The eight page weekly is the only PR newsletter on LEXIS/NEXIS.
Edition, May 14, 2008, Page 1
SCHRAGE TO FACEBOOK
Schrage, VP-global communications & PA at Google, is
joining Facebook to handle its worldwide PR efforts.
will direct our efforts to work with users, media,
governments and other entities around the world to ensure
that Facebooks policies are transparent, responsive,
effective and are recognized as being those things,
according to a memo from Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.
calls Schrages role critical to helping us scale
based on our culture that values transparency, openness,
and honest internal communications.
joins Sheryl Sandberg, a Google alum who shifted to Facebook
last month for the COO slot. Sandberg was responsible for
building Googles online sales channels for AdWords
and AdSense. Schrage reports to Sandberg. Prior to Google,
Schrage was senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations,
Columbia Business School professor and senior VP at Gap
HOSPITALS SEEK CRISIS PLAN
Northern Virginia Hospital Alliance, a group governed by
the CEOs and COOs of 12 area hospitals, is seeking a firm
to develop a crisis communications and media relations plan.
NVHA wants a program to train up to 10 senior executives
at each of its member hospitals. Budget must come in under
$100K for the project, which has to be completed by Aug.
situations named in the RFP include incidents involving
hazards, including attacks to a community using weapons
of mass destruction.
Corrigan ([email protected])
is overseeing the search. Proposals are due May 16.
SUPPORTS HIT GAME LAUNCH
+ Stevens supported the blockbuster launch this month of
Take-Two Interactives Grand Theft Auto 4
first-week sales of the game, developed by Take-Twos
Rockstar Games unit, hit $500M, including $310M on the first
day, figures more akin to a Hollywood movie release, as
several reports noted.
Stevens, principal at L+S, declined to comment on the launch.
Electronic Arts is pursuing a hostile takeover of Take-Two
for $2 billion. EA said this week it has secured $1B in
outside financing for that bid.
HELPS ABU DHABI GO GREEN
Dhabi is working with Edelman to promote its bid to become
the global showcase for environmentally friendly renewable
energy, according to Christopher Deri, general manager/Edelman
No. 1 independent firm began work for Abu Dhabi Future Energy
Co. ahead of the first World Future Energy Summit staged
there in January.
Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan made a splash at WFES
when he told the audience of more than 4,000 people that
Abu Dhabi will spend $15B in solar, wind and hydrogen power
projects. Sustainable development and carbon reduction also
are high on the Princes agenda.
oversees the master narrative of ADFEC, a story
that includes development of Masdar City, a green community
and technology center that is to open in `09 near Abu Dhabis
firm is to develop intellectual capital and
engage global thought leaders about Abu Dhabi,
which collects more than $200M daily from oil revenues,
and its renewable energy ambitions.
has billed its client $640K so far for the work that is
handled in its New York, London and Dubai offices. Iain
Twine is overall program director of the campaign.
REACHES FOR OREILLY
Fossella, New York Citys only Republican Congressman,
has retained OReilly Strategic Communications in the
wake of his drunk driving arrest in Virginia in the early
morning of May 1.
Del Percio, the firms founding partner, also was questioned
about the love child that Fossella had with
Air Force lieutenant colonel Laura Fay, who bailed him out
Staten Island/Brooklyn Congressman, who has three children
with his wife, released a four-paragraph statement on May
8 admitting a relationship and child with Fay.
is aware that his personal failings and imperfections
have caused enormous pain to the people I love and I am
who faces a five-day jail sentence if convicted of drunk
driving, said now is not the time to ponder his political
future. The Staten Island Advance has called for
Fossellas resignation because of his moral descent,
and the distractions and ugly controversy that it brings.
Its editorial states that far too much damage has been done
to Fossellas personal reputation for him to recover
and be an effective public servant.
Edition, May 14, 2008, Page 2
GUIDES ZIMBABWE OPPOSITION
has been counseling Zimbabwes opposition party amid
a challenged presidential election that has led to violence
in the landlocked southern African nation.
is working with presidential hopeful Morgan Tsvangirai and
his Movement for Democratic Change, the rival party to the
countrys quasi-dictator, Robert Mugabe, and his Zanu-PF
has been beset by violence following its presidential election
in late March that saw Mugabe lose to Tsvangirai.
the initial results were delayed for weeks and the tallies
released did not show a majority needed to avoid a runoff,
the MDC and foreign governments called the results into
has not yet said whether he would participate in a runoff
Bell, president of F-Hs Europe/Middle East/Africa
operations, is serving as a spokesman for Tsvangirai and
leading the account.
Welman, managing director of F-H/Johannesburg, wrote in
an April 2 position paper for the firm that, A legitimate
victory for Mugabe now looks impossible, if indeed it ever
has been in power since 1980, when the country was known
as Rhodesia. Agence France-Presse reported on May 9 that
pro-government militias have been instilling terror
in the countryside, sparking a call from the U.S. to end
the violence and resolve the election standoff in favor
member of the MDC team at F-H, the former BBC reporter Guto
Harri, left the firm last week to direct communications
for Londons new mayor, Boris Johnson.
STAR TAPS FIRM FOR FOUNDATION
Anthony, the prolific Denver Nuggets basketball player who
is about to turn 24 years old, has brought in Maroon PR
to boost his charitable foundation as the star forward has
had two brushes with the law in recent weeks.
was arrested in April for suspicion of DUI and picked up
a speeding citation on May 3.
Md.-based Maroon is headed by veteran sports PR pro John
firm is charged with overseeing the growth and PR outreach
for Anthonys foundation and philanthropic efforts,
according to a news release.
three-year-old Carmelo Anthony Foundation has made more
than $4M in contributions for projects mainly centered in
his hometown of Baltimore and Syracuse Univ., where he played
one year of college ball (winning the NCAA championship)
before turning pro.
also works with baseball great Cal Ripkens charitable
Marketing was hired in March to guide PR for Anthony outside
of his charity work. TM replaced marketing firm BDA Sports.
Francisco-based Tease was founded by Theresa Tran, former
director of communications for Nikes Jordan brand.
Anthony has an eight-figure deal to promote those shoes.
HOTELS LOOKS FOR PR HELP
Hotels & Resorts Worldwide is re-branding the venerable
Sheraton Yankee Trader Hotel, which will reopen in `09 as
the more upscale Westin Beach Resort in Fort Lauderdale.
Yankee Trader operated for the past 44 years with a leisure-based
clientele consisting mainly of family vacationers and airline
is looking to compete in the upper-upscale market
with at least a 55 percent mix of corporate group, convention
and incentive travel, according to the RFP. It wants to
bump the average daily group rate from $166.03 to $266.04
during the next three years.
is targeting travelers from New York, Boston, Philadelphia,
Chicago, Atlanta and Washington. The monthly retainer is
set at $7K.
firms must give a specific example of a crisis they handled
because organizations need to be prepared to handle
myriad crisis situations, including natural disasters and
terrorist attacks. Hotels are particularly vulnerable to
Brassie (954/245-3844 and [email protected])
wants to be contacted by May 19. The PR firm selection date
is June 2.
JOINS WADE GROUP
Clark, who was once Hill & Knowltons U.S. director
of crisis media, has joined The Wade Group as senior VP
in Washington to handle crisis communications and media
establishing his own consulting firm, Clark had been senior
VP at Walker Marchant and communications director for the
U.S. Senate Committee of Governmental Affairs. Clark, who
spent nine years at H&K, also was PA head of the U.S.
Office of Personnel Management, and handled a grassroots
effort to celebrate the bicentennial of the U.S. Constitution.
the journalism front, Clark was associate publisher of the
Saturday Review, news editor of the National Journal
and senior editor with McGraw Hill.
Wade Group was established in `02 by Terry Wade, who had
headed Cohn & Wolfes D.C. office and was managing
director at Burson-Marsteller.
has recruited the well-connected Gephardt Group to determine
why the Air Force awarded its $40B air tanker program to
Frances European Aeronautic Defence & Space Co.,
the parent of Airbus.
Democratic Majority Leader and St. Louis Congressman Dick
Gephardt heads the Washington, D.C. firm.
and his former chief of staff, Tom ODonnell, are squaring
off against political heavyweights such as former House
Speaker-Designate Bob Livingston, who reps EAD&SC, and
the tandem of ex-Sens. John Breaux and Trent Lott, who work
for EAD&SC partner, Northrop Grumman.
tanker PR is led by Bill Barksdale (St. Louis) and Kerry
Gildea (Washington, D.C.).
Hullin is Boeings senior VP public policy, responsible
for all federal, state and local government outreach.
Edition, May 14, 2008, Page 3
EYES ALL NEWS NET IN NYC
Electrics NBC Universal unit is launching a 24-hour
local news station in New York City in a bid to scoop up
some ad dollars.
digital station will share news staff with WNBC-New York,
and compete with Time Warners NY1 network.
will build a content center that will house
staff and some operations that are moving from its 30
Rock headquarters. It does not plan to hire more people
for the start-up.
New York station could be the first of several all-news
stations in markets where NBCU owns broadcast outlets.
RESORTS TO LAYOFFS
New York Times is forced to resort to a relatively
small number of layoffs because not enough newsroom
people accepted the buyout package, according to a memo
by Bill Keller, executive editor. The paper was looking
for about 100 volunteers.
thanked those who sought buyouts but agreed to stay on to
help us through the demands of a year when we must
cover both the Olympics in China and a national election
EE knows that times are unsettling and dispiriting,
but believes the worst is behind the paper.
believes the Times benefits from being owned by a family
that sees our work as a civic trust and durable business.
MAY GO PRIVATE
Broadcast Group may go private because Wall Street does
not give its financial performance the credit that it is
Dave Smith told a conference call that the valuation of
Sinclair shares doesnt show up from a market
standpoint in our equity. He added that the credit
crunch would make it difficult to arrange financing for
shares are trading in the $10 range.
company earned $16.4M during the first quarter on $160M
in revenues. Thats an improvement from a $2.4M loss
in the `07 period on $148M sales.
operates 58 TV stations in 35 markets. Twenty of them are
affiliated with Fox.
the big Long Island-based cable TV operator, is paying nearly
$500M in cash and stock to buy the Sundance Channel, which
is owned by CBS, NBC and actor Robert Redford.
Rainbow Media Holdings unit is the home of the IFC (independent
film channel) and a good fit for Sundances offerings,
according to Cablevision COO Jim Dolan.
percent of Sundances programs are features and documentaries
with the remaining a mix of exclusive series and shorts.
president Larry Aidem touted Rainbows programming
and distribution prowess as rationale for the deal.
on Monday was announced as the successful bidder to purchase
Newsday from Tribune Co.
CUTS BACK IN CHARLOTTE
Charlotte Observer is trimming five percent of its
staff to cope with the newspaper recession and restructuring.
Ann Caulkins regrets the Observer may have to say
goodbye to some trusted and valued colleagues. In
a memo to staffers, Caulkins wrote of the need to operate
more competitively and efficiently and to respond
to changing business models.
Observer is offering a voluntary separation package where
it has the opportunity to streamline, transfer or
consolidate job functions. It also discontinued its
circulation telemarketing efforts
GUIDE GETS NEW E-I-C
Guide has named Debra Birnbaum as editor-in-chief. She takes
over for Ian Birch, who departed last week with the completion
of Macrovisions acquisition of Gemstar-TV Guide International.
had served as executive VP of TVGs cross-platform
content integration, taking credit for TV Sexiest Stars
and Online Video Awards programs. She has more than 15 years
of lifestyle/entertainment reporting and editing, including
stints as e-i-c at Life & Style and executive
editor at Inside TV.
Crystal, president of TVG, also upped west coast bureau
chief Craig Tomashoff to the executive editor slot. His
background includes jobs at VH1, People, Boston
Herald and Seattle Times.
TO WRITE FOR SUNSET
Arieff will write a monthly column in Sunset beginning
in September about design changes reshaping the West.
editor-at-large, Arieff also will work on architecture and
design stories and serve as a consultant to its Idea House
programs; Two IH locations open in Menlo Park and Monterrey,
Calif. this summer. Prior to joining the Time Inc. publication,
Areff was senior content leader for IDEO and editor-in-chief
GETS NEW POST AT NICK
Offutt has been named to the new post of senior VP-creative
operations at Viacoms Nickelodeon/MTVN Kids and Family
Group. He reports to Sarah Levy, COO.
is responsible for operations, financial, technology and
will manage vendor relations and force new partnerships.
was in charge of Nick and Viacom entertainment and consumer
products. He also handled the social expression
business of Nick, Noggin, TV Land, Comedy Central and Spike
established the tie with Hertz for the Nick on the
Go program, a pre-loaded media player for vacationing
families and the connection with Shutterfly for photo cards
with digitally uploaded personalized content.
news continued on next page)
Edition, May 14, 2008, Page 4
DIGEST TAPS DKC AFTER REVIEW
Digest has tapped DKC after an RFP process to handle
PR for the flagship magazine and its redesigned website,
firms were invited to pitch in an RFP process, including
incumbent Susan Magrino Agency, which declined to defend
the account. DKC was tapped among three finalists.
agency change comes after its parent company, Readers
Digest Association, was taken private last year in a deal
that installed new management and a new editor-in-chief
for the magazine.
June issue of RD will be the first cover-to-cover book under
Peggy Northrop, who took the reins in November after serving
as EIC of Merediths More magazine. Its
a pivotal time in this iconic brands history and we
felt it would be a great idea to bring in a fresh team with
new ideas to help us take it forward, said Ellen Morgenstern,
director of PR. She declined to name the other two finalists.
Schiff, senior vice president at DKC (formerly known as
Dan Klores Communications), is the day-to-day lead for the
is the most widely circulated magazine in the world with
51 editions in 22 languages.
revamp of RD.com
was soft-launched last week, Morgenstern noted, and the
magazine has also been revitalized with the tagline Life
really not a new magazine, but Peggy has sort of refocused
a lot of what we feel is very core to the Readers
Digest brand, said Morgenstern.
had previously worked with RDA on the launch of Every
Day with Rachel Ray.
PEARLSTINE TO BLOOMBERG
Norman Pearlstine, former
editor-in-chief of Time Inc. and executive editor of the
Wall Street Journal, has been named to the new post
of chief content officer for Bloomberg.
Pearlstine had recently
been working as a senior advisor for The Carlyle Group for
telecom and media affairs. He will team with Bloomberg News
founder and EIC Matt Winkler.
Winkler said the idea
of teaming with Pearlstein gained steam when Pearlstine
presented him with a lifetime achievement Emmy Award in
December and the two discussed Bloomberg.
Pearlstine headed Time
Warners magazine division for 11 years overseeing
its 154 titles and also overseeing international and new
media business for several years.
He was managing editor
and then executive editor in a 23-year career at the Journal.
Brown, editor-in-chief of Legal Times, has expanded
his duties to serve as publisher of the Washington,
D.C.-based newspaper and Web site. Brown now oversees all
business affairs at the paper, as well as coverage of the
regions legal business, lobbying, and Capitol Hill.
He takes the publisher reins from Ann Pelham, publisher
since 1998, who is retiring and taking a sabbatical from
journalism, ALM said.
NIELSEN: MOBILE NETWORKING
More than four million
U.S. mobile phone users access social networks with their
devices each month, according to research by The Nielsen
That figure represents
about 1.6 percent of all U.S. mobile users, a close percentage
to the 1.7% of mobile users in the U.K.
MySpace was the top destination
among mobile networkers. The site logged 2.8M unique U.S.
mobile users in December, compared with 1.8M for the closest
rival, Facebook. In the U.K., Facebook topped MySpace by
557K to 211K unique users, respectively.
MSNs Windows Live
Spaces took top billing in Italy and France, albeit with
under 200K users, and ranked second to MySpace in Germany.
Nielsens VP of mobile
media, Jeff Hermann, noted consumer demand for mobile social
networking could be a key driver of mobile pricing models
in the near future.
Vodafone recently made
unlimited Internet access a standard feature in its monthly
plans in the U.K.
OLYMPIC BOYCOTT BOOK PUBLISHED
As pressure from media
and interest groups builds ahead of the 2008 Olympics in
China, independent sports publisher New Chapter Press (
New York) is publishing Boycott: Stolen Dreams of
the 1980 Moscow Olympic Games exactly three months
before the Games begin.
According to NCP, the
book covers the stories of American athletes denied
the opportunity to compete in the 1980 Olympic Games in
Moscow due to geopolitical circumstances surrounding
the Jimmy Carter-led U.S. boycott of the Games.
Vice President Walter
Mondale, who supported the boycott prior to the U.S. Olympic
Committees vote to officially boycott the Games, wrote
the foreword for the book. Mondale apologizes to the 1980
Olympic team but calls the team, warriors in our countrys
defense of freedom.
FORTUNES MCLEAN TO VANITY
Bethany McLean, who has
been at Fortune for the past dozen years, is moving
to Vanity Fair, which is owned by Conde Nast.
With Peter Elkind, McLean
co-authored The Smartest Guys in the Room: The Amazing
Rise and Scandalous Fall of Enron.
McLean joins VF after
her wedding in June.
APPLE PICKS AP
The Associated Press has
debuted its Mobile News Network, a wireless news portal,
with an application for Apples iPhone.
Apple says the Mobile
News Network powered by AP enables users to keep up-to-date
with whats happening anywhere. Users can tailor
the service to select local news from hometown papers and
The MNN is a product of
APs Digital Cooperative program to capture opportunities
in high-growth mobile platforms to offset the decline of
the APs newspaper service assessments.
Edition, May 14, 2008,
OF PR FIRMS
CROSSES THE POND
Murphy Group, Burlington, Mass., has entered the European
market with a London office.
veterans Brian Alberti and Joanna Horn head the U.K. operation
for the 10-year-old firm.
Eric Davies noted that most of the firms clients are
international in scope, so opening in the U.K. allows DMG
to support them with a single integrated global PR
and marketing team.
BEACON, FD WORK TROPICANA
Beacon Advisors and FD
are handling the Chapter 11 filing of Tropicana Entertainment,
owner of nine casinos in Nevada, Mississippi, Louisiana
The move follows the December
decision by the New Jersey Casino Commission to yank the
gambling license of Tropicanas Atlantic City casino
because the company was unable to maintain a first-class
Tropicana CEO Scott Butera,
who joined the Crestview Hills-based company last month,
says the bankruptcy filing will enable him to address debt
issues and reorganize the business to increase the value
which was the subject of an `06 bidding war, has more than
$1.2B in annual revenues and 11,000 employees.
Beacons Hud Englehart
and FDs Michael Geczi are working the bankruptcy filing.
BRIEFS: The 12-year-old
Public Relations Global
Network has added three firms to bring its ranks
up to 38 independent PR firms on six continents. Joining
the ranks are Mileage Communications of Singapore; Evident
PR, Amsterdam, and Aspire Communications, India. Frank Cullen,
head of Cullen Comms. in Dublin, Ireland, has taken over
as president of PRGN. ...Bob
Gold & Associates, Los Angeles, has aligned with
Creative Group, a branding and direct response agency,
to provide a turnkey communications package for cable operators
to educate stakeholders about the DTV transition. The firms
said the package includes three components electronic
tactics, print and community relations. ...OKeefe
& Company, Alexandria, Va., said it will mark
its 11-year anniversary with Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin
at a party on May 15. The firm marked 10 years with perfect
10 model Bo Derek last year. ...PR@vantage
has become Vantage Communications. The 24-person firm, founded
by Ilene Adler in 1990. Adler said the @ was used in the
firms name in its early years because it was a symbol
of the times. But today, the Internet, and PR, is
much more than a symbol, she said. Video production
capability has been added to the firms services. ...Jackson
Spalding, Atlanta, has re-branded its media and speaker
training unit as JS Cultivation following the hire of WXIA
general assignment reporter Blair Meeks. Tactics for the
unit include simulated press conferences, on-site media
interviews and public speaking counsel.
Group, New York/Camiant, policy control and application
assurance for telecomms. companies, and Mobilians International,
secure online payment service.
+ King Company, New York/Good, integrated media company,
Collins & Co., Buffalo, N.Y./Northtown Automotive
Companies, for re-branding including advertising, website/interactive,
point of sale and collateral, and PR.
+ Powers, Philadelphia/The Philadelphia Inquirer,
for PR for its second annual Sudoku National Championship
Communications, Andover, Md./ Attivio, business data
indexing; TRA, media marketing research company which matches
ads people receive with the products they actually buy;
Airwide Solutions, mobile messaging and Internet applications;
JackBe, enterprise mashup software; Safend, data leakage
prevention solutions; Lexalytics, data anlysis, and RAID,
managed storage services.
Worldwide, Washington, D.C./Salt Institute, trade
association for salt industry, for PR, lobbying and strategic
Raleigh, N.C./Nfinity, womens athletic footwear, for
PR counsel, including media relations, social marketing,
event marketing and product seeding. FWVs advertising
unit, Distilled, is handling media placement and ads.
Barr Communications, Oakland Township, Mich./Detroit
Marriott at the Renaissance Center, as AOR for PR. The firm
has worked with local and regional Marriott properties on
a project basis for more than two years.
Shandwick, Minneapolis-St. Paul/National Marrow Donor
Program, for second year of its Thanks Mom campaign
to recuit bone marrow donors. The work includes national
media relations, outreach to faith-based community leaders,
online strategy, and local outreach.
PR-IR, Boulder, Colo./Aztek Networks, voice comms.
switching products, for PR and analyst relations.
Communications, San Francisco/Fujitsu Computer Products
of America, for media and social media programs and analust
relations, for five product divisions.
PR and Marketing Group, Los Angeles/Make-A-Wish Foundation
of Greater L.A., for a fourth year of PR for its Season
of Wishes campaign.
Media, Los Angeles/Bret Merkle, faith-based
author of the book Tragic Blessing, (Promise
Land Publishing) for PR and marketing comms.
Communications, Menlo Park, Calif./Marketo, B2B software
company, for PR.
Edition, May 14, 2008, Page 6
BOLSTERS ONLINE TOOLS
PR firm WestGlen Communications has organized a group of
earned and paid media services for developing and connecting
with online audiences under the banner of SocialPRo 2.0.
Lamoureaux, SVP of WestGlen, said significant growth in
online communities has made it necessary for companies in
the broadcast PR sector to rethink and retool online strategies
to get clients more value and penetration for their marketing
also noted recent struggles in the broadcast sector with
FCC attention of VNRs and downturn from the heyday of bloated
companies in our space, business is down markedly and thats
because television has become a diffilcult place to play
for public relations placement, he said.
lot of organizations out there were looking for alternative
ways to reach audiences and the world of marketing has shifted,"
he added. "Advertising is dying in its traditional
form and marketers want more effective ways to communicate,
especially with those niche verticals of consumers that
approach blends paid placements like banner ads and in-line
text ads with an established network of websites and in-depth
research into online audiences being targeted.
said a recent campaign to launch an information website
for Quintiles Transnational Corp. began with a satellite
media tour and webcast, but was bolstered significantly
by a campaign targeting 220 health-related weblogs and sites.
"In some cases we had to build a relationship before
we were able to connect with the Quintiles site, but when
you do it right, when you engage the communities respectfully
and are transparent, it's a no-lose situation," he
said. The result was a 97 percent penetration rate on the
targeted sites, including top destinations like WebMD.
2.0 is a continuation of a "blended media" strategy
preached by Lamoureaux over the last few years which has
advertising complementing PR programs. He sees the effort
as a way of building awareness of traditional tactics like
VNRs and SMTs and getting more value beyond editorial coverage
of PR programs.
our PR clients to understand that it's okay to pay for things
if you're really just promoting the PR campaign itself is
key, because you can show return on your investment for
PR dollars that is amplifying the overall return on investment
for the campaign, he said.
Traditional media buying firm The
Dallas, has formally aligned with with SEO and interactive
development firm TuZoom.
The two companies have collaborated for more than a year.
has inked a multiyear contract renewal with NBC Universals
advertising unit, The NBC Agency, which handles the ad needs
of NBCs entertainment, news, sports and corporate
divisions. Teletrax monitors and analyzes affiliate use
of on-air TV promotions across the key 210 designated TV
Farrell-Talbot, SVP at Edelman, to Abelson Group,
New York, as a SVP. She worked in Edelmans corporate
and technology practice on accounts like Avaya, Canon and
iRobot. Earlier, she was senior director of worldwide corporate
comms. at Symbol Technologies and held posts at Porter Novelli,
Text 100 and Weber Shandwick. Abelson has also added Michelle
Jerrier, previously with Motorolas Enterprise
Mobility Business (formerly Symbol Technologies), as an
Priselac, comms. specialist for Chevron Corp., to
CooperKatz & Co., New York, as manager of client services.
Earlier, she handled media and analyst relations for PeopleSoft.
Reblando, director in the Pharmaceutical Research
and Manufacturers of Americas policy and research
unit, to Ruder Finn, Washington, D.C., as a VP. Also, Amber
McCracken, director of comms. for the National Womens
Health Resource Center, joins as a VP.
Buddendeck, senior director of global PR and corporate
communications for Motorola Mobile Devices, to Nissan North
American as VP of corporate comms. based in Nashville, Tenn.
He takes over for Frederique Le Greves, who held the post
for four years and is transferring to Renault headquarters
in Boulogne-Billancourt Cedex, France, in June. Her role
at Renault has not been announced, the company said. Buddendeck
had been with Motorola since 1997 in various roles in Hong
Kong, Austin, Tex., and recently in Libertyville, Ill.
Sherrer Beaton, director of national segment marketing,
Sprint Nextel, to e-government services provider NIC, Olathe,
Kan., as director of communications and investor relations.
Reynolds to global technology practice director,
Hill & Knowlton, New York. He was founder and SVP of
the firms analyst relations unit.
Stolarski to A/S and Branden
Blackmur to senior A/E, Robert Falls & Co. PR,
Perry to general manager of Weber Shandwicks
southern California operations. He is based in Los Angeles
and heads west after serving as an EVP in the firms
Detroit office. Perry, who is client relationship leader
for the General Motors account, takes over for Rod
Clayton, who was named head of WS issues and
crisis management group in London.
Falcetti to executive VP, GolinHarris, Los Angeles.
She heads the firms Orange County office and continues
to counsel clients like Toshiba, VTech and Buy.com.
Sullivan to senior A/E, Schneider Associates, Boston.
She jonied in 2006 and handles Cabot, Cabot & Forbes,
Nordblom, and Campanelli Cos. Danielle
Sullivan was upped to AA/E.
Villafane to senior A/E, OConnell & Goldberg
PR, Hollywood, Fla. She joined in 2006.
Canseco to AA/E, Preferred PR & Marketing, Las
Edition, May 14, 2008, Page 7
CLASS WAS FOR SALE, PROFS CHARGE
PR class project at Hunter College, New York, that excoriated
counterfeiting of fashion products "was in total violation
of the fundamental principle of universities, that the curriculum
is the prerogative of the faculty," Distinguished Professor
Stuart Ewen told the April issue of Clarion, the
monthly newspaper of the Professional Staff Congress of
the City University of New York.
further charged that Hunter president Jennifer Raab is "selling
off the credibility of the College."
course was taught in the spring of 2007 but a complaint
by Ewen and another professor is just now being lodged with
the Academic Freedom Committee headed by William Sakas,
professor of computer science.
Senate chair Richard Stapleford was quoted as saying he
would not comment while an investigation was being conducted.
is a tenured professor and author of several works including
"PR! A Social History of Spin."
maker of handbags and other luxury accessories and a client
of Paul Werth Assocs., Columbus, gave $1 million to Hunter
in 2007, shortly after Coach CEO Lew Frankfort was given
an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters.
$10K was given to Hunter to sponsor a project for students
in the "Special PR" class that called on the students
to create a PR program attacking counterfeit handbags.
to Stick to Plan, Prof Said
of these flyers began appearing on the Hunter College campus
in March 2007. The reward, as well as the flyer's author,
was later revealed to be a hoax.
34-page "Professor/Faculty Advisor Project Kit"
created by Werth was given to Asst. Prof. Tim Portlock,
who told the Clarion that Werth staffers ordered him not
to vary from it.
said he told Werth that he would like to add a section arguing
that counterfeiting might not be wrong and that some people
could only afford knock-offs of branded products, but said:
"I got a really strong message: this is not why we're
giving you $10,000."
added Werth opposed any ideas that differed from the industry
represents the AntiCounterfeiting Coalition, of which Coach
is a member.
Werth kit said the IACC "is partnering with the students
in your program in a client/agency relationship. We are
the client; your students are the Agency."
industry representative," Clarion reported, picked
from among three student proposals.
winner created a blog featuring a "fake student personality"
with the name of "Heidi Cee." This character created
a personality for herself by describing her dates and her
interest in fashion. She then complains that her prized
Coach handbag was lost. Actual flyers were posted around
the campus about the loss and offering a $500 reward for
its return. Students had no idea that Heidi Cee and the
missing handbag were fake.
reports that someone returned a handbag and is given the
$500. But the returned handbag turns out to be fake. Enraged,
she attacks the blight of counterfeit products.
Colleges Use IACC Materials
Meredith Halpern, executive
director of marketing and communications at Hunter, told
the Clarion that the IACC course "had been well received
at many other colleges around the country." It was
developed with IACC whose staff "are experts on this
subject," Halpern said.
Ewen said that Raab's
request that the course be offered "was not guided
by scholarly wisdom but, rather, by the desire to promote
a donation from the CEO of Coach Corp."
James Roman, chair of
the Hunter dept. of film and media studies, said that under
a new policy the faculty must approve all sponsored courses.
There were no quotes from
students about the controversy in the Clarion article.
Active in PRS
Sandra Harbrecht, president
of Werth, a Columbus, Ohio firm with about 20 employees,
is an accredited member of the PR Society and was chair
of its Counselors Academy in 1994. Her biography as of 2000
said the firm was the winner of nine Silver Anvils of PRS.
Werth is also a member
of the Council of PR Firms, whose Ethical Code says that
members "commit to standards of practice that assure
clients, the public and media, employees, and business partners
and vendors the highest level of professionalism and ethical
conduct in every relationship with a Council member."
The code of PRS says that
members are to "respect all opinions and support the
right of free expression."
Enforcement of the code
was discontinued in 1999.
A member that year charged
the 17 directors with violating five code articles after
the board voted to stop answering any questions of O'Dwyer
Co. staff members. No charges of inaccuracy were made about
O'Dwyer coverage, only that O'Dwyer staffers were asking
too many questions and taking up too much staff time. A
new boycott against O'Dwyer staffers was revealed in a e-mail
to "leaders" of the Society dated April 9. No
inaccuracies were cited. Instead, editor Jack O'Dwyer was
accused of practicing "attack" journalism in providing
materials to news sources that "attacked" PRS.
There was no charge that any of the materials provided to
sources was inaccurate in any way.
Roman told the Clarion
that corporate involvement in classrooms was not intrinsically
"If you look at corporate
America and take notice of its involvement with higher education,
you'll see there is quite a pronounced role," he told
"I'm not advocating
it, I'm just saying it exists," he added.
Steve Leberstein, chair
of the Academic Freedom Committee of the Professional Staff
Congress, urged professors to beware of violations of academic
functions of the faculty are under attack with the corporatization
of CUNY," he told the Clarion.
Edition, May 14, 2008,
use of students at Hunter College (and Ohio State, Howard,
CCNY and Univ. of Miami)
to carry the water of the Intl Anticounterfeiting
Coalition and Paul Werth Assocs. (page 7 story) makes us
question the advisability of PR being taught at the undergraduate
use of students (with the complicity of their professors)
to further the aims of giant corporations such as Coach
(gross profits of $2.02 billion and net of $728M on sales
of $3.05B in 2007) reminds us of Tom Sawyer tricking his
friends into paying him to whitewash a fence and the Indians
selling Manhattan to the Dutch for $24 in trinkets.
Coach, Limited, Abercrombie & Fitch and other members
of the IACC want is students pitching each other not only
in person but via the multi-million audience of Facebook
and MySpace on the evils of counterfeit handbags, clothing,
sporting goods, etc.
students endorsement of corporate goals is priceless
but what are they getting in return$5,000 to $10,000
in expenses for food, key chains, T-shirts, creating websites,
etc. They also pay the school a lot for the course and get
credit. They have come out on the short end of their first
real business deal. They dont understand one of the
basics of businessdont sell yourself short.
concede that ripping off famous trade names and products
is wrong and accept that its become a $600B a year
problem for Coach and others.
only wish that the PR Society had thought this way in the
1980s and early 1990s when it was selling tens of thousands
of copies of authors articles yearly without their
materials supplied for the course by Werth in behalf of
the IACC are anything but scholarly.
present only one side of this issue and contain unsubstantiated
claims such as counterfeiters are involved in drug
trafficking and terrorism.
11-page description of the program by Werth and the IACC
says the counterfeiters do not pay fair wages or benefits
to employees and often use child labor.
scholarly examination of this subject would pursue the labor
policies of all the members of the IACC. Use of child labor
and other abuses are rampant in countries producing both
real and fake products.
went out the window at Hunter where Coach CEO Lew Frankfort
donated $1M and the PR class got another $10K for expenses
in this campaign. Tenured Hunter Prof. Stuart Ewen has said
it was an outrage that a for-credit PR course
came from a PR firm working for a lobbying organization
and the course was offered without academic review. The
schools academic freedom committee is investigating
this and we await its report.
students to work on this program is a case of taking candy
from a baby.
Even worse is that the students at Hunter crafted a fake
student identity, fake website, fake theft of a non-existent
Coach bag and the students appeared to have enjoyed
the process, Ewen noted. They were under careful supervision
of both Coach and Werth personnel, he believes. Adweek,
which did three pages on this dust-up, quoted a member of
the class as saying, I think the entire PR team from
Coach, maybe six or seven women, were in the class
at times. Also monitors, said Ewen, were people from Hunter
president Jennifer Raabs office, dept. chair James
Roman, a lawyer from Coach, and a rep of Melina Metzger,
who runs the IACC program for Werth.
has told ODwyers that she was unaware of the
specifics of the Hunter program and that the two Hunter
professors on the course, Tim Portlock and Benjamin J. Weissman,
did not return her repeated calls. She said
the fake elements of the Hunter campaign were a violation
of the PRS code of ethics and she would not have approved
of them. IACC programs at other colleges have gone extremely
well, she said.
damaging to PR are the remarks of the student in the class
as related by AdWeek.
Asked about the class violation of Facebook rules
against phony entries, the student said such rules are violated
every day. She liked the Coach class, saying
it was far better than two PR internships she had which
involved grunt work and were B.S.
As for the deceptions in the campaign, she said this is
nothing but the reality of how PR works. PR people,
in general, have very little morals when it comes to being
completely honest with the consumer, she told AdWeek.
We wonder if such cynicism about PR is rampant among students.
place major responsibility for this with Werth president
an APR member of PRS and 1994 chair of its Counselors Academy.
Her bio (as of 2000) noted Werth had won nine PRS Silver
Anvils and Best of Silver Anvil in 1995. The
buck stops at her office. This is the doctrine of serial
responsibility that the Bob Frause code re-write committee
suggested should be made part of the code.
anything hurts PR. A firestorm of bad publicity broke after
it was revealed that the Federal Emergency Mgmt. Agency
staged a press conference Oct. 22, 2007 sans
head John Philbin, APR, stepped forward and took full responsibility.
criticism of him mounted and he lost a new government job
to which he was headed, Philbin took even more blame on
his own shoulders, saying he should have stopped the phony
press conference mid-way as soon as he learned
reporters were absent. Philbin showed a lot of character
and later found another job.
Hunter story could put undergraduate PR education under
the microscope of major media and lead to far-reaching changes.
Forbes has written about it thus far and AdWeek
has written about it two weeks in a row. Leading figures
in PR education will have to step forward on this issue.