy Blunt and ex-Missouri Governor John Ashcroft, spearheads
VP Juan Carlos Benitez, who was Special Counsel for Immigration-Related
Unfair Labor Practices at the Dept. of Justice, is expected
to be a key member of the unit. Wal-Mart has taken hits
following news that its subcontractors have been charged
with using illegal immigrants to clean its stores.
working on the Wal-Mart business are senior VPs James Hirni,
a former staffer to Republican Senators Bill Frist (Tenn.)
and Tim Hutchinson (AR) and Todd Boulanger, an aide to Sen.
Bob Smith (R-NH), and VP Jared Craighead, a former DOJ and
Federal Communications Commission staffer.
Edition, June 16, 2004, Page 2
RF CELEBRATES MILLENNIUM.
Chicago has hired Ruder Finn to handle the official unveiling
of the $475 million Millennium Park next month, an opening
that the Chicago Sun-Times has billed as "one
of the year's biggest media events."
The 25-acre lakefront park features a Frank Gehry-designed
outdoor music pavilion that has fixed seating for 4,000
and a 95,000 sq. ft. lawn that can accommodate another 11,000
Chicago anticipates the Park will attract up to three million
visitors a year, and $150 million in tourism revenues. It
expects the Park to be downtown's second tourist attraction
trailing the Navy Pier.
RF's Lori Erikson is handling local and regional media
for the week-long celebration. She said RF's New York office
is pitching national and international media. Events include
the first public concert at the Gehry facility, and a gala
to honor donors, which include Ameritech, Tribune Co. and
William Wrigley Jr. Co.
JENKINS MOVES TO PT/WS.
Pam Jenkins, who had co-headed Ogilvy PR Worldwide's global
health & medical practice, has joined Powell Tate/Weber
Shandwick's social marketing practice as its president.
She had led Ogilvy's team that developed the "Heart
Truth Campaign/Red Dress Project" to build awareness
of heart disease among women.
Nineteen top fashion designers have contributed to the
Red Dress project to help make it a symbol for women of
That PR effort, on behalf of the National Heart, Lung and
Blood Institute, earned an '03 Silver Anvil from PRSA. It
was Ogilvy's sole Anvil.
Jenkins also worked on various programs dealing with obesity,
asthma, cholesterol, cancer and high blood pressure for
the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National
Institutes of Health.
Laura Schoen, president of global healthcare at WS, said
Jenkins background adds a "critical layer of expertise"
to its work in product launches, scientific communications
and educational outreach.
Shifts to Ogilvy
Kate Cronin, who headed Porter Novelli's New York healthcare
practice, has moved to Jenkins' spot as co-head of the global
health and medical group with Sherry Pudloski.
Cronin has 17-plus years of experience, counseling clients
such as Baxter, Wyeth and Pfizer.
Ogilvy has more than 200 staffers in its healthcare group,
and is steeped with specialists dealing with HIV/AIDS, cardiovascular
disease, cancer and the central nervous system.
Clients are Johnson & Johnson, Merck, Novartis, Bristol-Myers
Squibb and GlaxoSmithKline.
BUT NEEDS 4 YEARS.
IABC, helped by a 15-month year and a $420,000 insurance
settlement, showed a gain of $591,449 for the period ending
Dec. 31, 2003 (having changed from a Sept. 30 fiscal year).
It had losses of $22,473 in 2002 and $718,069 in 2001.
Its accumulated deficit has been reduced to $716K and it
hopes to erase this in the next four years.
Total assets as of Dec. 31 were $1,209,269, up from $737,579
in the previous period. Liabilities were $1,924,962 vs.
$2,044,721 as of Sept. 30, 2002.
Liabilities include $1,583,446 in deferred dues revenue,
representing 61% of the group's total dues income of $2,586,809.
IABC, like most groups and almost all professional organizations,
defers booking half or more of its dues revenue because
the funds have not yet been earned through services provided.
Conference and seminar revenues, helped by a $420,000 payment
from an insurance company because attendance at the 2003
conference in Toronto was hurt by the SARS scare, were $1,931,283,
about the same as the $1,889,235 in such revenues in 2002.
Julie Freeman, president, said the work of the staff, board
of directors and members helped IABC to produce a gain in
assets for the first time since 1996.
The July/August issue of the group's magazine, Communication
World, will include the complete audit by Deloitte &
The audit said IABC is a defendant in a lawsuit but that
any liability is expected to be covered by the group's insurance
policy. Details of the suit were not immediately available.
The group held its annual conference in Los Angeles June
PRSA NAMES BLUE SKY
PRSA has named Blue Sky Factory, Baltimore, as its e-mail
PRSA e-mails sales pitches to 16,000 of its 19,500 members
that have given it permission to do this.
Products sold are its international conference and skills
development courses. It also sends the PRSA E-Newsletter.
The e-mails from Blue Sky carry a "bug" that
notifies Blue Sky whether a recipient has clicked on the
e-mail, whether the recipient has "clicked through"
to links on the e-mail, the time the e-mail was accessed,
and whether the e-mail has been sent to an incorrect address.
Recipients can elect not to receive the e-mails.
Anti-SPAM legislation requires that unsolicited e-mails
carry a notice at the end of the e-mail saying that further
e-mails will not be sent if that is the desire of the recipient.
PRSA said that Blue Sky is not used to track individual
day-to-day e-mails to members.
Some PRSA members wondered why the Society is not using
its e-mail capability to poll members on their opinions
or to conduct elections of officers and board members.
The last formal poll of member opinions and whose results
were published was conducted in 1997.
There is no provision for direct election of officers and
directors in PRSA's bylaws.
Edition, June 16, 2004, Page 3
WORRIES PR PRO.
The Federal Communications Commission's crackdown on indecency
worries Mark Hirsch, president of Mediahitman Inc., Boca
"Washington's current crackdown has left many news
outlets, networks and the PR industry aghast," said
Hirsch, whose broadcast PR firm distributes news content
for clients such as Sony Music and Citigroup.
"A single incident at a local news station could bring
FCC chairman Powell's quarter-million dollar hammer down,
literally changing things overnight," said Hirsch,
who pointed out the Broadcast Indecency Enforcement Act
of 2004, which passed in the House with overwhelming bi-partisan
support, has brought with it a ten-fold increase in fines
for indecent content.
While the crackdown has not yet caused a crisis in the
PR industry, it protends major changes in how TV news is
gathered and delivered, he said.
"Live newsgathering outside of the 10:00 p.m. to 6:00
a.m. safe harbor poses considerable risks to broadcasters,"
said Hirsch, who cited a petition by CBS affiliates to the
FCC protesting the crackdown.
If talent or a spokesperson casually uses an off-color
adjective in a live interview, the FCC can fine the news
outlet, and revoke the station's license.
"Any words related to sexual or excretory functionsregardless
of the contextmay subject TV newsrooms to fines as
high as $275,000 per utterance with a maximum daily fine
of $3 million," said Hirsch.
Nationwide broadcast news outlets have begun to put technology
into place that will allow a tape delay of live news programs.
"Despite the reluctance of companies that sell satellite
media tour production services to admit that Washington's
actions could impact business-as-usual, we believe it is
our duty to get the word out and ensure that the PR industry
is informed, and that practitioners take all necessary steps
to protect broadcasters," Hirsch told this NL.
"As content providers, we must take our share of responsibility
and educate clients to protect live news gathering,"
PR FIRM STARTS SITE
FOR BRIDES & GROOMS.
Maffeo Media, a Scottsdale, Ariz.-based PR firm, has started
AZWeddingDirector.com to help brides and grooms with their
Mariane Maffeo, who is the chief architect of the site,
said it will contain tips, tactics and timely information
on weddings, wedding planning and purchasing and provide
a cost effective ad medium for the thousands of small businesses
in Arizona that service the bridal market.
O''REGAN NAMED FOUNDING
EDITOR OF CMO.
Robert O''Regan was named founding editor-in-chief of CMO,
a new magazine for chief marketing officers that CXO Media
in Framingham, Mass., will publish. O''Regan had been executive
news editor of eWeek (formerly PC Week) before joining
McKinsey & Co. in a senior editorial capacity with the
Elaine Cummings, previously managing editor of CSO
magazine, was named managing editor of CMO, and Constantine
Von Hoffman, who previously wrote for The Boston Herald
and other newspapers, was hired as senior writer.
previously managing editor for daily news at Congressional
Quarterly in Washington, D.C., has joined The Associated
Press in New York as deputy business editor.
an editor on the national desk of The New York Times,
was named an editorial writer, specializing in suburban
issues, primarily for opinion pages to be introduced on
June 20 in The Times Sunday Westchester and Long Island
was named editor of The Charlotte (N.C.) Observer
after serving since 1997 as editor of The Wichita (Kans.)
He replaces Jennie Buckner, who is retiring.
is succeeding Christine Giordano as editor of Networking,
a monthly magazine published by Networking Newspaper for
Women in Remensburg, N.Y. Giordano left to join The Villages
Daily Sun, near Ocala, Fla., as a reporter.
op-ed columnist for The Arizona Republic, was named
editorial page editor of The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel,
replacing Michael Ruby, who resigned to collaborate with
New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson on a book about Richardson's
life and government service.
previously accessories editor at CosmoGirl!, was
named managing accessories editor at Shop Etc.
a freelancer, has joined Business Week as a correspondent
in Silicon Valley.
was named "Around Town" writer at Time
Out New York magazine.
has stepped down as a reporter for WEWS-TV in Cleveland,
Oh., to become a White House reporter for CNN.
who is anchor of the 5 p.m., 6 p.m., and 10 p.m. newscasts
on New York's Channel 5, is leaving WNYW. The 62-year-old
newscaster, who used to own Marchello, a restaurant in New
York, may open a media consulting firm.
was named U.S. editor of The Times of London. Baker,
who was an associate editor of The Financial Times,
will stay in Washington, D.C.
previously a contributing editor at Wired, has joined
The New York Times as technology reporter in the
San Francisco bureau.
36, who was executive editor of Outside magazine,
will assume the top editorial job at Cincinnati magazine
in mid-June from Kitty Morgan, who has been editor of the
30,000-circulation monthly for the past six years.
(Media news continued
on next page)
Edition, June 16, 2004, Page 4
STAGECRAFT A HALLMARK
Terrence Hunt, an Associated Press reporter in Washington,
D.C., since 1974, said President Reagan's funeral recalled
the high style and stagecraft of his presidency.
"From Reagan's Hollywood days, the former actor brought
a performer's talents and an appreciation for careful production
of big events," said Hunt.
"Presidential appearances were arranged like movie
scenes with Reagan in the starring role. There was a heavy
emphasis on staging and lighting."
Hunt said Reagan's advisors boasted they made the visuals
so compelling that TV networks could not pass up the story.
Left to Chance
Michael Deaver, who was president of Deaver & Hannaford,
a PR firm, and worked with Reagan when he was governor of
California before becoming his chief of staff, is credited
with making sure presidential appearance put Reagan in the
Deaver, who is currently vice chairman/international at
Edelman PR Worldwide in D.C., left little to chance, said
"Advance texts of most speeches were given to reporters
hours before the president spoke, and he delivered the lines
word-for-word," Hunt said. The practice of providing
advance texts backfired on the White House on one of the
biggest addresses of his presidency: Reagan's challenge
in June 1987 to Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev to tear
down the Berlin Wall.
Hunt said the speech was given to the travelling press
corps in Venice, Italy, the night before Reagan was to deliver
it in West Berlin at the Brandenberg Gate. "It was
splashed on the front page of The Washington Times
long before Reagan uttered the words: 'Mr. Gorbachev, tear
down this wall.'" Still, Reagan gave the speech unchanged,
"Unlike speeches, news conferences could not be scripted
and were occasions of worry and anxiety for the White House,"
Hunt said. "Days in advance, presidential aides would
ask the State Department, Pentagon and other agencies to
draw up lists of questions that reporters might ask and
to suggest answers for Reagan.
News conferences usually were followed by damage-control
sessions in which Reagan aides corrected presidential misstatements.
The Wall Street
Journal has started a new column, "Long and Short,"
in its "Money & Investing section.
The weekly column, written by Jesse Eisinger, will look
at the issues related to investing and Wall Street. It will
run each Wednesday, and some weeks will have extra columns
on different days.
Eisinger was writing for the "Ahead of the Tape"
magazine, which ended regular circulation in 2000,
will reappear as a weekend magazine in October.
At its launch, Life will be carried by more than 50 newspapers
with a total circulation of nearly 12 million, and a potential
reach of 26 million readers.
Among the papers that will distribute Life on Fridays will
be The Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times,
Newsday, The Philadelphia Inquirer, New
York Daily News and Miami Herald.
Bill Shapiro, who was recently named managing editor of
Life, said stories will be topical and have day-to-day relevance
to readers. There also will be an element of servicemainly
ideas to help make the time people spend with their family
more special, he said.
a specialty magazine publisher in Scottsdale, Ariz.,
is starting a new quarterly publication, Hiatus Travel
Magazine, which will target owners of timeshare vacation
The magazine will cover worldwide locations, both popular
and remote, that have timeshare accommodations available
for purchase, exchange or rental.
Resorts and activities will be reviewed by editors and
recommended based on the editor's first-hand experience.
Kristin Puetz, who is editor of Hiatus Travel, can be reached
at 480/367-9444, ext. 105; fax: 367-1110, and e-mail: [email protected].
Belo Marketing Solutions
is producing "What's New America?," a 30-minute
TV magazine program that provides local business
owners the opportunity to tell their stories and promote
their products and services during each program segment.
The "Houston Edition" debuted June 12 on KHOU-TV
BMS will oversee the development of the segment, from concept
and writing, through production and placement of the story.
The program will soon debut on Belo-owned stations in Dallas/Ft.
Worth, San Antonio and Austin.
Lisa Shumate, executive director of BMS, is in charge of
the program. She is at 214/977-6816.
ESPN'S PR STAFF.
Richard Sandomir, who covers the sports media beat for The
New York Times, gave ESPN's new series"Then
and Now"high marks, but he rapped the network's
PR staff for the way it promoted the program.
"Although it is easy to criticize ESPN for overly
promoting itselfI am harboring 545 untrashed e-mail
messages sent by its PR staffits modesty in 'Then
and Now' is not altogether becoming," he said in his
June 8 review of the new show.
James Meigs, previously
executive editor of National Geographic Adventure
magazine, is joining Popular Mechanics magazine
as editor-in-chief, succeeding Joseph Oldham, who retires
Edition, June 16, 2004, Page 7
IS BIG HIT
AT PR SEMINAR.
Richard Clarke, 30-year government intelligence employee
specializing in counter-terrorism, who authored Against
All Enemies, a critique of Bush Administration policies,
was the star speaker at PR Seminar May 26-29 at the Bacara
Resort & Spa, Santa Barbara, Calif.
Clarke's recitation of
his case against Bush Administration policies drew the most
questions and resulted in the most corridor talk, said several
of the nearly 200 attendees.
The 2004 PRS was one of
the biggest ever. The largest freshman class ever, 42 new
members, including 23 women, was inducted. There were 38
new members last year.
Seminarians said the huge
influx of newcomers is testimony to the rapid turnover in
the top corporate PR job at blue chip companies.
One reason for the turnover
is that the CEO post turns over rapidly. In the 1970s and
1980s, PRS usually took in less than ten new members annually.
Although most Seminarians
work for big business, which is usually thought to be closely
identified with the Republican party, the PRS program is
decidedly liberal and even left-wing, said some of the attendees.
Clarke's highly critical
remarks about the Bush Administration drew only a couple
of questions that challenged his position, said Seminarians.
He accused the Administration
of failing to heed his warnings about the increased threat
of terrorist activities in the U.S.
He also said the Administration
should have known that charges that Iraq had weapons of
mass destruction rested on faulty intelligence.
What was "mesmerizing"
about Clarke was his recitation of "fact after fact"
to support his case, said one PRS member. "It was pretty
sobering," the member added. Most of the audience seemed
to agree with Clarke and corridor talk was muted and polite,
said another member. "No one got mad at Clarke,"
said the member.
Many Seminarians also
belong to the Arthur Page Society. Some members who belong
to both said Page programs exhibit a similar liberal bent.
One of the speakers at
PRS this year was Ken Bacon of Refugees International while
a speaker at Page this spring was from Amnesty International.
Speaker Paul Steiger, managing editor of the Wall Street
Journal, talked about world events including the murder
last year of WSJ staffer Daniel Pearle.
Seminarians said Steiger
was "interesting" but "did not knock himself
least he didn t give us PR 101 about the WSJ's editorial
policies which he did the last time he spoke to us,"
said one member.
Bing Among Speakers
Other speakers included
Bob Schieffer of CBS news, who talked about national politics;
Stanley Bing of Fortune magazine (pen name for Gil
Schwartz of CBS), who gave a humorous speech about what
it's like to be in corporate PR; Marilyn Carlson Nelson,
CEO of Carlson Cos., who talked about women entrepreneurs;
Mickey Kantor, who talked about the need for free trade,
and lawyer Floyd Abrams, who talked about First Amendment
A corporate ethics workshop
was held in which Seminarians were split up into buzz groups
and given hypothetical cases to discuss. Some interesting
conversations were held but because of lack of time, the
buzz groups were not able to report to the combined group
what they had discussed.
The session was chaired
by Michael O'Neill of American Express, who was overall
He now moves up to chairman of the event while Phyllis Piano,
secretary/treasurer, moves up to program chair for the next
PRS in Naples, Fla.
Piano is VP-corp. affairs and comms., Raytheon.
Jon C. Iwata of IBM becomes secretary/treasurer.
Not present for the second year in a row was anyone from
PR Society of America.
Kathy Cripps, president,
Council of PR Firms, joined the group last year and was
invited again in 2004.
Invited to PRS/2004 were
302 PR executives, 95 of whom are women. In its early days
in the 50s, the group only had two or three women at any
PR Firms Represented
Besides corporate executives,
a few heads of major counseling firms are invited. These
include Daniel and Richard Edelman of Edelman; Lou Capozzi,
Manning, Selvage & Lee; Harold Burson and Chris Komisarjevsky
of Burson-Marsteller; Harris Diamond, Weber Shandwick; Bob
Feldman, GCI; Paul Taaffe, Hill & Knowlton; Marcia Silverman,
Ogilvy; David Drobis, who retired from Ketchum, and Al Golin,
Golin/Harris Int'l .
New members of PRS are:
Cathy Babington, VP, IR
& PA, Abbott Labs.
Vince Borg, VP-CC, Barrick Gold Corp.
Lisa Bottle, VP-CC, Goodrich Corp.
Roberta Bowman, SVP, ext. rels., Duke Energy
Dennis Boxx, SVP-CC, Lockheed Martin
Cheryl Campbell, VP-CC & PR, Convergys
John Cannon, SVP, PA & Legal, Cigna
Paul Capelli, VP-PR, Staples
Claudia Ceniceros, sr. dir., corp. PR, Cisco
Celeste Clark, SVP, corp. affairs, Kellogg
Kenneth Cohen, VP-PA, Exxon-Mobil
Heather Conway, XVP, corp./PA,
Steven Dale, SVP, media & PA, U.S. Bancorp
Peter Dworkin, VP-IR & CC, Applera Corp.
Peggy Echols, VP-PA, State Farm Ins.
Gregory Elliott, XVP-CC, Int'l Truck & Engine
Thomas Forsythe, VP-CC, General Mills
Donald Frischmann, SVP-CC/brand mgmt., Symantec Corp.
Henry Gomez, VP-CC, eBay
Dirk Grosse-Leege, comms. head, Volkswagen
Marc Grossman, SVP-corp. affairs, Hilton Hotels
Katharine Harkins, VP-PR & comms., Sun Life Fin.
Susan Hoff, SVP-CC, Best Buy
Jolie Hunt, PR dir., Americas, Financial Times
William Imada, chmn., CEO, IW Group
Mary Jo Keating, VP-CC, Northeast Utilities
Marie Kennedy, VP-CC, Amgen
Dallas Kersey, principal of mktg., Edward Jones & Co.,
who returns to the group after several years. He was with
Towers Perrin and Mutual of Omaha.
Ray Kotcher, CEO, Ketchum
Thomas J. Kowaleski, VP, comms., Gen. Motors
Michael Landry, VP-corp. dev., Manulife Fin'l
Mary Linder, SVP, corp./brand,
Northwest AirlinesEllie Loats, Research Strategies Corp.
Laurie MacDonald, VP-corp./brand comms. Nestle
Sari Macrie, SVP-CC, Cardinal Health
Lynn Marmer, group VP, corp. affairs, Kroger
Cindy McCaffrey, VP-corp. mktg., Google
Sheila McIntosh, SVP-IR, EnCana Corp.
Daniel McIntyre, VP-comms., MeadWestvaco
Douglas Michelman, XVP, corp. rels., Visa USA
Michael Pfeil, VP-CC, Altria Corp. Services
Michael Porter, VP-CC, DTE Energy
John Remington, VP-events mktg./comms., Target
Susan Rogers, VP-corp. affairs, Canadian Tire
David Samson, head of CC, ChevronTexaco
James Simon, VP-CC, Nationwide Insurance
Brenda Skelton, VP-CC, Northwestern Mutual
Joan Walker, XVP, corp. mktg./comms., Qwest
Ann Walker Marchant, CEO, Walker Marchant
Simon Walker, dir., CC, Reuters Group
Jim Warren, dir., CC, Magna Int'l Terri West, SVP, comms.
& IR, Texas Instruments
Richard J. White, VP-CC, Wisconsin-Energy
Jason Wright, SVP-comms. & PA, Merrill Lynch.
Edition, June 16, 2004 Page 8
PR Seminarians, who
politely heard Richard Clarke's negative critique
of the Bush Administration (page one), are mostly liberal-leaning,
several Seminarians have told us.
They said that if a poll were taken at PRS, the majority
would say they are going to vote for John Kerry rather than
George Bush. Some other PRS members argued that just because
an anti-Administration speaker highlighted the PRS program
does not mean the group supports that point of view.
"We just listen to all sides," said the Seminarian.
"Piffle," retorted other members. They noted
that the Arthur Page Society, to which many Seminarians
also belong, heard three foreign editors at its spring meeting
who excoriated the Bush Administration. No one challenged
the editors, they added.
Communications people, including PR pros (many of them
with media backgrounds), obviously have Democratic party
and liberal leanings.
Myrna Blyth, in Spin Sisters (4/14 NL) documented
the liberal bent of women's magazine editors and members
of New York Women in Communications.
She found an attitude bordering on contempt for the Bush
Administration and noted that no Matrix had ever been awarded
to a well known conservative even though New York has such
eminent candidates as Dorothy Rabinowitz of the Wall
Street Journal and Andrea Peyser of the New York
The outpouring of affection
for Howard Rubenstein on his 50th anniversary in
PR (page 5) was an amazing sight to see.
Some 3,000 people including many celebrities turned out.
We watched as scores of people made their way to Rubenstein
not only to congratulate him but to thank him for one thing
or another. Some of these people were famous. Many were
The food and entertainment at Tavern on the Green were
tops but can t account for the huge turnout.
Rubenstein is noted for being a problem-solver, a mediator,
and for his sense of fairness. His firm is one of the most
media-friendly in town. Calls are returned, no matter what
We called Rubenstein ourselves in 1994 when we got sued
for millions of dollars for covering editor Dean Rotbart
at the 1993 PRSA conference. We were a credentialed reporter
covering an open session but got hit with a copyright suit
for allegedly reporting too much of what was said. Rubenstein
listened to us and said "Send over the materials."
We did and not only did he let us use his name for our
legal defense committee but sent a contribution. Others
joining included Harold Burson, Daniel Edelman and Peter
Finn. Hal Warner, Joe Vecchione and John Beardsley, 1993,
94 and 95 PRSA presidents, refused to discuss
the matter with us. It turned out that PRSA also held the
copyright to the presentation. All charges were dismissed
in Federal Court Jan. 31, 1995.
Rubenstein, while not revealing his fee income, has for
many years given a staff count (170 in our latest directory)
and published a list of 100+ clients.
Having written about
sky-high HMO rates (6/9 NL) we wonder what the people who
created the "Harry & Louise" commercials
in 1993 now think. That ad/PR campaign killed Clinton Administration
attempts to reform health insurance.
Created by Goddard Claussen, now part of Porter Novelli,
for the Health Insurance Assn. of America, the ads said
people would lose their choice of doctors and insurance
would be so expensive few could afford it. HMO family rates
are now at or above $20K yearly and even singles are paying
$500+ monthly (heading to $1,000). Some 45 million Americans
have no medical insurance.
Goddard Claussen Porter Novelli revived Harry & Louise
in a campaign for CuresNow, which backs human cloning for
medical research. HIAA sued the group to stop use of H&L.
The "PRSA Names
Blue Sky for E-Mail" story on page 2 raises
PRSA has given, for sales e-mails only, the "blast
e-mailings" of 16,000 of its 19,500 members to Blue
Sky Factory. Such e-mails carry a "bug" that tells
Blue Sky whether anyone has clicked on the main message
or embedded links. The term "bug" can even be
found in the routing instructions of the e-mail if this
is opened. PRSA should tell members that clicking on these
sales e-mails will send a report back to Blue Sky. Such
members could now go on a "hot prospect" list
that is singled out for attention. Whatever the use, some
members don t like such "bugs" in their e-mail.
But the real issue
is if PRSA can e-mail its members so easily, why doesn t
it ask them for their opinions on something and to
vote on officers and directors? Democracy is staring PRSA
in the face but the eyes of the board are closed. We noted
last year that BoardSource (boardsource.org) has a program
called E-Vote that for $5,000 allows groups with up to 100,000
members to conduct secure voting.
Delaware allows remote voting by non-profit groups and
will provide a state charter by phone for an initial $89
plus a few other minor charges. BoardSource says nearly
100 groups inquired about this but none has taken it. The
groups say their own states don t allow it and they are
reluctant to switch to Delaware.
So, the other groups are about as interested in member
democracy as PRSA. Current state charters provide all sorts
of protections to leaders of nonprofit groups and they re
not interested in changing this.