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Internet Edition, October 10, 2007, Page 1


Burson-Marsteller's BKSH & Assocs. prepped Blackwater CEO Erik Prince who testified to Congress last week about activities of his private security firm that has been involved in the shooting of civilians in Baghdad. That relationship has played out on the political campaign trail due to B-M CEO Mark Penn's role as political strategist to Hillary Clinton.

Though Penn did not work for Blackwater, Democratic Presidential hopeful John Edwards said it's wrong to "replace a group of corporate Republicans with a group of corporate Democrats." The former North Carolina Senator sees Clinton tainted through an association with a firm "accused of using their weapons too aggressively on Iraqi civilians and police."

Howard Wolfson, Clinton's spokesperson, told the Associated Press that B-M "has cut ties to Blackwater and that was the right thing to do." Clinton, in fact, supports curbs on Blackwater's activities in Iraq, according to Wolfson.


Ohio is looking for help with a social marketing campaign aimed to cut tobacco use among college students in the Buckeye State.

The state’s Dept. of Health issued an RFP on Sept. 25 for a firm to support the campaign, which tentatively will include research, street marketing, and other PR.

Tobacco use is the top preventable cause of death in Ohio (and the entire U.S.) and college students are the youngest legal marketing demographic for the tobacco industry. The Ohio RFP notes that tobacco companies are using actions like free giveaways, event sponsorships and other PR tactics at campus events to push their products. Proposals are due Oct. 31.

Ohio in May became the 12th state to ban smoking in public places and workspaces statewide.


Aleksander Kwasniewski, ex-President of Poland, has joined APCO Worldwide’s International Advisory Council.

Kwasniewski helped guide Poland following the collapse of communism and led Poland’s campaign to join NATO and the European Union, moves that firmly cemented its connections to the West.

Since completing a second term in ’05, he has lectured at colleges and is a visiting faculty member at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. At APCO, Kwasniewski will counsel clients about investment opportunities that exist in central and eastern Europe.


Former Zeno Group CEO Jerry Epstein has moved to a consultant's role at the firm that is part of Daniel J. Edelman Inc.

He is replaced by Lynn Hanessian, who was GM of Edelman's healthcare practice in Chicago. She will head Zeno from Chicago.

Epstein, who joined the shop, then PR21, in late `02 is based in New York.

Phil Armstrong, a more than 25-year veteran of PR, remains COO/corporate and PA leader at Zeno. Prior to Zeno, he worked at Euro RSCG Magnet, Earle Palmer Brown and Hill & Knowlton.

John Berard, who was managing director of technology at Zeno, is no longer a staffer there.

Now a senior consultant to Zeno, he is CEO of Rabio, an Internet start-up operation in San Francisco that is developing a user-directed advertising network to link marketers to self-qualified customers. Zeno has recently moved into the 457 Pacific Avenue office space that is occupied by Rabio.

Zeno's clients include Disney, Pizza Hut, Kia Motors, AstraZeneca and TD Ameritrade.

Gina Hayes replaces Hanessian in the Edelman health spot.


Keith Hughes has parted Manning, Selvage & Lee after a decade for the senior VP/managing director of global marketing communications post at Fleishman-Hillard.

He was senior VP/North America consumer practice director at the French-owned firm.

Hughes served as director of innovation and development for MS&L’s Procter & Gamble business. He had input on work for General Motors, Kraft, Coca-Cola and Philips Electronics.

Earlier, Hughes was senior manager of international PR for Pepsi-Cola, helping to launch the $500M “Project Blue” marketing push.

He also worked at Ketchum and Creamer Dickson Basford.


Bill Sledzik, associate PR professor at Kent State University, a member of the PR Society for 25 years and formerly president of two chapters, has backed six of the 13 reforms proposed by this website for PRS.

The proposals and Sledsik's comments are carried on

(continued on page 7)

Internet Edition, October 10, 2007, Page 2


Eric Dezenhall, head of Washington-based Dezenhall Resources, worked the media on behalf of Texas oil tycoon Oscar Wyatt, who pleaded guilty Oct. 1 for playing a part in a scheme to provide kickbacks to Saddam Hussein’s regime in Iraq in exchange for United Nations’ oil-for-food contracts.

Wyatt, who could have faced a lifetime prison charge, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud.

He will serve a maximum two years in prison and forfeit $11M.

Washington, D.C.-based EAW Group’s John Aycoth, a good friend of the 83-year-old Wyatt, brought Dezenhall into the picture.

Aycoth told O’Dwyer’s that he has known Wyatt since `89 when he repped Nigeria and Wyatt’s Coastal Corp. wanted to lift oil there.

Wyatt also threw a party at his Houston home in `94 for the former President of Ukraine, an Aycoth client. That grand fest featured then-Texas Governor Ann Richards and her predecessor John Connelly.

Dezenhall represented Wyatt in the months leading up to the New York trial, which began last month.

He told this NL a “confidentiality clause” in his contract with Wyatt precludes him from talking about the project.


Julia Roether, who worked on GolinHarris’ key Nintendo of America account, has exited to open a Los Angeles office for Kohnke Communications.

Fred Cook, GH CEO, told O’Dwyer’s that Stephen Jones heads the Nintendo account, while Alison Holt leads the media team. Roether reported to Holt.

KC is an interactive entertainment firm with offices in New York and San Francisco.

Roether’s exit follows the Sept. 28 resignation of Beth Llewelyn, who was senior director of corporate communications at Nintendo.

She left after a dozen years, rather than relocating to S.F. Nintendo has announced plans to shift the PR/marketing team from the Seattle area to S.F. and New York.


Former Georgia Senator Max Cleland is senior policy advisor and Washington representative for Tissue Regeneration Technologies, a suburban Atlanta start-up that is developing shockwave technology systems to treat wounds and cardiovascular disease.

The Democrat, a triple amputee from a blast in Vietnam, is focusing largely on TRT’s “combat wound initiative.”

TRT is collaborating with Walter Reed Army Medical Center (Washington, D.C.), Brooke Army Medical Center (Fort Sam Houston, Tx.) and the National Naval Medical Research Center (Bethesda, Md.) on a program to treat severely wounded American soldiers injured by improvised explosive devices in Iraq.

Cleland, who headed the Veterans Administration during the Carter Presidency, serves as TRT’s liaison with the federal government and healthcare community.


Tokyo has selected Weber Shandwick to handle its bid to snare the 2016 Olympic Games.

The firm won based on its “unprecedented experience” in handling the sports festival, according to a statement from Ichiro Kono, chairman of the Tokyo 2016 Olympic Games Bid Committee.

The Interpublic unit is fresh from its winning bid for the Russian city of Sochi, which will host the `14 Winter Games. WS also handled successful bids by Beijing (`08), Torino (`06) and Sydney (`00).

Chicago is this country’s representative to compete for the `16 Games. Hill & Knowlton is spearheading that effort. Other cities in the running are Rio de Janeiro, Madrid, Prague, Doha (Qatar) and Baku (Azerbaijan).


Brad Fluegel, an Aetna Life & Casualty pro, has joined Indianapolis-based Wellpoint as chief strategy and public affairs officer. He is in charge of corporate communications, government affairs, strategic planning and corporate social responsibility programs.

Fluegel was VP at Aetna, CEO at UnitedHealth Group’s Reden and Anders unit, and a principal at Towers Perrin. He reports to Wellpoint CEO Angela Braly.

Wellpoint operates Blue Shield/Blue Cross Assns. in states such as California, New York, Connecticut, Indiana, New Hampshire, Maine, Missouri, Virginia, Ohio and Wisconsin. The company earned $1.6B on $30B in first-half revenues.


Kekst and Company is guiding Dallas financier Tom Hicks’ Hicks Acquisition Company, a new “blank check” entity set up to acquire struggling companies.

HAC went public last week with a $552M IPO, the largest ever for a special-purpose acquisition company, or SPAC.

Roy Winnick and Mark Semer, Kekst partners in New York, are handling communications as the company enters its post-IPO quiet period.

The Dallas Morning News noted HAC drew the huge IPO response with “no revenue, no operating history, only a reputation for wise investments.”

The paper said Hicks may have his eye on Cadbury Schweppes’ North American beverage unit, which includes Dr. Pepper. If he doesn’t make a deal in the next two years, shareholders get back $9.75 for every $10 share they bought.

Hicks is a well-known businessman who owns the Texas Rangers, Dallas Stars, Mesquite Championship Rodeo, and half of English soccer team Liverpool FC.


Tammy Lee, a former managing director of corporate affairs for U.S. Airways, has taken the VP/corporate communications slot at Eagan, Minn.-based Northwest Airlines.

Richard Hirst, who held the post on an interim basis since July, has been named SVP of corporate affairs and administration for the No. 5 U.S. airline, which emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy in May.

Internet Edition, October 10, 2007, Page 3


The Industry Standard, which chronicled the boom and collapse, is coming back, according to a notice on its website.

Porter Novelli is helping with the re-launch of the International Data Group property.

The Standard ceased publishing in the summer of '01, putting 180 staffers out of work. The magazine had set a record for ad pages just the year earlier. Its biggest issue had more than 300 pages.

The IS is expected to begin its comeback as a website.

IDG publishes more than 300 magazines (PC World, Macworld, CIO, ComputerWorld) and owns more than 450 websites.


Mother Jones, the progressive bi-monthly, has recruited David Corn as chief of its Washington, D.C., bureau. He has been reporting from the capital for The Nation for the past two decades.

Corn is author of "Imperial Hubris," a book written with Newsweek's Michael Isikoff about the selling of the Iraq invasion.

San Francisco-based MJ now has seven staffers in D.C., the same number as Time, noted the New York Observer.

Corn is expected to bolster MJ's profile on the talk show circuit. He often appears as the liberal voice on Fox News.


Herbert Muschamp, one of the country's most influential architectural critics, has died of lung cancer. He made his mark as critic/columnist for the New York Times.

Muschamp began his career, writing for magazines such as House and Garden and Vogue. He was appointed architecture critic for the New Republic in `87, and succeeded Paul Goldberger at the NYT in `92.

He left the NYT's critic's post in '04 for a columnist slot at T: The New York Times Style Magazine.

Muschamp was 59.


Betsy Morgan, general manager of, is moving to head up the business side of the Huffington Post, the political and cultural fare site.

The 38-year-old assumed command of the CBS site in `05 after working in business development. The CBS site attracts 5.5M visitors a month.

Ken Lerer, the PR executive who founded HuffPo with Arianna Huffington, had been acting CEO of the site. He moves to the chairman slot.

HuffPo gets 3.5M unique visitors a month. It has more than 43 staffers. Huffington told the Financial Times that her goal is to develop an online newspaper.


The New York Times has launched a branding campaign to increase awareness that its website ranks first among newspapers.

The paper plays upon its "All the News That's Fit to Print" heritage to expand to "All the News That's Fit to Click" or Blog, Archive, E-Mail, etc.

The NYT will run ads in trade publications, websites, TV, radio and outdoor. The campaign also will feature individual sections of the site, such as entertainment, technology, real estate and travel.

Murray Gaylord, VP-marketing of site, said the push aims to "make readers aware of the wealth of content" that the website offers.


The British Broadcasting Corp. is acquiring a 75 percent stake in Lonely Planet, the publisher of travel guides for backpackers and adventure seekers.

The Beeb, according to John Smith, who heads its commercial arm, plans to expand LP's website offerings, and expand its presence on TV.

Tony and Maureen Wheeler, founders of LP, retain a 25 percent stake in the firm that is based in Melbourne.

The LP produces "Lonely Planet Six Degrees" that airs outside the U.S. on Discovery Communications.


Burson-Marsteller is helping to rally Countrywide Financial, the nation's largest mortgage company that is in the middle of the subprime lending mess.

A half-dozen B-M staffers are bunkered down in CF's Calabasas, Calif., headquarters to coordinate the corporate comeback bid, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The firm has already announced plans to lay off 12,000 staffers (20 percent of its workforce) as loan level origination volumes are projected to plummet 25 percent in `08 from the current year.

BankAmerica pumped $2B into Countrywide in August as a "strategic investment."

Countrywide CEO Angelo Mozilo has taken his lumps in the media over his excessive pay package ($142M in `06) and his company's hard-nosed business tactics.

New York Times op-ed columnist Paul Krugman featured Mozilo and Countrywide in an Oct. 1 piece called "Enron's Second Coming." Krugman wrote that Mozilo "unloaded $138M worth of Countrywide stock" between Nov. '06 and August '07, "the months before investors fully realized the extent to which his company would be hurt by the subprime mortgage crisis."

Time Warner Cable, taking aim at Apple's iTunes, is selling music to customers of its Road Runner Internet operation.

Subscribers to RR can pay $9.95 for access to three million songs and music videos.

There also is ad-free radio.

Bicycling magazine said it will raise its rate base from 400K to 410K with its January/February 2008 issue. The Rodale magazine said ad pages were up 7.3 percent through August on a nearly 14 percent hike in revenue compared to 2006.

(Media news continued on next page)

Internet Edition, October 10, 2007, Page 4


The Marino Organization is working with the Real Estate Board of New York in the launch of, which links prospective home buyers and renters to access houses, co-ops, condos, townhouses and apartments.

Steven Spinola, REBNY's president, describes the site as a "one-stop consumer search engine" for people living in NYC and for those who would like to live here.

The site is billed as the "city's largest repository of exclusive listings," and one that contains wealth of information about NYC's real estate market.

Crain's New York (Oct. 1) says the site may be a major blow to the New York Times' Sunday real estate section.

The Times "could lose a significant portion of its lucrative residential and real estate advertising," according to Crain's.

The largest number of listings on the site are from Manhattan and parts of Brooklyn.

The Board plans to spend $300K to promote the site over the next two months.

Spinola insisted to Crain's that the site is not trying to compete with the NYT.

Frank Marino and Richard Mulieri are repping the site.


Sard Verbinnen is guiding Belo Corp.'s plan to spin off its newspaper division including corporate flagship Dallas Morning News and Providence Journal in a bid to increase shareholder value. Belo's shares rose more than $3 to $20.48 on the news.

The newspaper group registered $407M in first-half revenues and kicked in pre-tax profit of $73M. Belo's broadcaste unit chalked up $368M in revenues and $150M in earnings.

The Dallas-based newspaper company will be known as A.H. Belo Corp. and headed by Bob Decherd, current CEO. It will begin life debt-free.

The 20-station broadcaster group will be called Belo Corp. and headed by COO Dunia Sive. She joined Belo as controller in ’93, and became president of media operations in ’06.

Decherd also cites displeasure with the Federal Communications Commission's cross-ownership of newspapers and broadcasting properties as another reason for the spin-off.

He calls the rules "completely out of date" and believes "deregulation is long overdue in the television industry."

Decherd is moving to the newspaper side of the business because he "believes in newspapers." He faults many in the media for their "overly pessimistic" view of the future of the industry.

Decherd says there will always be a need for "great journalism."

SV's offices in New York and Chicago are handling the spin-off, which is supposed to be completed early next year.

People ___________________________

David Brown, executive editor of The American Lawyer since 2005, has been named editor-in-chief of sister ALM publication Legal Times. He takes over for James Oliphant, who has left to join the Washington bureau of the Chicago Tribune.

Brown was previously managing editor of LT and assistant managing editor of The Recorder, an ALM legal newspaper based in San Francisco.

Carl Lavin, deputy managing editor for online and multimedia at the Philadelphia Inquirer, has moved on to as managing editor.

Lavin joined the Inquirer in 2004, previously tackling responsibility for foreign, national, metro, science, health and business news. Earlier, he was at the New York Times for 20 years, including six as deputy Washington editor.

Rich Edson, a freelance reporter for Reuters covering international news in D.C., and Adam Shapiro, an anchor and reporter for WNBC-TV in New York, have joined the start-up Fox Business Network as reporters based in D.C. Shapiro was a Chicago correspondent for Fox News Channel from 1997-98. Edson was previously a government reporter for a Fox affiliate in Georgia.

LuAnn Brandsen, editor of Renovation Style magazine, has been named editor-in-chief of Country Home, both Meredith Corp. titles. Current EIC Carol Sheehan is retiring. Brandsen has been with Meredith for 18 years, also editing Country Gardens and serving as garden editor of Country Home.

Omnicom CEO John Wren ranked 67 on a list of 189 CEOs graded by Forbes for performance given in return for compensation.

Forbes calculates pay vs. stock performance including dividends relative to industry peers over six years. Also figured is performance relative to the S&P 500 during that time.

CEOs of the 500 biggest companies earned an average of $15.2 million each, a 38% pay raise. The top 20 averaged $145M in pay in 2006 while the top 20 Wall Street fund managers averaged $658M.

Wren was paid $38M in the six years to 2005 (Forbes did not have his 2006 pay) including $15.6M in 2005. His owned shares were worth $40.3M (not counting unexercised options).

Wren was paid $13.2M in 2006 and on April 4 this year his options on three million shares at $40 became exercisable, giving him a paper profit of $30M.

Forbes says that in spite of SEC attempts to simplify reporting of pay, it is still an arduous task.

Brief ________________________

Better Homes and Gardens has started a service to deliver recipes to readers' mobile phones. Recipes-on-the-Go was created by the Meredith magazine in partnership with Mobifusion and is only available for AT&T wireless users.

Internet Edition, October 10, 2007, Page 5


FD has acquired Ashton Partners, the Chicago-based financial communications and IR firm. Elizabeth Saunders and Christian Hodges founded the company in 1997. Saunders was president and COO of Thomson Financial Services’ IR unit. Earlier, she managed the shareholder services unit of Financial Relations Board.

Hodges was VP at TFS and a stockbroker who specialized in over-the-counter stocks and mutual funds.

Both executives are joining FD.

AP engaged M&A firm StevensGouldPincus to set up the deal. Ted Pincus, partner at SGP, told O'Dwyer's that his firm introduced Ashton Partners to FD and advised the firm through the closing of the deal last Friday.

AP, which has offices in Boston and San Francisco, has run programs for BorgWarner, Constellation Energy, Kraft Foods, Owens-Illinois, Covad Communications, National Beverage and Chiquita Brands. The firm posted 2006 billings of $5.9M with 42 staffers.

FD/North America is headed by Declan Kelly. It is part of FTI Consulting Inc.


Charles Ryan Associates, Charleston, W. Va., has been acquired by a West Virginia investment group led by Henry Harmon, CEO of oil and gas exploration company Triana Energy.

CRA, which has a strong relationship with energy sector clients and the state of West Virginia, posted $5.9M in PR billings with 55 staffers in 2005, the last year it provided figures to the O’Dwyer Co. A release announcing the deal said the firm has 50 employees. It also has an office in Glen Allen, Va.

Sixty-seven-year-old CEO Charles Ryan, who founded the firm in 1974 after working in TV news, said the deal was an “opportunity to see CRA continue as a West Virginia owned and operated firm.”

Harmon, 52, told the Charleston Daily Mail that his group has “high expectations that the involvement of CRA will complement each and every one of our other business ventures.”

The deal took less than two months to complete.

Ryan said he’ll be of counsel to the firm and will show up when needed. “But I do not plan to be in the office on a regular basis,” he told the Daily Mail.

Four days after the deal was announced, CRA acquired Gallagher/Goodwin-Gregg Communications Group and named Patrick Gallagher CEO and president of CRA.

Gallagher worked for Ryan after graduating from W.V. Univ.’s journalism school and called Ryan “a mentor to me throughout my [30-year] career.” GGG has offices in Charleston and Morgantown. Gallagher’s partner in the firm, Aly Goodwin Greeg, joins CRA as a senior VP heading the Morgantown office.

BRIEF: Waggener Edstrom Worldwide has formed an affiliate aggreement with Italian firm Imageware. It is WaggEd’s entry into Italy. Imageware is based in Milan and is already working with WaggEd clients Advanced Micro Devices and Segway in Italy.


New York Area

Ogilvy PR Worldwide, New York/Satyam Computer Services, for global PR after a five-year relationship in Australia. In the U.S., Ogilvy offices in N.Y., Washington, D.C., and San Francisco will handle the India-based outsourcing and IR services company. Ogilvy’s Chicago office has picked up the Brazilian Tourist Board, Embratur, for launch and media relations in the U.S. EVP Sandra Saias and SVP Moyra Knight head the account.

CeCe Feinberg PR, New York/Lewis Cho, designers, for fashion PR.

Corbin & Associates, New York/Bermuda Dept. of Tourism, as AOR following a review. Lou Hammond & Associates previously handled the account.

G.S. Schwartz & Co., New York/Telecom Expense Management Industry Assn., for PR. The San Diego-based organization was founded earlier this year.

Lippert Heilshorn & Associates, New York/icad; KeyOn Communications Holdings; LaPolla Industries; MIV Therapeutics; MPC Corp.; Protalex; Telanetix, and The Center for Wound Healing.

Mark Allen & Co., New York/Barc, African American and Hispanic men’s grooming products, as AOR.

The Morris + King Company, New York/Apollo Circus of Soul, for PR.

The Rosen Group, New York/Stack, multimedia sports company focused on the web, for PR.

Epoch 5 PR, Huntington, N.Y./Briarcliffe College, for a comms program.


Bauza & Associates, Holyoke, Mass./Comcast, for “culturally relevant” campaigns for the company’s digital products; Northeast Utilities, to audit its Hispanic outreach; Health New England; Eastern Connecticut State Univ.; Stamford Hospital; Hartford Foundation for Public Giving; Well Done Productions for a Placido Domingo concert in Boston; The Eastern State Exposition, and Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation, as general market and Hispanic market AOR for the Schemitzun powwow.

Trevelino/Keller Communications Group, Atlanta/
Investor’s Watchdog, as AOR after the firm handled its launch. Former SEC enforcement chief Pat Huddleston heads IW, which says it arms investors with information to protect them from broker misconduct, excessive risk and investment scams.


The McRae Agency, Scottsdale, Ariz./Sunny Delight Beverages Co., for public and media relations for its national “Swim to Success” program to support rec centers. McRae previously launched SDB’s FruitSimple beverage, which is testing in Arizona.


Citigate Cunningham, San Francisco/Sybase 365, mobile messaging, for PR. The firm has a long-standing relationship with parent Sybase, and is now AOR for the company and all its subsidiaries.

JS2 Communications, Los Angeles/Toy Insider, holiday toy guide appearing in the November issue of Redbook.

Internet Edition, October 10, 2007, Page 6


Steve Newman, CEO of Cision, will retire on December 31. The company has named Joe Bernardo, president and CEO of Cision North America, to take the reins of the former Bacon’s Information in January.

Newman joined the company as president and COO in 1990 from MGI Corporation. He will continue in an advisory role and as non-executive chairman of Cision North America.

Bernardo was president and publisher of Futures Magazine and president of computer services firm MGI in the late 1980s and ‘90s. He was previously GM at the Official Airlines Guides.

Bernardo said Newman had guided CNA from a “small, family owned monitoring company to a world leader in business and communications intelligence.”

Cision is owned by Sweden-based Observer Group.


The PR Society Foundation has reported revenues of $249,840 for 2006, up 10.2% from revenues of $225,896 in 2005.

Net assets of the Foundation, chaired by Gary McCormick of Scripps Networks, were $336,830 at the end of 2006.

The Institute for PR, which was the original "foundation" of the Society and which broke away from PRS in 1989 over the mandatory APR requirement for board members, reported a gain of 55% in revenues in 2006 to $845,185. Contributions rose to $326,961 from $162,831 and event income rose to $462,916 from $326,327. Net assets were $261,152 at the end of 2006.

IPR put its complete 2006 financial statement on its website in April this year along with statements for 2005 and 2004.


The Institute for PR's annual Summit on Measurement drew more than 100 participants to Portsmouth, N.H., last week to tackle topics like integrating PR measurement with advertising and marketing, and gauging the impact of consumer-generated media.

Katie Paine, founder of KDPaine & Partners, speaks during the 5th Annual Summit on Measurement.

The three-day fall event included workshops and two days of presentations by corporate, agency, research sector professionals and academia, as well as a closer look at Microsoft's "Prime" framework for assessing communications and U.S. Armed Forces PR.

Other sessions dealt with the importance that intangibles play in reputation measurement, and PR measurement challenges currently faced by the Mayo Clinic and other not-for-profits.

Workshops covered setting measurable objectives, writing a research report, writing survey questions, sampling, dashboards, share of discussion, media content analysis, analyzing quantitative data as well as correlations and statistical reasoning.

David Kistle, senior VP of Padilla Speer Beardsley, was awarded the Institute's Jack Felton Golden Ruler Award for a PSB project with Rockwell International and GfK.



Mark O’Connor, VP of PR for the Food Network, to Ogilvy PR Worldwide, New York, as a senior VP. O’Connor joins Ogilvy’s media relations unit under EVP Jane Mazur. At the Food Network, he guided corporate, industry and media relations for all programming and talent. He handled FN's 10th anniversary and the launch of the popular program “Iron Chef America.” He was previously director of communications for MSNBC and has agency experience with Goodman Media Int’l. O’Connor also handled press for CBS Entertainment and CNN.

MaryAnn Capritti, former EVP, managing partner for the Adient division of CommonHealth, to Flaum Partners, New York. Cary Lemkowitz, former vice chairman/creative director for Young & Rubicam, and Florence Levitt, creative dir. at Lyons Lavey Nickel Swift, have also joined.

Meghan Verdon, director of annual giving and assoc. director of alumni relations for Newark Academy, to Leach Communications, New York, as an associate.

Asha Williams, VP of marketing and comms., Society of Financial Service Professionals, to the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Washington, D.C., as managing director of comms. and marketing, starting Oct. 18.

Mike Welton, former director of comms. for the North Carolina Turnpike Authority, to McRae, Atlanta, as an account director. He was previously PR manager for PriceWeber in Louisville, Ky.

Stephanie Uiberall, marketing manager, Sullivan & Co., to Tara, Ink., Miami, as a senior A/E. She was previously marketing/PR manager, as well as special sections managing editor, for the New York Observer.

Janet Tabor, VP at Strat@comm, to Weber Shandwick, Detroit, as a senior VP. MarcBrailov, former senior director of corporate comms. for MicroStrategy, joins as a VP. Lyle Cifuentes, producer for WXYZ Channel 7 Detroit, joins as an A/S. Mary Horvat, A/E, Marcus Thomas, Kameya Smith, trade show coordinator, TechSmith Corp., and Nuria Baldello-Sole, A/E, Strat@comm, join WS as senior A/Es.

Amanda Powell, who owned her own comms. consulting firm, to Bader Rutter & Associates, Milwaukee, as a senior A/E. She previously held PR posts with the Wyoming Beef Council and Mississippi Cattlemen’s Assn.

Dawn Lindgren has left Weber Shandwick after 10 years for the director of PR slot at ASI Communications in Minneapolis.

Sean Mulholland, a strategist for emerging media at JWT, to Atomic PR, San Francisco, as director of emerging media.

Karen van Bergen, chief of staff to the European president of McDonald’s, to Fleishman-Hillard, as senior VP and regional director for Central Europe, a new post based in Amsterdam, with oversight for Prague, Warsaw and Moscow operations. At McDonald’s, she also held responsibility for corporate comms. and CSR, and managed government and franchise relations.

Internet Edition, October 10, 2007, Page 7

PRS REFORMS BACKED (Continued from page 1)

Sledzik is in favor of allowing chapter-only membership because it would boost local chapters “dramatically” and let the new members sample national’s offerings. The three-year limit on Assembly delegates should be dropped, he says, because it “squeezes out experienced delegates” and chapter members alone should be the deciders of who represents them.

He says PRS is “less than forthcoming with financial data” and the Society should “put it up for all to see, and answer member questions.”

The Assembly (which meets Oct. 20 in Philadelphia) should never adjourn, he says, thus giving it “ample time for debate and discussion of PRS issues among a broader range of members.” This is easy to do, he adds, with blogs, wikis and other social media, “media that PRS has been slow to adopt. A virtual Assembly would take member relations to a new level.”

Sledzik also agrees with banning leader speeches at the Assembly. Leader remarks and “a complete financial report” should be given to the delegates three weeks before the Assembly. He favors removing the APR rule for national board and officer posts, saying “APR carries little or no value in the marketplace” and “in past years, has limited participation by some of our brightest practitioners.”

Unsure About Conference Costs

Sledzik says he is unsure about’s claims that staff costs on the annual conference are far above the less than $200,000 claimed each year on the audit. He is not in favor of barring the 17 national directors, 19 section heads and 10 district heads from voting in the Assembly nor eliminating the rule that board members have to have headed chapters, districts, sections or national committees or have voted in an Assembly.

He would allow directors to return to the board as officers and would not interfere with the hiring policies of h.q. executives (such as giving jobs to PRS members). He does not favor the return of the printed directory of members, saying it’s “outdated long before it’s published.”


Rhoda Weiss, chair and CEO of the PR Society, will speak Oct. 10 to the Hoosier chapter, Indianapolis, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. It is the 11th biggest chapter with about 400 members.

Weiss previously spoke April 12 this year to her home chapter of Detroit, seventh biggest chapter with about 500 members. Detroit will host the annual conference of PRS next year.

Chapter leaders at 13 of the 15 biggest chapters, including the six biggest (National Capital, New York, Georgia, Chicago, Los Angeles and Colorado), said she did not address their chapter memberships this year.

She spoke last October to Central Ohio, the 12th biggest chapter with about 400 members, when she was chair-elect.

She will share with Hoosier “practical, proven, progressive and profitable ideas” from her career which has involved traveling more than six million miles and speaking and consulting with more than 700 organizations.


The New Jersey Society of CPA’s Professional Conduct Committee has rejected a request by this NL to review the audit of the PR Society conducted by Sobel & Co. of Livingston, N.J.

This NL, which had obtained criticisms of PRS’s audit from three college accounting professors, called the PR staff of the NJSCPA in an attempt to discuss the criticisms.

However, PR staffers refused to discuss the criticisms and said they could only be handled by the NJSCPA’s Professional Conduct Committee.

Professors Edward Ketz of Penn State, Charles Mulford of Georgia Tech and Phil Wolitzer of Long Island University, after reviewing the 2005 audit, said PRS should be deferring a major portion of dues until they are earned and that the $5 million+ lease obligation of the Society should be on the balance sheet. That would reveal a “more highly leveraged organization than is presented in management’s statements,” said Ketz, who is often quoted by the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, BusinessWeek and other publications.

A major complaint of this NL is that PRS members don’t realize that money is lost on the annual conference because PRS only counts staff time at the conference which was $189,052 in 2006; $181,657 in 2005; $103,122 in 2004 and $108,197 in 2003.

Conference Is Heavy Workload

Former presidents and treasurers have told this website that true staff costs are close to $2 million because work goes on for most of the year.

The professors said auditors are technically not required to “reach that far down” into an association’s finances.

NJSCPA PR staff directed this NL to Charles Lota, chairman of the NJSCPA Professional Conduct Committee.

NJSCPA’s website says the Society’s members follow the “highest standards” in performing their auditing duties and PRS’s code says members “adhere to the highest standards of truth and accuracy.”

NJSCPA subscribes (with the AICPA) to the “Joint Ethics Enforcement Program” which allows someone to complain about the work of a CPA without being involved in pressing charges and thus opening him or herself to a defamation lawsuit.

As required by Lota, this NL submitted materials to back up its complaint including copies of the 2006 audit of PRS and statements of the three accounting professors. Lota has now written this NL that, “After a thorough review of the correspondence you sent us, the Committee voted not to open an ethics investigation into your complaint since the allegations in your complaint were not supported by the evidence you submitted and thus do not constitute a violation of the Code of Professional Conduct.”

Charges would have to have been made against an individual accountant, rather than Sobel & Co. Audits are signed by the firm itself, rather than individual auditors, whose names are not revealed. Audits are directed to the board of directors of the client. The Sobel & Co. audits were accepted without objection by the audit committee headed by Gabriel Werba of Farmington, Mich.

Internet Edition, October 10, 2007, Page 8




Less than two weeks away is a showdown pitting the leaders of the PR Society against its members.

Who will win is the question that will be decided by the PRS Assembly Oct. 20 in Philadelphia (ironically the city that is the "birthplace of our democracy").

If the Assembly thinks of what is best for the rank-and-file members, it will throw off the royal bonds placed on it by the imperial staff and board and refuse to elect any officers or board members. It will disband the "Star Chamber" e-group where delegates discuss the fate of members in private.

Since 1986, when the board cancelled the Spring Assembly and later turned it into a "Spring Rally" in support of leadership (with $500 stipends to the 109 chapter presidents-elect), the Assembly has been little more than a well-inked rubber stamp for the board.

But the Assembly has "all the powers, rights and privileges of members at an annual meeting." It just doesn't use them. Its naïve members (limited to three years' service), are easily manipulated.

The delegates need their own lawyer or parliamentarian. They should elect their own officers (copying the ABA's House of Delegates) and vote to remain in continuous session (easy via blogs, e-groups, etc.).

Delegates should refuse to elect a new board or officers until the following reforms are put in place (otherwise it will be another year of inaction):

–At least a half dozen senior members go to work full time at h.q. whether paid or unpaid (finding out how every nickel is spent, especially expense accounts).

–Local-only chapter membership is allowed ("members will triple," said one chapter.

–Delegates take control of the PRS web and publications, opening them up for member opinions.

Tactics, Strategist and the bulletin board carry the full text of Central Michigan's proposal to model PRS governance after the ABA and AMA.

–A "registered" CPA is hired. Lack of a CPA at a group with $12M in revenues and 55 staffers is a "red flag." Fire Sobel & Co., which allows PRS to report conference staff time as 3.6% of payroll when it's close to 25%.

–The "library" of PRS is reopened and PRS again publishes the directory of members. It's the height of illogic to claim that libraries and phone books have been replaced by online services. As for saving money, how about the $300K severance to Catherine Bolton and having the conference in New York only once in 14 years (1990 and 2004)? NY attendance was a record 4,000.

–APR requirements are removed from the bylaws. APR is moribund with only 391 new PRS APRs in three years.

The Universal APR Board is a flop, an attempt to sell the APR test to other groups for $100 more ($375). New gambit is a move to sell "affiliate" student memberships for $82, double the $41 rate for PRSS members.

The first thing the 2007 Assembly must do is bar any of the nearly 50 "leaders" (board, sections, districts) from voting. This block could easily sabotage measures that need a two-thirds majority. Make arrangements now so that electronic votes are published immediately, ending anonymous voting. The main duty of delegates is riding herd on how national dues are spent. What do members get for $225 yearly? They get a bloated, non-PR h.q. staff with a $5.2M payroll that hammers them with seminars and webinars and wastes money on a national conference attended by 4% of members.

Fierce politicking is going on now. Assembly delegates are being called by national leaders in an attempt to keep them in line. Delegates have been told they will be seated alphabetically so they can "meet new people" and "network." Nonsense. They're being busted up so they can't caucus on the floor. CEO Rhoda Weiss has told friends she has visited more than 30 chapters but they must be the smaller ones. She has visited only two of the 15 largest (page 7). There are 25 chapters with less than 50 members but each gets one full vote–same as a chapter with 100 members. This is inequitable.

The web is the way members will wrest control from the clique of APRs that have ruled PRS since 1980. Our 13 reforms have been picked up by at least a dozen PR websites, blogs, etc. Outrageous anti-democratic tactics such as keeping the list of credentialed Assembly delegates secret from even the delegates themselves are being exposed to a wide audience. Traditional media, "wired" in one way or another, have failed to do what the web is doing. With reforms, national PRS dues could be $50 (move most of h.q. from New York, PDF Tactics and Strategist, trim annual conference, allow at-large student members, etc.).

Delegates should not be fooled by rosy financial reports (the delegates' binder had no financial information whatever). At least seven staff posts are open to save money, including three in web operations (not a priority at PRS). This is one reason financials for the Foundation are not on the PRS website. The PR post vacated by Cedric Bess was kept vacant for six months to save money (PR is also a low priority).

PRS is obsessed with its own inner workings. It now wants to re-write the entire bylaws although last year it denounced the Central Michigan proposal, claiming a costly new state charter would have to be sought.

"PR" is under attack as never before but PRS is powerless to do anything. Its 60th anniversary this year is going unnoticed in the press.

The Princeton Review's advice to the college-bound to take liberal arts rather than PR courses will cut deeply into the classes of PR professors. So will the findings by three PR veterans (pg. 7) that PR majors are only getting 10-15% of PR jobs. There is no response from PRS (either the staff or Educators chair Joe Trahan or incoming chair Terri Johnson of Eastern Illinois Univ.). We wonder how anyone can study PR when it's in such a bad odor even at PRS, the supposed citadel of PR and supposed worldwide setter of PR standards (so says the Strategic Plan).

--Jack O'Dwyer


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