The eight page weekly is the only PR newsletter on LEXIS/NEXIS.
Edition, June 28, 2006, Page 1
Happy Fourth of July to
all our readers. The next issue of the Newsletter will be
Keep up with breaking news on our website, www.odwyerpr.com.
SOS INTL LANDS BIG PENTAGON
SOS International, a New
York-based management consulting firm that has
handled work from counter intelligence training to linguistics
for the FBI, NSA and private companies, has emerged from
a lengthy review to monitor foreign media for the U.S. Strategic
Operations Command known as STRATCOM.
The contract had been
held by The Rendon Group, which was in the last stages of
a 15-month $8M contract.
The new contract with
SOS caps at a whopping $67M. Bid documents indicate a $5.25M
budget for 2007 that could grow to about $18M a year through
SOS, which has an office
in Reston, Va., is charged with tracking foreign press in
several languages across Europe, Latin America, Middle East,
Asia and Mexico with a focus on the so-called Global War
on Terrorism. The company did not return a call.
SOS has supplied anti-money
laundering training to the United Nations in Nigeria and
was one of four companies awarded a multimillion-dollar
contract with the FBI last year to provide training and
role players to support the Bureaus nationwide counterintelligence
training program. It also supplied a team of linguists to
Kellogg, Brown & Root in Uzbekistan and was a subcontractor
for the National Security Agency.
A swath of companies in
and around the PR industry took an interest in the assignment,
including Lincoln Group, TV Eyes, Delahaye, Factiva and
Carma Intl, along with dozens of consulting shops.
The Pentagon declined
a request by this website for the names of companies submitting
MERCKS WAINWRIGHT TO
Joan Wainwright, Mercks VP-PA, has exited that post
to take on the senior VP-PA and communications slot at Tyco
TE is to be spun off from Tyco International in the first
quarter of 07.
Wainwrights job is to help create a brand, culture
and mission for the $12.2 billion publicly traded company
that will have more than 90,000 employees.
Merck has initiated a search for a Wainwrights replacement.
executive Doug Dowie has filed a motion of acquittal in
U.S. District Court, claiming the government had insufficient
evidence and failed to prove the crimes charged in the indictment
of the former Los Angeles PR chief. A hearing is set for
KOMISARJEVSKY JOINS APCO.
Chris Komisarjevsky, former CEO at Burson-Marsteller, has
joined APCO Worldwide's New York office, where he will counsel
the Washington, D.C.-based firms corporate, financial
and investor relations clients. He will work closely with
fellow former PR firm CEO Kirk Stewart, who headed Manning,
Selvage & Lee before switching to Nike.
Komisarjevsky, 61, was appointed CEO of B-M in 98
and exited in 04. Before B-M, he served as president
of Gavin Anderson, and CEO of Hill & Knowltons
Europe, Middle East and Africa operations.
APCO Margery Kraus issued a statement that praised Komisarjevskys
global prospective in mergers and acquisitions, and corporate
Chris and Reina Komisarjevsky wrote "Peanut Butter
and Jelly Management: Tales of Parenthood Lessons for Managers
SIX VIE FOR SCAG ACCOUNT.
Six firms are considering a challenge to incumbent Cerrell
Associates for a six-figure PR contract with the Southern
California Association of Governments.
MWW Group, Consensus Planning Group, Burson-Marsteller,
VPE PR, Lee Andrews Group, and Pacific Municipal Consultants
all attended a pre-bid conference last week for the contract,
which is worth $500K over two years one year at $250K
plus an option.
The regional entity wants a firm to boost its four-person
communications team. Cerrell Associates hashandled the contract
for nine years.
NEW BYLAW INVITES LEGAL PERILS.
The Central Michigan chapter has been told by PRSA COO
Catherine Bolton that Assembly delegates would be personally
liable for any damages caused by an action taken by the
Assembly should the Assembly adopt the chapters
proposal to transfer power from the board to the Assembly.
Under a bylaw change sent to PRSA h.q. April 19, the Assembly
would become the ultimate policy-making body
(continued on page 7)
Edition, June 28, 2006, Page 2
BENADOR PLACED IRANIAN BADGE
Benador Associates, the
New York-based neoconservative PR firm, was behind the May
19 story about Iran adopting a dress code for infidels,
Eleana Benador told The Nation (July 3).
She said her firm placed that story in Canadas National
Post. Written by Iranian Amir Taheri, a member of BAs
speakers bureau, the article reported that Jews
would be marked with a yellow strip of cloth sewn in front
of their clothes while Christians will be assigned the color
red.The NP website ran a poll that accompanied the
piece, asking Is Iran turning into the new Nazi Germany.
The New York Post ran Teheris story that was
also picked up by Rush Limbaugh, Drudge Report and right-wing
The Iranian Embassy categorically
denied that any law had passed requiring religious minorities
to wear colored badges.
Iran also summoned the
Canadian Ambassador in Tehran to protest remarks by Canadas
Prime Minister Stephen Harper. He said the dress code reminds
people of Nazi Germany. Harper was forced to disavow
those words on May 25 after the NP said the story was not
true and apologized for the piece.
Taheri, for his part,
blames the media for jumping the gun, claiming that such
legislation is under consideration and may or may not be
approved in the fall.
Benador told the Nation
that accuracy is a luxury when it comes to Iran. As
much as being accurate is important, in the end its
important to side with whats right. Whats wrong
is siding with the terrorists, she said.
TOBACCO IS DRUG, SAYS PARRISH.
Altria Group, whose products include the best-selling cigarette
Marlboro, was the subject of a cover story in the June 18
New York Times magazine in which senior VP Steve
Parrish said he supports regulation of tobacco as a drug
by the Food & Drug Administration.
The tobacco industry for many years argued that smoking
was not addictive.
The NYT story said about 48 million Americans still smoke
and that more than 400,000 smokers die each year of diseases
caused by smoking.
Marlboro accounts for about 40% of cigarette sales, the
Interviewed at length for the article was Parrish, senior
VP, corporate affairs, Altria, and with the company since
A J.D. graduate of the University of Missouri, Parrish
heads the corporate affairs strategies unit
of Altria, according to his bio on the companys website.
He is involved in company efforts to build bridges
to a range of constituencies including health organizations,
anti-smoking groups, civic organizations, the media and
government. He was named to his current post in 1995.
The NYT article, written by staffer Joe Nocera, who joined
the NYT from Fortune magazine last year, says that Parrishs
pay, including salary, bonus, and restricted stock, was
valued by the company at more than $14 million in
RADIOS DR. LAURA
GETS PR HELP.
Radio talk show host Laura Schlessinger has hired MGP &
Assocs. for PR and media relations work, Mike Paul, CEO
of the New York-based firm told ODwyers.
Paul says there is a huge audience to be tapped
for Schlessinger, who has a son serving in Iraq, including
military families and those interested in health and
Schlessingers Dr. Laura Show was nationally
syndicated in `94, and at its peak was the highest-rated
talk show in the country trailing Rush Limbaugh.
Her anti-homosexual views (biological error) and
hard-right political views (against premarital sex, abortion
and two-paycheck families) led many radio stations to drop
her program including WABC-AM in New York. (Schlessinger
can be heard in the NYC area on a low-powered Christian
radio station in Hackensack, N.J).
A threatened boycott by gay activists helped kill Schlessingers
programming deal with Paramount Television. The Schlessinger
show debuted in September `00 and was pulled in March due
to poor ratings and little ad support.
Paul is confident he can move beyond the controversy surrounding
Schlessinger, noting that radio has dramatically changed
since her high-profile dust-up and that there is a whole
new generation of radio listeners waiting to be pitched.
The PR counselor also wants to extend Schlessingers
brand to include her books, (The Proper Care and Feeding
of Husbands), speaking engagements and one-woman show.
VONAGE BOLSTERS IR TEAM AMID
Vonage America, the Internet telephone company that limped
through its IPO last month, has bolstered its investor relations
team with veteran Craig Streem.
Streem, who takes the role of SVP of IR for Holmdel, N.J.-based
Vonage, was VP of IR for AON Corp. since 2004 and earlier
did stints at Household International, Paine Webber and
American Express Group.
BusinessWeek called the voice-over-Internet-protocol
service providers May 24 public offering disastrous,
a stumble which has its shares down 30 percent from the
IPO and has opened the door for other criticism of Vonages
operations, although the IPO raised more than $500M for
Manning Selvage & Lee and Connors Communications have
handled PR work for Vonage.
F-H PITCHES WWI MUSEUM.
Fleishman-Hillard is handling PR for the $26M expansion
of Kansas Citys Liberty Memorial Museum, the only
U.S. public museum dedicated to WWI.
The Museum opened on Armistice Day in 1926 with great fanfare
as leaders from five allied powersU.S., France, United
Kingdom, Italy and Belgiumattended the ceremonies.
The facility fell upon hard times and was shut down in
94 because of deterioration.
F-Hs trick is to get the public interested in a war
fought almost a century ago, according to a recent Associated
Edition, June 28, 2006, Page 3
DENIRO EYES OBSERVER.
The New York Observer
is going to be bought by actor Robert DeNiros Tribeca
gang, according to New York magazine.
Publisher Arthur Carter,
75, has talked to more than 20 potential buyers, including
the New York Daily News Mort Zuckerman, who planned
to turn it into a Wednesday supplement so his media and
mover & shaker friends would look at his paper
at least once a week.
The money-losing, smart-alecky
toned and opinionated weekly has a circulation in the 50K
Observer editor Peter
Kaplan believes the paper would be raking it in
if it had a professional sales team. It has similar demographics
to the N.Y. Times, but younger, more highly
educated and more affluent.
DeNiros gang includes
his long time producer Jane Rosenthal and her real estate
investor husband Craig Hatfoff.
EISNER INVESTS IN KID VID
Dan Klores Communications reps Team Baby Entertainment,
which is being acquired by the firm of former Walt Disney
CEO Michael Eisner.
TBE creates DVDs with licensed footage of college sports
and adapts the information as entertainment for toddlers
and young children. The idea is to allow parents to share
love of their favorite teams with their children.
The company has produced DVDs such as Baby Irish
(Notre Dame), Baby Longhorn (University of Texas)
and Baby Wolverine (University of Michigan).
TBE also licenses with the NBA, PGA and NASCAR. The company
is negotiating a deal with Major League Baseball.
Houston-based TBE was founded in 05 by Greg Scheinman,
a veteran of Miramax Films in New York.
Eisner set up Tornante Co. last year as a vehicle to invest
in family entertainment ventures. The companys name
means hairpin turn in Italian.
TURCK NAMED PUB OF OLD HOUSE.
Matt Turck, who was associate publisher of Time,
has been named publisher of Time Inc.s This Old House
Ventures unit. He assumes the post on July 10.
The 43-year-old executive is in charge of the first-run
and syndicated TV series This Old House, Ask
This Old House and Inside This Old House
plus This Old House magazine and its website. The
home enthusiast brand reaches more than 50M a month.
Turck succeeds Dan Robertson. He reports to Tom Beusse,
president of Time4 Media.
HUMPREYS TAPPED FOR BLUEPRINT.
Sarah Humphreys, who was editing special issues of Real
Simple and its cookbook, has joined Martha Stewarts
Blueprint as its editor.
She takes over for Rebecca Thuss, who left before the maiden
issue of Blueprint hit the stands in May.
has exited the Sun-Sentinel for a reporter job at the Village
Voice. The former Newsday staffer acquires the courts beat.
ELLE LAUNCHES MIDDLE EAST
Elle has launched a Middle East edition offering fashion
advice for readers who wear loose-fitting abayas or chadors
in public but want to look chic underneath and indoors,
according to the June 20 Wall Street Journal.
We can mix the East and the West in fashion,
said Desiree Sadek, publisher of the Hachette Filipacchi
The WSJ reports that women throughout the Middle East are
wearing often- revealing attire indoors, and their social
calendars are filled with women-only parties attended by
women in slinky dresses and glimmering tube tops.
Many Arab women pick up copies of fashion magazines while
traveling overseas. Its not uncommon to see
women draped in black sitting at their local Starbucks reading
Vogue, noted the WSJ.
Elle is available on newsstands in Lebanon, Jordan and
The magazine is slated to hit Saudi Arabia, the most conservative
Middle Eastern state, in October. The Kingdom is the biggest
fashion market in the Arab world as nearly 40 percent of
its 27M population is under the age of 15.
launch in Indonesia
Meredith Corporation has inked a deal with Pt Metromakmur
Sejahtera -- a subsidiary of Indonesian media company Mahaka
Media -- to publish Parents magazine in the south Asian
MM will publish a local edition of the magazine in Indonesia's
official language, Bahasa Indonesia. It will be distributed
in the capital city of Jakarta and other large cities, starting
in early 2007.
Meredith recently introduced Better Homes and Gardens
PBS RELIES ON BG&R.
The Public Broadcasting Service, which is threatened by
a 23 percent cut in its budget, has registered as a client
of Barbour Griffith & Rogers, the well-connected Republican
Bryan Cunningham, a former aide to Nevada Sen. John Ensign
and chief staff member on the Republican High Tech Task
Force; Jennifer Larkin, a staffer to ex-California Rep.
and Rush Limbaugh guest host Bob Dornan, and Bill Viney,
who has experience in Republican politics in Wisconsin are
lobbyists for PBS.
On a GOP party-line vote, a House subcommittee approved
the budget cut earlier this month. Paula Kerger, PBS CEO,
said the cuts would "drastically reduce the programming
and services public television and public radio can provide
to local communities and that are greatly at odds with important
BG&R was founded by Haley Barbour, a former Republican
National Committee chief and now Mississippi Governor, and
Ed Rogers, who was deputy director of the Office of Policy
Affairs in the Reagan White House.
It is owned by the Interpublic Group.
(Media news continued
on next page)
Edition, June 28, 2006, Page 4
Kinsley, former editor of Slate, Harpers
and the New Republic, plans to join the Guardian
(U.K.) as American editor-at-large in September.
Kinsley currently writes
a column for the Washington Post and Slate. He was
American editor for The Economist and co-host of
CNNs Crossfire for six years.
Kinsley was tapped to
spearhead the paper's expansion in the States.
political editor of Time.com
and former White House correspondent for the newsweekly,
has joined Conde Nast Portfolio as Washington editor, starting
He was formerly a Washington correspondent for Newsweek
and wrote the White House Watch column for the
Earlier, Cooper was Atlanta bureau chief for U.S. News
& World Report and an editor at Washington Monthly.
His wife is political operative Mandy Grunwald.
articles editor of The New Yorker and former editor-in-chief
of the New York Observer, has been named fashion
editor of The New Yorker in addition to her current duties.
Morrison joined the magazine in 1997 as a senior editor
from Vogue, where she was features director from
1995-97. Previously, she was a founding editor of Spy
magazine, and an editor at Vanity Fair.
has signed a new three-year contract to continue as chief
editorial director of American Media, Inc.
Fuller, who is credited as a key figure in the rise celebrity
newsweeklies, oversees AMI magazines like Star, Shape
and Men's Fitness.
She has spent the last three years with Star editor-in-chief
Joe Dolce revamping the supermarket tabloid into a popular
Fuller previously worked as the editor-in-chief of Wenner
Medias Us Weekly.
Former President Bill
Clinton is writing a book on citizen activism and
service to be published in the U.K. by Hutchinson in late
2007 or early 2008, The Random House Group announced. It
will be published simultaneously in the U.S. by Knopf.
Fox Cable plans a Chicago-based network to cover sports
of the Big Ten college conference football, basketball and
other activities. It also will air 60 hours of academic
programming when it launches in the summer of 07.
The New York
Times will begin selling ads on the front of
its Business Day section next month. They will run on a
strip on the bottom on the page.
Bill Keller, editor of the Times, told staffers it was
a tough decision. He said it came down to selling premium
ads or losing more reporting slots.
The Times also may follow the lead of the Washington
Post and Los Angeles Times and shrink the width
of the paper next year in a cost-cutting move.
Business 2.0 names
You! The Consumer as Creator as the most influential
on its 50 Who Matter Now list in its July issue.
The collaborative intelligence of tens of millions
of people, the network you-continually create, and filter
new forms of content, anointing the useful, the relevant,
and the amusing and rejecting the rest, says the mag.
Google co-founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page follow the
consumer. Paul Jacobs (Qualcomm CEO), Rupert Murdoch (News
Corp.) and Steve Jobs (Apple Computer) round out the Top
Dow Jones has
established the Zawya Dow Jones News Service with ABQ Zawya.
The Arabic-language entity will provide news, commentary
and market analysis to financial professionals in the Middle
Rob Ruijter has been named interim CEO of VNU, the Dutch
media combine and will remain chief financial officer until
a replacement chief is found.
He succeeds Rob van den Bergh.
VNU is in the process of going private after
the proposed $7B takeover of IMS Health collapsed in 05.
has launched a website for Hallmark Magazine, as
the magazine prepares to hit newsstands with a September/October
issue in late August.
The womens lifestyle pub is said to be about
being real not perfect.
With more attention
than usual turned toward Africa the success
of Somalias Islamist insurgents and CNNs much
talked about interview between Anderson Cooper and actress/Africa
activist Angelina Jolie the Chicago Tribunes
PR unit issued a press release on June 26 pitching its Africa
correspondent Laurie Goering as an interview subject.
The Wall Street
Journal and Chicago Tribune were given
awards for excellence in news coverage of Asian American
issues by the Asian American Journalists Association.
Journal staff reporter Geeta Anand's feature The
Most Expensive Drugs and the Tribunes Monica
Eng, who wrote Flameout: The Best-Selling Author Iris
Chang, were honored by the group for print.
Other awards were given in categories like online, photography
Online magazine Slate
has redesigned its format as it marks its 10th year. Automaker
Nissan sponsored the unveiling of the redesign with a sitewide
ad buy on June 26.
The new look was developed by New York-based design firm
Edition, June 21,
2006, Page 5
OF PR FIRMS
financial communications firm Sharon Merrill Associates
has named two veteran IR executives as partners amid a revamp
of the companys look and location.
Buckley, who joined the 20-year-old firm in 1993, and David
Calusdian (1995) have been tapped as partners for the firm.
is a former reporter for the Eagle Times in New Hampshire.
Calusdian was previously an A/E at Jack Walsh & Associates.
has also redesigned its logo and website, and relocated
to 77 Franklin Street in the heart of Beantowns financial
and CEO Sharon Merrill noted the firm began as a two-person
operation on the Boston waterfront. She said the two promotions
reflect both their commitment to the firm and the confidence
we have in our prospects for growth.
a former adjunct instructor of IR, PR and persuasive speaking
at Emerson College, said IR is a profession that is continually
evolving, which creates an opportunity formeaningful
counsel every day.
recent Boston Business Journal report noted that
the Massachusetts PR industry is thriving in a time of uncertainty
in the advertising arena. A heavier reliance on PR because
of media fragmentation and a robust economy were cited as
factors in the boom, which is affecting independents
like Shift Communications and PAN Communications, as well
as conglomerate-owned firms like Weber Shandwick.
VA. LAW FIRM WANTS PR/MARKETING
LeClair Ryan, a litigation
law firm with main offices in Virginia and Washington, D.C.,
is searching for firms interested in handling PR and marketing
as the firm looks to become a "top decile performer
in law firm marketing."
The firm, which has more
than 150 lawyers, brought in Edge International, a management
consulting firm focused on the legal sector, to oversee
the process. It has issued a review of qualifications to
gauge interest in the PR work.
Including in the planned work is event support, external
communications, professional development, collateral materials,
among other tasks.
The duration of any contract
is considered a "proposable item." Deadline for
submissions to express an interest is July 15 with the release
of an RFP planned for August 1. Questions go to Edward Wesemann
New York firm The Torrenzano
Group has relaunched its website, www.torrenzano.com.
...Coyne PR helped
client Goodyear unveil the name of its newest blimp. The
name, Spirit of Innovation, was suggested by
a high school chemistry teacher as part of a contest by
the tiremaker. ...The
Abernathy MacGregor Group is providing Chapter 11
communications for French Automotive Castings, a Wisconsin-based
auto industry supplier.
Play Communications, New York/Parents magazine, to
publicize its line of licensed toys for infants and toddlers
for a third year.
Dynamics, New York/Cambridge Display Technology,
for PR and investor relations.
PR/New Media, New York/
OutrageousAuctions.com, auction and jewelry portal, for
a national PR and branding campaign.
& Co., New York/TransitCenter, a non-profit which
develops and administers commuter benefits programs, for
Group, New York/Maclaren USA, baby strollers, as
AOR for communications.
Finn, New York/Singapore Biennale 2006, for international
media relations for the September exhibition of contemporary
PR, Bridgewater, N.J./iPEC Coaching, certified professional
coach training, as AOR for PR.
PR, Chappaqua, N.Y./Data Station, the U.S. marketing
unit for German technology brand TrekStor, for launch of
TrekStor in the U.S. market.
Novelli, Boston/Goodwin Procter, law firm, for national
Associates, Boston/d-CON, pest control products,
for a national education push about rodent problems.
Communications Group, Silver Spring, Md./Convera
Corp., for PR counsel and services, a renewal.
MarCom, Sanford, N.C./Mothwing Camo Technologies,
camoflage pattern developer, for PR, marketing and advertising.
Inc., Decatur, Ga./Shut-Up! Apparel; Huntforce, and
Infinity Technology Consulting.
Freeport, Fla./Lucid8, Microsoft Exchange Server database
software, for North American PR.
Group, Boca Raton, Fla./
online store looking to recapture the ideals and gestures
of a gentler time, for PR.
Group, Chicago/Nubian Health Products, for a national
health education campaign targeting African Americans.
Partners, Minneapolis, Minn./New Isoc, for opening
of first Cosi restaurant in Minnesota.
Read-Poland, Austin, Tex./NetSpend Corp., pre-paid
debit cards, as AOR for PR, including media relations, public
affairs, business development and marketing support. Parent
GCI Group picked up AOR duties for Gattis Pizza, based
PR, Los Angeles/Action Sports Association; Image
Entertainment and QD3, for launch of a hip hop DVD, and
recording artist Double F, all for PR, branding and media
relations. The firms New York office beat six firms
in a competitive search to handle PR for The HealthCentral
Network, a consumer health web company.
Edition, June 28, 2006, Page 6
MARSHALL IS BACK.
Marshall, a veteran executive search consultant who ran
the first search firm focused on PR and corporate marketing,
has set up shop again.
has unveiled the latest incarnation of Marshall Consultants,
based in Ashland, Oregon, keeping the name of his previous
firm, which was founded in New York in 1967 and dissolved
in 2002 after he retired early.
was an early investor in Dell Computer and reaped a windfall
from its success. He traveled the world after retiring early
and told ODwyers that hes ready to get
back in the ring.
said MC, which hes running with his wife, Joy, will
take on a limited number of senior level searches at any
location, nationally or internationally. With pent-up
demand for hiring again, after the economic downturn a few
years ago, and our having taken a brief hiatus, the needs
for our recruiting services are emerging again, he
Marshall, a consultant for the Childrens Miracle Network
who guided fundraising and cause-related marketing for childrens
hospitals, oversees operations and research for MC. She
also handles recruiting for the non-profit sector. Veteran
PR executive Hugh McCandless, former EVP for MC, serves
as of-counsel and splits time between southern California
said he also handles management consulting tasks like M&A
advisement, succession plans, agency search, and staff evaluation.
CAUSE-RELATED ANGLE YIELDS
pitches are a small percentage of PR projects but yield
a high percentage of stories in small papers and journals,
according to a study by Norwalk, Conn.-based eNR Services.
The company found that
only 11 percent of 461 PR projects studied were cause-related,
but they accounted for more than 34 percent of resulting
news stories, mostly in local newspapers and journals with
a circulation of less than 50,000.
Chris McTague, director of PR applications for eNR, said
non-profits and corporations need to make a greater effort
to pitch cause-related news to local media.
Almost all cause-related
events are local, with local volunteers, with local donations,
with local companies helping local communities, he
has put together a multimedia package for earnings announcements
called Video Earnings. The New York-based video
PR services company hosts still images, audio and video
to support company earnings for media covering such calls.
...News Broadcast Network said the number of radio feeds
pitched by its staff has reached the highest point in two
years. In May, 8,000 feeds were accepted, the company said,
the highest tally in NBNs history and a 25 percent
increase over the previous year. Feeds are measured by monthly
telephone feeds and MP3 feeds accepted by radio stations
Browning, senior media director in a four-year career
with Hunter PR, to The Morris + King Company, New York,
as a VP. She heads work for Pilot Pen, Beliefnet.com, and
Actus Lend Lease Communities.
Jewell, director of national PR for the Deloitte
Center for Health Solutions and former Deputy Assistant
Secretary of Public Affairs for Policy and Strategy at the
U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services, to Burson-Marsteller,
New York, as a managing director with the firms strategic
Lofgren, former SVP of marketing and communications
for Sharp Healthcare, to Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and
Kaiser Foundation Hospitals, based in Oakland, Calif., as
senior VP of brand strategy, communications and PR. She
was formerly VP of customer and market strategy for Catholic
Health Initiatives and ran The Gage Group for 10 years.
McGann, who headed AT&Ts media relations
team in Washington, D.C., to Qorvis Communications, as managing
director. McGann spent more than 20 years at Ma Bell, playing
a key role in pitching the media about the pros and cons
of the Telecommunications Act of 96. He also forged
coalitions in support of AT&Ts entry into local
markets, and provided PR counsel for its federal sales group.
McGann will be working with the Computer and Communications
Industry and the pro-Net neutrality Its
Our Net coalition on the current telecom reform bill.
The prospects for such legislation to get signed into law
is dim, according to Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.V.).
Holran joins Dittus Communications this week to head
its crisis and issues management practice. He departs WPP
Groups Wexler & Walker Public Policy Associates,
where he focused on transportation, aviation and homeland
security issues. Prior to that, Holran was deputy chief
of staff to then-Rep. Robert Walker and an aide to Rep.
Lawrence Coughlin. Holran succeeds Kevin
Walker, who moved to the Pharmaceutical Research
Manufacturers of America as VP for group access and affordability.
Dittus was acquired by Financial Dynamics in '05.
Laird, who handled IR and shareholder comms. for
American Century Investments, to CTA PR, Louisville, Colo.,
as a senior A/E.
King, president of Bates Churchill Investor Relations,
to McGrath/Power PR and Communications, Santa Clara, Calif.,
as director of investor relations.
Parry to senior A/E, Eric Mower and Associates, Syracuse,
Millheiser to senior A/E and Yanet Obarrio-Sanchez
to A/E, rbb PR, Coral Gables, Fla.
Boylan and Leigh
Wagner to senior VPs, Public Communications Inc.,
Chicago. Peter Barry
Tan to senior A/E, Schadler Kramer Group, Las Vegas.
Edition, June 28, 2006, Page 7
INVITES LEGAL PERILS (contd
from page 1)
board would be unable to take substantive action in
urgent situations without the permission from the
could also propose bylaw changes during an Assembly without
any prior notice.
directors are now seeking president-elect --treasurer Jeff
Julin and directors Michael Cherenson and Anthony D'Angelo.Cherenson
is unopposed for secretary. Gerard Corbett and Anthony DAngelo
are vying for treasurer.
candidates for Sunshine, Tri-State and at-large are Leslie
Backus, Francis Onofrio, and Thomas Eppes, respectively.
are no candidates for the Northeast district to succeed
Anthony DAngelo. No candidates showed up for three
at-large Assembly positions.
Galloway, 2004 president, is nomcom chair.
above candidates can be opposed by special petition 30 days
before the Assembly.
present, 60 days notice is required for any bylaw
chapter said current bylaws limit the Assembly from
serving in a fully democratic capacity. It cited the
American Bar Assn. and American Medical Assn. as being governed
by "Houses of Delegates" rather than the boards.
May 4 letter from Bolton to chapter president Andrew Corner
also said that the bylaw change, according to advice given
by PRSAs law firm, would require PRSA to change its
certificate of incorporation with New York State.
asked Corner to review the request with national director
Christopher Lynch of Cleveland in order to discuss
any possible alterations to their proposal before it is
presented to the Assembly.
chapter may also present the bylaw unchanged, noted Bolton.
phone call and e-mail have been sent to Lynch seeking his
PRSA directors are forbidden to talk to the press.
PR director Janet Troy has been asked why the Central Michigan
proposal has not been reported on the PRSA website but she
has not responded.
president Cheryl Procter-Rogers has not talked to this website
since March 20 and has ordered the site not to attempt contact
with her again.
Stevens, president of PRSA/New York, said he supports the
initiative of Central Michigan and would like the Assembly
to meet as soon as possible on the proposal
rather than waiting until Nov. 11.
Assembly should elect its own officers, he said, noting
that PRSA/NY has long sought removal of the APR requirement
that has blocked non-APRs from serving on the national board
17,000 members are barred from running for national office,
STRAINS EVIDENT IN BAGHDAD
nine Iraqi PA staffers employed by the U.S. embassy in Baghdad
are reporting increased intimidation by militia and Islamic
groups that is negatively affecting their daily lives, according
to a cable sent by Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad to the State
Dept. on June 6. The Washington Post obtained a copy
of the cable, which is posted on its website.
staffers are told to get rid of western dress and not drive
their own cars. Some groups are demanding that women even
cover their faces, a step not taken in Iran even at
its most conservative, notes the Ambassador.
threats have been lodged.
Iraqi guards at Green Zone checkpoints have
begun taunting PA staffers. Upon arriving at the checkpoints,
the guards loudly proclaim that staffers are employed by
the embassy. Such information is a death sentence
if overhead by the wrong people, according to the
of the nine workers have not told their families that they
work for the U.S. That makes it difficult for the embassy
to contact them at home for fear of blowing their cover.
Mounting criticism of the U.S. at home among family
members makes life tough for the U.S. Government workers.
outside the Green Zone also has become emotionally
draining. A staffer reports new stress from his social
circles who increasingly disapprove of the coalition
reports that though the staff retains a professional manner,
strains are evident: We see that their personal fears
are reinforcing divisive sectarian or ethnic channels, despite
talk of reconciliation by officials.
fears that objectivity, civility and logic that make
for a functional workplace may falter if social pressures
outside the Green Zone don't abate.
President Bush made his surprise visit to the Green Zone
on June 13.
HEISTED TWICE IN BOSTON.
Communications Group, the home of the politically connected
George Regan, was the victim of two burglaries last week.
Thieves heisted computers, cameras and a printer.
Boston Globe noted that in a city that feeds on rivalry
and competition, the thefts immediately raised speculation
in political circles that one of Regan's competitors might
have been behind the crimes.
The "headstrong Regan has a knack for making powerful
friends, and almost inevitably, a few adversaries along
the press secretary to former Beantown Mayor Kevin White,
downplayed the incident. Welcome to the big city,
he told the paper. Unfortunately these things happen.
current campaign for Virginia-based AES Corp. is RCGs
most controversial client.
The company wants to build a liquefied natural gas terminal
in Boston Harbor. Environmentalists sketch a potential nightmare
of a tanker blowing up in the Harbor.
Edition, June 28,
2006, Page 8
national leaders and loyalist chapters are circling
the wagons because of the Central Michigan
proposal to wrest control from the national board and place
it in the hands of the Assembly (i.e., chapters).
The board has barred any
mention of the CM bylaw change on PRSAs website or
in Tactics or Strategist. Board members and loyalist
chapter leaders are blocking any discussion within chapters
until just before the Assembly Nov. 11 in Salt Lake City.
They have been instructed to play dumb if queried
about the proposal.
The actions prove that
PRSA is woefully lacking in democratic practices.
Central Michigan says
it wants to transform PRSA into a more democratic
organization in keeping with the wishes of Assembly
delegates and certain unidentified PRSA directors, as well
as the spirit of America.
PRSA h.q. staff and leaders
have been withholding news of the CM initiative since April
19 when it was delivered to h.q.
Ironically, both 2005
president Judith Phair and 2006 president Cheryl Procter-Rogers
said they would make no attempts at reforms such as decoupling
the board from the APR requirement until they first heard
from the members.
But as soon as a chapter
spoke up and tendered a reform, Procter-Rogers and
her executive committee hit the chapter with legal threats,
saying delegates could be liable for lawsuits and PRSA would
have to pay the costs of revising its New York State charter.
A PR-type response would have been to reach out not only
to CM but other chapters, asking what gripes members may
Both Procter-Rogers and Phair have refused to use the modern
technology that is right under their noses to sample member
The Society has 21,000 e-mail addresses of members and
uses them to bombard members almost daily with all sorts
of sales pitches and announcements.
These are classic behavioral patterns of dictatorships--endless
propaganda and withholding of key information. Warning delegates
that they will be legally liable if they take the power
CM wants them to have borders on ludicrous. No board member,
with the same liability, has ever been sued in the 59 years
of PRSA. Besides, there is insurance to cover this.
is getting so bad that its own board members are
quitting and almost no one wants to be on the board or be
Ron Owens and Gary McCormick quit this year with years to
go on their terms and only six people showed up for seven
posts in this year's nominations.
We would also count as "resigned" Tom Vitelli,
who last year ran for three offices and now suddenly lost
all his ambition. He says he wants to spend more time with
his family but he had the same family last year. Maybe he
doesn't want his company's name or his name involved with
PRSA, which distributes financial statements that are false
or misleading in three major ways. He is with Intermountain
Health Care and PRSA's 2006 secretary. Normally he would
move up to treasurer. Owens and McCormick are also with
major companies (Kaiser Permanente and Scripps, respectively).
No candidates showed up for the Northeast district, which
includes the large Boston chapter (about 400 members).
Directors are unopposed for Tri-state, Sunshine and at-large.
The candidate for Tri-state, which includes New York City
and New Jersey, is Francis Onofrio, of Mason Onofrio PR,
of the small town of Bethany, Conn. As for at-large, members
from any of the ten districts could have sought a post on
the board but only one made it his "primary" choice,
Tom Eppes of Eric Moser and Assocs., Charlotte, N.C. Onofrio
made it his "secondary" choice but he is the only
candidate for Tri-state and can't be in two places at once.
Same for Leslie Backus, Davie, Fla., the only candidate
for Sunshine district.
Three directors are
now seeking president-elect--treasurer Jeff Julin and
directors Michael Cherenson and Anthony D'Angelo. Gerard
Corbett of Hitachi and D'Angelo of Carrier are seeking treasurer
which is in line to be president-elect.
Why is Hitachi allowing its name to be attached to PRSA
is the question we would raise? Maybe the Japanese see Corbett
as the "savior" of the organization, working from
within rather than quitting like Owens and McCormick. Maybe
PRSA would listen to Corbett and we hope he would correct
the financial statements and initiate democratic practices.
If so, we shouldn't have to endure a year of governance
by Rhoda Weiss, a solo practitioner who, as far as we can
determine, works out of her home. She already has her hands
full with her own business, teaching at UCLA and working
on a Ph.D.
To our eyes, Weiss has disqualified herself as presidential
material by failing to correct PRSA's false financial reports
either as treasurer or as president-elect. She has based
her PRSA career on avoiding the press so how can she suddenly
be the industry spokesperson?
Julin is also not worthy of being president for the same
reasons. These people do not realize what a bad odor they
have given to PRSA and the profession.
As further proof of
the undemocratic nature of PRSA, the period for commenting
on Julin, Cherenson and DAngelo as candidates for
president-elect lasts only from June 23 to July 10. This
is laughable since it's the July 4 holiday period and members
have their minds on other things. PRSA leadership doesn't
seem to want comments on the candidates and we don't see
the candidates putting forth any platforms, either. No PRSA
candidate ever has. We reached Julin and Cherenson and both
said they are satisfied with the financials as audited by
Sobel & Co. and both say the Central Michigan bylaw
proposal will be handled via the normal timetable for Assemblies
(meaning there will be no publicity on this from PRSA until