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Internet Edition, November 1, 2006, Page 1


San Antonio is looking for a firm to develop and guide a year-long public education effort as the city moves to automated garbage and recycling collection over the next three years.

The second most populated city in Texas (1.1 million as of the 2000 census) has issued an RFP to provide bi-lingual PR and marketing services for its Environmental Services Department to support the transition. The effort includes media, youth and resident outreach, development of a slogan, mascot, education materials, advertisements, PSA development, and a redesign of the ESD’s website.

A pre-proposal conference has been set for Nov. 1 with pitches due Nov. 15. Gwen Schuler, public information officer ([email protected]), is contact.


Citigate Sard Verbinnen reps Pequot Capital Management, the $7B hedge fund that has been the target of a Securities and Exchange Commission probe into insider trading.

Pequot founder Art Samberg informed investors on Oct. 5 that the SEC does not plan any enforcement action related to the insider trading investigation, but the probe continues. The SEC interviewed former Pequot chairman John Mack, who now heads Morgan Stanley, about any tips that he may have provided Samberg.

The New York Times (Oct. 22) ran a lengthy story, “SEC Inquiry on Hedge Fund Draws Scrutiny,” that questioned whether Mack, a top contributor to President Bush, received any special treatment from the SEC.

The Senate Finance and Judiciary committees are investigating the SEC’s handling of the Pequot probe.


Susan Bro, senior communications director for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Office of the Commissioner, has moved into the pharmaceutical industry with a senior PR post at Caremarx Rx in Tennessee.

Bro has been the FDA’s chief spokesperson and senior strategist for communications under commissioners Mark McClellan and Lester Crawford.

She takes the title of senior VP, corporate communications, for Nashville-based Caremarx, which provides drug benefit services to corporate and government health plans in the U.S.

Previously, Bro was director of corporate media relations for Pfizer and earlier led healthcare client teams at Burson-Marsteller and Cohn & Wolfe.


WPP Group’s shares registered their biggest drop in three years as the British ad/PR shop failed to meet revenue expectations. Its stock tumbled 4.4 percent on Oct. 27 as revenues—minus currency swings and acquisitions, rose four percent for the third-quarter below the 5.2 percent forecast among the 11 analysts in a Bloomberg News Survey.

CEO Martin Sorrell cited the U.K. and Continental Europe as the major drags on performance. Britain showed one percent growth, while the Continent was up three percent. That pales in comparison to the eight percent gain in North America and the 16 percent rise in rest-of-world revenues.

Sorrell remains confident of meeting WPP’s full-year growth targets despite “concerns amongst some commentators about the U.S. economy, twin deficits, the indebted consumers, and the direction of interest rates and commodity prices and the impact on inflation.”

Despite WPP’s less-than-robust performance, its PR and PA group (Hill & Knowlton, Burson-Marsteller, Cohn & Wolfe and Ogilvy PR Worldwide) performed well, up 12 percent from the strong ’05 period.


Interpublic’s Barbour Griffith & Rogers has hired Eric Burgeson, who was chief of staff to Energy Secretary Sam Bodman, as VP to beef up its energy practice.

That unit is currently staffed by BG&R co-founder Ed Rogers, COO Loren Monroe, former energy and environmental advisor to Sen. Pete Dominici (R-N.M.), and Brant Imperatore, the former aide to Rep. Richard Baker (R-La.) who doubles as head of BG&R’s financial services practice.

Burgeson served as an aide to Bob Dole and joined the Bush Administration from the Mercury Group.


Bill Nielsen, retired corporate VP of AP, Johnson & Johnson, said PR has the unique job of building a reputation for trustworthiness for institutions and governments worldwide.

Nielsen, who gave the International Distinquished Lecture to the Institute for PR Oct. 11 in London, said the role of PR is "crucial and singular" in creating trust.

"We have the opportunity to set ourselves apart, clarify our roles and responsibilities, and achieve a singular character for PR that is both palpable and enduring," he said in the speech at the Reform Club.

(continued on page 7)

Internet Edition, November 1, 2006, Page 2


Creative Response Concepts, the Arlington, Va.-based firm that led the Swift Boat attack on former Democratic Presidential candidate John Kerry, reps Missourians Against Human Cloning.

That group aims to defeat “Amendment 2” that is slated for the November ballot that if approved would “protect all forms of embryonic stem cell research allowed under federal law,” according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

The MAHC is backed by the Missouri Catholic Conference, St. Louis Archdiocese and the Missouri Baptist Convention.

It contends the Amendment is designed by lawyers and biotech companies that “plan to make billions of dollars by cloning humans for research.” It offers the vision of a “mini-Gold Rush in human tissue” as fertility clinics “pay women any amount for their eggs.”

The MAHC says “biotech special interests behind the deception that is Amendment 2 have spent $30M to buy an amendment to the Missouri constitution."

It claims that page one of the Amendment says it bans human cloning, but the fine print later on reveals it allows for “somatic cell nuclear transfer.” This is the process that resulted in Dolly the Sheep.

The group put together an ad featuring St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Jeff Suppan and ex-St. Louis Rams quarterback Kurt Warner against the Amendment, countering a supporting spot by Michael J. Fox.

Monsanto, a leading company in the biotechnology space, is headquartered in St. Louis. It has not yet been reached for its position on Amendment 2.

Monsanto battled activists throughout the `90s on the “Frankenfoods” debate over its genetically engineered seeds.


DCI Group, the brass-knuckled Republican PR firm in Washington, has sold its TCSDaily online journal to editor Nick Schulz.

TCSDaily (Technology, Commerce, Society) was published by DCI’s Tech Station unit, and hosted by James Glassman, resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute. It was launched to celebrate the “power of free markets, open societies and individual human ingenuity to raise living standards.”

TCSDaily, in May, launched the “Fast Talk Nation” website to attack the “Fast Food Nation” anti-fast food movie based on Eric Schlosser’s book.

The Wall Street Journal reported then that Glassman pulled the site after dismissing as “theories” Schlosser’s arguments against fast-food.

TCSDaily has received corporate funding from American Beverage Assn., ExxonMobil, McDonald’s, General Motors, PhRMA, Gilead Sciences and Freddie Mac.

The site says “previous sponsorship agreements have expired,” and that  updates about the transition in ownership” will soon be available.”

Glassman is taking over American Enterprise magazine. He plans to re-launch the title as The American. Schulz has edited the site since ’01.


Blue Cross of California, which has been accused of illegally dumping policyholders when they get sick, uses Sitrick & Co for crisis work.

The Sitrick role has been criticized by BC critic, Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights public advocacy group, as evidence that the health organization is more “concerned with improving its public image than honoring its promises to patients,” according to the group’s Jerry Flanagan.

The Los Angeles Times reported last month that Blue Cross settled legal claims that it dropped patients from coverage after they got sick.

The plaintiffs said they were left with hospital bills of more than $100K. An attorney for the plaintiffs would not disclose the settlement amount received by his clients, but said they wouldn’t have to worry about medical bills anymore.

The FTCR wants California to regulate against the industry practice of “use it and lose it” policy of retroactively canceling coverage when enrollees get sick.

Blue Cross spokesman Robert Alaniz is on a “temporary leave of absence” and could not be reached. This website was referred to Shannon Troughton, VP-corporate communications at parent company Wellpoint in Indianapolis.

She emailed O’Dwyer’s to say that Sitrick has provided Blue Cross of California with PR counsel on a “variety of issues for the better part of a decade.” Sitrick is “one of the many communications firms in California and across the country that we work with,” she added.


Global Communicators handles PR for Professor Muhammad Yunus who will receive the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo during a ceremony on Dec. 10. He is honored with Grameen Bank of Bangladesh for fathering the microcredit program that extends mini loans to entrepreneurs in the developing world.

The Nobel committee cited microcredit as one of the means to help large populations break out of poverty. “Development from below also serves to advance democracy and human rights,” it said in awarding the $1.4M prize.

GC chairman Jim Harff told O’Dwyer’s that he has been providing media advice to Yunus since ’04. “Around the world, we have supported Professor Yunus’ dogged efforts to communicate the efficacy of microfinance in helping the poorest of the poor extricate themselves from the cycle of poverty that afflicts millions globally,” said Harff who handled PR from his Washington perch at Ruder Finn for Croatia, Bosnia and Kosovo during the heyday of the `90s Balkans conflict.

GC arranged the media crush surrounding Yunis’ visit to Korea on Oct. 20 to receive the “Seoul Peace Prize.

The firm also organized media in Beijing and Tokyo for Yunus.

The Grameen Bank, which Yunus founded, has made loans worth $5.7B to 6.6M borrowers. Women got ninety seven percent of those funds. The loan recovery rate is a spectacular 99 percent.

Internet Edition, November 1, 2006, Page 3


The Associated Press has unveiled a future events database, AP Planner, as a research and planning tool for thousands of goings-on across 100 categories.

The service is positioned as a complement to the AP Daybook and available by subscription.

Information on events is indexed by date, category and organization with links to websites and media contact information.

PR services companies eNR Services, Business Wire, and BurrellesLuce are providing marketing and sales support.

The AP is also working with U.K.-based Advance Media Information, which produces a similar service overseas.

Categories for indexing include press conferences, award ceremonies, financial announcements and legislative events.

The AP is responsible for content and research for the service.


A privately held Houston company headed by U.S. and Mexican nationals has launched a magazine targeting upscale Mexicans who visit the U.S.

TODO Texas launched this month with the goal of reaching across the border to get the attention of Mexicans who spend billions in Texas each year on fashion, dining, education and healthcare.

Initial circulation is 55,000 as a newspaper insert in Mexico City, Monterrey and Merida.

The 76-page title garnered ads from Saks Fifth Avenue, Louis Vuitton, and Cartier.

A December issue has gone to press and plans are underway for a January/February 2007 edition focused on health and wellness and Texas summer camps for children.

Offices are in Houston (713) 963-3640.


Danforth Austin has been named director of the Voice of America, succeeding David Jackson. He will lead the effort to step up VOA outreach via satellite TV and the Internet to supplement its FM and AM radio programming.

Austin had headed Dow Jones & Co.'s Ottaway Newspaper group of community papers. He was responsible for 3,000 workers in nine states. Earlier he was deputy national news editor for Wall Street Journal Reports and Pittsburgh bureau chief.

VOA also tapped Russell Hodge as director of TV operations. He oversees editorial, production, program development and talent. Hodge is the founder of 3 Roads Communications, video production house.

People __________________

William Kerr, former CEO of Meredith Corp., has been named to Interpublic Group’s board of directors.

The 65-year-old executive serves as chairman of Meredith.

Prior to more than a decade at Meredith, he was VP for the New York Times Co.


Sen. Joe Lieberman is expected to make an effort to get tough on the Internet a key part of his next term in office if he prevails against Ned Lamont in the November election, according to a report in Broadcasting & Cable.

The Connecticut politico told a “listener brunch” for WDRC in Hartford that it was easy for him to turn off “raunchy television” a decade ago in order to prevent his four-year-old daughter from watching. That's no longer the case with the Internet.

Lieberman also noted that today’s kids have a “whole new hidden world of entertainment through a wide variety of devices.”

The Progress and Freedom Foundation's Adam Thierer told B&C that Lieberman is helping to "change the way Democrats – the traditional defenders of unfettered freedom of speech and expression in Washington – think about those issues."


BusinessWeek (Oct. 30) notes that both Nissan and General Motors are running "startlingly similar ads" that show their cars are roomy enough for young people to live in for at least one week.

Nissan's "Seven Days in a Sentra" effort created by TBWA/Chiat/Day broke Oct. 16.

Chevrolet's Aveo ads were created in-house and launched Oct. 23. They were sparked by a Public Relations Student Society of America competition that ran in April.

PRSSA chapters are coordinating the Aveo campaign on campuses throughout the U.S.


News Corp. has hired Chris McCaffrey, who handled PR for MSN UK, as director of corporate communications for Fox Interactive Media.

That unit includes MySpace, a social media site that News Corp acquired last year, plus and

McCaffrey joins the News Corp. team this month.

He also will oversee MySpace's relationship with its PR firm, Freud Communications. MySpace launched a British edition in April.


Deborah Martin, managing editor at House Beautiful Magazine, has signed on as ME and partner for the new bimonthly Launch magazine, a glossy publication focused on hobby rocketry, commercial space travel and exploration.

Mark Mayfield, former editor-in-chief of House Beautiful, Traditional Home, and Southern Accents, is EIC of the new title, which is published by MM Publishing in New York.

Mayfield noted that as NASA’s budgets are slashed, billionaires like Paul Allen and Richard Branson are making news by funding commercial space travel ventures. Those efforts have created a level of “excitement” not seen since the 1960s, he said. Info:

(Media news continued on next page)

Internet Edition, November 1, 2006, Page 4


The People for the American Way is "astonished" that NBC TV is refusing to air ads promoting the Dixie Chicks documentary, "Shut Up and Sing," about the censorship of the group because of its criticism of President Bush's invasion of Iraq.

The Dixie Chicks were "banned" from country music stations throughout the U.S. and the band was forced to cancel performances mainly in the South.

General Electric's NBC unit reportedly says it is not accepting ads because they are "disparaging to President Bush."

That decision, according to PFAW New York Director Andrew Stengel, "insults Americans' intelligence."

Ralph Neas, president of PFAW, is asking its 900,000 members to contact NBC to protest the censorship. The group is mulling legal action against the network.


Michael Lewellen, senior VP-corporate communications at BET Networks, has departed the cable TV entertainment, news and PA programmer for the African-American community. He had served as chief spokesperson for the Washington-based Viacom unit since `99.

Lewellen, who has not been reached, joined BET from Fox Sports Network, where he was VP-media relations. Earlier, he handled the Goodwill Games as PR director for Turner Sports in Atlanta.

Lewellen also worked for five years at Nike headquarters in Beaverton, Ore. and began his PR career at Southwestern Bell.

Tom Reynolds, who is BET's PR contact, did not return a call about replacement plans for either Lewellan or Nina Moore, who also has exited the firm to spend more time with her family.

She was executive VP-news and public affairs.

Briefs ______________

BusinessWeek is producing an audio podcast version of the magazine which includes all stories from the weekly publication and select content from its website. The file is available for download to subscribers in MP3.

Oracle has sponsored free downloads for the first three weeks of the audio edition.

Georgia-based Network Communications has entered the Southern California market with its fourth home improvement title, Long Beach Home Improvement Magazine, a monthly that debuted on Oct. 19. The publication targets homeowners in Long Beach and the South Bay Areas and has an initial circulation of 25,000.

NC publishes home improvement titles in Atlanta, Washington, D.C., and Dallas. The company is eyeing publications for Florida, Ohio, and North Carolina.

An online magazine based in Halifax, Nova Scotia, has launched with the aim of providing a positive (yet realistic) perspective for the "Sex and the City " generation of women in their 20s and 30s. includes articles, columns and news on relationships, health/beauty, fashion, and entertainment. Trylon SMR is promoting the site.

NewspaperDirect, which provides digital images of more than 350 newspapers, has added the capability for its service for mobile phones.

Fox News Channel and the South Carolina Republican Party announced they will present the first GOP debate for the 2008 presidential election on May 15, 2007 at the Univ. of South Carolina in Columbia.

Ampersand Publishing, owner and publisher of the Santa Barbara News-Press, has filed a complaint in U.S. District Court against the Santa Barbara Independent charging the Independent with copyright infringement, misappropriation of trade secrets, unfair business competition, and intentional negligent interference with prospective economic advantage and contract.

Ampersand alleges that the Independent obtained two unpublished News-Press articles and published one of them in violation of copyright laws.


Clear Channel Communications, the nation’s leading radio group, has put itself on the auction block. The potential sale could be worth more than $16B, of which the founding Mays family would reap $1.1B of that amount.

The San Antonio-based company has retained Goldman Sachs as its financial advisor. The investment banker was hired to evaluate “strategic alternatives to enhance shareholder value.”

Two private equity groups are expected to bid for the company. One consists of Blackstone Group, Kohlberg Kravis & Roberts and Providence Equity. The other includes Texas Pacific, Bain Capital and Thomas H. Lee Partners.


David Schneiderman, who had been CEO of the Village Voice, has left the company with the merger of the New York City alternative daily into New Times Media.

Most recently, Schneiderman was in charge of digital operations. He says he is leaving because the merger integration went smoothly, according to a New York Times report.

Schneiderman’s Internet duties are being assumed by Bill Jensen, the former editor of the Boston Phoenix.


A group of Baltimore civic and business leaders wants to buy the hometown paper from Tribune Co., which itself is considering restructuring moves.

Theodore Venetoulis, a former Baltimore County executive, is heading the group that has expressed a “strong interest” in buying the Baltimore Sun,” according to a letter sent to Chicago-based Tribune.

He heads the 20-member Baltimore Media Group.

Internet Edition, November 1, 2006, Page 5


The Abernathy MacGregor Group has opened its first office in San Francisco, the financial and crisis communications firm's second West Coast outpost.

Jerry Giaquinta, who has held senior PR and marketing posts for Sony Pictures, Silicon Graphics and Mercedez-Benz, heads the Post Street operation.

Giaquinta recently ran his own shop, The Giaquinta Group. He served as president of Chiat Day Advertising's PR unit and also held posts with Tandem Computers and Toyota.

New York-based Abernathy, which is owned by Havas, opened in Los Angeles in 1998.

Jim Abernathy, chairman and CEO of the firm, called the new office a "natural next step" in building a presence in the region, where it is eying business from the Bay Area, Silicon Valley and the Northwest.


Joe and Lee Cerrell, the husband and wife team who founded Cerrell Assocs. 40 years ago, have expanded the firm's ownership to include seven equal shareholders.

Joe Cerrell continues as chairman/CEO of the firm. He is joined by president Hal Dash, a 29-year veteran of the Los Angeles-headquartered shop; CFO Steve Bullock, a 19-year veteran, and executive VPs Matthew Klink, Lisa Gritzner, Kristen Lonner and Mark Wittenberg.

CEO Cerrell, 71, says he made the move because the new shareholders are committed to growth in the five areas of local government, land use & planning, campaigns & issue management, environmental and energy affairs and PR. He also said that he is positioning the 40-staffer firm for the next 40 years of growth.


Nearly forty percent of corporate CEOs choose to ignore bloggers in a post-crisis situation even if they are posting the wrong information, according to Weber Shandwick’s “Safeguarding Reputation” survey.

Leslie Gaines-Ross, chief reputation officer at WS, believes that may indicate that CEOs are more intent on “fixing the problem and understanding what went wrong before turning their attention to correcting online conversations.”

Her research finds that “only a minority of companies pay attention to online coverage.”


CKPR has been tapped by Brookstone to lead PR for an integrated marketing holiday push for the specialty retailer.

In addition to PR, the campaign, with a budget in the six-figure range, includes print and on-line advertising and in-store promotional materials via sister agency Cramer-Krasselt | Hampel Stefanides.

The campaign and agency hires are firsts for Brookstone, which is part of Osim International and chalked up revenues of nearly $500M last year.

The company sells goods via 300 retail stores across the U.S., a catalog and website.


New York Area

Abelson Group, New York/MindMatics, mobile messaging, marketing and payment services, and Hook Mobile, mobile collectible content and sharable digital asset delivery, both as AOR for PR.

Dan Klores Communications, New York/, fashion portal; Limbo 41414, mobile entertainment, and Brainpop, school curriculum content, all as AOR.

The Brandman Agency, New York/Arzu Rugs, for pro-bono PR to support the company which aims to provide sustainable income to poor Afghan women by sourcing and selling their woven carpets, and Vanderbilt Residence Club (Newport, R.I.).

Walsh PR, Fairfield, Conn./MSM, publisher of Games Quarterly Magazine, as AOR to support National Games Week and its Games Expo 2007 conference.


Racepoint Group, Waltham, Mass./NeuroLogica, neuroscience medical imaging, as AOR.

Chris O. Communications, Severna Park, Md./
GeoStructures, for a PR program to support expansion of its ground-stabilization products.

The Aker Partners, Washington, D.C./Nanobac Pharmaceuticals, biotech focused on nanotechnology, for a national media relations program.

French/West/Vaughan, Raleigh, N.C./Fossil, for PR, special events and media buying, and Bad Boy Worldwide, to secure a live audience for the taping of an MTV pilot.

Jackson Spalding, Atlanta/Aquasis, water desalination, for brand identity, web design, PR and public affairs; Chesapeake Development Inc., homebuilder, and Custom Builders – Atlanta, both for graphic design and PR; VRH Partners, and Atlantic Capital Bank, for naming, branding and corporate launch efforts. The firm’s Athens office has picked up graphics, adv. and marketing work for Oak Grove, and web design work for Health Plan Select.

Ambit, Fort Lauderdale/Greater Hollywood Arts Foundation, for PR and marketing for its ArtsPark at Young Circle.


Game Day Communications, Cincinnati/Stardust Resort & Casino (Las Vegas), for PR support for an auction of the historic resort’s assets. The Stardust is closing Nov. 1 to make room for a new property, Echelon Place.

Risdall McKinney PR, New Brighton, Minn./Vision-Ease Lens, ophthalmic lense technology, for integrated PR, including media relations, launch support, and tradeshow visibility.


Salmon Creek PR, Vancouver, Wash./Lile Entertainment Group, TV and film production, as AOR.

UPP Entertainment Marketing, Burbank, Calif./
National Cherry Growers & Industry Foundation, for a two-year contract extension to push cherries within the entertainment industry. Placements have included “The O.C.,” “The Price is Right” and “Malcolm in the Middle.”

Internet Edition, November 1, 2006, Page 6


Carmen Group Communications, a Washington, D.C.-based public affairs firm, was tapped for several recent video production projects.

The firm produced a recruitment commercial for the International Assn. of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental and Reinforcing Iron Workers which aired on Spike TV during a documentary on iron workers of 9/11.

Carmen has also been asked to create new segments for the Int’l Union of Painters and Allied Trades’ web site and to update its cooperation marketing video “Charting the Course.”

The firm is also producing promotional video for the General Contractor Association of New York’s centennial, and is putting together a marketing video for the National Energy Management Institute’s 25th year.


The National Black PR Society was feted late last month by the city of Philadelphia at the group's annual confab in the city.

Mayor John Street hosted a City Hall reception for the group, which drew about 250 attendees to its four-day conference and career fair, themed "Partnering for Progress -- Adapting to Thrive" for 2006.

Representatives from firms like Edelman, Fleishman-Hillard, Weber Shandwick, Golin Harris, and search firm Heyman Associates were on hand for recruiting.

Black PR luminaries were honored at a founders luncheon, including Ofield Dukes; A. Bruce Crawley, president of Millennium Management (Philadelphia); Eugene Morris, of E. Morris Communications (Chicago), and Robert Dale of RJ Dale Advertising & PR (Chicago).

Michelle Deese, senior manager for diversity and talent at Edelman, moderated a discussion on landing a job or internship in PR. Chris Murray of the Philadelphia Tribune discussed sports PR, and BPRS co-president Lynn Jackson and VP Renee Foster outlined markets in Africa and the Caribbean as well as "what they don't teach you in college."

Sponsors were Allstate,, Business Wire, Federal Express, Philip Morris, PECO, Exelon, PR Newswire, Southwest Airlines and Toyota.

George Beach, who launched his Philadelphia-based marcom agency in 1974 and has since served clients like Pfizer, John F. Rich and Company, Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, and McDonald’s, shared the group's 2006 Founders Award with NBPRS board member Trenae V. Floyd, an assistant director of marketing and communications for the Miami-Dade Office of Fair Employment Practices.

The group, which was set up in 1997 in Los Angeles, has set its 2007 event for Chicago.

BRIEF: Tennessee’s Dept. of Tourist Development is requesting bids for a clipping service. Info: Lorene Curfman ([email protected]). ...Vocus said it has integrated its services from its $28M August acquisition PRWeb into its PR management software suite.



Brad Ferris, VP of communications media and strategy network for Ketchum, to Carmichael Lynch Spong, New York, as media relations manager for accounts like Buell, Colorox, Maytag and Select Comfort. He was media relations manager with Manning Selvage & Lee in Washington, D.C., for four years. Lisa Kovner, who directed brand strategy comms. for John Paul Mitchell Systems, joins CLS in Minneapolis as partner and chair of its experiential marketing unit. Matt Wagner has left an associate director post at LeGrand Hart for a senior counselor role in CLS’ Denver office. He was formerly a principal at Public Strategies Inc. Amanda Pierre, arts and entertainment reporter for the Des Moines Register, joins CLS’ Minneapolis office as a media relations specialist. Brittini Nelemans joins the office as an associate comms. specialist and Jillian Beauman joins as an associate.

Laura Capp, A/C, Jack Horner Communications, to WordWrite Communications, Wexford, Pa., as an A/E.

Danielle Swift, associate director of PR, R&R Partners, Nevada, to Mason Onofrio PR, Bethany, Conn., as PR director.

Patrick Riccards, VP and healthcare practice director at Widmeyer Communications, to Lipman Hearne, Washington, D.C., as VP in its public affairs unit. He was formerly executive director of the Coalition to Protect Community Not-for-Profit Hospitals and held senior comms. posts for Sen. Robert Byrd (D-W.V.) and former Sen. Bill Bradley (D-N.J.).

Wendy McCarthy, director of client services, The Signature Agency, to French/West/Vaughan, Raleigh, N.C., as group account director. She handles accounts like bioMerieux, Structure House and Saft. She has held management posts with Edelman and Porter Novelli in Chicago.

Paul Jankowski, president of Access Marketing Services, to Elvis Presley Enterprises, Memphis, Tenn., as its first chief marketing officer. He was previously VP of media marketing for SFX Entertainment.


Dana Runnells to director of communications, Comcast Spotlight, the advertising division of Comcast Cable, based in New York. She joined the company in 2003 and was previously senior manager of comms. Earlier, Runnells was with Ruder Finn and BSMG Worldwide, now part of Weber Shandwick.

Alexandra Crabb to senior PR strategist, ink Communications, Boston. The firm has added Orly Ariely, a PR exec in Israel, as PR and marketing strategist for EMEA.

Nicole Gagnon and Joan Vander Valk to senior VP and VP, respectively, at Stern + Associates, Cranford, N.J. Both joined in 1998.

Deidre Krause to A/E, Thorp & Co., Coral Gables, Fla. She was formerly at Landor & Assocs. in N.Y.

Jason Padgitt to VP, Rogers & Cowan, Los Angeles. He handles music brands, recording artists, record labels, music associations and entertainment events.

Internet Edition, November 1, 2006, Page 7

NIELSEN: PR BUILDS TRUST (Cont’d from page 1)

A problem with organizations that espouse a lofty value system is that they must deal on a daily basis with competitors in markets that do not have the same values, he noted. As an example, he said that J&J uses high quality water in skin care products but competes against companies in other countries that have different standards of water quality.

U.S. companies, he noted, are also burdened by the stringent rules of Sarbanes-Oxley that enforce “ever higher standards of governance and conduct."

He hopes that such laws will not prove to be “too great a distraction or burden the wide global agenda that must be pursued.”

While approving of the “spirit and intent of corporate social responsibility,” Nielsen feels there has been a “rush to institutionalize” it.

“Institutional responses to the CSR agendas of others has blunted the good intentions of many companies that have long histories in corporate philanthropy, left many hollow programs and created still another form of ‘compliance report’ through the many surveys fielded to rate and measure CSR performance,” he added.

He said there is a tendency to label too readily what are “business problems” as “violations of ethics.” Ethics codes are everywhere, and many written in exhaustive detail, he said, adding that one result is that old-fashioned “lousy business decisions are now somehow ethical lapses.”

‘Articulated Values’ Are Needed

Nielsen sees a need for “articulated values” that “shape and define any organization’s ethical or moral imperatives” and can be followed worldwide.

Employees and other stakeholders can then “watch a company’s behavior and decide whether its actions are consistent with stated beliefs and values.”

PR pros must be the “owners of organizational values,” responsible for their articulation and for being the “strong and persistent voice for behavior that is consistent with these values,” said Nielsen.

He sees the statement of beliefs as being “something very different from a code of ethics.” One value to be owned is “transparency.”

Service to the public comes first with Nielsen. He feels this is necessary because truth is involved and it is therefore “a prerequisite for achieving the best interests for clients.”

Some may question “whether we have any responsibilities whatsoever to the news media—especially given the decline we have all witnessed in journalistic standards—such as ‘not letting the facts get in the way of a good story,’” said Nielsen. There is also the belief by some that “traditional media are dead,” he noted.

But he disputed this and said “responsible journalist and news organizations are working to reconstitute and reassert the standards that apply to their profession and we should respect this effort, encourage it, and be responsive to its further development.”

PR people must recognize the right of the press to “inquire and report about matters deemed to be of interest to the public,” he said.


A PRSA Assembly delegate call Oct. 26 was told that the board’s proposed change in the standing rules would make it more difficult for the Assembly to pass resolutions calling for board action.

Resolutions can now be submitted under “new business” but under the new rules such resolutions would have to be submitted 30 days in advance unless there was an “emergency.” This would stop “resolutions on the fly” and resolutions written “during lunchtime” at the Assembly, said board member Dave Rickey.

Delegates on the call said there is currently no 30-day requirement for submitting resolutions.

The board proposal was submitted after a proposal by Central Michigan that would remove from the bylaws the sentence “The business and affairs of the Society shall be managed and controlled by a board of directors of 17 members.” CM would replace it with a sentence saying the Assembly “shall serve as the ultimate policy-making body of the Society.”

CM said this governance structure is used by the Amer. Medical Assn., Amer. Bar Assn., Amer. Dental Assn., AICPA, Amer. Psych. Assn., National Assn. of Counties and many others and would make PRSA more “democratic.” With CM’s proposal, the board would be forced to carry out resolutions passed by the Assembly, which is not now the case.

Battle in Mid-1980s Over H.Q.

The definitive battle over board vs. Assembly powers took place in 1984-85. PRSA/Houston argued that the possible move of h.q. from New York was such a big decision that the Assembly should make it.

Chapter member Sally Evans said the bylaws state that the Assembly “has all the powers of members at an annual meeting” and this makes the Assembly the “supreme governing body of PRSA.”

However, 1985 president Dave Ferguson said another bylaw says the board has the “power to run the administrative affairs of the Society” and the possible move of h.q. came under that. Houston petitioned the board to make the move a decision of the Assembly but this was rejected by the board.

The board decided not to move h.q. from New York in May 1986, citing advice from a $25,000 study by Touche Ross that said a move to another city would cost $836K in “real” expenses and another $257K in revenues lost because of staff inexperience. Only four members of the staff said they would move to another city. Eight chapters sought h.q., saying the TR study only mentioned the cost of moving and not future savings from lower rent and staff costs.

In January 1985, without consulting the Assembly, the board permanently cancelled the Spring Assembly, saying there was a need to cut costs. The 110 chapter presidents-elect are currently invited to a Friday-Saturday meeting each June at a PRSA-estimated cost of about $100K.

In arguing against the CM proposal, the board says the bylaws say that the Assembly “is the overall governing body of the Society.” There is no such sentence in the bylaws.

Internet Edition, November 1, 2006, Page 8




Debra Miller, chair of the PRSA COO search committee and 1997 president, opened a hornet’s nest for PRSA Oct. 26 when she said PRSA should follow the example of other groups and give the president’s title to the new chief staff officer.

This would be the third time PRSA has done that, the first being in 1971-72 and the most recent being 1994 to 2000 when Ray Gaulke held the title.

Requiring changes are 28 bylaws (described in eight pages in the Assembly packet). Miller said PRSA is following the example of IABC, NIRI, the Conference Board, ASAE and other groups.

However, she failed to cite the major professional associations–American Bar Assn., American Medical Assn., and American Dental Assn. All use executive director for the staff person and keep the title of president for the top elected professional.

“President” implies election by members, said staffers at these groups. In each of the above, the elected person is either a doctor, lawyer or dentist and so is the top staff person. Gaulke’s background was advertising. The dictionary says president is “one chosen to elected official...the chief officer of an organization.” “Presidential” carries the meaning of power.

As for IABC, NIRI and ASAE, we find all three to be staff-dominated. Their elected leaders keep a low profile. Association people want power but members of groups should not cede too much power to the staffs. That has happened at PRSA to the detriment of members and the industry.

Miller’s committee is ready to give up “president” because it hasn’t found anyone who wants to be COO. Miller is expecting a lot of the new COO. The new title will help find “the next leader of the Society,” she told the Oct. 26 teleconference, indicating neither she nor the committee see president-elect Rhoda Weiss as this “leader.”

Since PRSA is citing what other groups do, it should take a close look at the ABA.

There is a “chair” at ABA. It’s Laura Bellow, a lawyer who is chair of the 500-member House of Delegates. She was elected by the House itself and runs its meetings. In PRSA, the board runs the meetings of the Assembly. The ABA does not allow votes by “proxies” at its House of Delegates. Such voting, which will be allowed at the PRSA Assembly meeting Nov. 11, is forbidden by Robert’s Rules, under which the Assembly is supposed to operate. The ABA once used the electronic voting devices that are now in use by PRSA but switched back to voice voting and then standing votes if the vote looks close. Factors driving the switch were the fact that electronic votes are “blind” unless a roll call is ordered and also the cost of such devices. The ABA believes that its delegates should “stand up and be counted” in a close vote so everyone can see who voted what way.

Since PRSA wants to compare itself to other groups, it should also note that the ABA, AMA and ADA all defer about half of their dues income as unearned. PRSA books the complete amount of dues paid a year in advance except for about 20% that is allocated to its publications.

PRSA thus compares poorly to the most prestigious of the professions. The Central Michigan proposal would bring PRSA up to par by erasing the sentence in the bylaws that the business and affairs of PRSA “are controlled by a board of directors” and replacing it with “the Assembly shall serve as the ultimate policy-making body of the Society.” This is similar to the wording in the ABA and AMA bylaws.

However, the weak Assembly shows every sign of defeating the CM proposal; changing president to “chair”; allowing proxy voting; barring any resolutions at the Assembly itself unless there is an “emergency”; reducing PRSA from ten to five districts, and allowing PRSSA members to join PRSA for $60 five months before graduation.

The Assembly is weak because half of its members are either in their first or second year as delegates (2004 Assembly survey). Delegates can serve no more than three years. No legislative body or company could operate well if its policy-making members were restricted to three-year terms. The delegates are allowed to meet only once a year; are unable to create their own agenda in advance; mostly lack knowledge of Robert’s Rules, and may be forced to listen to hours of presentations by board members. The Assembly often allows itself to be split into 12 or more subgroups on the one day that it meets. The Assembly caved to the board in the 1980s when it allowed the board to decide the location of h.q. and let the board cancel the Spring Assembly. Some years later the board started budgeting $100K annually to bring 110 chapter presidents-elect to New York each June for training.

PRSA’s biggest chapter, National Capital, will vote against the CM proposal and in favor of proxies. New York, No. 3, will vote against CM and ask for more study. Undecided are Los Angeles, No. 4, Chicago, No. 5, and Houston, No 10. Georgia, No. 2, Colorado, No. 6, Detroit, No. 7, Phila., No. 8 and Minnesota, No. 9, did not return phone calls or e-mails. Only CM is publicly in favor of its proposal.... A new development in PRSA governance is the appointment of podiatrist Mark Schilansky as permanent parliamentarian for the Assembly. He is also an ex-officio member of the nominating committee and an ongoing consultant on PRSA governance. He initiated the “formalization” of the executive committee as the “extension of the full board”; initiated the 30-day notification rule for resolutions at the Assembly, and gave the rationale for proxy voting which was used last year despite criticism from PRSA/Miami and other chapters.

Although he said proxy voting could be barred at the beginning of the 2006 Assembly, the proposal before the Assembly is to bar proxy voting as of 2007.

--Jack O'Dwyer


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