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Internet Edition, August 6, 2008, Page 1


The U.S. Navy, acknowledging its “eroded” ability to communicate amid new media and the “exponential enlargement of the global communications environment,” is asking for proposals from firms to provide public affairs support on an as-needed basis for up to five years.

An RFP issued this month aims to potentially tap multiple firms and has drawn the interest of some PR firms with extensive Pentagon experience.

The Navy says increased demands have long outstripped its public affairs apparatus’ capacity to respond to its swelling requirements, resulting in missed PR opportunities or “communication misalignment.”

The Rendon Group, Burson-Marsteller, The Lincoln Group, GolinHarris and Hill & Knowlton were among more than two dozen companies attending a July 17 conference about the RFP in Philadelphia, according to procurement documents. Representatives from VMS, Booz Allen Hamilton and the Gallup Organization were also in attendance.

The work is new and there is no incumbent firm, but the RFP is narrowed to large agencies because it requires a firm to have performed at least $5M worth of work in public affairs for a single client over a one-year period.

“This contract is meant to begin closing the gap between the requirements placed upon [the Navy Chief of Information, or CHINFO] by the realities of today’s communication environment and Navy leadership’s requirement of CHINFO to lead communication for the Navy,” reads a copy of the RFP, which notes the growth of blogs and sites like YouTube and MySpace.

A proposal issued by the Navy outlines a communications staff of 22.
The Navy hopes to award a contract (or multiple contracts) by Sept. 15. Proposals are due Aug 12.

Former White House press secretary Ari Fleischer is making the rounds of National Football League training camps to speak to players about handling the media. He spoke with the Green Bay Packers last week, a team that is reeling from the decision of star quarterback Brett Favre to “unretire.”

Fleischer runs his own sports PR firm, a venture with IMG.

A big sports fan, Fleischer tells players to remain on their toes when talking with reporters, but that the media can do much to advance their careers. He handled fall-out from the Mitchell report on the use of performance-enhancing drugs in Major League Baseball.


Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa opposes the $1.3M port PR contract that was awarded June to Hill & Knowlton and Rogers Group.

That three-year contract from the Los Angeles Board of Harbor Commissioners is for the Clean Trucks Program, an effort that requires all trucks entering the L.A./Long Beach port to meet `07 federal emission standards within five years.

H&K and Rogers were tapped to explain the CTP to businesses and people who live near the ports.

Villaraigosa told a meeting of the Harbor Commission that he wants only one firm to do the work. He also wants the contract to run until city staffers are trained to do the work. Villaraigosa wants the Commission to pull the pact.

L.A. had a three-year ban on the use of private PR firms following the Fleishman-Hillard overbilling scandal.


Burson-Marsteller has recruited Pam Keeton, former U.S. Army Reserve PA Officer, from Boeing for a managing director slot at the firm’s Washington, D.C. office.

Keeton, 49, served as director of external comms. for Boeing’s integrated defense division, where she analyzed media perception and developed strategies for the high-profile aerial tanker program.

Keeton earned two Bronze Star medals during two combat tours. She deployed to Afghanistan in `04 to oversee the country’s first presidential election and inauguration of Hamid Karzai. Keeton was a staff officer at both the Office of the Chief Public Affairs at the Pentagon and Army Reserve headquarters.

At the U.S. Institute for Peace, Keeton worked as PA and comms. director. A highlight was doing PR for the USIP’s Iraq Study Group.

Keeton has PR firm experience from Interpublic’s Powell Tate.


In the essay below, a veteran PR Society member who is also an educator argues for the return of the printed One Source Directory of PRS, which had about 800 pages of member listings and another 200 pages on Counselor Academy members, PR service companies, chapter, section and district leaders, bylaws, code of ethics, staff directory, newly accredited members, College of Fellows members, past presidents and chairs, official definition of PR, and chairs of more than 30 tasks forces, boards and committees.

(Continued on page 7)

Internet Edition, August 6, 2008, Page 2


The state of Georgia is looking for a firm to attract tourists from the United Kingdom and Ireland, as a strong Euro and British Pound have increased tourism from Europe to the U.S.

The Peach State has allocated $250K to tap a representative for the two countries and develop a PR and marketing plan to attract more leisure visitors.

Georgia said firms that work with other states are not disqualified, but “strong preference” will be given to firms that do not work with its chief competitors for tourism - Alabama, the Carolinas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee and Virginia. A firm must also have been active in the U.K. and Ireland for the last three years.

Proposals are due August 11. The resulting contract with the tourism division of the Dept. of Economic Development is expected to run for one year through September 2009 with four year-long options.


Interpublic CEO Michael Roth says the ad/PR combine is on track to achieve its financial objectives this year following news that second-quarter net sank 30.6 percent to $95.1M on an 11.1 percent rise in revenues to $1.9B.

He says IPG has not yet seen a major retrenchment among clients, but the firm is monitoring the economic scene very closely. Roth is dedicated to keeping a sharp eye on costs and vows action in order to protect margins. He noted that "all our major operating units are showing improvement in their financial results so far this year."

Roth says organic revenue was up 6.3 percent for the quarter and 5.8 percent for the first-half. IPG was bolstered by increased client spending in the U.K. and Asia-Pacific, and new advertising and PR account wins in the U.S.

IPG reported a 9.3 percent jump in reported salaries due to higher pay, more benefits and temporary help to support business growth. For the half, IPG registered net of $32.3M vs. $11.1M for last year. IPG shares jumped more than $1 to $9 on the earnings news.


Joele Frank, Wilkinson Brimmer Katcher has picked up Chapter 11 communications duties for department store chain Mervyns, which filed for bankruptcy protection last week to reorganize its finances across its 176 stores in the U.S.

Mervyns is the latest retailer to fall victim to the sluggish business climate. In a statement issued by Joele Frank’s New York office, Mervyns CEO John Goodman cited the “state of the economy and difficult operating environment for our industry” in making the bankruptcy petition.

The Hayward, Calif.-based company has secured a $495M commitment from Wachovia. It seeks court approval to continue operating amid the restructuring.
Goody’s (FD), Steve & Barry’s (Kekst & Co.) and Linens ‘n Things (MWW Group) are among other retailers that have sought bankruptcy protection in recent months.


Susan Hager, who co-founded Hager Sharp in `73, died July 26 from complications related to polycystic kidney disease.

Upon college graduation, Kentucky-born Hager moved to the Eskimo village of White Mountain, Alaska, as part of the Volunteers in Service to America program. She established a community newspaper and launched a Head Start program there.

Hager moved to Washington as a recruitment officer for Vista and the Peace Corps, and worked as program analyst for U.S. Office of Economic Opportunity and program director for National Center for Voluntary Action before launching her firm with Marcia Sharp.

HS, a social marketing firm, is known for work with clients such as IBM, American Red Cross, National Cancer Institute, VISTA, J C Penney, National Endowment of the Arts, Perrier, Dept. of Energy and National Head Start Assn.

Hager is remembered as a mover & shaker in the Washington, D.C. PR community. She helped establish the National Assn. of Women Business and served as its first president.

Washingtonian Magazine honored Hager as “Washingtonian of Year,” Washington Women in Public Relations called her “Woman of the Year,” and Working Woman Magazine called her one of 25 people “whose actions over the last quarter century have given women in the workplace a better shot.” Hager was inducted into PRSA’s National Capital Chapter’s Hall of Fame in `05.

A memorial service is slated for September. Garry Curtis, who was executive VP at HS, is now CEO.


Caplan Communications is supporting non-profit Earthjustice’s effort to regulate mercury pollution from cement plants throughout the U.S. Congress called for those regulations more than a decade ago.

EJ and partner, Environmental Integrity Project, released a report July 23, showing that cement kilns are releasing mercury at twice the level estimated by the EPA in `06.

The report focused on a dozen states including New York, California, Texas, Illinois, Maryland and Michigan.

It found unregulated kilns near major bodies of water such as San Francisco Bay, Chesapeake Bay and Lake Huron.

Their pollution makes fish unsafe and poses a threat to pregnant women and young children. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that eight percent of American women of child-bearing age have high enough levels of mercury in their bodies to put their babies at risk for birth defects.

The EPA has promised to issue regulations in September or October. The environmental community has little confidence in that promise.

CC’s Aric Caplan is among those skeptical about that vow, one that comes from the Bush Administration EPA. He notes that many corporate executives and their political supporters equate regulations with taxes, which is a non-starter in their point of view.

Internet Edition, August 6, 2008, Page 3


Advance Publications, which is controlled by the Newhouse family, is demanding that 200 non-union staffers at the Star-Ledger take buyouts, or the paper will be sold.

The S-L cuts include 100 of its 340 editorial staffers. Similar cuts are asked of employees at its Times of Trenton.

AP has retained JP Morgan Chase to carry out a potential sale, if the buyouts are not in place by October 1. The S-L and Times lose up to $40M a-year, according to Donald Newhouse, president of AP.

George Arwady, publisher of the S-L, penned a July 31 letter to staffers, giving them the bad news.

“We simply have been unable to offset the unprecedented and continuing steep decline in advertising revenue,” he wrote. “Therefore, we now have a genuine crisis. The situation is critical—we are currently on life support.”

The buyouts are S-L’s “last chance of survival.” Arwady warned that a new owner “will likely consider cutting costs sharply, among other things, laying off employees, reducing pay and eliminating expensive employee benefits.”

If the 200 buyout target is not reached, no buyouts will be accepted. “The future of the S-L is in your hands,” wrote Arwady.

The S-L is the nation’s 15th largest paper. It has a weekly circulation of 345K. The Times circulates 55K copies.

AP owns the Staten Island Advance, (New York City), Plain-Dealer (Cleveland), Times-Picayune (New Orleans) and The Oregonian (Portland).


The Los Angeles Times Media Group said it will begin publishing a monthly Sunday magazine on Sept. 7 to “celebrate the unique nuances of life” in the City of Angels.

The pub, titled LA, is a stand-alone editorial operation, LATMG said, but will only be distributed within the Sunday paper.

LA is under the direction of former LAStyle editor-in-chief Annie Gilbar, who was a founding editor of InStyle and former executive VP and EIC of

LA will debut with a fall fashion issue of more than 140 pages and will follow with an October 5 edition on design, home and entertaining. A November/December edition will cover gifting and the holidays.

Valarie Anderson, director of fashion advertising for the L.A. Times, is publisher.


Mark Whittaker, senior VP at NBC News, is assuming Washington bureau chief duties that were handled by Tim Russert.

He joined NBC News in `07 after a career at Newsweek, which is part of Washington Post. Co. He had edited the magazine for eight years.

Whittaker will oversee election coverage and make occasional on-air appearances.

Adds Russert to Mix

Luke Russert, son of Vanity Fair writer Maureen Orth and Tim Russert, is joining NBC News as a correspondent.

The 22-year-old recent Boston College grad will cover the youth vote through the general election as an at-large correspondent, the network said. He’ll be contributing to “NBC Nightly News,” “Today” and MSNBC.

“Never before in an election cycle has so much attention turned to the youth vote, and Luke will bring a unique perspective to covering it,” said NBC News president Steve Capus.

Russert has been co-hosting a sports talk show on XM satellite radio with James Carville.

NBC noted his “poise and composure” in eulogizing and discussing his father caught the eye of network execs.

Russert said he’s already heard criticism that he’s trading on his name. “I’ve already heard that,” he told NBC. “I definitely respect their opinion. Their taking a chance on me, and I’m very humble and grateful for it. At the end of the day, I am my own hardest critic.”


A.H. Belo CEO Robert Decherd plans to eliminate 500 staffers at the Dallas-based media company in response to the “unprecedentedly adverse business environment facing the newspaper industry.”

He outlined restructuring plans in “Dear Colleagues” and “Dear Fellow Shareholders” letters penned July 28.

Decherd told staffers that management believes some of the gloom overhanging the newspaper business is “exaggerated with regard to business issues and that the market is overreacting to a combination of secular and cyclical changes.”

Belo, publisher of the Dallas Morning News, Providence Journal, Denton Record-Chronicle (Texas) and Press-Enterprise (Riverside, CA), however, is impacted by falling ad revenues, record newsprint prices and escalating costs of ink, supplies and healthcare coverage.

The company, according to Decherd, is committed to distinguished journalism and is eager to invest in its technology platform and business development opportunities.

He told shareholders Belo plans to cut costs by $50M by eliminating 14 percent of its workforce. The company already has cut 170 workers this year.

Decherd expects to complete the voluntary severance process by mid-September. If Belo does not attain the 500 job loss target, it will launch an “involuntary reduction-in-force” program.

Belo is also exploring the sale of real estate in Dallas and Providence. The company lost $3.2M on $163M during its just completed second quarter.

Anne Chertoff, a producer at NBC’s, has joined as senior editor. She started out at Martha Stewart Weddings.

(Media news continued on next page)

Internet Edition, August 6, 2008, Page 4


Debbi Kickham and her husband, William, have been named travel editors at Luxury Travel Multimedia (, which is targeted at households with more than $250K annual income.

She is former editor for the Robb Report and author of “Off the Wall Marketing Ideas,”

He is an attorney and former spokesperson for the Insurance Information Institute and Massachusetts Academy of Trial Attorneys.

They will write about spas, cruises, high-end resorts, exotic destinations and shopping.

Debbi is currently looking for information about beauty products made with indigenous ingredients around the globe, and upscale hotel products that one can purchase.

She can be reached at [email protected] and 781/407-9305. He is at [email protected] and 781/320-0062.


Clear Channel Radio has joined forces with Katz Media Group to forge an online radio network that they say will deliver almost 80M sessions per month and a unique audience of 5M listeners per week.

The venture called Katz Online Network incorporates Internet radio stations with mobile streams from AM and FM stations.

It is pitched as a way for advertisers and agencies to get a national audience.


Former Maine Senator and U.S. Defense Secretary Bill Cohen is among investors who are negotiating to purchase the Blethen Maine Newspapers, which are owned by the family that publishes the Seattle Times.

The BMN group includes the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram, Kennebec Journal (Augusta) and Morning Sentinel (Waterville).

The Portland newspaper has a circulation of 70K each day and 115K on Sunday. The other papers have less than a 20K daily circulation.

Cohen’s group is headed by Michael Connor, former editor and publisher of the Wilkes-Barre Times Leader. He is chief operating partner of the group that also includes real estate developer Robert Baldacci, brother of Maine’s Governor; investor Michael Liberty and Kevin Cohen, son of Bill.

Connor organized a group that bought the Wilkes-Barre paper from McClatchy Co. The Maine papers went on the auction block in March.


Adam Townsend is the new executive VP/investor relations at CBS Corp., which separated from Viacom in 2006.

He had been in charge of IR and corporate strategy at E*Trade Corp. Townsend handled communications for more than $5B in transactions there during the past four years.

Previously, he wrote the company’s press releases, marketing materials and shareholder presentations.

Prior to the online broker, Townsend was an equity research analyst at JP Morgan Securities’ Financial Institutions Group, where he covered online trading companies and the technology sectors.

CBS, meanwhile, reported a 1.1 percent rise in second-quarter net income to $408M on a 0.6 percent revenue rise to $3.4B.

CEO Les Moonves announced plans to divest 50 radio stations that are located in mid- sized markets. The broadcaster completed its $1.8B acquisition of CNET Networks in June.

Its stock is trading at $16.36, just off its 52-week low of $16.34. It traded as high as $32.97 during the past year.


Louis Vuitton Malletier said Aug. 1 that it reached a settlement with Sony BMG after five years of lawsuits by LV over the use of its intellectual property in music videos and imagery.

LV, which is represented by Kekst & Co. in the U.S., won two previous suits involving rapper Da Brat and Britney Spears and was awarded more than 150K Euros in French courts.

Sony BMG has agreed to make an undisclosed payment for imagery on a Ruben Studdard CD and will pay the 97K Euro outstanding balance from the previous judgments. Sony also agreed to stop selling the Studdard CD or any other product showing LV designs or items, and will educate record labels about intellectual property.

Nathalie Moulle-Berteaux, intellectual property director for LV, said the company is pleased to resolve the matters in a manner that “protects” its brand and customers.

A music video for Spears’ single “Do Something” which featured an LV pattern on the dashboard of a car was seen as an “attack” on the brand by a French judge in a ruling last fall.


Celebrity publicist Warren Cowan, who was buried with a cell phone in his hand, earned a two-page photo spread in Portfolio’s August issue.

The Rogers & Cowan co-founder was profiled as the “consummate Hollywood PR man” who mentored “every powerful flack” in town.

That list includes Pat Kingsley, Cowan’s former secretary, and Paul Bloch and Alan Nierob, the duo who used to fetch him coffee.

Cowan, who was memorialized at Los Angeles’ Mount Sinai Memorial Park in May, represented Judy Garland, Cary Grant, Frank Sinatra and Gary Cooper.

Portfolio says Cowan’s life “spanned the rise of the celebrity publicist.” His death marks the end of an era.

Cowan learned that he had melanoma only three weeks before he died at age 87.

He spent part of his last day with staffers at Warren Cowan & Assocs. planning an event for Wayne Newton.

The spread included photos of Cowan with Kirk and Michael Douglas; Farrah Fawcett; Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward; Sophia Loren and Joan Collins.

Internet Edition, August 6, 2008, Page 5


Ruane Communications, a 16-year-old boutique firm which breathed new life into the Chicago Marathon and set up what USA Today called one of the greatest moments in Yankee Stadium history, is closing its doors.

John Ruane, president of the Roswell, Georgia, firm, told O’Dwyer’s that his desire to keep RC small over the years made it more dependent on retaining clients than larger firms. Management changes often led to changes in agency relationships whether warranted or not, he said.

Ruane’s biggest client was pharmaceutical company Boehringer Ingelheim. “They went through a management change and over the course of the last few years those changes affected us,” said Ruane. “I don’t think we really could’ve done a better job than what we did, but there was no consideration for that. It happens to everyone, but it’s frustrating.”

Ruane ([email protected]; 678/773-7575) said he plans on working as an independent PR consultant and is developing a venture outside of the PR sector. He is a former Chicago Sun-Times reporter who later moved to Edelman and was VP of PR at The Upjohn Company.

He said RC had 10 staffers at its height, noting that he assisted each of his current staffers in their job searches.

Among RC’s PR credits is Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Day at Yankee Stadium, which included a screening event on the stadium concourse and an on-field ceremony with Roger Clemens and his mother, Bess. A photo of the mother and son was circulated nationally and was recently named one of the greatest moments in Yankee Stadium history by USA Today.


James Arnold, who counseled more than 200 of the Fortune 500 companies as president of Chester Burger & Co. and in the Arnold Consulting Group, has become senior managing director of The Torrenzano Group, N.Y.

The two firms will share offices, staff and resources at 60 E. 42nd Street.

“My friendship with Jim goes back more than 20 years when I was at The New York Stock Exchange [as chief spokesperson] and he was president of Chester Burger,” said Richard Torrenzano, chairman and CEO of Torrenzano.

Arnold Consulting was founded in 1991 when Burger retired. It became the first management consulting firm to specialize in corporate communications, serving 200+ members of the Fortune 500.

Arnold said his clients included AOL, AARP, American Airlines, American Bar Assn., American Century Investments, American Express, Andersen Consulting (Accenture), Allied-Signal and AT&T. He noted that that was “just the A’s” on his client list.

BRIEFS: Sard Verbinnen & Co. is working with DeVry Inc. on its $290M acquisition of U.S. Education Corporation, the California-based parent company of two large healthcare trade schools. Sard’s Chicago office is handling deal for Oakbrook Terrace, Ill.-based DeVry, a major trade school operator.


New York Area

M. Young Communications, New York/Kindred Spirits, Miami-based importer, for media relations and promtions; Harvard Business School Club of N.Y. Social Enterprise Summit, Sept. 23 event; George Duboeuf Wines, for media relations and events, following a competitive pitch; Italian Wine Week, Jan. conference by the Italian Trade Commission; Food Network’s “Chelsea Market After Dark,” for event management and production; The Culinary Institute of America, for partnership development and projects; Volunteers of America, culinary management for annual fundraiser, and Vinos of Madrid, for media relations.

Rubenstein PR, New York/AFI, USA, subsidiary of investment company Africa Israel, for PR for its U.S. real estate development projects, and The Jalousie Residences, St. Lucia “green” resort community, for PR.

Bullfrog & Baum, New York/Chris Cannon and chef Michael White, restaurateurs, for the eateries Vonvivio, Alto and the upcoming Marea, slated to open in the winter of 2009, and chef Christopher Lee of midtown eatery Gilt at the New York Palace Hotel, all for PR.

Haute PR, New York/Georgette Klinger, skincare products, for PR.


Ketchum, Washington, D.C./Erickson Retirement Communities, as AOR for PR. Ketchum’s D.C.-based consumer health and wellness unit will handle influencer outreach, media relations, issues management and development of thought leadership programs. Ketchum teams with sister Omnicom ad agency BBDO Atlanta, while PHD Network Chicago handles strategic media.


Schafer Condon Carter, Chicago/GoodFoods Group, for branding, packaging, adv., promotion, online PR and new product development.

Risdall McKinney PR, New Brighton, Minn./
Professional Awning Manufacturers Assn., for PR for a third year.

Mountain West

Norman Communications, Provo, Utah/MultiLing Corp., language services and technology, as AOR for PR. ML operates translation centers in more than 30 countries.


Voxus, Gig Harbor, Wash./RPI, print-on-demand fulfillment and logistics, as AOR.

Greenough Communications, Menlo Park, Calif./
Cloud9 Analytics, ’Net based business intelligence applications, for PR.

Rogers & Cowan, Los Angeles/The Zurich Film Festival, to handle international PR and marketing for the event, which runs Sept. 25-Oct. 5. R&C is charged with raising its profile in Hollywood and the global film community. Executive VP Nikki Parker heads the account with A/D Dennis Dembia.

Mayo Communications, Los Angeles/Paula Parker Designs, Texas, for promotion of the new book “Art in Austin... the registry (Volume One)” and other projects.

Internet Edition, August 6, 2008, Page 6


William Heyman, who has spent most of his career as a PR recruiter, first with The Cantor Concern and then with Heyman Assocs., New York, which he founded in 1998, has been admitted to the Arthur W. Page Society, New York.

The approximately 300 members of the group are drawn from many of the largest companies in the U.S. and largest PR firms.

Two current recruiter members, Richard Marshall of Korn/Ferry International, and George Jamison of Spencer Stuart, joined Page while still with corporations. Marshall was with Silicon Graphics and previously at Home Depot while Jamison was with Hughes Electronics.

Tom Nicholson, executive director of Page, said Heyman has made “significant contributions to the industry” over the years including serving on panels and being active in seminars and serving as keynote speaker for Page events.

Heyman has “given back to the industry,” said Nicholson, noting that while corporate and agency PR executives are usually picked for membership, the board at its discretion can make an exception.

Maril Gagen MacDonald, principal of Gagen MacDonald, Chicago, is president of Page. Her firm handles “strategy execution and communications, leadership assessment and coaching, organizational design, diversity strategies, and information flow management. Blue chip companies are reportedly among clients of the firm but it does not release a client list.


TEKgroup International, the Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based PR software company, said it has partnered with 1Vault, a local company with a Category 5 hurricane-rate high-tech facility, to ensure its opreations are unaffected by any large storms in the area.

Duane Merson, director of IT for TEKgroup, notes that bluechip clients have to have reliable and efficient hosting due to high availability requirements.

1Vault claims its 66K-square-foot data center can withstand any distruption by natural disaster, system failure or human intervention.

TEKgroup is issuing the reassurance amid predictions of 15 named storms for the Atlantic basin this year.


Melissa Data, a mailing services company based in Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif., says localized direct mail is an effective and cost-effective way to get a message out in tough economic times.

MD says its “saturation mailing” service targets a local area to generate buzz for special events, grand openings or to establish a brand at rates of 20-25 percent off stanard mail.

A key requirement for a such a tactic is that the mailing must be pre-sorted in “walking sequence” order to facilitate delivery. Lists are available in this format from major providers, MD says.

The company has a white paper on the subject at



Lyn Leigh, a veteran frangrance industry PR pro, to the Frangrance Foundation, New York, as communications and PR consultant. Leigh was formerly PR director for Estee Lauder’s Aramis division and later served as VP of comms. launching several brands for Tommy Hilfiger, DKNY and Michael Kors in London, Paris and N.Y.

Alicia Gay, marketing and comms. associate with the American Civil Liberties Union, to CRT/tanaka, New York, as an A/S. Sara Dunaj has joined as an assist. A/E in Los Angeles.

Robert Dickeson, former SV for policy and organizational learning at the Lumina Foundation for Education, to Widmeyer Communications, Washington, D.C., as a senior counsel. Andrew Weinstein, former VP and chief spokesperson for AOL, has returned to WC as a senior counsel.

James Storey, VP of IR for BlueLinx holdings, to Horizon Lines, Charlotte, N.C., a container shipping and logistics company, as director of IR and corporate comms. He was previously a reporter and editor for Dow Jones & Co. in New York.

Stephen Spurgeon, executive VP and managing director at Porter Novelli/San Francisco, to Ketchum, as director of new business development for Ketchum West, which includes Los Angeles and S.F. Sandy Pfaff recently stepped down as SVP for bizdev at Ketchum West for a post at Peppercom.

Vivek Varma, GM of comms. and PR for Microsoft’s platforms services division, to Starbucks as senior VP of public affairs, starting Sept. 8. Varma is part of the corporate realignment that sends COO Martin Coles back to his role as president of Starbucks International.

Georgeana Fung, executive VP, consumer marketing, Weber Shandwick China, to Burson-Marsteller, as managing director and market leader for its Hong Kong office. She takes over for Ian McCabe, who focuses on his other role as managing director of Asia Pacific public affairs and government communications.


Holly Jarrell to global director of insight and research, Manning Selvage & Lee, New York. She joined in 2006 and had been senior VP.

Elizabeth Romero to A/S, PR and Hispanic marketing, Howard, Merrell & Partners, Raleigh, N.C. She joined in 2006.

Deck Sloan to VP, government, investor and public affairs, Arch Coal, St. Louis. He joined the company in 1997.

Jennifer Walker to VP, Landau PR, Cleveland. She’s a 12-year veteran of the firm.

Mark Shadle and Janet Cabot to co-presidents of Edelman’s Central Region, based in Chicago and also covering Dallas and Austin. The duo succeeds Nancy Ruscheinski, who headed the region for seven years and was recently named president and COO for Edelman’s U.S. operations. Shadle is 23-year Edelman vet, while Cabot joined three years ago.

Internet Edition, August 6, 2008, Page 7


The names of those entering the contest are being withheld for the time being until it can be determined there will be no retaliation in any form for those participating in this debate.

(Deadline for entries is Friday, Aug. 8. Prizes of $500 each will be given to the best essays for or against resuming publication of the directory. Send entries to [email protected].)

As a longtime PRSA member, I am very unhappy with the decision to eliminate the member Blue Book (aka One Source Directory), the decision-making process surrounding it, and the lack of communication regarding that decision.

1. Members really weren’t part of this decision. The handling of this particular issue is not illustrative of the tenets our association holds dear: two-way symmetrical communication, transparency, building and maintaining good relationships.

2. I don’t recall being asked about the member directory. Members are surveyed on so many things repeatedly that it is odd our attitudes weren’t measured on this. I recall no dialogue about it. Also, the change was not well communicated. I suspect it was officially announced somewhere, but I don’t recall hearing it.

3. This change seems to have been kept under the radar. When I finally realized the Blue Book had been eliminated, I expressed my dismay to two individuals on the national board and got only bureaucratic responses essentially telling me to take it up with someone else.

4. The Blue Book is a valuable benefit for members who pay steep annual dues. When I realized the association eliminated the directory, I considered dropping my membership. The Blue Book is one of the single most important benefits to me. I suspect it is an important benefit to others as well.

25% Vote Should Bring Back Directory

5. As long as a significant portion of the membership wants a hard-copy directory, the association should provide it. In this case, it shouldn’t require a majority. If 25% of the members want the Blue Book, it should be printed. What is significant? What is the magic number? What should the cutoff be at which time the association legitimately could do away with a hard-copy directory? Is 10% enough?

6. I’d suggest the magic number is whatever percentage of the members that the association doesn’t mind risking losing. My own membership? The jury is still out. I’ll wait and see what happens with the Blue Book. The double whammy of losing the Blue Book and seeing educator conference rates skyrocket may be the straw that breaks this professor’s back in terms of deciding whether or not to continue my membership.

7. The Blue Book is valuable to PRSSA members. The association pushes the benefit of networking with professionals to promote PRSSA membership. Eliminating the Blue Book greatly weakens that benefit.

8. Many students join PRSSA for the networking value of PRSA. For example, if a student is going to a certain city after graduation, a professor can easily connect them with PRSA members in that area with the help of the Blue Book. Without the Blue Book, making those connections becomes tedious, thus the connections are virtually lost.

9. The Blue Book is invaluable to educators. I referred to it all the time in locating experts to speak to classes or in advising PRSSA students about PR leaders in various cities they were headed. It is so valuable to me that I still find myself using the last hard-copy directory (2005), which is outrageous. The online directory will suffice only in some instances. I am sure professionals in each sector can attest to the importance of the Blue Book to what they do.

Directory Invaluable to Educators, Students

10. It is valuable to chapter, district and section leadership. The Blue Book is valuable to help chapters, districts and sections communicate to members across chapters with various specific niches about professional development programs and events of interest to them. In my presidency of two chapters, it has been essential to me.

11. The Blue Book aids communication and networking. Eliminating the print directory limits member networking and ability to communicate with one another in our own association—an association of professionals in the relationship and communication business!

12. Not all members want to use online resources. In this in-between era of transition from print to digital, public relations professionals, more than most, know that this segment must be remembered and their desires respected.

13. Without the Blue Book, members are out of sight and out of mind. Without the Blue Book (without having the full membership list in front of me), I interact less with others in the association. I’m much less likely to search the online database, I’m unlikely to make all of the various printouts I would need, and then I essentially don’t have access to the members within my association. It doesn’t make sense to eliminate something so important to member communication and networking.

14. An autocratic system is out of place in an association of public relations professionals. It’s ludicrous to eliminate modes of communication and relationship building in an association of professional communicators who build relationships for a living. Eliminating the Blue Book without a legitimate rationale and while a sizable number of members want it and offering instead a segmented online directory that places limitations on use… dictates what members may and may not do regarding communication within their own association. I’m not comfortable with that type of organizational mentality. This association exists for the members. Let the members decide.


Hill & Knowlton is working with solar-cell manufacturing equipment maker GT Solar International, which disappointed Wall Street with a $500M IPO last week that quickly fell in value.

The Wall Street Journal quoted a Cantor Fitzgerald analyst who called the 12 percent drop on GT's first day of trading "totally shocking" and said the decline shows how precarious the marketplace is.

Merrimack, N.H.-based GT took another blow to its stock price when one of its clients said it would buy equipment from a China-based rival. GT issued a statement from its chief financial officer, who said he didn't believe that defection would affect GT's targets or projections.

After GT's shares were priced at $16.50 for the IPO on July 25, the stock is trading under $12.

E. Bruce Harrison, a veteran corporate communicator who is chairman of EnviroComm International, received the Practitioner Best Paper Award at the international Conference on Communication 2008 held in England in June. Harrison earned the award for his paper, “Corporate Greening 2.0: Five Factors at Play as Executives Zero in on Climate Change.”

The paper recommended corporate executives consider green PR as part of strategic planning.

Internet Edition, August 6, 2008, Page 8




At our request, PR Society members are presenting arguments for the return of the printed members’ directory and they’re good ones (page 1).

First of all, members were never even consulted about this decision. When it was made, it was poorly communicated. When members learned of it one way or another and asked national directors about it, they were rebuffed. “Single most important benefit of membership” is the phrase we heard in 2005 and continue hear in reference to the 1,000-page volume (which had 200 other pages of valuable materials including leader and staff contacts).

Are you suspecting that these “leaders” and staff don’t want to be contacted? You could be right.

For years we have asked why the 300 Assembly members can’t be reached with a single e-mail. The answer has always been that the delegates don’t want to be bothered with a slew of e-mails.

The official Assembly list is not available until shortly before the meeting itself. It’s not on the PRS website.

One critic has put forth a very good suggestion. Let the members vote on this and if 25% want the directory back, it should be published again.

This critic is being very generous. Only 4% of the membership goes to the annual conference, according to 2005 president Judith Phair, and this money-losing meeting goes on year after year. Staff likes it.

Members have never been allowed to vote on anything although it would be easy with current technology.

They can only be heard through the Assembly, which is wired to the gills starting with the 45 votes of the national board, districts and sections. Leadership should not be voting on their own proposals. Chapter leaders are wired by the national titles and other goodies h.q. can dish out including appointments to the 30+ national committees, Silver Anvil judging panel, etc., which help pad resumes. Budgets can be readily approved of complacent chapters, sections and districts and there is always the $500 stipend to help defray the weekend in New York in June for the “Leadership Rally.”

Docile Assembly delegates sit quietly while leaders occupy the mike about 95% of the time. Official Assembly transcripts (which used to be available on a $1 disk) are no longer provided but not a peep emerges from any delegate or leader. With the transcript, it would be easy to measure mike time.

Innocent victims of the “suspension” of the directory (it will be brought back if leaders listen to members) are students.

It was a great resource for students, say professors who help them with networking. What was an easy task is now “tedious” with online. “I interact less with others,” says a professor. That’s what leaders/staff want. They don’t like members talking to each other, comparing notes. They might organize!

PRS’s “autocratic” rule is “out of place in an association of PR professionals,” says a professor. We agree. Online has “too many limitations” in use. PRS, which blew $3 million on APR from 1987-2001, could easily afford both online and printed. Lots of $$ could be saved by PDFing Tactics and Strategist. Much of Tactics is already on line.

Americans are “high” on information and the incredible information available in sports these days is one reason for their popularity.

Baseball fans not only get batting averages but averages against individual pitchers, averages at different counts (2-1, 2-2, 0-2, etc.), averages in the past 10 games, etc. Close plays in baseball may be shown from a half dozen angles resulting in calls for the “challenges” that have been available in football for years.

Fans have a grasp of their favorite sports that they never had before and this is making sports immensely popular and profitable.

We were guests at a corporate box last week at Yankee Stadium and most of the talk was not of the game but of the fact that our host company and the nearby companies were being priced out of the new Stadium.

A single seat in the box (about 20 rows from the field) will cost $2,400 per game in the new digs, or $192,000 for the 80 home games. This is too much for any but the bluest of the blue-chips. Sports tickets have become the No. 1 sales aids of big business. Sidelights: beer was $9.50 and water, $5.25; the Yanks, with a $200M payroll, trail the Rays, with a $20M payroll (money can’t buy everything).

The PR Society, which is so frightful of information release and so stingy about it, has missed the information boat. If it released all its financial information and showed how it looked from several angles (including deferred dues), it might get more involvement from members and non-members. Its audit belongs on the PRS website. Star players show up for interviews right after the game and managers are even interviewed during the game. Owners know that snubbing fans is a turn-off. They are not going to kill the goose that laid the golden egg. PRS leaders including staff have been on the run from members and the press for years. Current CEO Jeff Julin has not addressed a single chapter that we know of. He cut off direct questioning of him at leader teleconferences as one of his first acts. COO Bill Murray has appeared before two chapters that we know of. PRS membership is stagnant at 22,000. It was 19,600 ten years ago. The 22K probably includes a few thousand students who can join up to five months before graduation.

Newspaper staff cuts are especially impacting black journalists, says Barbara Ciara, president, National Assn. of Black Journalists. “We are fighting for our very survival, our livelihoods,” she told the Women’s Media Center. More than 2,000 newspaper jobs were lost last year including 300 journalists of color, she said.

--Jack O'Dwyer


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