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Internet Edition, August 30, 2006, Page 1


A joint venture between California’s agriculture industry and the state that runs a marketing program encouraging the purchase of Golden State-grown products is reviewing its $550K PR account.

The campaign, called “Buy California,” began in 2001 with $5M in seed money from Gov. Gray Davis. Agricultural organizations in the state, along with the California Dept. of Food and Agriculture, oversee the campaign under the Buy California Marketing Agreement.

The PR component [its ad account is separately being reviewed] is currently handled by Fleishman-Hillard and the firm has submitted a proposal to defend the account.

The BCMA said it has a PR budget of up to $550K for a PR contract through June 2007. The group said the initial focus is on California’s 30 million people, but it is possible that a national or international component could be added.

California’s agriculture industry is a $30B business, representing the cultivation of 350 crop and livestock commodities.

A firm could be selected by the end of August.


Ryan Barr, VP of corporate communications for Atari, has left the video game maker for a SVP post with Hill & Knowlton to head the firm’s New York financial relations specialty group. Barr also takes the title of director of IR and financial comms.

At Atari, he headed all internal and external communications, including investor relations. He also led funding activity to secure capital for the company.

Earlier, Barr was director of corporate development and communications for Medialink Worldwide, handling IR, PR, corporate marketing and advertising. He was previously a VP for Brainerd Comms. in New York.

Atari has not yet named a replacement.


Andrew Gray, communications director for the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs, has joined the public affairs practice of Ogilvy PR Worldwide in Washington, D.C.

He handled media duties for key legislation such as the Fair Credit Reporting Act, Terrorism Risk Insurance Program and Sarbanes-Oxley.

Previously, he served as deputy press secretary for Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), who chairs the Senate banking panel.


The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy’s well-funded media campaign aimed to reduce youth drug use has not been effective and Congress should consider limiting its funding, according to a 77-page report from the Government Accountability Office.

The campaign, which burned through $1.2 billion between 1998 and 2004, uses Foote Cone & Belding for advertising and Fleishman-Hillard for PR. Both firms have reaped tens of millions of dollars working on the effort.

The latest report is the second of two GAO studies on the ONDCP campaign. The first, released in March, was conducted after the Senate Appropriations Committee expressed concerns that contractors were collecting a large portion of a budget intended to pay for media time.

The GAO found then that 72 percent of the $520M spent on contractors from ‘04-06 went to buying media time and space. Contractors took in $147M for their services during that time. [F-H collected $27M between 2002-04, the GAO reported.]

Responding to the GAO’s finding, John Walters, director of ONDCP, criticized the GAO’s recommendation for Congress to limit funding because it “offers insufficient detail to demonstrate satisfactory evidence of progress.”

He also said there could be far-reaching and unfavorable consequences to cutting the ONDCP budget, similar to recent results that found curbs to anti-smoking programs have coincided with upswings in youth smoking rates.


Veteran PR counselor Frank Parisi has been named interim executive director for the Minnesota Planetarium and Space Discovery Center that is looking to open in the fall of `09. Minneapolis is funding Parisi’s post for at least a year.

Parisi, the one-time head of F-H’s Minneapolis office, recently exited the Omnicom unit. He left as senior counselor.

Earlier, Parisi was chief communications officer for Cowles Media and Star Tribune Co. He also held PR posts at Cray Research, United Technologies, Getty Oil and Trans World Airlines.

The Minnesota legislature okayed $22M in bonds to pay for the planetarium, but there is a need for an additional $22M in private contributions to complete funding for the facility that will be housed in the Central Library in Minneapolis.

Internet Edition, August 30, 2006, Page 2


Wal-Mart Stores is distancing itself from Herman Cain, a member of the steering committee of the Working Families for Wal-Mart front group that is bankrolled by the Bentonville, Ark., behemoth. (Andrew Young resigned as chief of the WFWM group this month after making racial remarks about Jews, Arabs and Koreans.)

Cain penned an Aug. 22 column on in which he attacked Democratic presidential hopefuls (and Wal-Mart critics) as “Hezbocrats, a roaming band of militant guerrillas.”

Cain is perturbed that Sens. Joe Biden (Del.) and Evan Bayh (Ind.) along with New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson attended a Des Moines rally to demand that Wal-Mart pay workers a “living wage.” Bayh said Wal-Mart is “emblematic of the anxiety around the country, and the middle-class squeeze.”

Cain dismissed those charges as “spurious,” pointing out that the average full-time Wal-Mart worker earns $10.11 an-hour. He also noted that qualified workers may get heath coverage starting at $11 per-month.

Cain is particularly angry with New York Senator and former Wal-Mart director Hillary Clinton, who returned a $5,000 campaign check from the retailer. He called her the “Hezbocrat militia’s leading candidate for the 2008 nomination.”

Cain wrote that “Hezbocrats, armed with nothing more than Katyusha-grade class warfare rhetoric” are “determined to take down Wal-Mart, a company they consider the nation’s largest capitalistic oppressor of the proletariat.”

Wal-Mart, on its website, notes that Cain is not a corporate spokesperson and that his views are his own.

Edelman handles Wal-Mart’s PR. Its former vice chairman Leslie Dach joined Wal-Mart as communications chief. He worked on the Presidential campaigns of Jimmy Carter, Ted Kennedy and Michael Dukakis.


Northwest Airlines says it’s sorry for handing out a booklet called “101 Ways to Save Money” to employees cut from the payroll as the nation’s No. 5 carrier restructures operations under Chapter 11.

The booklet recommends money-saving tips such as buying jewelry in pawnshops, auto parts from junkyards and giving children “hand-me-down” clothes as gifts.

“Don’t be shy about pulling something you like out of the trash,’’ states the booklet that was created by NEAS, an employee assistance outfit based in Wisconsin.

Robert Roach, VP at the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, told Bloomberg News the 165-page booklet is “degrading.”

The Association of Flight Attendants-CWA issued a statement saying “the geniuses that run Northwest Airlines are insulting not only our intelligence, but our dignity as well.’’

NWA has stopped handing out the booklet. ``We sincerely apologize to our employees for any offense this list caused them,’’ said Crystal Knotek, senior VP-ground operations.


San Diego-based Katz & Associates beat five firms for a six-figure PR contract with the California Dept. of Motor Vehicles.

The pact makes K&A the on-call firm for the DMV to handle PR, intergovernmental relations, production, public education and market research, among other tasks for up to three years.

Ogilvy PR Worldwide, One World Communications, Weber Shandwick, Crocker/Flanagan, and Runyon, Saltzman & Einhorn submitted proposals for the RFP, which was issued in mid-May.

The first year of the contract is estimated at $500K. It maxes out at $1.5M if two option years are exercised over three total years, according to the RFP.

K&A – a 20-year old PR and PA shop headed by Sara Katz, a former aide to Gov. Pete Wilson and San Diego Mayor Susan Golding – has an office in Sacramento, where the DMV is headquartered.

The motor vehicle institution notes that it touches the lives of more Californians than any other state agency. Following a two-year overhaul and efforts to improve its service, specific areas of interest for the DMV’s upcoming communications plans include gauging how it is identified by key audiences, deciding the best ways to communicate with its stakeholders, and improving its overall reputation.


Fleishman-Hillard is handling PR for Election Systems and Software, which ironed out a $750M agreement with Indiana last week to settle complaints about the performance of its electronic voting machines in the May primary.

John Groh, senior VP at ESS, which is battling Diebold in the electronic voting game, said at an Aug. 22 Indianapolis news conference that the company has put together a “bible” of lessons learned from the Indiana fiasco. The company vowed to hike its support staff in the 46 states in which it operates.

ES&S recently got a vote of confidence from F-H’s hometown of St. Louis. County officials reported few glitches in the Aug. 8 primary.

St. Louis County spent $9.6M in federal money to install ES&S machines to comply with the 2002 Help America Vote Act.


Creative guru Helayne Spivak is joining healthcare PR firm Chandler Chicco Agency next month.

She will take the creative reins at the firm’s CCA Advertising unit. Spivak also will counsel the parent firm which was founded in `95 by Robert Chandler and Gianfranco Chicco.

Spivak has been worldwide creative director at JWT and chief creative officer at Young & Rubicam. Credits include campaigns for Sears, MCI, FedEx, General Motors, Eastman Kodak, and AT&T.

Chandler says he looks forward to using Spivak’s “experience and perspective to create new avenues to reach consumers.”

She joins CCA on Sept. 12.

Internet Edition, August 30, 2006, Page 3


Dow Jones & Co. is looking for “value-creating alternatives” for six papers in its Ottoway Community Newspapers unit, according to a statement from the media combine.

It plans to either sell or swap properties in Danbury, CT; Oneonta and Plattsburg, NY; Sunbury, PA; Traverse City, MI, and Santa Cruz, CA.

Those papers generate about $25M in annual profit. DJ says any proceeds from a sale would be used to pay debt.

A transaction also would allow the company to use $155M in capital loss tax carry-forwards that expires at the end of the year.


Time Inc. has shut down its Office Pirates humor website that was largely aimed at the men in cubicles market.

On the site, OP, thanks “everyone who wasted a bit of time on the corporate dime with us.” It claims 11.5 million page views over the month of August.

Time says OP faces a “longer road” than anticipated before it was going to be a big business. The site was launched six months ago.


The New York Times Co. is paying $35M for Baseline StudioSystems, a site that provides data about the movie and TV businesses.

The subscription site will generate about $6M in `06 revenues. Janet Robinson, CEO at NYTO, is looking for subscription streams to add to its advertising stream.

Hollywood Media Corp. had owned Baseline, which has box-office revenue data, plot summaries, and archived articles from Variety and Hollywood Reporter.

Baseline is based in Santa Monica. It has about 50 employees.


Microsoft has signed a deal to be the exclusive advertising supplier to Facebook, which trails MySpace in the social networking scene.

The three-year pact begins with banner ads and will ultimately wind up with ads linked to Microsoft's search service, which lags far behind Google. Facebook is big on college campuses with nine million registered users.

Microsoft’s Facebook hook-up follows News Corp.’s $900M tie with MySpace. Terms of the Microsoft deal have not been disclosed.


The Akron Beacon Journal, a former Knight Ridder paper unloaded by McClatchy, is cutting 25 percent of its news staff to cope with dropping ad revenues.
The 40 layoffs by new owner Black Press are only the second time staffers were laid off in the paper's 167-year history.

The Beacon, which reported the cutbacks, quotes new publisher Ed Moss saying the cuts are “necessary to align costs with revenues.” He also called it a “very sad day.”

The paper, according to Moss, is working on a plan to hike revenues. He warned of more cutbacks if those promised increased revenues don't arrive.


Sony Pictures Entertainment has bought Grouper, a free user-generated video website, in a deal worth $65M.

Grouper, No. 2 behind YouTube, fits Sony’s “vision of making entertainment accessible to consumers whenever, wherever and however they want,” according to Michael Lynton, CEO of the Sony unit.

The company has no plans to change Grouper's management or marketing strategy because the entity “gives us a strong platform for growth,” added Lynton.

Sausalito, Calif.-based Grouper was founded in ’04 by Josh Felser and David Samuel. They were backed by $5M in seed money.


Viacom has made the MTV and Nickelodeon cable units full labels under its Paramount Motion Picture Group to better leverage their "talent and marketing capabilities," according to CEO Tom Freston.

They join Paramount Pictures, DreamWorks SKG, Paramount Vintage and Paramount Classics brands.

Scott Aversano has been named president of MTV Films and Nick Movies. He is in charge of film development, production and acquisitions. Aversano reports to Gail Berman, president of Paramount Pictures.

Van Toffler, group president-MTV Networks Music Group, and Cyma Zarghami, president-Nickelodeon and MTV Networks Kids and Family Group, are responsible for image and brand-related matters for the new movie labels.

MTV Films will produce comedies, documentaries, urban fare and horror flicks for teens and young adults, while Nick Movies will release animated and family films.

Nick Movies has recently released “Nacho Libre” and “Barnyard.” It is slated to release a live-action version of “Charlotte’s Web” in December.

Sherman’s Travel is being spun off from, which received more than 1.5M unique visitors in July. The quarterly magazine is aimed at people interested in the "smart luxury value" market.

James Sherman, a former executive at Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, started the website in `03 with funding from Gannett Co.

Sara Mathew, has been named president of Dun & Bradstreet’s U.S. operations. She succeeds 52-year-old Michael Pepe, who is exiting in October to do other things. Mathew, 51, retains CFO duties.

Hugh Panero, CEO of troubled XM Satellite Radio Holdings, has resigned from the board of beleaguered Vonage, the Internet phone company. He wants to focus his sights on crafting a survival plan for XM, which may wind up merging with rival Sirius Satellite Radio.

Vonage has no immediate plans to replace Panero.

(Media news continued on next page)

Internet Edition, August 30, 2006, Page 4


David Calhoun, vice chairman and 27-year veteran of General Electric, has been named CEO of VNU Group, the Dutch publishing/research giant.

He had been running the GE Infrastructure unit, which includes its aviation, energy, oil & gas, transportation and water units. That is a $47B enterprise with more than 85,000 workers.

VNU supervisory board issued a statement that said Calhoun's experience makes him "superbly qualified to take VNU to the next level of growth and performance."

The Wall Street Journal speculates that VNU, which was acquired last month by an investment group including Blackstone Group and Kohlberg Kravis & Roberts, is shelling out at least $100M to lure Calhoun from GE.

That amount includes $50M in compensation that he is leaving at GE and another $50M in potential equity. VNU has not disclosed terms of Calhoun's comp package.

VNU's revenues are in the $4B range. Its 41,000 employees work at places such as Nielsen Information Research, ACNielsen, AdWeek, Hollywood Reporter, Computing and Billboard.


The New York Times has named magazine writer and author Chandler Burr as its first perfume columnist.

Burr, who penned “The Emperor of Scent: A True Story of Perfume and Obsession” (Random House, 2003), wrote his first column for the Times’ T: Women’s Fashion supplement on Aug. 27.

The Times said his column, Scent Strip, will appear frequently in the paper's style magazine. He will review and rate new and classic perfumes and products like scented candles based on a four-star system.

Burr has written for the Times, Food & Wine and The New Yorker. He is currently writing a book about the Hermes fragrance Un Jardin sur le Nil, based on a story he penned for the The New Yorker.

People _________________

Allison Arieff has resigned as editor-in-chief of home design magazine Dwell. Managing editor Ann Wilson Spradlin takes on responsibility for both the editorial and art teams.

Also, Andrew Wagner and Sam Graw have been promoted to executive editors.

The six-year-old title has branched out into conferences and lent its name to pre-fab housing.

Roger Neal, director of business development at eBay, has been named senior VP and GM of BusinessWeek Online.

Lou Helton, a radio host and trade reporter, plans to launch a new publication on the country radio and recording industries in Nashville.

Helton has been country editor and Nashville bureau chief for Radio & Records in a 23-year career there. He resigned this month after R&R owner VNU tapped him to be Nashville editor of Billboard to replace the fired Phyllis Stark.

Helton said he will serve as president and CEO of a new company to develop the publication. He has retained an agreement to publish the Mediabase country charts published by R&R.

Chuck Aly, R&R associate country editor, has joined Helton's venture as VP of editorial and operations.
VNY named Wade Jessen to Helton's post at R&R.

Briefs _____________________

VNU Business Media has launched Contract China, a monthly magazine focused on commercial interior design and architecture, and an offshoot of Contract in the U.S.

CC is VNU's first publication to launch in China.

The bi-monthly claims an initial circulation of 17,500. Edward Leung is editor.

VNU says there are 550K people working in China's interior design industry.

ValueRich, a business magazine for small-cap companies and investors, plans to increase its frequency from quartery to bi-monthly in 2007.

The two-year-old title, based in West Palm Beach, Fla., has brought in Liza Grant Smith has managing editor and plans to debut new features like CEO Q&A, guest columns, and social sections. has inked a deal to produce market-related videos and business reports at the NASDAQ market's Times Square studio.

TheStreet will produce two or three videos per week to include interviews with opening and closing bell guests, as well as financial market reports.

The web portal, which has been beefing up its video portfolio, will run the features as streaming video online.

Fox Broadcasting is the first national advertiser to purchase "blinks" (one or two second ads) on Clear Channel's radio network. The spots promote "Prison Break" and "The Simpsons."

Fred Barnes, executive editor of the Weekly Standard, says liberalism is “endemic” in today’s mainstream media. He notes that while he was Washington correspondent for the then-liberal New Republic, good young writers of that pub were snatched up by the New York Times, Time and Newsweek.

No mainstream outlet is interested in the young conservative writers at the WS, Barnes told a Hillsdale College National Leadership Seminar. He called the NYT hiring of David Brooks an exception. Brooks though was “the least conservative person” at the WS, according to Barnes.

CNN will commemorate the fifth anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks by replaying on the `Net the coverage of that terrible day.

Viewers can tune in at 8:30 a.m. – just prior to the first report of a plane crashing into the World Trade Center – and watch in real time until midnight the news of the terror attacks.

Internet Edition, August 30, 2006, Page 5


Eric Mower and Associates, a well-connected upstate New York PR/PA firm, is advising a high-profile group of horse racing entities in its bid to take over New York State's prominent racetracks.

If the group, Empire Racing, is successful, a team of WPP Group agencies will join Mower to guide ongoing communications.

WPP's New York-based Young & Rubicam Brands unit, including Y&R, Burson-Marsteller, Landor, Wunderman, and The Bravo Group, will team with Syracuse-based Mower if the Empire Racing group wins a competitive bidding process to run the state's fabled racing franchise - Saratoga Race Course, Belmont Park, and Aqueduct Race Track.

The advertising, PR and marketing pact is contingent on ER winning the bidding process, although Mower is involved with the bidding process.

Robert Bellafiore, a partner at Mower who heads the firm's Albany office, told O'Dwyer's his firm is guiding PR and public affairs for Empire as it prepares its bid. He said Empire leadership "scanned the field" before naming Y&R and Mower as its AORs should the entity be successful. He pointed out that Mower worked for NYRA in the 1970s and early 1980s.

The New York Racing Association has run the New York tracks since 1955, but its latest deal expires at the end of 2007. It is expected to pitch again.


Tiziani Whitmyre, a Boston-based ad and PR shop, has begun offering trademark and copyright services as part of its integrated marketing programs.

The firm has aligned with Gwenn Roos, a corporate attorney for Peabody & Brown who focuses on intellectual property rights, to offer the services. She has served as trademark counsel for Polaroid and Duracell.

TW noted such services would be applicable for legal review of prospective brand names, trademark monitoring and protection, Internet domain registration, and defending against third party oppositions and cancellations.

BRIEFS: Integrated Corporate Relations’ Westport, Conn., office is advising Iconix Brand Group as the company acquires the London Fog brand from London Fog Group in a $37.5M deal. ...Schwartz Communication is serving as PR counsel to Picis, an information technology company which makes software for emergency and operating rooms at hospitals. The company filed for an IPO on Aug. 18 and plans to offer up to $86.25 million in stock. ...Sitrick & Co. is promoting Daniel Pearl World Music Days, an international network of concerts that are slated to run from Oct. 6-15. Pearl was the Wall Street Journal reporter who was murdered by terrorists in Karachi, Pakistan. He also was a talented violinist. The concerts, which are not related to any fund-raising event, are designed to promote tolerance and cultural understanding. Elton John and Herbie Hancock are among musicians who have created television PSAs.


New York Area

Pulse Creative, New York/Ungerer & Co., fragrances and flavor chemicals, as marketing AOR.

Cornerstone PR, New York/Concert.TV, free live music web channel, for media relations.

Utopia Communications, Red Bank, N.J./Affinity Federal Credit Union, as AOR for PR.


FH Out Front, Washington, D.C./RainbowVision Properties, community developer for 50+ gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people, as AOR following a review. Out Front is Fleishman-Hillard’s gay/lesbian practice. The account will be led from Washington, D.C., with support from San Francisco and Austin.

DPR Group, Cary, N.C./HiSoftware, web content governance, for PR.

French/West/Vaughan, Raleigh, N.C./Vincent Shoes, children’s shoes, for launch support, including media relations, product placement and product seeding.

TransMedia Group, Boca Raton, Fla./Palm Beach International Film Festival, for PR and fundraising.


Guthrie/Mayes PR, National Guard Youth Foundation, for media and community relations for its Bluegrass ChalleNGe Academy.


The Investor Relations Co., Chicago/Integrity Bancshares, holding company for Georgia-based Integrity Bank, the first chartered “faith-based” bank in the state, for a full IR program. Portions of the bank’s income go to charitable organizations.


M/C/C, Dallas/Alienware, computer gaming, as AOR for PR following a search.

Armada Medical Marketing, Denver/Elecur, medical therapies, for marketing and communications for its Fenzian Treatment System, an electric impulse therapy aimed to alleviate chronic pain.

Moses Anshell, Phoenix/Sunglass Icon, a subsidiary of Oakley Inc., for a re-branding integrated marketing campaign, including creative, interactive and PR.

Mobility PR, Lake Oswego, Ore./Wireless Industry Partnership, as AOR for comms.

VerbFactory, San Francisco/OpsTechnology, web-based software for the real estate industry, as AOR for PR. The firm has handled projects for Ops in the past.

Wundermarx, Laguna Beach, Calif./GloNav, GPS semiconductors, for corporate launch; KETIV Technologies, consulting for mechanical design and civil engineering, for branding for its 20th anniversary, and the Univ. of California Irvine Diabetes Center, for web design and e-marketing.


Edelman, Hamburg, Germany/International Paralympic Committee, for global PR. The firm will work in the U.S., Asia, Canada and Europe on a pro bono basis for the games, which are held shortly after the Olympics in the same city and venue.

Internet Edition, August 30, 2006, Page 6


Tenures for chief marketing officers at top consumer brand companies have shrunk to little more than 23 months, reports executive search firm Spencer Stuart.

The average employment duration for CMOs dropped to 23.2 months in 2006, compared with 23.5 in 2005 and 23.6 in 2004.

Greg Welch, who heads Spencer Stuart’s CMO searches as well as the firm’s global consumer goods and services unit in Chicago, said he was surprised by the number of changes at that level.

He said CEOs and CMOs have pointed to a handful of possible factors for the high turnover. A broader range of responsibilities beyond the traditional advertising and PR mix has created the need for a more sophisticated approach to marketing, including the Internet and direct consumer communication.

Welch also noted that a recent study by Spencer Stuart found 85 percent of senior marketing and management executives said it was critical for CEOs to communicate with a company’s marketing unit, but less than half thought it was being done.

He also said CMOs have to be more engaged with the executive suite of a company and develop personal relationships with members of that team.


D S Simon Productions, New York, has opened a new Chicago office headed by VNR producer Jim O’Reilly.

O’Reilly, a former TV journalist, has been with Simon for six years in New York.

Contact: 237 East Ontario St., Chicago, IL, 60611; 312/255-0240; j[email protected].


Porter Novelli and client Watson Pharma have won the 2006 Jack Felton Golden Ruler Award from the Institute for PR. The nod honors achievement in PR measurement and evaluation.

PN and Watson submitted a study for the overactive bladder prescription drug Oxytrol. PRtrak, a measurement unit of VMS, helped the firm and client develop a media analysis approach to show that when news coverage includes key messages there is a correlation to higher sales the following quarter.

The award will be presented in September.

BRIEFS: The Adventure Travel Trade Association, a Seattle-based group which promotes exotic and active vacation spots, has signed deals with TravMedia and Market Wire. TravMedia disseminates news to travel industry reporters, while Market Wire is a general press release newswire. Under the agreements, MW and TM get access to ATTA’s marketing outlets, including the group’s annual world summit. ...Kristen Avioli, a production assistant for the Disney film “Enchanted,” and Laurie Doppman, an intern at Atlantic Records, have joined News Broadcast Network in New York as publicists. Avioli handles VNRs and B-roll projects, while Doppman works with NBN’s radio media tour unit.



Stephen Bell, editorial page editor of the Buffalo (N.Y.) News, to Eric Mower and Associates, Buffalo, as a senior counselor for public affairs. In a 20-year career at the News, he was city editor, assistant managing editor/business, and managing editor. Earlier, Bell was a state editor in Albany and bureau chief in Buffalo for the Associated Press. His reporting career began at the Stamford Advocate.

Linda Jasper, public affairs manager for Empire BlueCross BlueShield, to Coyne PR, Parsippany, N.J., as an assistant VP overseeing GlobalChoice Healthcare and Medco Health Solutions. Victoria Loo, formerly of Capelin Communications, has joined Coyne as an assistant A/E on its Goodyear team. The firm has also hired seven new account coordinators.

Christine Randle, freelancer, to DPR Group, Germantown, Md., as an A/E for the technology PR firm.

Erich Shea, formerly of SheaHedges Group and Weber Shandwick in Washington, D.C, to Environics Communications, also in D.C., as an A/S focused on technology and telecommunications clients for the firm. Shea's career includes a stint with Booz-Allen & Hamilton as a marketing communications editor. He also was a reporter and editor with Inside Washington Publishers and Business Publishers Inc.

Erica Noll, senior analyst with Lincoln Financial Group, to Lambert Edwards & Associates, Grand Rapids, Mich., as a senior associate handling IR and PR assignments. During six years at Lincoln , she managed the company’s corporate communications program, including analyst, investor, media and employee relations, and was a member of its M&A team. Ashley Tubergen has joined LE&A as an associate. She recently served in project management and market research roles at Auxiliary Advertising and Hanon-McKendry.

Cielo McClain, brand manager at National City and an indepedent consultant, to Marcus Thomas, Cleveland, as a management supervisor.

Don Allen, founding partner, The Allen Group, to Incuity Software, Mission Viejo, Calif., as VP of corporate communications. He handles PR, financial comms., advertising and sales promotion. Allen has worked in-house at Quest Software, FileNET, Wonderware Corp. and Xerox.

Heather Peterson, senior manager of corporate PR for Sybase in Dublin, to J. Stokes & Associates PR, Walnut Creek, Calif., as VP of PR. She was formerly a managing supervisor for Alexander Ogilvy’s San Francisco office and handled marcom programs for Korn/Ferry International and Bingham McCutchen.


Anya Grottel-Brown to VP, Dentsu Communications, New York. The seven-year veteran of the firm handles Siemens, Sinar Bron Imaging and VNU Expositions.

Michael Gross and Chris Lukach to account managers, Anne Klein & Associates, Marlton, N.J. Both joined the firm in 2004.

Internet Edition, August 30, 2006, Page 7


The Central Michigan chapter of PRSA, undeterred by a letter from PRSA national raising legal issues about its move to “democratize” PRSA, has sent its proposal to the 110 chapter presidents.

Central Michigan Assembly delegate Mark Holoweiko told the chapter presidents in an e-mail that he wants the chapters and their members to have “ample time” to discuss the CM bylaw change which would block the national board from making substantial decisions without the approval of the Assembly.

The CM proposal, said Holoweiko, “would democratize the structure of PRSA in line with democratic principles and the bylaws of other national professional organizations.”

Cited are the governance setups of the American Bar Assn. and the American Medical Assn.

“PRSA is structured as more of a from-the-top-down corporation than as a membership organization,” said the Holoweiko letter.

Whether the chapter presidents will pass the letter to their members remains to be seen.

Thus far no chapter has put the CM proposal on its website although chapter presidents were sent a copy of it months ago by this website.

Art Stevens, president of PRSA/New York, the third biggest chapter and the biggest chapter representing a single city, said he would show the CM letter to the chapter board but he was not in favor of putting it on the PRSA website.

He said he would follow the structure of PRSA in which power flows from the national board to chapter boards to members.

Bolton, Lynch Don’t Answer CM

The Holoweiko letter noted that PRSA COO Catherine Bolton wrote CM May 4 that the CM proposal raised legal issues such as the requirement to re-write the PRSA charter from New York State and the possibility that individual members of the Assembly could be sued if they took on more responsibility.

The chapter asked for a “clarification” of these warnings but has not received an answer thus far from either Bolton or PRSA director Christopher Lynch, who also became involved in the discussion. Lynch is the PRSA director representing the district that includes CM.

“Members of CM are looking forward to a healthy debate on the subject at the Assembly [Nov. 11] in Salt Lake City,” wrote Holoweiko.

“If you would care to share your chapter’s views on the subject with us – whether pro, con, or indifferent – we would much appreciate it...” wrote Holoweiko.

The CM proposal includes this wording:

“Between meetings of the Assembly, the board shall perform, not inconsistently with any action taken by the Assembly, the functions that the Assembly itself might perform.

“In urgent situations, the board has the authority to take those policy actions that it deems best represent the interests of the Society and the public. Any such actions by the board must be placed before the Assembly for ratification.”


A Harris Interactive/PRSA Foundation telephone poll of 1,015 U.S. adults between June 7-12 last year found most of them feel PR is something conducted for the benefit of companies.

Eighty-three percent of respondents believed that PR is “just another tool that companies can use to market their products or state their positions on certain issues.”

Seventy-nine percent believe PR pros “are only interested in disseminating information that helps their clients make money.”

Believing that PR pros “sometimes take advantage of the media to present misleading information that is favorable to their clients” were 85% of respondents.

Asked if PR pros “help their clients to provide fair and balanced information to the public and other groups,” 56% answered yes. Disagreeing were 41%.

Two other questions in the poll found that the public mostly believes that PR can draw attention to a product or issue.

Believing that PR pros “help raise awareness about important issues that the public might not know about” were 71% of respondents, while 71% said PR pros “help get the media to address issues that otherwise would fail to get the attention they deserve.”

The poll was weighted for age, sex, race, education, number of adults, number of voice/telephone lines in the home, region and size of place.

Said Harris: “In theory, with a probability sample of this size, one can say with 95% certainty that the results for the overall sample have a sampling error of plus or minus three percentage points of what they would be if the entire U.S. adult population had been polled with complete accuracy.”

The results of the poll were to have been given at a press briefing Oct. 24, 2005 at the national meeting of PRSA in Miami Beach. However, the entire national meeting was cancelled because of Hurricane Wilma.

Instead, a “web-based press conference” was held Nov. 10, 2005. PRSA then distributed a release via Business Wire and the PRSA media room.

The lead of the release did not single out the results that involved PR pros and the general public but reported overall results that included attitudes of business leaders and Congressional staff members towards PR pros and attitudes towards media.


Kirk Reynolds, the former San Francisco 49ers PR executive who was bounced in 2005 after producing a lewd educational video for the team’s players, has resurfaced as director of PR for NBX, an online fantasy sports website and company.

The veteran sports PR executive, who has called his judgment “awful” and expressed regret for the videotape incident in San Francisco, spent 11 years in the NFL working for the St. Louis Rams and the 49ers.

NBX calls itself an “online sports entertainment company” and essentially allows users to wager on sports with points instead of money while creating a social network community.

Internet Edition, August 30, 2006, Page 8




“Sales is not a dirty word,” PR author Tom Harris has told us in commenting on the Harris Interactive/ PRSA survey described here last week that found that four of five Americans feel PR is just “another sales tool” of companies.

“It’s O.K. that the public sees PR as part of selling,” he told us.

PR plays an important role in helping sales and our capitalist system is about the buying and selling of goods and services in a free marketplace, he notes. “It’s as good a raison d’etre as I know for what we do,” he adds.

We agree with that but PR also has the higher duty of answering questions of the press and public.

Part of the American system is “vigorous” public debate. That is how truths are arrived at. Americans have confidence in the marketplace because they see products, services, issues and public figures being batted around in the media.

The view of some Europeans, expressed many years ago, is that PR in the U.S. has “lost its soul” by becoming too commercial and too identified with institutions rather than serving as a bridge between institutions and the press.

Richard Edelman had an interesting weekend Aug. 12-13 that included dinner with Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres and breakfast with financier George Soros, who bankrolls many a candidate and cause of the Democratic party. Peres, who had just celebrated his 82nd birthday, told Edelman that Israel was surprised by the tenacity of the Hezbollah in Lebanon and expressed the hope that the Government of Lebanon could reconstitute itself without Hezbollah. Soros has just completed a book, The Age of Fallibility; Consequences of the War on Terror. Edelman (writing in his blog), said he was pleased by his friend Ned Lamont’s victory over Senator Joseph Lieberman in the recent Democratic primary in Connecticut. Edelman held a fund-raiser for Lamont...Jana Schilder, who has a PR firm in Toronto, commented on the Harris/PRSA study, saying, “The ultimate irony is that the profession that seeks to build understanding and awareness for others has a bad reputation itself.” She feels that advocacy for PR (PR for PR) is the “single most important thing” that PR associations such as the Canadian PR Society, IABC and PRSA can do...but Brian Kilgore, who operates the website in Canada, says there is little PR for PR in Canada. CPRS told him it is setting up a speakers’ bureau for that purpose. Kilgore said the last major PR for PR effort in Canada was nearly 20 years ago when CPRS president John Francis talked to boards of trade throughout Canada...Roger Bolton, president, Arthur W. Page Society, said the Society doesn’t pretend to speak for the entire industry but it works to ensure that its members and their employers and clients live by the Page principles. “These include telling the truth and listening and being responsive to the needs of diverse constituents—principles that are at odds with the negative portrayals of PR,” he said...September is “Ethics Month” at PRSA and, as part of it, four members of the Board of Ethics and Professional Standards will conduct nine teleseminars on Sept. 5, 12, and 26 (three different times each date). Cost is $190 for members and $290 for non-members. BEPS members speaking are chair Linda Cohen, James Lukaszewski, Robert Frause and Emmanuel Tchividjian. We wonder if this is open to the press. Our first question would be, “Is it ethical for the PRSA board to stop the Central Michigan chapter from putting its proposal to ‘democratize’ PRSA on the PRSA website?” The chapter has now had to send 110 individual e-mails to chapter presidents in a move to get a discussion going. Whether any president will put this on his or her own chapter website remains to be seen. PRSA/New York will not do this, proving the Central Michigan point that PRSA is marred by “top down” governance...since BEPS is also concerned with “professional standards,” we wonder if it’s “professional” for the PRSA PR staffers Janet Troy and Cedric Bess to refuse to help us on weekends when we are preparing copy for Monday and need answers. Media such as daily papers and radio/TV stations work 24/7 and we think that “professionalism” among PR pros would require them to be available on weekends...PRSA will celebrate its 60th anniversary over a two-year period—from June 2007 to June 2008. It was founded in the summer of 1947 (and PRSA directories for decades referred to PRSA’s founding in 1947). But it didn’t get its “charter” from New York State until the next February. PRSA had planned for years to celebrate 1997 as its 50th anniversary (including seeking a stamp with the years 1947-1997 on it). But Debra Miller was elected president for 1997 and she had her enemies at h.q. and on the board. The nomcom had tried to kick her off the board but she ran from the floor of the Assembly and defeated Janice Newman of Newman, Newman & Jones. So the board/h.q. suddenly switched the observation to 1998 when Mary Cusick was president. The two-year observance is illogical and will make it hard for PRSA to get anniversary stories which may be a motive for this. Googling PRSA O’Dwyer brings up 16,700 entries. PRSA may want to stay out of the limelight...“Scoop,” the new Woody Allen movie, depicts a female college reporter as a temptress, luring story subjects to bed so she can rifle their belongings (8/16 NL). She also lies as much as necessary. “Thank You for Smoking” had similar behavior by a female reporter and Lois Lane, Superman’s love interest, not only beds a source but has his baby. Reporters often come across as “money-grubbing, selfish, arrogant scoundrels” in the movies and on TV, according to the Image of the Journalist in Media project at USC. New York Times columnist David Carr, writing about this 8/14, says a more positive view of journalists is in the new Bravo series called “Tabloid Wars.” It captures journalists in the pursuit of stories and notes that they don’t get discouraged even though most of the people they call “hang up” as if they were “telemarketers.”

--Jack O'Dwyer


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