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Internet Edition, Nov. 2, 2005, Page 1

The Texas Dept. of Transportation has issued an RFP for “strategic marketing and PR services” to tell the public about its offerings.

The contract will be for three years. There is an option for two additional 36-month periods.

TxDOT's current focus is on the Texas Rail System Plan designed to upgrade the state's railways and cut congestion.

TxDOT wants a firm with at least five years of experience and a full-time office in the Lone Star State. Officials will outline specific needs at a pre-proposal conference slated for Nov. 15 in Austin.

Proposals are due Dec. 2. They will be evaluated Dec. 13-15.

Jess Castilleja ([email protected]) is handling questions about the RFP.

Under investigation in the CIA leak probe, presidential advisor Karl Rove has reached out to Alexandria, Va.-based Corallo Media Strategies, the boutique PR firm set up by former Justice Department Public Affairs Director Mark Corallo.

Rove is said to be shoring up his legal and PR defense as he is investigated by U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald in the CIA leak probe.

Corallo was named director of PA at the Justice Dept. in 2003 by then-Attorney General John Ashcroft. He was communications director of the House Government Reform Committee from 1999-2002 and was press secretary for Rep. Bob Livingston for two years through the House Speaker’s resignation for an extramarital affair in 1998.

Corallo did not returned a call from O'Dwyer's.

Sloane & Co. has been tapped by management and technology consulting company BearingPoint, the KPMG spinoff struggling with accounting problems, an SEC probe and other woes.

New York-based S&C is charged with guiding corporate and go-to-market communications and investor relations for the company.

Connie Weaver, who joined BearingPoint this year as its chief marketing officer, said Sloane will help the company rebrand and retool its communications efforts. She joined BP from longtime Sloane client AT&T.

“This is a great account for us working with a company that is coming out of a difficult time and ready to aggressively tell its story,” Sloane told O’Dwyer’s.

Sitrick & Co. has replaced Rubenstein Assocs. at Refco, the giant commodities and futures brokerage that filed the fourth largest Chapter 11 proceeding on Oct. 18 after blockbuster revelations that its former CEO, Phillip Bennett, hid a $430M debt owed to Refco by a company that he controlled. Bennett faces securities fraud charges.

S&C was brought in for its bankruptcy expertise. Sandy Sternberg is handling the Refco work.

Marcia Horowitz, senior executive VP at RA, told O'Dwyer’s that the firm slid over to represent Tom Lee. His firm, Thomas H. Lee Partners, is the investment bank that purchased a majority stake in Refco in `04 for $508M, and made twice that amount when Refco went public the next year.

The Oct. 24 Wall Street Journal reported the mission of Lee’s firm is now “damage control” to defend its reputation as being a savvy investor.

Wendy Hall, who as chief spokesperson for Halliburton fended off charges of “war profiteering” in Iraq by its KBR engineering unit, has quietly left the company.

A Halliburton spokesperson told O'Dwyer’s that Hall “decided to spend more time with her family.” Cathy Mann is now Halliburton’s prime media contact.

In an ’04 poll of readers, Hall was edged by Wal-Mart’s Mona Williams (52-48 percent) as having the “toughest PR job.”

PRSA, facing a possible refusal of its insurer to pay for the cancelled 2005 conference in Miami Beach, is hard at work trying to arrange a new conference and is also asking registrants to consider making their conference fees ($1,025 for full registration) a donation to PRSA.

President Judith Phair told one of two leaders’ teleconferences Oct. 27 that some members have already said they would contribute their fees to the Society to save it from financial distress.

The insurer, so far unidentified but reported to be one of 62 companies using the Lloyd's name, is insisting that PRSA set up a new conference.

“We cannot cancel, we must look into postponement,” said COO Catherine Bolton.
But Phair said it would be “extraordinarily difficult if not impossible” to recreate the 2005 conference.

(continued on page 7)

Internet Edition, Nov. 2, 2005, Page 2

WPP Group Martin Sorrell Oct. 28 apologized on behalf Neil French, the firm’s former creative director, who ridiculed the work of female creatives as “crap” and said they don’t rise to the top because they “wimp out and go suckle something.”

Sorrell told British radio that if French’s comments were as reported they are regrettable and should not have been said. The WPP CEO has not seen a transcript of French’s remarks.

Sorrell said if French is “sticking to his guns, I guess I should offer that apology on his behalf.”

Sorrell called the issue of gender and diversity important issues in the U.S. “It is not just the issue of women and their role but others as well and the serious point is we have to get the balance.”

Irons Out $50M Divorce Settlement

Sorrell paid his former wife of 32 years, Sandra, more than $50 million in assets in a divorce settlement, according to an 18-page document made public Oct. 10 by London’s High Court of Justice Family Division. obtained the document, and has posted as a story about the “messy marital breakup” in which Sorrell was “banished by court order to the basement of his family home.”

Judge Hugh Bennett ruled against Mrs. Sorrell’s demand that the former couple’s assets be split 50/50 because of Sorrell’s “spectacular contribution” in building WPP. The Judge believes Sorrell does “possess the ‘spark’ or ‘force’ or ‘seed’ of genius.”

The Judge agreed with Mrs. Sorrell that “Mr. Sorrell did not behave as a ‘good’ husband in that from about 1993 he conducted an affair about which the wife learned in 1999.”

He faulted her claim that Sorrell was a “father by appointment,” and called a 472-page exhibit to her affidavit an example of trying to “overegg the pudding.”


Shaw Group, the Baton Rouge-based engineering and construction giant, has hired Patton Boggs to lobby on behalf of its Hurricane Katrina relief effort.

The Department of Homeland Security faced a barrage of criticism for awarding $100M in no-bid contracts to Shaw, Bechtel, Fluor and CH2MHill in the immediate aftermath of Katrina.

Those contracts are to be re-bid. The Federal Emergency Management Agency has promised to award work to local and small business.

Tommy Boggs is the son of Hale Boggs, the former House Majority Leader and Congressman from New Orleans. He leads the Shaw business with Robert Jones, former counsel to the Senate Appropriations Committee under John Stennis (D-Miss.), and James Reeder, aide to ex-Sen. Bennett Johnston (D-LA).

Robinson Lerer & Montgomery’s Walter Montgomery and U.K.-based Finsbury Group’s Rupert Younger are helping Elliot Bloom, Cendant Corp. senior VP/corporate communications, handle media calls about the firm splitting into four separate companies.

New York-based Cendant formally announced Oct. 24 that it would split into four units.

SBC Communications, the San Antonio-based phone company, announced Oct 27 that it will re-brand itself as AT&T when the company completes the $16B acquisition of the remains of the once-storied 120-year-old Ma Ball at the end of the year.

CEO Ed Whitacre promises a multi-million marketing campaign and a new logo to mark the return of AT&T. The reincarnation is designed to capitalize on the 98 percent consumer and 100 percent business awareness of the AT&T brand. The SBC name is largely unknown outside its 13-state marketing territory.

An SBC release humbly calls the decision to bring back AT&T moniker a “milestone in the history of communications.”

SBC has more than 50 million access lines and owns a 60 percent stake in Cingular Wireless. It acquired AT&T for its global telecommunications network that serves businesses.

Financial Dynamics is guiding PR efforts for a diverse Washington, D.C.-based coalition of education groups that is unhappy with Congressional proposals to cut higher education programs.

Stan Collender, GM of FD’s Washington office, told O’Dwyer’s that the firm is currently engaged in a public affairs effort for the Student Aid Alliance to show that cuts currently being considered by Congress would do lasting damage to higher education institutions.

FD organized a conference call on Oct. 24 which drew 35 reporters, a significant number, Collender said, in a D.C. news environment focused on a bevy of other major stories. The Alliance, which Collender described as a “coalition of coalitions,” is an umbrella group for education interests like the American Federation of Teachers, the NCAA, United Negro College Fund and Council for Christian Colleges and Universities, to name a few. FD’s D.C. office picked up the account this year.

The Karpel Group “got the word out to the media” that Sheryl Swoopes, the three-time most valuable player of the WNBA, has signed an endorsement deal with Olivia, the cruise line that serves the gay and lesbian community, Kristin Farrell, a TKG staffer told O’Dwyer’s.

Swoopes, a forward for the Houston Comets, used the endorsement opportunity to “come out” as a lesbian. Farrell emphasized that TKG’s work was on behalf of Olivia, and not about Swoopes’ sexual orientation.

The New York Times played up the Swoopes announcement on the front page of its Oct. 27 sports section. It ran another front page follow-up on Oct. 28 called “homophobia is alive in men’s locker rooms” to bemoan the fact that gay male athletes hide their sexuality while still in professional sports. “Where is the Oliver Cruise Line for a ‘Queer Guy on the Straight Team,’’’ wrote Selena Roberts.

Farrell said TKG got coverage for Olivia/Swoopes news in the Chicago Tribune, USA Today, Boston Herald and San Francisco Chronicle. Craig Karpel founded TKG in `97.

Internet Edition, Nov. 2, 2005, Page 3

Primedia is thinking about splitting itself into two separate companies to "unlock value for shareholders." The $1.1B company announced Oct. 24 that it may separate its consumer guides segment from the enthusiast media/education groups. Its stock tanked more than $1 to a 52-week low of $1.85 on the news.

Primedia deems its free consumer guides (apartment, auto, new home) a high-growth business. The enthusiast magazine/education group, in Primedia’s eyes, offers long-term prospects and strong cash flow. Primedia publishes 120 magazine titles such as Motor Trend, In-Fisherman, and Stereophile. Channel One, which provides programming to 12,000 middle/high schools, forms the backbone of the education group.

Goldman Sachs and Lehman Brothers are working on the split-up. Details are promised by the end of ’05.

Primedia CEO Kelly Conlin, who joined the firm two years ago, apparently was not so hot about the separation idea and left the company upon the announcement. Chairman Dean Nelson has taken over for Conlin.

Primedia last month completed the $385M sale of its business information unit to Wasserstein & Co.

The Wall Street Journal Online will drop its subscription firewall from Nov. 7-12 to showcase its features and content to prospective subscribers.

Blue-chip advertisers like Sprint, Charles Schwab and Chase Bank USA are sponsoring the so-called “open house,” which the Internet unit held last year and in ’97.

The company, part of Dow Jones, said last year's push generated about 10,000 new subscriptions.

New York Times publisher Arthur “Pinch” Sulzberger needs to explain the “apparent deference” going back several years that was displayed toward its embattled reporter Judy Miller in view of the ethics issues that have come to light, according to Byron Calame, the paper's “public editor.”

Neither Sulzberger nor Bill Keller, executive editor, did much digging into Miller’s contacts before she received a subpoena in 2004, wrote Calame on Oct. 23.

That may have been because of instinct or the Times tradition of protecting a reporter’s confidential source, yet Miller talks about “special support” from Sulzberger. Of Sulzberger, Miller said “he metaphorically and literally put his arm around me.”

Calame takes a swipe at Sulzberger’s “measured response” to the Miller affair. The publisher only has said that there are “new limits to what she can do next.” Calame’s view: “...the problems facing her inside and outside the newsroom will make it difficult for her to return to the paper as a reporter.”

Miller plans to return after a vacation.

Calame does praise the paper for its “commendable” 6,200-word Oct. 16 article about the Miller episode. That article combined with Miller's side of the story suggests that the journalistic practices of the Times and Miller are “more flawed than I feared,” wrote Calame.

Marvel Entertainment, the comic book publisher, and BusinessWeek have made strides to enter the Middle East publishing arena.

Marvel has inked a deal with Teshkeel Media Group to bring Spider-Man, the X-Men and other Marvel publications to the Middle East.

Teshkeel has agreed to a multi-year publishing program for Arabic-language versions of Marvel comics, trade paperbacks and magazines from the Arabian Gulf to North Africa.

Bruno Maglione, president of Marvel International, said in a statement that introducing comics into the region, which he called “one of the fastest growing markets in the world,” is a “crucial first to developing a full business model in new regions.” Marvel’s comics business has sparked successful Hollywood films and millions of dollars in licensed merchandise.

Publication is slated to begin early next year. In addition to Spider-Man and X-Men, Marvel plans Arabic versions of the Fantastic Four, The Incredible Hulk and The Avengers. Dan Klores Communications reps Marvel and handled PR for the deal.

Meanwhile, BusinessWeek’s first Arab-language edition has hit newsstands. The magazine is being distributed to subscribers of Al Eqtisadiah, a daily business and economic newspaper based in Saudi Arabia which reaches 22 Arab countries.

BusinessWeek Al-Arabiya, published jointly by McGraw Hill and Beirut-based InfoPro Management, is published monthly and includes content from the publication's North America, Europe and Asia editions.

Initial circulation is 30,000.

New York’s Village Voice, the alternative weekly that is celebrating its 50th year, is to be acquired by New Times Media in Phoenix. The combined company will have annual revenues in the $200M range and a circulation of 1.8M readers from its 17 free weekly papers. It is to be called Village Voice Media.

David Schneiderman, who is CEO of the VV, becomes head of VVM’s digital operations. Donald Forst, who edits the VV, will do the same at VVM.

Michael Lacey, NTM’s executive editor, will take the same role at VVM. James Larkin, who was CEO at NTM, is slated for the helm of VVM.
The deal is expected to close early next year.

CBS News president and 24-year veteran of the network Andrew Heyward will depart when his contract expires at the end of the year. CBS Sports president Sean McManus adds oversight of the news division.

Heyward, who was president of CBS News for 10 years, saw the network’s credibility hit during the 2004 Bush National Guard memo crisis. Ousted producer Mary Mapes has written a book slated for release the day before McManus takes over on Nov. 7.

McManus has headed CBS Sports since 1996 and is credited with a solid turnaround at the unit.

(Media news continued on next page)

Internet Edition, Nov. 2, 2005, Page 4

BIRD FLU INFO SITE LAUNCHED. has launched a website to serve as a clearinghouse for news and analysis of avian flu.

The site,, includes links to news articles, government and NGO information, and commentary from health scholars.

Nick Schulz, editor of TechCentralStation and former politics editor for, said the ’Net publisher hopes the site will become a resource for media and concerned citizens.


La Voz, a daily newspaper which claims to be Arizona's largest Spanish-language publication, plans to launch a free, weekend edition on Nov. 12.

La Voz Fin de Semana is slated to be home delivered on Saturdays to 60,000 in metro Phoenix targeting areas with an 85 percent Hispanic household penetration, according to the publisher.

Arizona is the fastest growing Hispanic market in the U.S. and Phoenix has the eighth largest Hispanic population in the U.S., according to Census data.

La Voz is published by Phoenix Newspapers Inc., part of Gannett which publishes the Arizona Republic.

Wi-Fi TV has agreed to run content from travel agencies and other entities highlighting vacation trips to foreign countries. The Internet TV network,, will be paid by the travel groups for any trips that are booked as a result of leads generated by the travel videos. The network has 200 channels of live programming sorted by country and category.

Annuity Market News has been named the official publication of the Reston, Va.-based National Association for Variable Annuities. All NAVA members will receive the monthly magazine and be granted access to its website starting in January.

Entrepreneur Jack Hardy has created and produced a new video blog aimed at cultivating grassroots contributors and viewers. includes news, commentary and entertainment content geared toward broadband and mobile Internet users. The V-log, based in Vancouver, Wash., has a daily broadcast prepared weekdays by 8 a.m. PST. Hosted by Kristen Reilly, the site plans to use content from "reporters" around the world.

Reader’s Digest has launched a Romanian edition, the magazine's 49th worldwide edition, following the launch of book and music publishing businesses in the Eastern European nation in 2004. Initial print run is 150K targeting ages 30-55. RD is now available in 20 languages.

The Reader's Digest Assn. also announced new book publishing operations in Bosnia and Serbia in partnership with Slovenian publisher Mladinska knijiga.

Music Alive!, a magazine geared toward music students and distributed in schools, marks its 25th year this school year. The not-for-profit monthly is published by the Cherry Lane Music Foundation and does not take advertisements.

Publisher NetWorld Alliance has launched Fast Casual magazine to cover the so-called fast casual sector of the restaurant business.

The mag is the print incarnation of – which has covered the market online since 2000 with promotional pieces about the industry. The new magazine estimates the fast casual eatery market will exceed $70B in 2006 from key brands like Starbucks, Panera, Chipolte and Qdoba. Subscriptions are free.


Kate Moodie, style director for Self magazine since 2001, has joined Fitness as executive style director. She handles styling for celebrity covers, development of fashion editorials and manages the magazine's fashion department.

Earlier, she was style director at YM magazine and Redbook and was senior editor at Glamour.

Mike Lafavore, founding editor-in-chief of Men’s Health, has been named to the new post of editorial director for Meredith Magazines. He oversees new product development and is responsible for newstand covers for Meredith pubs, which include Better Homes and Gardens, Parents and American Baby.

Lafavore, who has consulted for the company for the last few years, will also manage editorial strategy for Fitness.

Ty Sawyer has become editorial director of Islands, which is published eight times a year by World Publications. He shifts from WP’s Sport Diver, which Sawyer had edited.

Winter Park, Fla.-based WP also publishes Caribbean Travel & Life, Destination Weddings & Honeymoons, Spa and Florida Travel & Life.

Roger Ailes, Fox News Channel CEO, is hailed as one of America’s best leaders in the Oct. 31 U.S. News & World Report. He is praised for his “flat out refusal to lose.” Ailes’ recipe for leadership: “Take responsibility and make decisions, encourage your troops, joke with `em, make sure work’s fun, tell ‘em the truth, stay open, take responsibility if you screw up, change the decisions that are bad as quickly as possible.”

Other “bests” are e-Bay’s Meg Whitman, Apple’s Steve Jobs, Bill and Melinda Gates and Oprah Winfrey.

Peter Frank, who was deputy editor of Men’s Journal, has been hired by Conde Nast Traveler, to relaunch its website.

Al-Jazerra, the Arabic satellite TV network, is looking to hire a sports reporter for its English language operation. An understanding of baseball, basketball, hockey and football is a must.
On-screen experience is required for the Washington, D.C.-based job. The network is also hiring air conditioner mechanics for its Doha headquarters.

Internet Edition, Nov. 2, 2005, Page 5

CarryOn Communications has been named agency of record of after the privately held Internet social portal heard from three firms.

Shari Cogan, manager of PR for, told O'Dwyer’s that the company was looking for three things: a mid-sized firm, offices in Los Angeles and New York, and media relations savvy. She said Lewis PR and boutique firm Parisol Marketing Group were also considered for the work.

Greenough Communications was the incumbent, but its Boston base and corporate focus prompted the change, said Cogan.

The account at CarryOn is headed by senior VP and tech practice head J.P. Schuerman out of Los Angeles. The firm said it will focus heavily on consumer media relations, entertainment publicity programs and creative promotions. says its 35-million membership base is growing by about 40,000 users a day. People looking to reunite with classmates, military colleagues, lost loves and distant families make up some of the site’s base.

The portal was formed in 2002 with the merger of and It operates on a subscription model ($36/year for a standard subscription) and also powers the “people search” function for sites like Lycos USA, InfoSpace and

A federal judge has postponed the trial of Doug Dowie, former head of Fleishman-Hillard’s Los Angeles office, and John Stodder, ex-senior VP, for four months to give them more time to prepare a defense.

They have been charged with bilking the city’s Dept. of Water and Power.

Both men say they are innocent. The trial was to begin Nov. 15.

Brunswick Group and client the U.S. Polo Association have declared victory in a five-year-old court battle with Ralph Lauren over the marketing rights to images of polo players.

The USPA and Jordache won the right to use these three logos to market clothing.

The Polo Association and clothing marketer Jordache Limited received the go-ahead from a New York Federal Court this month to use three silhouette logos of mounted polo players, an iconic image in the clothing industry associated with Ralph Lauren.

Lauren sued the USPA and Jordache for trademark infringement in 2000.

A jury ruled last week that three out of four logos in question were acceptable for the USPA and Jordache to market.

The two victors plan to launch a major advertising and marketing push using the three logos awarded to them by the court.

Brunswick director Ellen Gonda handles the USPA account. Jordache has not yet been reached about the upcoming marketing push.


New York Area

Goodman Media International, New York/Quick and Simple, Hearst magazine focused on women's services; Siempre Mujer, Spanish-language, bi-monthly women's magazine published by Meredith Corp.; Amerada Hess, for annual launch of its Hess toy truck; mun2, cable network targeting Latino youth; ArtWalk NY, benefit for Coalition for the Homeless, and the Vermont Institute for Artisan Cheese.

Deep Focus, New York/The Weinstein Co., film produc-tion company headed by Miramax founders Bob and Harvey Weinstein, for advertising, online work and PR. TWC tapped Dan Klores Comms. SVP Liza Burnett to head PR in September (9/07 NL).

Eric Mower and Associates, Buffalo, N.Y./American Lung Assn. of New York State, for PR to support its 2005 Lung Walk.


Racepoint Group, Waltham, Mass./Renesys Corp., Internet monitoring; SEEC Inc., IT management soft-ware; Sentillion, identity and access management svcs. for healthcare sector; Virtual Iron Software, data center software, and Webhire, talent management services.

The Brownstein Group, Philadelphia/Frankford Candy; Kyle's Treehouse Foundation; Morris, James, Hitchens & Williams LLP; Octagon Research Solutions, and Rumson Capital, for PR, advertising and online work.

Perception Inc., Gaithersburg, Md./National Association of Personal Financial Advisors, 1,000-member group of fee-only financial planners, as AOR for PR. The firm is initially focused on revamping the group's media kit and press center on its website.

Elite Financial Communications Group, Lake Mary, Fla./ICOP Digital Inc. and VitaCube Holdings d/b/a XELR8 Holdings Inc., for investor relations counsel.

NewsMark PR, Boca Raton, Fla./Antiques & Country Pine, for U.S. retail launch of an English-inspired fur-niture line.

TransMedia Group, Boca Raton, Fla./The Payroll Professionals, payroll management, for PR. TransMedia has hired Lesley Gross from TPP rival ADP to manage the account.


Weber Shandwick, Minneapolis/Jo-Ann Stores, fabric and craft retailer with 847 stores in the U.S., as AOR for PR. WS' New York office will assist with the account.

Marx Layne & Co., Farmington Hills, Mich./Inn at St. John's, Detroit conference/event center, as AOR for PR.


Waggener Edstrom, Seattle/Angiotech Pharmaceuticals, Vancouver-based pharma company; Biogen Idec, oncology, neurology and immunology therapies; Heidelberg Engineering GmbH, German company focused on development of light-based diagnostics for eye diseases; OXiGENE, small-molecule therapies for cancer and eye diseases. WE's bioscience and health care unit leads the new work.

High Road Communications, Toronto/Canadian Information Productivity Awards, given for IT innova-tion, as AOR for PR.

Internet Edition, Nov. 2, 2005, Page 6

The New York and Chicago offices of Pims, which supplies production and distribution services for the PR industry, have filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

Both are owned by Pims Holdings of London.
Total liabilities for New York are listed as $2.9 million and assets as $1.7M.

The assets include $450,000 in receivables and $996,476 due from the Chicago office.

Biggest New York creditor is GHG Realty, 221 Penn Plaza, New York, former landlord of Pims, which has a “disputed” claim for $726,487 against Pims. By filing for protection under Chapter 11, Pims would prevent GHG from seizing its property via a Supreme Court lawsuit.

Mark Glickman, president of both New York and Chicago, said the firm has unsuccessfully tried to negotiate itself out of the lease at Penn Plaza.

It is hoped that this dispute will be settled as part of the bankruptcy proceedings, he said. The filing was made Oct. 14. New and tougher laws against bankruptcy filings went into effect Oct. 17.

Another major creditor is Xerox Capital Services for purchase and leasing of equipment ($156,373).

‘Downturn’ in PR Noted

Pims/New York employs 27 people and continues to meet its payroll and provide normal services, said Glickman. He expects the firm to emerge from bankruptcy by March, 2006. The filing noted that “a serious downturn in the economy” caused marketing and PR budgets to be “slashed” although they are “slowly returning.” New technologies also gave clients new ways of communicating, the filing said.

Pims is now directing itself to a new model that stresses “electronic press kits.”

“Through the reorganization process, we will make substantial investments in the resources that have the most meaning to our clients,” said Glickman.

Chicago debts were listed as $1.1M and assets as $177,638. Nine employees are listed. Pims said it intends to consolidate Chicago with New York and operate Chicago as a “virtual presence.” More info is available at


Norwalk, Conn.-based eNR Services, says it has signed Staples, Best Buy, Herbalife and Curves as clients for its flagship Grassroots PR product.

Broadcast PR company Z Communications, Bethesda, Md., recently completed a five-city campaign for the launch of a K-Y massage product. The company offers these tips for broadcast PR efforts: allow four to six weeks of planning ahead of a promotion; remember that radio promotions have PR opportunities beyond contests and mentions, like DJ endorsements and samplings at station events.

IMN, Waltham, Mass., has launched an e-newsletter campaign service with analytics meant for technology companies to keep resellers abreast of product developments.


Mel Granick, director of Mount Sinai Hospital's public affairs unit, is the new senior VP-media services at Chamberlain Communications. He is a former CBS Radio health and medicine reporter and senior VP/health strategy at Edelman.

Chamberlain has added Nanci Steinberg as VP-media services. She was media rep for the City of Hope National Medical Center, PR director at Cabrini Medical Center and public information officer at the American Medical Assn.

Also joining CC is Michelle Strier to work on the Pfizer business. She leaves Manning Selvage & Lee, where she worked on Procter & Gamble, Roche, Pfizer and Sanofi-Aventis products.

New York-based Chamberlain is a healthcare specialist founded in '93.


Tammy Gilson-Hodge, who led PR and marketing pro-grams for International Data Corp., to Greenough Communications, Boston, Mass., as a manager. She is a former writer for public policy magazine Empire State Report.

Anita Contini, VP and director of the Lower Manhattan Development Corp., to CIT Group, New York, as seni-ior VP and director of corporate and public affairs. She heads community and public affairs internal and exter-nally for the commercial and consumer finance company.

Audrey Easaw, director of multifamily marketing and communications for Fannie Mae, to Enterprise Social Investment Corp., Columbia, Md., as VP of marketing and communications. She was previously a marketing manager for Giant Food's retail stores, pharmacies and credit union.

Jacqulyn Hampton, who guided media relations at a geopolitical/policy intelligence agency and former comms. advisor for Air Force officials at the Pentagon, to Potomac Communications Group, Washington, D.C., as a program manager. Lindsay Donofrio leaves a global heath post at Edelman in New York for a PR project coordinator role at Potomac.

Stephen Manfredi, policy director of The Ripon Society, a Republican policy and advocacy group, to Shirley & Banister Public Affairs, Alexandria, Va., as an A/E.

Tyler Gronbach, VP of corporate comms. for Qwest Communications, to R.H. Donnelley Corp., Cary, N.C., in that same title. Donelley publishes Yellow Pages and powers online searches.

Missy Acosta, director of PR, Gish, Sherwood & Friends, to Waterhouse PR, Chattanooga, Tenn., as VP/managing director. Earlier, she was an account manager at Ackermann PR.

Allyne Mills, GM and senior VP for Rosica PR, to Allison & Partners, New York, as GM of the firm's New York office. Linda Burns has been promoted to VP, media relations, in New York.


Lisa Cruz to account manager, Dublin & Associates, San Antonio, Tex. Leigh Baldwin to senior A/E.

Internet Edition, Nov. 2, 2005, Page 7

PRSA (Continued from page 1)

Bolton said she has been “meeting with the staff all week” to look at “possibilities of how we can go forward with the postponed conference – we’re looking at everything.”

Bolton told the 70 or so leaders on each call that she hopes to resolve the dispute within 30 days.

Phair noted that many Arthur W. Page Society members in 2001 contributed their fees to Page for a Sept. 21-23 meeting in San Diego when it was cancelled in the wake of 9/11.

The 160 registrants had paid $1,615 each and were given the option of donating it to Page and/or 9/11 victims, Page said. More than half did so, many splitting the fee between Page and 9/11, raising $25,000 for victims of 9/11.

Bolton told of intensive, ongoing negotiations with the insurer last week. CFO John Colletti and Bolton were in “constant touch” with the adjuster. “Every time I speak to the poor man he has been more than gracious and kind with his time,” Bolton said. "But every time I talk to him he sounds more exhausted, I just don't know how he's doing it,” she added.

The agreement with the insurer, she said, is that “we look to postpone the conference itself before it can actually be cancelled.”

Registrants were at first told to write in for a refund, citing a reason but were then told not to ask for any refunds while re-scheduling is being explored and an “overall assessment” was made for the insurers. Refunds might be made in hardship cases, it was explained on the teleconference.

Phased Cancellation of Conference Explained

Phair explained how the conference was cancelled in stages, first the students, then the Assembly and Fellows' and past presidents' dinners, and then the entire conference. Directors arrived Wednesday, Oct. 19, and met early the next day.

First concern was the 1,000 or so students (many under 21, noted Phair) who were arriving Thursday for Friday meetings. “The board decided early on Thursday morning to cancel PRSSA," she said. The Assembly was then cancelled because many of its 300 delegates were to arrive Thursday/Friday for Friday night meetings.

“In terms of the conference, that decision came a little bit later” because there were “different issues with the conference” Phair said. “We were insured,” she said (apparently referring to the main meeting).

The insurer, she said, was looking for “trigger points” such as an official “hurricane warning,” which she said was not declared until 4 p.m. Saturday, and airports being closed (airports were open through Sunday).

Bolton and Colletti “worked very hard, literally around the clock with our insurers Thursday afternoon and well into the evening and morning to convince them that there were special circumstances that made it just about impossible to hold a conference in Miami,” said Phair.

An agreement was reached that PRSA would have the chance to "prove" to the insurer that it could not set another conference although it would “love to do that.” Phair said, adding: “It’s highly unlikely.”

PRSA is looking into things that can “mitigate those circumstances so we can recover as much as possible” and not put PRSA into “financial straits,” said Phair. She said that at that point (Thursday) it was “still unclear what path Wilma would take” and there was “still a possibility in fact, right through Friday, that it actually would have missed Miami although by that point it was clearly going to hit Florida in some major way. But hurricanes are unpredictable and as we've seen in the past fall Mother Nature is very unpredictable.”

PRSA is thinking of holding the Assembly in New York or Chicago on Dec. 3 or 10, the teleconference was told. PRSA bylaws require one by Dec. 15. There was a lengthy discussion of whether delegates could vote by proxy and parliamentarian Mark Schilansky said New York State law allows this because there is nothing in the PRSA bylaws against voting by proxy. This shocked some of the teleconference participants because PRSA has always rejected any proxies in the Assembly.

Phair said she was surprised by what Schilansky had discovered. She said voting by proxy had never been examined because no one ever questioned the PRSA policy against it. “I learned something,” she told the call. Schilansky said one or two members can attend an “Assembly,” declare a quorum was lacking, and “set an adjourned meeting.” This would satisfy New York law for the 2005 Assembly, he said, if PRSA couldn't round up enough delegates or proxies.

Trim the “staff-driven” national PRSA conference, veteran PRSA leaders told this NL. It loses too much money, is attended by less than 10% of members, and distracts staff from other duties, they said. Leaders “love it” because they go free and are in the spotlight for five days, said the critics.

A past conference chair who spoke on the basis of anonymity said staff and volunteers spend “over a year of planning” on the meeting.

A past national president, meanwhile, said “failure to allocate the proper amount of staff time to the conference gives a totally unrealistic picture of what it really costs.” PRSA’s audit only allocates staff time at the actual conference ($103,122 in 2004, $108,197 in 2003, and $108,826 in the 2002).

The past president said this is “not an accurate picture.” The board has "long asked for the real numbers" but staff and the PRSA treasurer "have ignored these requests," said the past president.

A former board member said boards have debated the worth of the conference for years but “no one is ever willing to make a change.” “Staff books hotels 4-5 years in advance so any change would take a while to go into effect," the ex-board member said.

Calling the conference “staff-driven,” the former conference chair said:

“There’s an obsession with doing it the same way year after year because the staff has a set routine it likes to follow. It would take a very strong-willed board to buck the staff on this matter.

Internet Edition, Nov. 2, 2005 Page 8




Hurricane Wilma may be a blessing in disguise if it halts staff and leader obsession with the national conference, which benefits the few at the expense of the many.

National leaders who know the inside story have condemned this wasteful exercise for which the true costs are hidden, especially staff time (page 7).

PRSA members received big shocks in the past couple of weeks including the loss of their annual conference to Hurricane Wilma and the possible loss of their printed 972-page directory of members, services, bylaws, code, leaders, sections, etc.

There were plenty of warnings for the first disaster but members have yet to be told about the directory.

Another shock was learning that Assembly delegates can cast their votes by proxy.

This has been a governance sore point for many years. Failure of chapters to have representation in the Assembly led to APR being decoupled from Assembly membership in 2004.

The situation came to a head in 2002 when 24 chapters were unrepresented in San Francisco.

Parliamentarian Mark Schilansky has now pointed out that while the Assembly is governed by Robert’s Rules, which favor in-person delegates, New York State law allows proxies unless specifically prohibited in a group's bylaws. State law thus “trumps” Robert’s because there is no such ban in PRSA's bylaws, he says.

PRSA wants proxies now because it's afraid it won’t be able to get the needed 100 delegates in person by Dec. 15.

The chilling thought is that PRSA members and delegates have been falsely told something for many years and all the recent delegate votes may be invalid because chapter votes were improperly lost.

The false impression about proxy voting given by leaders is one reason delegates need their own rules expert or own lawyer. Some of the delegates are now complaining that they spent money to get to Miami and also purchased conference tickets including the full $1,025 package, and would like their money back so they can afford an Assembly.

The odds of them getting refunds are growing slimmer, the way we read these tea leaves.

PRSA’s insurer is obviously fighting PRSA’s claims. Insurers already have to pay off billions of dollars for the wreckage left by Wilma, Katrina and the record number of other hurricanes this year.

The insurer seems to be saying to PRSA, just put on another conference and if people don’t show, that’s their problem. Keep the money. PRSA has already told the 1,000 or so students they’re not getting back their $275 fees, which are being saved for a future meeting during the school year (probably not in connection with a national conference).

PRSA directors, insisting as late as Thursday, Oct. 20, that Wilma might miss Miami, should have met by phone on Tuesday and cancelled the meeting based on then-available information. Cancelling the students on Thursday was too late because many had already arrived or were in the air.

When PRSSA (1,000 students) and the Assembly (300) were erased on Thursday morning, registrants knew the main conference was finished because those two represented about half the projected 2,500+ total.

PRSA directors, taking up the matter too late, were between a rock and a hard place. The insurer wanted an official hurricane warning and the closure of the Miami and Fort Lauderdale airports.

Although PRSA leaders claimed the storm was “erratic,” it was only erratic as far as timing. The 400-mile wide “record” hurricane, packing 145-mile-an-hour winds in an 85-mile center zone as of Thursday, was headed straight for lower Florida after a visit to Cancun, said weather maps. It was going to arrive anytime from Saturday to Monday. When it hit Monday morning, PRSA’s hotel, the Fountainebleau, lost power for 24 hours, had 15 windows blown out, and 24 palm trees uprooted.

Members trying to learn something from the PRSA website about this potential financial disaster are getting far less information than the leaders got on the conference calls Oct. 27. The website does not describe the difficult negotiations with the insurer.

Web visitors are only told PRSA is trying to reschedule the event and not to ask for refunds. President Judith Phair, meanwhile, told the conference calls that it would be “extraordinarily difficult if not impossible” to recreate the 2005 conference...she has suggested members can “donate” the money to PRSA, if there is no conference, citing what Arthur W. Page Society members did in 2001 after 9/11. But only 160 signed up for that Sept. 21-23 meeting, not 2,500+ as with PRSA’s conference.

Page asked its members to donate all or part of their fees to 9/11 victims, which many did...will PRSA ask its members to donate their fees to Wilma and Katrina victims? That would be good PR...Assembly delegates told us they never got the names of the other delegates, which was supposed to happen...the two conference calls Oct. 27 were being recorded, participants were warned at the start of each call. Previously, Phair had said that recording such calls was illegal in some states and that it was also against PRSA policy to do so...when one caller from Green Bay asked for the tape, she was told it was for staff use only to help prepare a report of the conference calls. As of Oct. 31, there was no report of the calls on the PRSA website...another caller said that if there is an Assembly, leader speeches should be held until after all the debating...while students arriving at the conference were told to go home, a number did not, the teleconference was told...among freebies at annual conferences are all past presidents, who number more than 20.

– Jack O'Dwyer


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