The eight page weekly is the only PR newsletter on LEXIS/NEXIS.
Edition, November 19, 2008, Page 1
MOVES TO MARCUS
Margaritis, former CEO of Ogilvy and chairman of Euro RSCG
Worldwide PR, has taken a senior VP slot at New Jersey firm
The Marcus Group.
Marcus Group affords me the opportunity to work directly
with clients without the bureaucracy of larger consulting
firms, he said.
served as executive director and chairman of North America
for Euro RSCG Worldwide PR in a brief stint from late 2005
to March 2007 departing amid philosophical differences over
how to grow the business.
left Ogilvy in 1997 and later served as chief marketing
officer for upscale British luxury goods company Asprey.
Earlier stints were at Firebrand Financial Group, Fleishman-Hillard,
Burson-Marsteller and GE.
STURTZ SHIFTS TO CARRYON
Laura Sturtz, a branding
and marketing veteran of big PR firms, has joined CarryOn
Communications as New York-based president. She reports
to Kevin Grangier, CarryOns founder & CEO, who
is in Los Angeles.
Sturtz will focus on new
media, environmental initiatives, business-to-business assignments
and marketing, while Grangier is now free to concentrate
on CarryOns Brandeavor (branding) and
COi (social media) programs.
Sturtz joins from Euro
RSCG Worldwide PR, where she served as North American CMO.
Her resume includes Rowland Communications Worldwide COO;
senior managing director at Ogilvy Adams & Rinehart;
VP-PR at Hill, Holiday, and VP-marketing communications
at Hill & Knowlton.
CANNES ADDS PR CATEGORY
The Cannes Lions Festival,
the Oscars of advertising, has added a PR competition for
2009 and installed the U.K.s Tim Bell to head the
The week-long June festival
in Cannes, France, said that the addition of PR to categories
like film, press, and outdoor ensures the whole advertising
and communications industry is represented. PR categories
include sector-related PR, product and services, and technique.
Bell, who helped found
Saatchi & Saatchi, is chairman of Chime Communications,
parent to PR powerhouse Bell Bottinger. He said the new
category will further elevate the recognition of reputation
management within our industry.
Philip Thomas, CEO of
the festival, said PR has been on the Cannes radar for quite
OMC FOLDS WASHINGTON GROUP
Omnicom is folding The
Washington Group lobbying unit into Clark & Weinstock.
The move is part of Omnicoms
plan to consolidate operations in D.C. TWG is currently
part of Ketchum which purchased it in `01.
TWG received a blow last
month with the defection of its CEO Susan Molinari to Bracewell
& Giulianis government affairs practice.
TWG had `07 fees of $4.7M.
Clients include Exelon, New York Metropolitan Authority,
National Cable and Telecommunications Assn., Shield Technologies
John OHanlon is
managing director of TWG. He was trustee for the Kerry/Democratic
National Committee Campaign. Vin Weber, the former Republican
Congressman from Minnesota, heads C&W. It had fees of
$7.5M. Clients include Ericsson North America, General Dynamics,
Nokia, PhRMA, AICPA, and Yahoo.
C&W is the surviving
name of the merged entity.
EDELMAN REPS LUX RESORT IN
Edelman is representing
the swank Yellowstone Club, the Montana resort for high-rollers
that filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection last week
with $343M owed to creditors.
Bill Keegan, director
of Edelmans U.S. crisis and issues management practice
in Chicago, confirmed that the firm is working with the
YC counts as members of
its residential resort facilities Bill Gates, Greg Lemond
and Dan Quayle.
The value of the Gallatin
Mountains land for the YC is $778M and the club also counts
another $336M in unsold memberships. It owes $343M to banks
Ski magazine reported
in 2001 that the initiation fee for the club was $250,000.
ON SOCIETY SURVEY
of a personal nature are on the 2008 Post-Assembly Delegate
Survey that has been sent to nearly 300 delegates by the
These include such
areas as the age bracket of the delegate (30 or younger,
31-40, 41-50, 51-60, 61+); gender; years in PRS; whether
a Fellow or not; years of membership in PRS; what offices
held nationally, in sections, districts or chapters; who
paid for attendance at the Assembly, and number of Assemblies
What is most annoying,
said several delegates, is that the e-mail survey does not
permit a respondent to
(Continued on page 7)
Edition, November 19, 2008, Page 2
BRAND SLIPS BEHIND CANADA
United States fell a notch to No. 3 in Futurebrands
annual ranking of top country brands behind
top-ranked Australia and rising star Canada. Italy, France,
New Zealand, U.K, Japan and Sweden round out the Top 10.
Futurebrand unit polled 2,700 frequent business and leisure
travelers from nine countries to assess country brands across
several categories. The results were released Nov. 11 at
Londons World Travel Market expo with the help of
sister firm Weber Shandwick.
the Country Brand Index, the FB ranking flagged China, the
United Arab Emirates and Croatia as the top three countries
likely to become major tourist draws in the next five years.
They are followed by Vietnam, India and Cuba.
U.S. was absent from the top five countries in several key
categories for top brands like art and culture (Italy, France,
Egypt, Japan, Greece), families (Canada, Spain, Denmark,
Australia, New Zealand) and best country you would
most like to live in (Australia, New Zealand, Canada,
Switzerland and Scotland).
U.S. was knocked out of the No. 1 slot in three categories
from 2007, including easiest to do business in
(down to No. 2 in 08), extend a business trip
(down to No. 6) and conferences (down to No. 2). FB highlighted
particularly poor rankings for the U.S. in standard of living
(14), political freedom (19), safety (45) and environmentalism
firm noted that significantly fewer people prefer the U.S.
and fewer visitors would recommend it as a destination to
family, friends and colleagues.
U.S. was among the top countries in categories like ideal
for business and shopping.
noted several travel trends in its report, including increased
numbers of women traveling without men; affluent retirees
traveling more, with half of Baby Boomers taking their grandchildren
along; finite travel, or people visiting places seen as
endangered from environmental risk, and religious tourism.
noted that the U.S. is one of the only major countries in
the world that does not have an official government tourism
board, instead relying on city and state tourism campaigns.
As a country brand, the U.S. has no formal identity
and no formal call to action to lure travelers and to help
drive the economy, the firm pointed out.
PLUCKS HANRETTY FROM GOP
Hanretty, who was communications director for the National
Republican Congressional Committee, becomes a Qorvis Communications
managing director next month. She is a frequent commentator
on CNN, MSNBC and Fox News.
GOP background, according to Qorvis CEO Michael Petruzzello,
will come in handy since many of the coming PA debates will
be won not with red or blue arguments
but with purple strategies and bipartisan
also served as deputy communications director for Fred Thompsons
presidential run and spokesperson in Arnold Schwarzeneggers
gubernatorial campaign. Petruzzello calls her battle-tested.
joins the Qorvis PA staff, which includes Maura Corbett,
a member of Barack Obamas technology media policy
committee; Dan Goldberg, an aide to former President Clinton,
and Jake Ward, ex-press secretary for Sen. Olympia Snowe
PUSHES HEALTHCARE REFORM
coalition of interest groups under the name Divided We Fail
is planning a million-dollar campaign to push Barack Obama
and the new Congress to keep campaign promises to pursue
healthcare reform and a solution for the financial crisis.
the effort are AARP, Business Roundtable, Services Employees
International Union and the National Federation of Independent
Nannis, director of advocacy media relations for AARP, told
ODwyers that internal teams at the four lead
organizations which claim to represent 53 million
Americans are handling PR. GSD&M Idea City in
Austin, Tex., is producing issue ads.
campaign kicked off with a full-page letter to President-elect
Obama run as an ad in USA Today on Nov. 11. Capitol Hill
papers and cable news networks are other targets for the
campaign says it wants to hold Obama and members of Congress
to pledges for healthcare reform made during the election
cycle. It says Obama and more than two-thirds of the incoming
111th Congress have endorsed the groups pledge committed
to a bipartisan effort on healthcare and lifetime
REPS BAHRAIN ON RIGHTS
Kingdom of Bahrain, the Persian Gulf island of 725,000 people
off the coast of Saudi Arabia, has hired Patton Boggs to
handle concern over its human rights practices. [Qorvis,
which is affiliated with PB reps the Saudis.]
Boggs heads the PB team that bills at an hourly rate. Boggs
bills the Arab state $990 per-hour.
is joined by Ed Newberry, former aide to Rep. Frank Wolf
(R-Va) who bills at $695; Stephanie Peters, a $505-biller
who advised Democrats during the floor debate and vote on
the Articles of Impeachment of Bill Clinton, and Peter Gould,
a natural resources specialist who bills $415.
to the State Dept.s country report on human rights
practices released in March, Bahrain restricts civil
liberties, including freedoms of press, speech, assembly,
association and some religious practices.
violence against women and children was common, as well
as discrimination on the basis of gender, religion, sect
and ethnicity. Trafficking in persons and restrictions on
the rights of expatriate workers are problems.
The Shia majority population was routinely discriminated
against by the ruling Sunnis, according to State.
is to reach out to both the executive and legislative branches
of the U.S. Government on behalf of Bahrain. Its engagement
letter suggested an initial $25K retainer to get the ball
Edition, November 19, 2008, Page 3
TIMES CO. SHARES PLUNGE
New York Times Co. stock plummeted to an $8.16, 52-week
low on Nov. 11 following news of a big write-off largely
for its troubled Boston Globe property operation.
Shares traded at $8.81 on Nov. 9 in 1990.
NYTC, which last month reported a preliminary $6.5M third-quarter
net, now says it lost $106.3M following a $166M impairment
of assets charge related to its faltering New England
to its Securities and Exchange Commission filing, the NYTC
pins the charge on the continued decline in print
advertising revenue affecting the print industry and lower-than-expected
current and projected operating results at the Boston
Globe and Worcester Telegram & Gazette.
NYTC warns that more write-downs for the New England papers
may be in the works. The company has not yet finalized
its interim impairment analysis due to the timing and complexity
of the calculations required.
further charges are anticipated for the fourth-quarter when
the company completes its interim third-quarter 2008
NYTC is closing its Billerica, Mass., printing plant during
the second-half of `09 because it no longer needs
as many presses to print all copies of the Globe, which
will be printed at the main plant in Dorchester.
NYTC says savings will result from that move following the
completion of negotiations with labor unions.
Globe, this month, laid off 42 people in advertising, marketing
and circulation. It also tightened control over its Boston.com
site. That site now reports to Globe publisher Steve Ainsley
rather than the NYT digital operation.
Schiller, 47, becomes president and CEO of National Public
Radio on Jan. 5. She takes over from interim CEO Dennis
Haarsager, who has held the spot since March.
led the NYTs digital operation to the top spot among
newspaper websites. She handled product, technology, marketing,
classified, planning and business development.
Schiller spent four years as senior VP and GM at the Discovery
Times Channel, cable venture between New York Times Co.
and Discovery Communications.
to joining the NYTC, Schiller was senior VP of CNN Productions,
leading its long-form programming. She began her career
as a simultaneous Russian translator in the Soviet Union,
which led to documentary work at Turner Broadcasting.
Stevenson, NPR chair, called Schillers news roots,
operational expertise and extensive media experience a natural
fit for NPR.
TAKES WSJ DEPUTY SLOT
Baker, a veteran of the BBC, Financial Times and
Times of London, has moved to the Wall Street
Journal as deputy editor-in-chief of Dow Jones and the
Wall Street Journal.
assumes the position in January, reporting to Robert Thomson,
who called Baker a student of the minutiae of monetary
policy, and the frailties of the international financial
will edit the WSJ when Thomson is not around and accelerate
its development as a national paper of influence and
as an unrivalled international business news franchise.
`88 to `94, Baker was producer and economics correspondent
at the BBC. He was FTs Tokyo correspondent and then
Washington bureau chief.
`04, Baker helped launch the Times here and developed its
PRUNES 10% OF FORCE
publisher of Runners World, Prevention, Organic
Gardening and Mens Health, is cutting 10
percent of its work force (111 people) via outsourcing of
information technology and customer service.
company says it is hurting due to advertising cutbacks among
automakers. It reported a five percent decline in Q3 revenues
from the year earlier period.
Murphy, CEO of Rodale, said though the ad decline has hit
the company, it has been able to achieve our profit
goals by delivering books, magazines and online products
digitally to a global audience.
STEPS DOWN AT RTNDA
Cochran is stepping down as president of the Radio-Television
News Directors Assn. in June after a dozen years of service.
She will consult the trade group in the role of president
chairman Ed Esposito credited Cochran for advocating on
behalf of online journalists, especially in the area of
First Amendment rights and protections. He also noted that
Cochran was instrumental in opening the Supreme Court to
the release of selected audio recordings, according to the
board has begun a search for Cochrans replacement.
Cochran plans to keep busy over the next eight month, working
on Communicator, the online system for judging the Murrow
Awards, and drafting the organizations strategic plan.
TAPS BAKER IN D.C.
Tribune Co has promoted Cissy Baker VP in Washington to
coordinate newsgathering for the companys print, publishing
and interactive operations. A big task for Baker is to facilitate
who joined Tribune in 1994, had been in charge of D.C. broadcasting
operations. She exited CNN in `80 for a run for the House
in Tennessee. She won the primary, but lost the general.
She returned to CNN in `83 and left in `90 for the job of
VP of Fox News Service, handling national news feeds and
Financial Times has revamped its website
to create more of a clean and uncluttered executive
briefing on the world of global business. There is
expanded coverage of macroeconomics, energy and technology
and tighter integration of market data and news.
news continued on next page)
Edition, November 19, 2008, Page 4
SEES BIGGER AD FALL
Denton, founder and owner of the Gawker Media network of
blogs, issued a gloomy advertising forecast and folded the
ValleyWag Silicon Valley blog into GMs namesake blog,
conglomerates to Internet ventures, executives should be
planning now on a decline of up to 40% in advertising spending
during this cycle, he wrote Nov. 11 in his 2009 Internet
argues that ad forecasts, which have ranged from six to
16 percent decline for online sites, dont anticipate
a deep recession and that previous banking crises in countries
like Japan and Sweden led to gloomier climates. He said
suggestions that Internet advertising is immune to a steep
downturn or that it is more mature than when
a steep decline of 27% hit Net ads from 2000-02 dont
add up. Denton said that maturity in digital
ads also means that its underlying growth is more sluggish
than it was early on.
has six main levers for publishers to navigate
the downturn get out of categories like politics
that advertisers shy away from; renegotiate vendor pacts;
consolidate; offshore more; reduce high executive pay for
profit-sharing, and provide more ad value for advertisers.
Chelstowski, publisher of Wenner Medias
Rolling Stone, has moved to the CR Media USA luxury
lifestyle magazine set for a February launch, Prestige
Chelstowski is former
national sales director for Time Inc.s Entertainment
Cohn, executive editor of Wired, has been
recruited by The Atlantic to become editorial director
Based in Washington, D.C., Cohn reports to editor James
Bennet and oversees all digital editorial efforts, including
blogs, web-only features and online delivery of magazine
Cohn was executive editor
of Wired since 2001. Earlier, he held that title at The
Industry Standard and was editor and publisher of Stanford
Owen has been promoted to fashion editor and Gabrielle
Porcaro to associate fashion editor at Ladies
Owen now leads development
of the fashion section, including styling and writing all
Porcaro continues to cover
the show market and coordinate photo shoots. She adds coverage
of fashion and accessory markets to her duties.
Co. has acquired social media technology and analytics
company Ripple6, which becomes a wholly owned subsidiary
of the media company.
Ripple6 currently powers
sites, which recently launched in 80 local markets, also
provides social media properties for Procter & Gamble
and the soon to be launched MixingBowl.com,
Meredith Corporations social network around meals
and meal planning.
COUNT ENEMIES, FRIENDS, SAYS
An important early move
in any crisis plan is to count and study potential enemies
and friends and keep this a closely guarded list, advises
Rene Henry in "Communicating in a Crisis: A Guide for
is essential, says Henry, who has worked for corporations,
educational institutions and agencies in a career of more
than 40 years.
He advises obtaining biographical
information on adversaries, determining who will be their
leaders and spokespeople, and what media might support them.
Review their speeches,
books, papers and articles, he advises, looking for
their philosophy and whether they have been
making contradictory statements.
Possible allies of opponents
should also be checked out carefully, he says, and biographies
and other information collected.
Your client or employer
must also explore whether celebrities can be
expected to enter the fray against you, he says.
People on your side involved
in plans and delicate negotiations must be trustworthy and
not considered a risk of leaking to the media,
Focus groups and opinion
polls conducted before any crisis develops can help a company
determine whether and how much public support it can expect,
says Henry. A must read, according to the author,
is Rules for Radicals by Saul Alinsky.
Written in 1972 as a primer
for students and dissenters, it advocates disorganization
of the old and organization of the new, and the stirring
up of dissatisfaction and discontent.
Henry notes Alinskys
belief that communication is the single most important
quality for an organizer.
Henry, who was director
of the office of external affairs of the Environmental Protection
Agency from 1996-2001 and executive director of university
relations, Texas A&M University from 1991-96, authored
in 2000 "Youd Better Have a Hose If You Want
to Put Out the Fire," which became a best-seller on
He authored in 2000 "Marketing
Public Relationsthe Hows That Make It Work,"
and in 2001 wrote "Offsides! Fred Wyants Provocative
Look Inside the National Football League."
Henry draws on his experience
in government, education, sports and PR firms (Edelman,
Flourney & Gibbs and his own firm) in writing about
scores of crises in those areas.
He has advice on dealing
with lawyers, educational administrators, corporate executives
and government figures.
Lawyers, he notes, make
little money preventing crises and a lot resolving them.
He feels they have little understanding of the media
and have a tendency to move slowly and cautiously.
He quotes Pete Oppel,
managing director of Fairchild/Oppel, Dallas, as saying
that Lawyers are so afraid of possible litigation
that they go out of their way to be dull and then wonder
why the other side gets all of the media attention in a
19, 2008, Page 5
OF PR FIRMS
REPLACES NORTHERN CALIF. GM
Shandwick has shuffled oversight of its Northern California
Interpublic firm has added GM/Northern California to the
duties of its New York-based North American technology practice
head, Robert Dowling. He takes over as GM of Northern California
for Tim Marklein, who has moved into an EVP role atop the
firms measurement and strategy practice.
has been with WS for four years. Announcing Markleins
new role, WS president Andy Polansky noted the importance
of communications measurement in challenging economic times.
played a role in developing the firms measurement
model ARROW, which stands for activities, reach, relevance,
outcomes and worth.
HORN DELVES INTO ONLINE VIDEO
Horn Group, a tech firm
with offices in San Francisco and New York, has unveiled
a 1,200-square foot, full-service video production shop
for digital content creation in its San Francisco office.
Shannon Latta, partner
at Horn Group, noted that people expect video on the web
but marketers rarely have the skills or time to produce
In the past few months,
the firm has completed projects including CEO interviews
and white boards sessions for EchoSign, Genius and Kalido,
event motion graphics for Adify and a man-on-the-street
piece for Tealeaf.
Services include production,
direction, script writing and storyboarding, shooting and
post-production. Its facilities include a green screen and
Info and details are at
Communications, New York, has set up a project division
targeting companies that seek short-term PR support for
situations like trade shows, product launches or events.
The unit, called PRoject JS2, is based in the firms
New York office and headed by GM Alissa Pinck. ...San Diego
has formally set up a Hispanic sister unit called Formulatin.
The Formulatin team has worked with Tecate beer since 2005
and also handles Tequila Herradura. Michael Olgiun, president
of Formula who also helms the Hispanic unit, said ongoing
growth in the sector and the need for PR firms to have an
authentic point-of-view sparked the creation
of Formulatin. ...The
Dilenschneider Group, New York, has formed a working
alliance with South Koreas largest firm, Prain.
TDG said it will represent Prains corporate clients
in the U.S. while Prain does the same in South Korea. Robert
Dilenschneider, founder and chairman, said South Korea is
one of Asias most dynamic and robust economies and
presents numerous commerical opportunities for U.S. companies.
Lee Sung-Bong is president of Prain. ...Edge
Communications, a 12-year-old Encino, Calif., firm,
has a new website and blog penned by founder Ken Greenberg
and other staff.
Schwartz & Co., New York/Global Association of
Risk Professionals, not-for-profit trade group of 100K risk
management pros and researchers for entities like banks,
investment management firms and government agencies, for
PR following a review. GARP didnt previously work
with an agency.
Morris + King Company, New York/University of California,
San Francisco, to develop a PR campaign for the opening
of its $100M Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center
Research Building, slated for June.
PR, New York/American Society of Interventional Pain
Physicians, for a public education campaign on the specialty
New York/Sony Ericsson, as AOR for PR in North America.
The firms London office has been SEs global
firm for the past year.
PR Bridgewater, N.J./Maquet, surgical equipment unit
of Swedens Getinge Group, for PR in North America
for its Variop operating room suite. Maquet, which has installed
Variop suites in Europe for more than 25 years, recently
put in its first U.S. installation in South Carolina.
Waltham, Mass./Soapstone Networks, resource and service
control software for telecom carriers and enterprises, as
AOR for PR, an expansion of its previous relationship for
Richmond, Va./Mirage Studios and 4Kids Entertainment, for
development of a website to mark the 25th anniversary of
the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. MS owns the brand and
4Kids is its licensing agent.
Lynch Spong, Minneapolis/Noodles & Company, noodle
eatery with 200 locations in 18 states, as AOR for PR. Ad
unit Carmichael Lynch is also working with N&C.
IR-PR, Boulder, Colo./JNBridge, software, for ongoing
PR after the firm handled PR for its JNBridgePro product
over the past year and a half.
Fernandez & Associates, San Antonio/Colonial
Bank, commerical bank division of $26B Colonial BancGroup,
for Hispanic advertising, PR and online work throughout
the South and Southwest.
PR, San Francisco/Smule, sonic applications developer
for the iPhone, as AOR for PR. The company has launched
four applications, including Sonic Lighter and Ocarina,
among the top paid iPhone applications in the U.S. and abroad.
Communications, Los Angeles/Patina Restaurant Group,
for PR for its West Coast division following project assignments
in the region.
Communications, Los Angeles/Psyclops, kids products
and interactive website, for PR, and Cookie Jar Entertainment,
for PR for its digital media division. CJE brands include
Strawberry Shortcake and Inspector Gadget.
Edition, November 19, 2008, Page 6
HAS NET SERVICE
has released an Internet media monitoring service, iMonitor,
that features unlimited use for a monthly fee and no per-clip
service include free and subscription-based news sites,
blogs, social media and other outlets, and also includes
its 2.0 monitoring portal, which allows tagging and organization
of coverage and reporting, including print and broadcast
Shannon, executive VP for BL, said time and budget contraints
for PR pros made the introduction of a flat-fee service
timely for the company.
MEDIALINK POSTS LOSS
Medialink Worldwide reported
a 28 percent decline in third quarter revenue and net loss
of $1M following its sale of its U.K. operations and stake
in the Teletrax monitoring service during the period.
Net loss for the same
quarter in 2007 was $1.6M.
Revenue for Q3 of 2008
was $5.3M, down 28.4 percent over the same period of 2007.
Medialink posted an operating loss of $948K for the quarter
($1.2M for Q3 of 2007) before impairments and charges of
$897K that include a $450K loss from its now-shed U.K. operations.
Net loss for the nine
months ended Sept. 30 was $11.6M. The company said it has
cash and working capital totaling $7.1 million and $7.2
Revenues in the
third quarter increased in our US-based business amid rough
economic times and a broadcast media environment that was
saturated with election coverage, Larry Moskowitz,
president and CEO, said in a statement. He said deteriorating
economic conditions are a significant challenge to
Medialink and others in the space. He predicts a $1.4M decline
in revenues for its U.S.-based business in the fourth quarter,
compared with Q4 of 2007.
Moskowitz said Medialink
has re-focused its efforts on its U.S. operations, especially
Internet-based video and audio services. Medialink shares
are trading in the range of its 52-week low $.08. The company
could face delisting in February 2009.
AD CUTS COULD BOOST PSAs
Spending cuts in advertising
could come at the benefit of one particular segment of PR
public service announcements.
New York broadcast PR
company WestGlen Communications said last week that its
PSA airings are running 18 percent higher in November, which
is traditionally a tough month for such placements because
ad spending increases from elections and holiday buys.
A survey by WestGlen of
TV and radio stations showed that ad sales were expected
to slump through the first quarter of 2009.
Annette Minkalis, senior
VP of PSA services for WestGlen, said the full impact of
ad cuts hasnt been felt yet because marketers are
still running commitments made during the summer. She sees
great uncertainty a month or two down the road.
She said the economic hardship for one industry sector
has at least opened a tremendous opportunity for another.
Fletcher, deputy chief of staff for external affairs
for California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, has returned
to Ogilvy PR Worldwide, San Diego, as a senior advisor to
the firms West Coast operations. Fletcher, a veteran
Republican operative, was deputy campaign manager for Schwarzeneggers
2006 re-election. At Ogilvy, she is back in the fold with
former political partner Maggie Linden, a Democrat who heads
the firms West Coast public affairs practice.
Meghdessian, senior A/E, Development Counselors International,
to The Dow Chemical Co., as media and community relations
manager for the Middle East. She previously held posts at
RAIN Media and Al Arabiya Television. Dow has eight current
and proposed ventures in the Mideast.
Curwen, senior associate, APCO Worldwide, to Widmeyer
Communications, Washington, D.C., as a VP in its public
affairs practice. She is former director of PA for the American
Phifer, former director of corporate communications,
Jenny Craig, to The Johnny Rockets Group, Lake Forest, Calif,
in that same title. She was previously strategic PR program
manager at Sony Electronics and senior PR manager at Eddie
Blazek, president and publisher of Ball Publishing,
to Arment Dietrich, Chicago, as a VP focused on business
development. Also, Tara
Stocker, managing principal, Chaffee Group, joins
as a managing supervisor.
Szwiec, PR manager, Restaurant.com,
to Zizzo Group Advertising and PR, Milwaukee, as an A/E.
Friedman, who headed her own PR shop for 16 years,
to Steinreich Communications, Hackensack, N.J., as an account
Borden, account manager at Jaffe Communications,
to R&J PR, Bridgewater, N.J., as an A/E. Also, Vickie
Cullen, an intern, to A/C.
Jan Brinkhorst, former Dutch cabinet minister and
member of the European parliament, to APCO Worldwides
international advisory council. Gene
Lawson, founder of the U.S.-Russia Business Council,
has also joined the council.
Hughes, former general manager, China, for The Hoffman
Agency, to Ketchum Shanghai, as GM. He takes over for Penny
Burgess, who takes on a consulting role with the Omnicom
Perras to senior VP, Dukas PR, New York. Perras,
who joined the firm in 2004, leads the firms new asset
management team, which includes hedge funds, asset managers
and service companies. Seth
Linden has been promoted to VP/media director, to
head the firms financial and professional services
Napolitano to visual communications manager, DDR
PR, Mt. Kisco, N.Y.
Tappouni to VP, Spectrum Science Communications,
Washington, D.C. Tappouni takes on a new role as a manager
in its client service group. She joined the firm in March
Edition, November 19, 2008, Page 7
to further questions until all the personal information
questions have been answered in full.
post-Assembly survey is supposed to be about the quality
of the Assembly and the quality of the leadership of the
Society and not about the identity of the delegates, said
critics of the survey.
with age, gender, chapter, offices held and other information
leaders could easily determine the identity of those filling
out the questionnaires, said delegates.
numbered electronic voting devices were used, leaders and
PRS staff members could then see how these individuals voted
on various issues during the Assembly, they further said.
and staff could then determine who is on board
with leadership and who isnt, they added.
No Personal Questions
Dissidents said personal
questions have no place at all on the survey.
There should be no attempt
to coordinate voting records with age, gender, years in
PRS, leadership roles, whether representing a section, district
or chapter or any such background, they said.
This represents an ad
hominem approach to assessing criticism that has no
place in a democracy, they said.
The survey would be a
legitimate one without the personal questions, said several
Questions on the survey
include the following. Delegates were asked to vote according
to seven different levels of satisfaction or dissatisfaction:
Extremely effective, Effective,
Somewhat Effective, Neutral, Somewhat
ineffective, Ineffective, Extremely
Provided a member-centered forum for organizational
respectful discourse on issues of importance.
chapters, districts, sections and other groups a voice in
[the Society's] strategic focus as an organization.
chapters, districts, and sections a platform to communicate
with national leadership.
In another section of
the survey, delegates were asked to assess their views of
the national board and whether key issues were discussed.
Seven levels of satisfaction
or dissatisfaction could be indicated: Strongly agree,
Agree, Somewhat agree, Neutral,
Somewhat disagree, Disagree, and
The topics included:
I felt well
informed of key issues and items presented for Assembly
I knew enough
about key issues and items ahead of time sufficiently to
prepare for Assembly votes.
I had ample
opportunity to express my views during the Assembly.
in which delegates participate in the business of the Assembly
was professional and productive.
I feel good
about PRSs governance process under current Assembly
procedures and practices.
I am confident
in the leadership of PRS as a result of my involvement in
the 2008 Assembly.
Delegates were also asked
to rate their satisfaction in the two hours of discussion
groups led by Jean Frankel of Tecker Consultants.
PROSPEROUS IPR MAPS RESEARCH
The Institute for PR,
which hosted WPP's Martin Sorrell and General Motors' Steve
Harris at its annual dinner Nov. 5, has announced ambitious
plans for research into the fundamental nature of PR.
Although revenues only
grew $27,646 to $867,631 in 2007 from $839,985 in 2006,
net assets jumped 33% to $380,760 from $297,152 and cash/investments
climbed 23% to $408,410.
Cash grew to $197,074
from $146,397 while certificates of deposit declined to
$99,486 from $179,616 as IPR apparently shifted about $80,000
from CDs to "investments." The investments rose
to $111,850 from $5,376.
Frank Ovaitt, IPR CEO,
said from a conference of the International PR Assn. in
China that the investments are in a money market fund.
Ovaitt told the Nov. 5
dinner that IPR will carry out research into "ground-breaking
topics" including examining "long-held claims
that PR and advertising produce different effects."
have been named to provide "expert guidance" into
the research program that will build and share the "science
beneath the art of public relations," said Ovaitt.
The six are Kathryn Collins,
retired director of communications research of General Motors;
Donald Wright, professor of PR, Boston Univ.; David Michaelson,
president, Echo Research; Louis Williams, chairman, L.C.
Williams & Assocs.; James Grunig, emeritus professor
of communications, Univ. of Maryland, and Don Stacks, professor,
Univ. of Miami School of Communication.
COYNE WRESTS CATAN
Wayne Catan, who ran Catan
Communications for more than a decade, recently joined Parsippany,
N.J.-based Coyne Public Relations as VP/media specialist.
He works on Disney, Toys R Us, Hard Rock International,
Mary Kay, Goodyear and Casio.
Catan is remembered for
his work on behalf of Pets.com
(of sock puppet fame) leading up to the dot-com crash. He
was promoter of Dog Day Afternoon, a nationwide
tour for pets and their families.
Earlier this year, Catan
was inducted into the New York State Hall of Fame at the
University of Buffalo.
The Syracuse University
graduate told the New York Daily News that he applies
wrestling techniques learned in college to his work. I
use the tools I have from wrestling to beat opponents in
the boardrooms on Madison Ave., he said.
Catan writes for Amateur
Wrestling News and is proud owner of the Dellinger Award,
which is bestowed on the nations top wrestling writer.
He began his PR career
at Manning Selvage & Lee.
Edition, November 19, 2008,
Motors, Chrysler and Ford seem headed for bankruptcy
and are getting no sympathy from the public, GM PR head
Steve Harris told the Institute for PR Nov. 5. Evidence
Harris is right were six letters-to-the-editor of the New
York Times Nov. 14 blasting GM for being out of touch
with consumers by foisting gas-guzzling SUVs on them.
million jobs are directly tied to the Big Three
and the ripple effects of their bankruptcies
on a worsening economy would be almost too great to imagine.
hasnt PR been able to work its magic and
reverse this tide of anti-U.S. auto industry sentiment?
After all, the publics own neck is in the noose now.
One reason is a lack of industry spokespeople who can persuasively
argue their cases in discussions and debates on TV. The
PR spokespeople most often seen by viewers on a variety
of subjects are Fraser Seitel and Mike Paul, who have been
on cable and network shows hundreds of times.
the positive side, Jamie Dimon of JPMorgan Chase and Edward
Liddy of AIG have been hitting the public airwaves. Dimon
has been discussing the economic slide and Liddy has been
explaining that only $23,000 of the $400,000 spent on a
recent much-criticized AIG meeting was AIG money. The purpose
of the meeting was to train non-AIG agents in the sale of
AIG products, he says.
switch from a macro view of this situation,
with its hard to grasp boxcar figures, to a micro
viewnamely the street we live on in Connecticut, which
is a block from a grade school.
The letters to the NYT
blame the U.S. auto companies for pushing SUVs on consumers
but thats not what we saw happening down the block
and with our neighbors.
About 20 years ago small
cars were all the rage in our town. Then more and more SUVs
started to appear and especially around the school until
just about all of the cars near the school were such giants,
each one bigger than the last.
Safety was one factor.
Parents felt their children were safer in a big car and
they were right. It was an automobile Greshams
lawthe bad drove out the good. It became unsafe
to ride around in dwarf cars in a land of giants.
Fashion was also a factor.
What parent could bear to have his or her child made fun
of because the parent drove around in a tiny car? Irresistible
peer pressure from children was also at work.
Meanwhile, on the street
where weve lived 30 years, almost every resident started
riding around in foreign cars. It was the smart thing
to do. Volvos, BMWs, Lexuses, etc., became the fashion.
We were the oddity on the streetdriving a pedestrian
Over the years, practically
every executive on the block lost jobs that were at companies
such as International Paper, ABC-TV, Hertz, etc. There was
a connection between the two, not one-to-one, but a connection.
PR number was also done on the U.S. auto buyer
who thinks that most Japanese cars, for instance, are actually
made in the U.S. At one time about 25% of Japanese
car parts were made in the U.S. but this dipped to about
10%. Also, while GM and other U.S. automakers are saddled
with high and even ruinous labor/medical costs, Toyota and
others profit by making nearly four million cars in non-union
plants in the South. U.S. automakers failed to get out messages
Part of what happened
over the years to PR is that it got dominated by demographic-oriented
marketers intent on aiming messages to segments
of the public. PR lost its ability to make a case with experts
in the press. The public looks for truth in the clash of
ideas in open venues.
2008 PR Society Assembly in Detroit Oct. 25 was a fraud
perpetrated on the general membership not only by
the national board but by the Assembly delegates, all of
whom are wired in one way or another.
It was bad enough that
the board scheduled more than two hours of canned presentations
plus a two-hour exercise in strategic thinking
that would have insulted the intelligence of a third-grader.
Even worse was the acquiescence
of the more than 200 chapter delegates in this charade.
Its easy to see
why the delegates took a dive.
The bylaw passed in 2004
that let non-APRs into the Assembly had a huge Mickey in
it. Non-APR delegates had to be board members of their local
This strengthened leader/staff
control of the Assembly as the local titled establishments
joined the national establishment.
The entire Assembly now
is APRs or leaders of chapters/sections/districts.
These are members on the take from PRS in terms
of local, district and national titles, memberships on the
30+ national committees, etc.
They are often desirous
of even more titles that they feel enhance their resumes.
They are mostly status borrowers rather than
status lenders and are not going to bite the
hand that feeds them.
Besides receiving titles,
leaders get various budgets and expense accounts approved
by national. The $571,000 spent on travel in
2007 also includes meals but there is never a breakout of
meals. We wonder how much of that total is spent
on staff and volunteer meals. Such a total should be readily
no wonder the delegates sat there like bumps on a log and
allowed themselves to be led around by their noses the entire
Not one delegate arose
to ask why the board was reneging on its promise to bring
even one meaningful bylaw change before the Assembly after
vowing a year ago to provide a full slate of new bylaws.
Weve asked about
ten delegates to obtain the 136-page transcript of the Assembly
that was delivered to Jennifer Ian at PRS h.q. a couple
of weeks ago. All refused. Of course they did. They dont
want to hear anything more about the shameful Oct. 25 meeting
in which they failed to represent their constituents. Rank-and-file
members have every right to see what went on at that meeting.
We hope the nine new national
directors will not wait until the end of January to exercise
their powers including demanding the release of the transcript.
They are now involving not only their own names but the
names of their organizations in a dysfunctional, undemocratic
They are Gary
Scripps Interactive; Kathy
& Southern Financial Group; Gail
retired head of PA, U.S. Army; Steven
Education Assn.; Gail
Catholic Medical Center, and Deborah
Buffalo State College.