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Internet Edition, March 26, 2008, Page 1


Howard Paster, executive VP at WPP Group, has joined Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign as COO. He will organize staffs and arrange budgets.

The former Hill & Knowlton CEO served in the Clinton White House as its congressional liaison. He reports to Maggie Williams, campaign manager.

Paster also served as chairman at Burson-Marsteller and showed pollster Mark Penn “the ropes” when he took over the CEO spot.

Penn is Clinton’s pollster and chief strategist.

The Clinton campaign has added pollster Geoff Garin, president of Peter D. Hart Research, to its line-up. Garin has experience in the key battleground states of Pennsylvania, Indiana and North Carolina.

NBC reported that some in the Clinton campaign “have been arguing for months” that Penn should not be polling his own message ideas.


Arizona is calling for PR pitches to boost visitors and spending from Mexico, the state’s most important international market.

The Arizona Office of Tourism’s RFP notes “the Mexican’s affection for Arizona’s shopping resorts, medical services and numerous recreational opportunities … continues to generate strong numbers of travelers to the state.” The work includes media relations, in-market representation, trade show work, and media monitoring.

A questionnaire required to pitch includes description of a small and large budget campaign, as well as space to discuss “the negative image Arizona has in the Mexico press.”

Jackson Marketing Internacional of Mexico City is AOT’s current rep in Mexico.

Agnes Magezi ([email protected]) is overseeing the agency search and taking questions. Proposals are due via the state’s online RFP system,, by April 4.


BGR Holding, the former Barbour Griffith and Rogers, has recruited Michael Meehan, chief of staff for Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash), to head the newly formed BGR Public Relations.

Meehan, who also worked as communications advisor for Sen. John Kerry, is the first key Democrat hired at the Republican firm.

BGR, in December, announced a restructuring that promised a stepped up PR, media management and strategic communications operation.


Hill & Knowlton’s Washington office is playing a key role in European Aeronautic Defence & Space Co.’s campaign to stave off Boeing’s challenge to the Air Force’s decision to grant it a $40B aerial tanker contract with partner Northrop Grumman.

Kelli Parsons, executive VP and GM of H&K/D.C., told O’Dwyer’s that the WPP Group unit was tapped earlier this year by Chistof Erhart, senior VP-communications at EADS, and Guy Hicks, VP-communications at EADS North America.

John Ullyot, senior VP, heads the H&K team. He served as communications director for the Senate Armed Services Committee that handled the tanker lease review in `03/`04, the time when that panel declined to approve the Boeing lease.

That decision, noted Parsons, led to the Feb. 29 award of the tanker contract to Northrop Grumman-EADS.

Ullyot, who joined H&K last August, is a former VP-communications at AOL Europe and an officer in the Marine Corps.

H&K’s sister company, Ogilvy Government Relations, had been doing lobbying work for EADS.

Northrop Grumman has hired Breaux-Lott Leadership Group to lobby on its behalf.


Kiersten Zweibaum, director of GCI Group’s global corporate practice, has departed to head Ogilvy PR Worldwide’s global corporate unit as a managing director. The corporate reputation specialist handled clients like Darden Restaurants, Nike and British Airways in a two-year stint at GCI.

Zweibaum was previously a senior VP and associate director in Ketchum’s corporate practice. She was with that Omnicom agency for 16 years.

Zweibaum is based in London.


Gail Baker, Ph.D., dean of the College of Communications, Fine Arts & Media, University of Nebraska, Omaha, resigned March 20 as chair of the Ethics Board of the PR Society after this NL pointed out ethical issues at the Society to University officials.

Baker, who served last year as vice chair of honors and awards, was a controversial appointee because she had not been on the EB.

After attempts to reach Baker by phone or e-mail were unsuccessful, this NL sent an e-mail outlining ethi-

(Continued on page 7)

Internet Edition, March 26, 2008, Page 2


cal issues at PRS at 11:55 a.m. March 20 to Baker, University Chancellor John Christensen, and Wendy Townley, media relations assistant director.

Also sent to Townley was the four-page story in the February 1995 O’Dwyer’s PR Report on PRS’s practice of copying and selling articles and chapters of authors’ works without their permission.

The authors have been conducting a 13-year battle to obtain some redress from the Society in the form of money or free ads in PRS publications. Luis Morales, 1996 president, admitted the copying in a letter to the authors and made an apology, but offered no compensation.

PRS PR staffer Joseph DeRupo sent this NL a one-line e-mail at 3:49 p.m. March 20 saying: “Gail Baker is not the Chair of the PRS Board of Ethics.”

The PRS website, which had been showing Baker as EB chair and Bob Frause and James Lukaszewski as vice chairs, on March 20 only listed Frause and Lukaszewski as vice chairs. No one is listed as chair.

80% of Members Barred from Office

The e-mail to Baker, Christensen and Townley also noted that since the 1970s, more than 80% of the members have been barred from holding national office because they are not “accredited.” Said the e-mail: “The leadership is therefore not representative of the membership.”

There are only 4,000 accredited members of the Society after 40 years, indicating the low acceptance of accreditation in the Society itself and in the industry.

The accredited rule has helped to drive corporate, counselor and investor relations PR professionals from the Society, which, instead of being led by executives from the biggest companies and PR firms, is now mostly led by solo practitioners and those in their own PR firms.

Although 2008 is the 60th anniversary year of the Society, the anniversary committee has been disbanded, removed from the Society website.

The board for the third year in a row refuses to provide a transcript or a recording of the 2007 Assembly to members who have asked for it although such transcripts were provided for many years.


Energetic Greenpeace campaigners disrupted the kick-off of the Cottonelle Comfort Haven road show in New York City on March 20, handing out leaflets and urging passers-by not to buy the toilet paper put out by Kimberly-Clark.

The Comfort Haven bus has been reconfigured to look like the brand’s Labrador Retriever mascot. It features comfort stations, massage chairs and entry forms for the “Be Kind to Your Behind” sweepstakes and was parked across the street from Grand Central Terminal.

Greenpeace staffers charge K-C with cutting down North America’s last ancient forest for a product that is flushed down the toilet.

The green group has its own Lab mascot who urges people to “Be Kind—Leave Ancient Forests Behind.”

Ketchum handles Cottonelle’s PR.


Porter Novelli’s no-bid contract to handle PR for an aerial moth spraying program in California has been cancelled by the state.

The $500K pact was suspended earlier this month after local media and the Associated Press noted that a state contracting official questioned why the contract wasn’t put through a normal RFP process.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s office said it would review the pact after media interest piqued and the governor’s press secretary said March 17 that the contract was terminated.

Porter Novelli’s Sacramento office was brought in after aerial spraying to control an invasive moth was met with health complaints by some residents. The state said it expected federal reimbursement for the PR work.

The AP reported that PN collected $66K before the contract was cancelled this week. Another $30K could be due to the firm.


Singer & Associates has been awarded a new $180K/year contract to guide PR and community outreach for the Transbay Joint Power Authority, San Francisco’s transit agency, following an RFP process.

Three other firms pitched for the work, including Edelman, BergDavis Public Affairs, and Karbo/Fonkalsrud Communications, after the RFP was sent to 97 firms.

Singer teamed with community relations firm Hope Road Consulting as a subcontractor for the pitch.

The TJPA board on March 20 approved the pact, which maxes out at five years and $900K and was recommended for approval by TJPA staff. Singer’s recent three-year contract was slated to expire on April 20. The firm has five staffers on the account, including president Sam Singer and EVP Adam Alberti.


Ketchum is handling the National Senior Games Assn., a non-profit group that seeks to encourage people over age 50 to stay in shape.

The Omnicom entity will promote NSGA and its activities leading up to the `09 Summer Games that are slated for Stanford University (Aug. 1-15).

The Bay Area is the largest media market in the 30-year history of the senior games. Houston (`11) and Cleveland (`13) are the next venues. Heathcare giant Humana is the sponsor of the competition.


Michael Konczal, who was deputy managing director of Manning Selvage & Lee’s Washington office, has shifted to Levick Strategic Communications as senior VP in its corporate practice.

At MS&L, Konczal worked on the U.S. Army and Army Reserve’s “Army on One” recruitment campaign, and General Motor’s labor and safety efforts.

Prior to MS&L, Konczal was associate director of PA at the Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant, where he headed communications for the Superfund clean-up. He managed community relations, regulatory & government relations and special events.

Internet Edition, March 26, 2008, Page 3


London’s Finsbury is counseling dissident shareholders Harbinger Capital and Firebrand Partners, the duo that has been granted two seats on the board of the New York Times Co.

HC and FP waged a three-month siege of the NYTC and promised a proxy contest to elect four of their directors at the April 22 annual meeting.

The NYT, on March 17, increased the size of its board to 15 members and added Firebrand’s Scott Galloway and Kohlberg & Co.’s James Kohlberg to the list of nominees for board service.

HC and FP control 19 percent of the NYTC and want the company to unload slow-growth properties and invest in digital assets.

NYTC chairman Arthur “Pinch” Sulzberger says he welcomes the “perspectives and insights of our proposed new directors.”

Harbinger’s Philip Falcone, also quoted in the NYTC statement, looks forward to “working with the other directors and management to build and deliver value for all shareholders.”

Andy Merrill, CEO of Finsbury USA, is leading the run at the NYTC.

He joined the WPP Group unit in `06 after working at Edelman (global financial communications unit general manager), Abernathy MacGregor (managing director) and Bank of New York (investor relations director).


Slate, the online journal, will launch “The Big Money” site this summer.

The site promises to be heavy on irreverence to explain the workings on Wall Street.

It is aimed at a general audience of those with an interest in financial affairs.

Editor James Ledbetter told Reuters that most current financial sites are dry and makes a reader feel like he is doing his homework. He is a veteran of Time and The Industry Standard.

Slate also announced that Washingtonpost. Newsweek Interactive VP John Alderman has been named publisher of the online magazine.

Alderman was in charge of business development at the parent company, a role which he maintains. He is slated to take over for Cliff Sloan on April 1.

Sloan, who was publisher and general counsel for WPNI, has taken a partner post at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher and Flom.

Alderman was previously VP of business development at The Away Network, an online travel publisher, and general manager of Outside Online.

WPNI deputy general counsel Sherrese Smith was promoted.


The Seattle Times Co. has put its Maine newspapers on the auction block. They include Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram, Kennebec Journal and Morning Sentinel (Waterville).

The privately held company acquired those papers in `98 for $200M.

STC is selling the papers because of the “difficult business environment” and the need to focus on its holdings in Washington state. It owns the Yakima Herald Republic and Walla Walla Union-Bulletin.

Dirks, Van Essen & Murray (Santa Fe) is marketing the papers. A deal is expected by the end of the year.


Frank Comes and Mary Kuntz, assistant managing editors at BusinessWeek, have moved to management consultant McKinsey & Co.

They will report to Rik Kirkland, the Fortune veteran who heads McKinsey’s publishing unit.

Comes has more than 30 years of experience at BW. He joined the Pittsburgh bureau and wrote from Minneapolis, Toronto and Paris before taking the international edition editor spot in New York in `89.

Kuntz joined BW as marketing editor in `95, after working at Newsday and Forbes.


Greg Coleman, a seven-year veteran of Yahoo, has taken the CEO slot at NetSeer, a search and ad targeting start-up in Los Angeles.

He exited Yahoo as executive VP-global sales and was president of Reader’s Digest magazine prior to that.

Yahoo ad revenues grew from $600M to $6B under Coleman’s watch.


Dow Jones Newswires has replaced Associated Press with Paris-based Agence France-Presse after the two sides could not negotiate a renewal deal.

Clare Hart, executive VP of Dow Jones & Co., praised her new partner for general and political news as having a “reputation for speed, accuracy and trustworthiness.”

The AP content deals with the Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones Factiva are not affected by the Dow Jones Newswires’ split.


The Associated Press has tapped Noelle Knox, a national real estate reporter for USA Today, to help create and lead a new real estate and home news service.

The new service, called AP Business: Real Estate & Home, is the first targeted news product from its newly created Financial and Business News division.

Knox takes the title of real estate editor and will help launch the service in the first half of this year.

The new division is part of a corporate strategy for the news cooperative focused on developing financial news, sports and entertainment.

Knox previously worked for the AP in 1998, covering banking and investment banking in New York.

She joined USA Today as a business writer in 2000 and, three years later, became a European correspondent based in Brussels, a position she held until taking over the U.S.-based real estate beat in 2006.

(Media news continued on next page)

Internet Edition, March 26, 2008, Page 4


Tribune Co. is expected to receive bids for Newsday from Rupert Murdoch, owner of the New York Post, Mort Zuckerman, owner of the New York Daily News, and Cablevision.

Newsday ranks as the country's biggest suburban newspaper. It has a circulation of 387K largely on Long Island.

A deal is expected to fetch more than $350M.

Tribune Co. CEO Sam Zell is in the midst of a "strategic review" of the Chicago-based media combine that reported a $78M `07 fourth-quarter net loss compared to a $239M year ago profit.


Vindu Goel, columnist and former business editor at the San Jose Mercury News, is joining the New York Times next month as deputy technology editor.

Prior to the Merc, Goel was consumer products reporter in the Philadelphia bureau of the Wall Street Journal and government reporter for the Cleveland Plain-Dealer. Damon Darlin is tech editor at the NYT.


Oliver Knowlton, general manager of Sports Illustrated, has been named president of MediaNews Group Interactive, the digital unit of the country's No. 4 newspaper company.

Knowlton is a 25-year veteran of Time Inc., and was a key executive involved in its early Internet strategies.

Joseph Lodovic, president of MediaNews Group, expects Knowlton's "experience in moving a print franchise into the digital world will be invaluable" to the Denver-based publisher.

Knowlton will join MediaNews' office of the chairman.


Morning shows play by different rules. Viewers want to be informed in a manner that’s quick and fun, said a panel of morning show producers at a Feb. 27 Publicity Club of New York luncheon.

More than 180 PR pros showed up for the sold-out panel, which offered an insider peek into the workings of some of the most popular New York morning TV news and talk shows.

According to Emily Raiber, producer of WNBC-TV’s “Today in New York,” consumer reports and medical news continue to be in high demand for morning shows.

Melissa Rabinovich, executive producer for New York 1 News’ “Living” segments, said health and fitness, as well as stories regarding bargains, are top items of interest for her viewers.

While keeping stock in these topics could increase your chances of getting airtime, landing a slot on the morning networks requires a knack for appealing to newsroom timeliness and relevance.

“It’s all about getting the story to me before someone else does,” Raiber said.

Marcia Parris, senior producer for CW 11WPIX, said all successful morning pitches contain three ingredients: items should be “newsworthy,” offer a current-affairs “tie-in,” and contain a component that’s “wacky and wild.”

“Pitch something that’s happening right now and try to play off that,” Parris said. “If there’s an epidemic going on, bring someone in to talk about what’s going on. Tell us how we can protect ourselves and our families. You look for angles like that and you get used to it.”

Mio Abe, producer for Fox 5 News, said one of the most popular segments on her show is the “NY Minute,” where three or four events happening in New York are chosen and profiled daily. The segment is fun, educational and timely in content; and having each of these touchstones is a testament to the segment’s popularity.

Visuals are also a big component of morning TV. One of the benefits of the morning news is its flexibility on submitted video footage. Raiber said much of her show’s content is pre-shot and pre-produced. Parris said her station allows PR pros to use their own video crew.

This visual flexibility opens the net for what types of stories can be pitched. Content aside, Parris said “the better the quality, the more likely we’ll use it,’ and Abe commented that video’s primary objective “should be fun.” Abe said her station takes submissions on either DVD or Beta format, and the panel stressed the importance to label the tape.

While the morning news plays on timely elements, most producers like to fill their slots much further ahead of time. Ninoska Arriaga, Executive producer of Telemundo’s “Noticiero 47,” said she often books segments up to a month before they air.

The morning beat is rife with last minute decisions. Slot changes and guest cancellations are par for the course, another reason why publicists may want to consider pitching early. The panel said PR pros can use this phenomenon to their advantage.

“I like advanced notice because it gives us time to flesh it out,’ Parris said. “And I can’t lie, sometimes we have cancellations. We can do segments the day before, Rabinovich said, but “the sooner ahead of time we know, the better.”

Another benefit of the morning news is that most are owned by a national conglomerate.

Most of these stations air 24-hours, where there is a constant need to fill the information vacuum. According to the panel, what airs first on morning TV often moves later to a nation-wide spot.

“It’s not unusual for (Fox) to ask us for segments that can be broadcast nationwide,” Abe said.

The same is true of morning show’s burgeoning web component. The panel said many segments find a second home online after they air, a placement the panel described as a “a two-part deal.”

“Even if we don’t get back with you, keeping sending away,” Raiber said. “You’re not bothering us, even though it seems like it sometimes.”

The panel was moderated by PCNY President Peter Himler.

Internet Edition, March 26, 2008, Page 5


Stefan Hankin, a pollster for Sen. Barack Obama’s presidential run, has left the campaign for a slot at Widmeyer Communications. He is deputy director of the firm’s research & polling unit. Hankin has done political work for New Jersey Democrats Gov. Jon Corzine and Sen. Bob Menendez and South Dakota’s Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin.

From `05-`07, Hankin was director of policy and outreach at 18to35, a think tank focused on issues concerning young voters. He continues as senior advisor to, merger partner of 18to35.

Hankin has coordinated campaigns with Shell Oil, WWF/Smackdown Your Vote, AT&T, City Harvest and Home Builders Assn.


Rubenstein Communications will promote Major League Baseball’s 2008 DHL All-Star FanFest that is slated for New York City’s Javits Center from July 11-15. The event is billed as the “largest baseball fan event in the U.S.” and will allow people to test their hitting, pitching and base stealing skills. FanFest is held in conjunction with the All-Star Game that will be played on July 15 in Yankee Stadium.

The Yankees are relocating after this season to a new ballpark across the street. Yankee Stadium hosted All-Star Games in 1939, 1960 and 1977.

Howard Rubenstein has been a long-time spokesperson for the Bronx Bombers. His firm also is promoting the Chevrolet Red Carpet Show that precedes the 79th All-Star Game.

NYC expects the All-Star Game will generate $150M in revenue for its coffers.


Child’s Play Communications, New York, is marking its 20th year and has launched three new services focused on its main target demographic – mothers.

The firm has set up its own network of “mom bloggers,” an invitation-only brunch event for mother’s engaged in online media, and live events with product demonstrations for mothers in major markets in the U.S.

CPC’s president Stephanie Azzarone, a PR pro and former journalist, founded the firm when she was pregnant with her son. She says moms are responsible for 85 percent of household spending.

CPC has worked for Hasbro, CVS and Samsonite.


Five travel-centric PR and marketing firms have banded together in a global network covering North America and Europe.

The Pengaea Network covers 11 countries and includes Spring, O’Brien, New York (U.S. and Canada); bgb communications, London (U.K. and Ireland); AIGO, Milan (Italy, Eastern Europe); Contact & Creation GmbH, Frankfort (Germany and Austria), and Indigo Consulting, Paris (France).

Chris Spring is U.S. contact for the group (212/620-7100, ext. 225; [email protected]).


New York Area

Articulate Communications, New York/Neocleus, virtualization software for business; Netrics, data matching technology, and WorkLight, server-based products for corporate computing, all as AOR for PR.

Coyne PR, Parsippany, N.J./Mary Kay, direct-selling cosmetics company, as AOR for product publicity and promotion following a competitive review. The firm previously did project work for Mary Kay.

CJP Communications, New York/World Gold Council, for media and investor relations, executive positioning and thought-leadership counsel for its corporate initiatives in the U.S.

Goodman Media, New York/Ian Fleming Productions, for U.S. PR for the 100th anniversary of James Bond author Ian Fleming’s birth on May 28; Children’s Book Council, for support of National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature and re-launch of Children’s Book Week; Island Press, for general PR counsel and to promote conservation author Alan Rabinowitz, and Walter Dean Myers, author of his forthcoming young adult novel “Game.”

Middleton & Gendron, New York/Black Tomato, a custom travel company based in the U.K., for launch in U.S.; Altour, high-end travel agent network, for PR after a prior relationship in 2006, and The Jefferson, a boutique hotel in Washington, D.C., for re-opening.


Birnbach Communications, Marblehead, Mass./
Bradford Networks, network access control, for media relations, online media, product reviews and analyst relations.

Sage Communications, Vienna, Va./Bivio Networks, deep packet inspection and processing; Centurum, network engineering and support for Defense Dept. and other federal agencies; Children of Uganda, non-profit; Liquid Computing, computing architecture system for data centers; Mikoh Corp., security and digital marketing services, and Privo, youth marketing compliance consultancy, for PR and marketing.

Capstrat, Raleigh, N.C./Building Together Ministries, non-profit education and community support group for low-income families, for pro-bono PR in 2008.

GolinHarris, Miami/BBC Mundo, the Spanish American online and radio venture by the BBC in the U.S., for PR support of its “Hablas Espanol?” initiative, part of its 2008 presidential election coverage. Two BBC Mundo staffers are headed on a three-week, cross-country tour.


Bayou City PR, Houston, Tex./Massage for the Cure Day, for PR for its Massage Envy clinics to benefit Susan G. Komen for the Cure’s Houston affiliate.


Lane PR, Portland, Ore./Arico Natural Foods, gluten- and dairy free products like cookies and chips; Devine Color, interior paint; Mother’s Bistro & Bar and Mama Mia Trattoria, eateries, and Shape Foods, flax oil products, for PR.

JS2 Communications, Los Angeles/, online community for parents, as AOR.

Internet Edition, March 26, 2008, Page 6


ARAnet, Hopkins, Minn., which provides features on home improvement, finance, health and many other consumer topics to print and online media, also has its own group of websites that carry many of the ARA features.

PR firms say the ARA websites are not identified as such on the opening page but that the articles obtained through a click-through are identified with the initials ARA at the start and on the bottom with the notation, “Courtesy of ARAcontent.”

ARAnet's Quick News Online site has no mention of ARA on its main page.

They said such websites are blurring the dividing line between legitimate media and sponsored media and that full identification should take place on the first page.

Scott Severson, president of ARAnet, said the ARA websites generate more than one million article page views per month and help to bring more traffic to the stories that are being distributed for clients.

“Stories on our ARA websites are typically only a small fraction of the overall number of website placements that we generate for our clients. The majority of placements occur on TV news web sites, newspaper sites and special interest content sites,” said Severson.

“Our clients really value that ARA can help them to reach consumers online in a way that is relevant, measurable and effective,” he said.

The ARA websites include,,, and

A typical ARA site,, does not identify ARA on its opening page as the sponsor of the site. However, each story inside has at the bottom the notation, “Courtesy of ARA Content.” Product plugs are usually deep within the feature.

A feature on ceramic tile promotes Tile of Spain and a feature on Easter baskets promotes the use of Extra sugar free gum in place of sweets.

Amy Scharf Fond, a former Fox News Channel producer recently at Medialink, has joined Cameron Communications as a media trainer and presentations coach. Fond was a senior producer at Medialink. She started out in TV news at Philadelphia’s ABC affiliate WPVI-TV and spent seven years at FNC.

Normalinda Gonzalez, corporate communications manager for software company Amdocs, has joined broadcast PR company West Glen Communications in New York as an account director. She handles broadcast and Internet PR campaigns at the company.

Gonzalez previously worked in PR and marketing at TXU Energy and held agency posts at Access Communications and Ogilvy PR Worldwide.

D S Simon Productions, New York, has aligned with home improvement specialist Gary Dymski to produce satellite media tours and ground tours this year.

Dymski writes a Newsday column, “Homework.” His work with Simon will focus on do-it-yourself projects for the home. Info: [email protected].



April Wildermuth, former deputy press secretary for Rep. Stephen Lynch (D-Mass.), to Morrissey & Company, Boston, as an associate. She handles Sappi Fine Paper North America and British explorer Lewis Gordon Pugh at the firm.

Jane Baxter Lynn, who ran her own marketing comms. firm, to TourismROI, New York, as executive VP in charge of North American sales and marketing.

Andy Goldberg is back at Burson-Marsteller, New York, as chair of its corporate and financial practice. He had been corporate affairs director more than a decade ago. Goldberg was running AGG International, a B-M subsidiary.

Cynthia Tinsley-Douglas, founder and editor, Living Space Magazine, to AirTran Airways, Orlando, Fla., as corporate communications manager. She is based in Atlanta and handles media relations and external comms. She was previously a TV reporter and news anchor in Dallas, Cleveland and Atlanta.

Rob Liberatore, head of global external affairs & public policy at automaker Daimler, is stepping down at the end of the month. The D.C.-based executive will join the German Marshall Fund of the United States during the summer as senior transatlantic fellow. Liberatore, 59, spent more than 20 years in the auto business at Chrysler, DaimlerChrysler and Daimler AG, the German parent of Mercedes-Benz that divested Detroit’s No. 3 automaker last year. Dieter Spoeri, who is Berlin-based, will handle external affairs and public policy issues until a replacement for Liberatore is found. The GMF works to foster closer ties between the U.S. and Europe.

Susan Corsini has been named deputy managing director of GolinHarris’ Washington, D.C. office, which is headed by Lane Bailey. Corsini was managing director of OAI, a non-profit consulting firm, and in charge of community outreach at Sallie Maie. Earlier she led Fleishman-Hillard’s AOL account after working as communications director for AOL International.

Kirstin Hinchcliff to senior VP, Insidedge, an employee comms. unit of Interpublic.

Pam Kulik, former web content strategist for Sapient and marketing comms. manager for Thomson Elite, returns to Bender/Helper Impact, Los Angeles, as VP overseeing its corporate entertainment and entertainment technologies group practices. The Silicon Valley vet was at B/H 10 years ago.


Jennifer Khoury to VP, corporate comms., Comcast Corp., Philadelphia. She was formerly VP of PR for Comcast’s New England region. Also, Joseph Waz Jr. was upped to SVP of external affairs and public policy counsel. Kerry Knott was promoted to SVP of govt’ affairs.

Erica Quagliata to A/E and internship coordinator, Silverman Media & Marketing Group, Woodbury, N.Y. She is a former intern.

Emmy Whitney to A/E, Coventures, Inc., Boston. She joined the firm in 2005.

Internet Edition, March 26, 2008, Page 7


Peppercom, with an increase of 41% in 2007 fees to $11.8 million, 5W Public Relations, with a 24% jump to $11.5M, and Edelman, with a 23% jump to $72.1M, were the biggest gainers among the top ten PR firms reporting their New York fee incomes.

Closely behind, among the ten, were M Booth & Assocs., up 19.8% to $11.3M, and Kaplow Communications, up 22% to $10.3M.

Edelman’s worldwide fee total was up 22.2% to $395.4M.

Most of those on the list of 52 New York ranked firms, including Peppercom and Booth, do not have branch offices.

Many are in networks of independent firms such as Worldcom, Pinnacle Worldwide, IPREX, PROI, PR Global Network and the newest, PR Boutiques International.

Ruder Finn’s New York office declined 11.9% to $66.9M due to a restructuring. Co-CEO Peter Finn said the firm is focusing on larger accounts and has added eight new accounts worth more than $1 million each in the past several months, which he called RF’s “best new business streak in 20 years.”

Quinn, Healthstar, CooperKatz Expand

In the 11-25 category ($10.3M to $4.1M), biggest gainers were Quinn & Co., up 48.9% to $4.8M; Healthstar, up 35% to $8.9M; CooperKatz, up 32% to $4.1M; Lou Hammond & Assocs., up 28% to $6.5M, and Stanton & Crenshaw, up 25% to $8M.

There were only nine minuses on the list and five reported keeping even with the previous year.

Newly Listed Show Gains

Ten firms joined the list with several showing major gains.

These included Kwittken & Co., rising 55% to $3.3M; Bite Communications, up 54% to $3.1M; Middleberg Communications, up 45% to $2.59M; Richard Dukas Communications, up 90% to $2.3M; Corinth Group, up 89% to $925,712, and Butler Assocs., up 226% to $637,125.

Other newcomers to the list are Sawchuck, Brown, Albany, up 6.8% to $1.9M; Wordhampton PR, East Hampton, up 20% to $916,018; Child’s Play Communications, up 10% to $680,602, and J.B. Cumberland Group, up 14% to $599,460.



Brunswick Group is working for Dillard’s, the 330-unit apparel/home furnishings chain that faces a proxy fight from New York-based Barington Capital Group.

Barington nominated four directors to serve on the board of the Little Rock-headquartered company. It believes management has failed to unlock Dillard’s “vast value potential.”

Dillard’s stock price is down more than 50 percent since June 30. CEO William Dillard is adding “upscale, contemporary and trend-right fashion” merchandise and closing underperforming units.

Dillard’s net income fell to $47M from $150M during its most recent quarter ended Feb. 2. Its stock trades at $18.36.



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Internet Edition, March 26, 2008, Page 8




The sudden resignation of Gail Baker as chair of the Ethics Board of the PR Society (page one) should spur some action at PRS.

A PRS governance committee three years ago told the board to drop the APR rule for board service and to trim the 17-member board to 10 or 12 members.

These recommendations were ignored.

APR continues to have a stranglehold on leadership. It’s the main reason directors are now mostly freelancers or from small PR firms instead of from blue chips.

Blue chip volunteers did not need to have any of their expenses paid by PRS but the solo practitioners do. It’s one reason there’s such a hot contest for the top elective posts.

Board spending has been hidden from view since 1990, when the board decided to remove the 300+ statistics in the Statement of Functional Expenses. There was no such statement in the 1991 audit. An outcry from members forced return of the statement in 1992 but nine categories were missing including board and district expenses. Board expenses in 1990 were $177,836 and included $109,370 for travel, hotels and meals.

Board spending got lumped into “leadership support” and the spending for that in 2006 was $605,665. This included $196,379 in travel, meals and hotels and $114,533 for “professional fees.” We don’t know what the “professional fees” were for since PRS does not answer questions about its finances.

District costs were $35,170 in 1990. A KPMG analysis in 1992 urged that the ten districts be dropped as a waste of money. However, the districts involve 50 titles (chair, chair-elect, etc.) and blocked their demise. At least a half million has been wasted on the districts since 1992.

The resignation of Baker is embarrassing not only to Baker but to the University of Nebraska, PRS chair Jeff Julin, who appointed her to the most prestigious of all the 30+ boards of PRS, and PR itself.

Only political favoritism got her named in the first place. She was not even a member of the Ethics Board and therefore had no business being appointed its chair, jumping over veteran members of the EB.

Her resignation came almost immediately after this NL notified Nebraska Chancellor John Christensen and the PR dept. that Baker was conflicted in heading an “ethics board” that was ordered by the national board not to talk to the press.

We noted we had been unable to reach Baker by phone or e-mail for at least a week. We also described various unethical practices of PRS including its 13-year refusal to deal with authors whose works had been sold by PRS without their permission; its lack of democracy (80% of members barred from national office), and its stonewalling of members who have requested transcripts of the Assemblies. Less than four hours after we contacted the University, PRS PR staffer Joe DeRupo sent us the cryptic, slippery comment: “Gail Baker is not the chair of the PRS Ethics Board.” It could be PRS told this evasion to the University when it called to find out what the hubbub was all about.

DeRupo’s remark to us was anything but the “highest standards of truth and accuracy” that the PRS code demands that its members follow. Luckily, we had printed out in March the PRS boards and Baker was listed as the chair of the EB.

The PRS website now shows no chair at all for the EB. Instead, Bob Frause and Jim Lukaszewski are listed as vice chairs. Frause, a former EB chair, in 1999 presided over the erasure of the old PRS code and its replacement by a new code with no enforcement mechanism. Frause said the old code was “a joke” and unenforceable because accused members would either say they had nothing to do with the alleged infraction (claiming it was done by some other member of their firm) or would mount a legal defense that would be costly to PRS. Lukaszewski’s view of the truth is that it is “15% facts and 85% perception”... our experience with the Nebraska Univ. PR dept. was typical. The initial PR staffer contacted got unnerved when we said that the head of their communications dept. had refused to talk to us even though she heads an ethical board. He would not give us his e-mail address or fax number but said he would call us back (which he never did). We tried another PR staffer and left a voicemail message (few PR pros pick up their phones these days). She called us back and gave us her e-mail address and fax number. She had never heard of the O’Dwyer Co. or any of its products. This is also typical. The PR trade press is not taught in PR courses at either the undergraduate or graduate levels. We sent her, Chancellor Christensen and Baker the story but have not heard from any of them. Baker and Julin owe the PR industry, the school, and PRS members an explanation of this affair.

Twin abuses are resulting in PRS becoming like the “gang that couldn’t shoot straight.” The APR rule for office-holding has eliminated PR leaders in the business community from becoming leaders in the Society. The rule against PR pros working at h.q. (except for a couple in media relations) means that no one is on hand to handle PR crises such as the sudden departure of Baker from the EB or to develop a “PR for PR” program. Outside help is needed but concerned veterans who offer criticisms fear the wrath of staff/volunteer leaders. Critics are not likely to get any of the “hundreds” of new business leads that the Counselors Academy says pours into h.q. each year.

PRS has been very stingy with the authors whose works earned it at least $200,000. It’s especially galling to the authors who watch PRS leaders throwing numerous well-stocked parties for themselves at national conferences and the board treating itself to meetings at such resort locations and cities as Lake Tahoe, Vancouver, London, Santa Fe, Carmel, San Juan, etc. Board meetings at resorts appear to have stopped although where and when recent boards have met is not on the PRS website.

--Jack O'Dwyer


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