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Internet Edition, December 17, 2008, Page 1


Katz & Associates has won a competitive process to develop a PR campaign promoting safety at rail crossings in commuter-heavy Orange County, Calif.

The O.C. Transportation Authority issued an RFP in October to develop a rail safety education and public awareness outreach push under legal mandate from county and federal officials.

Katz defeated Caltrop (Los Angeles), Keena Thomas Communications (Mission Viejo), MBI Media (Covina), Rozcreative (San Diego), Schubert Flint Public Affairs (Sacramento) and Westbound Communications (Orange) for the $378K contract.

The county’s Metrolink commuter rail handles four million passengers a year and is expanding through 2010. The increased service combined with federally mandated noise reductions poses a risk for accidents at its 52 rail-highway grade crossings in the populous county. K&A is a 22-year-old public affairs and PR firm headed by Sara Katz, a former aide to Gov. Pete Wilson and San Diego Mayor Susan Golding. It has offices in San Diego, Sacramento and Seattle. The firm will handle special events, media outreach and other aspects of the education campaign with the goal of increasing rail safety awareness and curbing trespassing.

OCTA also awarded an on-call PR pact capped at $100K to Arellano Associates of Chino, Calif.


Christina Pretto, key spokesperson for Citigroup, is moving to American International Group next month, according to Nick Ashooh, senior VP-corporate communications at AIG.

Ashooh told O’Dwyer’s AIG is “looking forward to benefit from her long experience.”

Pretto, who assumes the VP-corporate media post, joined Citi in `01. She takes the spot vacated by Chris Winans, whom AIG recruited from Lehman Brothers in `05. A Citi staffer said Jon Diat has slid into Pretto’s spot.

Pretto had been handling media calls regarding Citi’s plans to cut 50K staffers from the payroll, and fending off reports that the board wants to bounce chairman Sir Win Bischoff, who replaced the ousted Chuck Prince last December.

AIG, which has received a U.S. bailout, went into crisis mode Dec. 10 following a Wall Street Journal piece claiming that it owes Wall Street $10B for speculative deals that went south. The company issued a statement to say its “multi-sector credit default swap portfolio” is clearly spelled out on page 117 of its Form 10-Q for the period ended Sept. 30.


Lou Capozzi, 61, has stepped down as chairman emeritus at Publicis Groupe’s PR and corporate communications group. He will continue as an honorary senior counselor at the French combine’s MS&L unit.

Capozzi is president of International Communications Consultants Organisation and adjunct professor at New York University’s school of continuing and professional studies master’s degree program in PR.

Capozzi joined MS&L in `90 as creative director. He became CEO in `97 after Kirk Stewart left for Nike and ran the firm for seven years before moving to the parent company.

Launching his career in `69 as publicity trainee at Hill & Knowlton, Capozzi worked at Bankers Trust, Ketchum, Aetna and Ayer PR prior to MS&L.


Pamela Bailey, a longtime public affairs and trade group executive, is stepping down as CEO of the Personal Care Products Council to helm the Grocery Manufacturers Association, the powerful D.C. group of food, beverage and consumer products companies.

Bailey takes over in January for interim president/CEO Manly Molpus, former VP of corporate affairs for The Kroger Co. who headed GMA for 16 years and was called back in July when Cal Dooley exited GMA for the American Chemistry Council.

Bailey led the office of communications planning in the Reagan White House and was special assistant to the President and deputy in the White House public affairs office. She also held top PA posts at the Dept. of Health and Human Svcs and advised Presidents Ford and Nixon.

Bailey headed the PCPC, the trade group for the cosmetics and personal care products industry, since 2005 and earlier led the Advanced Medical Technology Assn.


Senior members of the PR Society, frustrated at numerous attempts to obtain the transcript of the 2008 Assembly and believing members have a right to it, last week filed a request for help from the New York County Supreme Court.

Judge Jacqueline W. Silbermann has been asked to order the Society to make the transcript available to members as a downloadable PDF on the Society website.

Cited is Section 621 of the New York State non-profit corporation law that enables members of a group to obtain access to books and records that are being denied to them by leaders.

(Continued on page 7)

Internet Edition, December 17, 2008, Page 2


Public relations, which Fortune said seven decades ago is “one of the greatest opportunities for the contemporary business executive,” has not lived up to its promise, writes veteran PR pro John Budd in “Too Many Geese; Too Few Swans - An Unexpurgatorial Account of the Rise, Fall and Future of PR” AuthorHouse (April ’08).

Budd, one of the top executives at Carl Byoir & Assocs. for many years and then with Emhart Corp., wonders if practitioners have become mostly “implementers” rather than “influencers.” He believes that not only this generation but the next is “lost” in regaining PR’s proper role in the corporate executive suite.

“The current generation of communicators, with some notable exceptions, lacks the talent, the sophistication and the commitment” needed to be “chief communications officers,” he writes. “Who will relight the fervency and restore the soul of public relations?” Budd asks.

He quotes Williams College sociologist Robert Jackall, who “tramped miles of plant floor” in researching his 1989 book, “Moral Mazes.” and said PR people are “quintessential purveyors of advocacy, invading every corner of society, encouraging people to spend money, join organizations, rally to a cause or express outrage.” The downside of this activity, Jackall says, is that it “can place truth, trust and credibility at risk.”

Budd’s book is the result of an assignment by Ball State University to prepare a white paper on the past, present and future of PR. “Nothing less than a book length examination could offer answers,” says Budd, who has operated the Omega Group “think tank” for the past 19 years.

Budd delves into the contributions to PR of such figures as Paul Garrett of General Motors, Arthur Page of AT&T and W. J. Cameron of Ford and finds that current PR figures don’t measure up to them.

Be Counselors Like Da Vinci

PR pros should be like Leonardo Da Vinci and Bayard Castiglione, who counseled heads of state in the 1500s. Da Vinci was supported by princes “not for his skills as artist, inventor and engineer extraordinary, but for his counsel,” says Budd.

Rather than “chief communications officer,” he would like the top PR person to have the title of “advisor to the chief executive for public diplomacy.”

He feels that the use of PR as a term will continue to fade and “where it remains it will be tightly linked to marketing.”

The book mentions PR Seminar, now known simply as “Seminar.” Fewer than ten of its 200+ blue chip corporate members have PR anywhere in their titles.

Only five of the 50 largest PR firms as ranked by O’Dwyer’s use the term PR in their names.

Budd feels that PR people have “bloated self-images” in their professional organizations that are not mirrored in what they do for a living.

PR executives, he says, “perpetuate the mirage of PR, embracing its ceremonial standards—sitting at the feet of academic gurus at such elite watering holes as Vail and Boca Raton, or paying homage to the best selling management tutors—before returning to their decidedly more limited day jobs of brand management or marketing communications, ignoring, or not recognizing, the paradox.” PR executives must get out from under “administrative duties” and become “thinkers,” “analysts,” and “advisors,” he says. “When the CEO calls you in to discuss something that has not yet happened, then you may assume that your judgment, not your media wizardry, is being respected.”


The Defense Department’s public affairs and information operations did not have clearly defined structures which led to “inappropriate” funding between the PR and propaganda units, according to a Pentagon audit released Dec. 11.

The Defense Department’s Inspector General said in the 100-page, acronym-laden report that the failure to appoint a director for the Armed Forces Information Service for seven years allowed for that funding snafu, as well as other lapses like the loss of hundreds of thousands of dollars in property and funds wasted on unnecessary purchases at AFIS. The AFIS, which includes entities like the Stars and Stripes newspaper and Armed Forces Radio, is overseen by the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs.

The report, requested by Assistant Secretary for PA Robert Hastings, was sparked in part by questions last October over funding for the “America Supports You” PR program, which has been administered under the public affairs unit’s purview but funded through the AFIS.

The Stars and Stripes newspaper was drawn into a controversy last year when it was reported that PR work for the ASY campaign was being funded from the paper’s budget, meaning public affairs funds went to propaganda operations, an apparent violation of federal law. The auditor’s report said a lack of separation of duties between policy, oversight and operations at AFIS led to that “adverse media attention.”

The auditors recommended that he perform an independent assessment to determine whether the use of AFIS funding for public affairs programs violated public law and whether the use of PA contract services to support strategic communications efforts was appropriate.

Hastings told the auditors that internal reviews are underway to correct some of the concerns.


The National Restaurant Assn. has hired Beth Johnson, Acting Under Secretary for Food Safety at the Dept. of Agriculture, as executive VP for PA. The registered dietician also held the deputy chief of staff and senior advisor positions.

Johnson joined the USDA after a four-year stint at Fleishman-Hillard.

Her other jobs were staff member at the Senate’s Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, nutritionist at the Food and Drug Administration and associate director of food policy at the National Cattlemen’s Beef Assn.

Dawn Sweeney heads the NRA, which represents the country’s No. 2 employer with 13.1M jobs. Members of the NRA generate annual sales of more than $550B.

Johnson is to oversee the group’s government affairs, public policy and communications functions.

Internet Edition, December 17, 2008, Page 3


Andy Alexander, who was chief of Cox’s Washington, D.C., news bureau, which is being closed by the Atlanta-based media company, will be the new ombudsman at the Washington Post. He takes the position Feb. 2, replacing Deborah Howell.

Katharine Weymouth, publisher of the Post, says Alexander will bring his “30 years of experience in the news industry and will be an excellent advocate for our readers.”

He joined Cox/D.C. as a reporter in `76, become foreign editor in `89, deputy bureau chief in `94 and chief in `97.

Weymouth’s memo calls Alexander a “leader in promoting open government.” He will serve WaPo’s readers and become an “internal critic” of its journalism.


Greg Osberg, former president of Newsweek, has taken the CEO post at Buzzwire, mobile video outfit in Denver.

The 51-year-old executive is credited for launching the online version of the Washington Post Co.-owned newsweekly in an 18-year career there. Earlier, he was sales and marketing president at CNET.

Buzzwire helps clients publish video and Internet radio material on mobile device. It counts Verizon and AT&T as clients.

Osberg told the Wall Street Journal he took the post because “mobile media feels like the Internet in the early `90s.”


Newsweek, which is owned by Washington Post Co., is cutting ten staffers and extending its early-retirement that was accepted by 117 staffers earlier this year.

The magazine dropped its rate base from 3.1M to 2.6M. That is the amount of circulation that is guaranteed to advertisers.

Ann McDaniel, senior VP at WaPo Co., said appetite for both news and Newsweek is strong, but "we are living in tough times."


The New York Times Co. expects to raise $225M in financing in the form of a sale-leaseback of its new headquarters building near the Port Authority in an effort to shore up its balance sheet.

That comes from “guidance” released Dec. 9 by the company ahead of the appearance of CEO Janet Robinson and CFO Jim Follo at the UBS global media and communications conference.

The NYTC owns 58 percent of the tower, and has hired Cushman & Wakefield to negotiate the financing deal.

Follo says the building proceeds will be used to pay down long-term debt. It provides a “unique opportunity for us to borrow at attractive rates,” he said.
The NYT is looking for “various alternatives, including revolvers, public offerings or private placement” to deal with the credit crunch and a challenging '09.”

The company is evaluating its liquidity requirements and is in discussion with lenders regarding debt maturing in '09 and '10.

Follo said there is no intention or need to replace the $400M credit facility that expires next year.

Robinson believes the company is ready for the softness next year. She said “through our revenue initiatives, expense cuts and the steps we are taking to improve our financial flexibility, the Times Co. is well positioned to weather the challenges next year is expected to bring.”


Steven Swartz succeeds George Irish, 64, as president of Hearst Newspapers after a nearly three-decade run on Jan. 1.

Irish is to become VP and eastern director of the William Randolph Hearst Foundation in California and The Hearst Foundation in New York.

Swartz, 46, was made executive VP in `01. He will preside over 6,500 employees working at 16 dailies and 49 weeklies.

Those papers include Houston Chronicle, San Francisco Chronicle and Albany Times Union.

Swartz began a journalism career as a reporter for the Wall Street Journal, and was president of SmartMoney, a venture between Hearst and Dow Jones, before joining Hearst. He was responsible for Hearst's acquisition of Metrix4Media, search engine marketing, and was in charge of yellow pages operation since `06.


CEO Jeff Bewkes will add the chairman title when Dick Parsons exits Time Warner on Dec. 31.

The employment contract of 56-year-old executive Bewkes gave him the option to resign if he didn't get the chairman position in early `09.

Bewkes is still trying to negotiate a deal to combine AOL with Yahoo, those talks have been ongoing.


National Public Radio, projecting a $23 million deficit from loss of underwriting and other revenues, said it will cancel two programs and cut 64 staffers.

NPR said it initially projected a $2M deficit for 2009 on a budget of $168M, but the economic turmoil ballooned that figure to $23M after sponsors backed out.

“Day to Day” and “News & Notes” will be pulled March 20 and NPR also said it wouldn’t fill several open posts and look to trim costs across its operations.

The workforce cuts amount to a seven percent reduction in NPR’s staff, which now numbers 889.

NPR said the cuts are necessary despite reaching near-record audience levels on-air and online. The media entity claims 26.4M listeners weekly and eight million users of

Although it has a significant endowment, legal restrictions limit its expenditure. “It’s crucial to realize that these programming changes are being driven by a loss in revenue, not relevance,” said Ellen Weiss, NPR’s senior vice president for news.

(Media news continued on next page)

Internet Edition, December 17, 2008, Page 4


Financial Dynamics is one of three targets of a $10M libel suit brought by a U.S. law firm.

FD is being targeted for its work for Russian telecom Altimo, which is tussling with the Norwegian company, Telenor, over control of a joint venture.

FD’s London headquarters office distributed an open letter to Telenor’s board on Nov. 12 outlining allegations against the Norwegian company, a copy of which is on the Altimo website with FD listed as a press contact.

In that letter, Altimo’s chairman, Andrei Kosogov, charges, among other nefarious claims, that a “network of legal firms and public affairs agencies in Russia and the U.K. appear to have undertaken black PR campaigns in the media to try to discredit Altimo, its parent company Alfa Group, and its shareholders involving methods such as payments to journalists and newspapers for the publication of information.”

FD staffer James Melville-Ross, managing director of financial communications (UK), is listed as the primary contact at FD on the open letter.

The suit was first reported by the U.K.’s Daily Mail, which noted a dossier distributed in the Russian company’s name claimed evidence of “dirty tricks” against the Philadelphia law firm Marks & Sokolov, which handles clients in the Ukraine and Russia. The law firm says it hasn’t worked for Telenor.

Altimo is part of the Russian conglomerate Alfa Group, which is controlled by powerful Russian businessman Mikhail Fridman and also named in the suit.

FD, which declined to comment to the Daily Mail, has not been reached.


Burson-Marsteller CEO Mark Penn published his first online Wall Street Journal “Microtrends” column Dec. 11 with a piece about “mattress stuffers” who are “people who have lost their trust in the financial world and are preparing for the next meltdown.”

The MS crowd isn’t a bunch of “crotchety misers,” rather they are “Baby Boomers” who believed life (and the future) was sweet only a short time ago.

The financial shock now has them “stuffing their money into Treasury bills instead of into a tin cup.” They are purchasing U.S. Mint gold coins and paying for items with cash vs. charge cards.

Penn suggests that “dying post offices” convert P.O. boxes into safe deposit boxes to service TMers. He eyes the possibility of a “baby squeeze” as couples put off having a kid as the “ultimate consumer pull-back.”

Penn, who pens the column with E. Kinney Zalesne, sees a hunger for security hedges such as a “gun, some cash, a little gold and a small safe in the bedroom in case all the ATMs suddenly shut down.”

Penn wrote “Microtrends: The Small Forces Behind Tomorrow’s Big Changes” in `07. A paperback version is slated for the spring.

His column will appear weekly in the marketing section and deal with trends that he sees developing.

The WSJ identifies Penn as B-M CEO; Penn, Schoen and Berland president and advisor to both Clintons, Tony Blair and Bill Gates. It credits Penn with creating the term “soccer mom” in `96.


Christie Hefner, 56, is stepping down as chairman/CEO of Playboy Enterprises, capping a two-decade rule of the media company founded by her father, Hugh.

She will stay on as CEO through January and remain on the board until a replacement has been named.

Jerome Kern, board member, will serve as interim chairman and become temporary CEO in the event Hefner’s successor is not found by Feb. 1.
Hefner says she is finished with the corporate world. She plans to do public service/non-profit work and give speeches.

Kern heads his own consulting firm and was chief of On Command Corp., which provides interactive video to hotels.

Briefs __________________________

Crain Communication said Financial Week ceased its print run on Dec. 7 and has become an online-only publication. “Year over year, our Internet traffic has grown dramatically,” said Nancy Adler, publisher of the erstwhile weekly newspaper. "By focusing on delivering the news on the web rather than in print, we can keep our readers truly updated in today's volatile marketplace.”

Michele Promaulayko, executive editor of Cosmopolitan, has been named editor-in-chief of Rodale’s Women’s Health magazine.

Promaulayko was named EE of Cosmopolitan in July 2000 after serving as deputy editor for a year. She was previously one of the original editors of Teen People and began her publishing career at YM magazine.

Kate Marymont, vice president of information center content in Gannett’s U.S. community publishing division, has been named VP/news for the division. She succeeds Phil Currie, who is retiring after 40 years with Gannett.

Earlier, she was executive editor and VP/information center at the News-Press, Fort Myers, Fla. She was formerly executive editor of the Springfield (MO) News-Leader.

Time Warner’s Headline News cable network will debut a new weekend show led by syndicated radio show host and “money coach” Clark Howard on Jan. 3, 2009. The eponymous program aims to help viewers make sound financial decisions amid an “increasingly dire economy,” said TW. Two 30-minute shows will air back-to-back on Saturdays and Sundays at 6 a.m., noon and 4 p.m., including calls from Howard’s daily radio program, “The Clark Howard Show.”

The programs will also feature a “Money Coach” segment including a profile of callers’ finances, a consumer tip of the day and travel tips. Info is online at

Internet Edition, December 17, 2008, Page 5


Twenty-two percent of clients severed ties with U.S. PR firms in 2008, according to a study by StevensGouldPincus, essentially even from 23 percent in 2007.

Real estate and technology took the hardest hits and firms in the tech cradle of northern California as well as Southwestern states took the hardest hits topping 30 percent turnover.

Firms in the $3M-$10M range were hardest hit, according to the study, with an average just under 30 percent.

Other sectors of PR that have taken a beating include travel/hospitality (24.2%), consumer products (23.1%), crisis (22.8%) and healthcare (22.7%). Sports and entertainment are bearing the economic downturn with the least damage with only 13.8% client turnover, said SGP managing partner Rick Gould.

Although the economic downturn was the most cited reason for the churn, many also said management changes at clients was a factor, although that could be a result of executive revamps resulting from the economy.

Only slightly more than 12 percent said client reviews caused them to lose business.

SGP partner Mike Muraszko, who is based in Los Angeles, noted California and the Southwest were already in a steady economic downturn when the bank and credit market collapses hit. “This delivered a double hit to those PR clients there and their PR agencies,” he said. He added that principals at firms in the region say competition for PR business is “aggressive.”

About one-fifth of the firms surveyed said they had been able to replace lost clients with new ones. Firms said intensified training, more frequent personal contact with clients and improved review methods to measure results were among steps being taken to retain business.


GCI Canada, part of WPP Group, said it has launched a new public affairs division with the recruitment of two execs from sister firm Hill & Knowlton Canada.

The move follows H&K’s hire of Ian Brodie, former chief of staff to embattled Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, who joined H&K as a senior counselor.

Ken Boessenkool, national practice director for PA at H&K, and Jamie Carroll, a senior counselor, are making the move to GCI. Carroll is a VP based in Ottawa.

H&K Canada CEO Mike Coates wished the two success in a statement from GCI announcing the move.

Boessenkool was a senior advisor to Harper. Carroll was national director of the country’s Liberal Party.

BRIEFS: Gutenberg Communications, a New York PR and investor relations shop, has expanded to the west coast with a Silicon Valley office in Los Gatos. Suzanne Matick, who handled PR for Cemaphore Systems and IronPort Systems, heads the outpost as a principal. The outpost is the firm’s sixth office (four are in India) since its founding four years ago. Info: ...Trippe & Company is moving from Frisco, Colo., to Westminster, outside of Denver;


New York Area

Alison Brod PR, New York/Mission Skincare, skincare brand designed for athletes and “active” people, as AOR.

Ruder Finn, New York/Elecktrobit Corp., Finland-based global tech company, for PR for its Wireless Solution business. Senior VP Chris Fallon leads the account targeting wireless, B2B and consumer audiences.

The Morris + King Company, New York/,
web-based software for chronicling digital family memories, as AOR for launch in spring 2009 and ongoing PR.

Anne Klein Communications Group, Marlton, N.J./
Asbury Communities, senior living communities, for “branding” and PR; Croda, natural-based specialty chemicals, for community outreach, and The Visiting Nurse Assn. of Greater Philadelphia, for PR and marketing.


Rasky Baerlein, Boston/Lasell College (Newton, Mass.), and the Boston Center for Adult Education, as AOR for PR.

Pirozzolo Company PR, Wellesley, Mass./Ada Energy, Kazakhstan-based oil and gas company, for a two-day seminar for PR executives of the company, including a briefing at Bloomberg News. Britannica Business Solutions, London, arranged the U.S. session.

Ogilvy PR Worldwide, National Cancer Institute, Office of Communications and Education, for a five-year comms. campaign with The Media Network and DB Consulting Group. First-year budget is $2.8M.


Eisen Management Group, Cincinnati/Air Alpha, private air charters, for PR.
Maccabee Group, Minneapolis/Gold’n Plump Poultry, for PR including local and national media relations, as well as corporate communications.


Impress PR, Phoenix/Fleixble Display Center at Arizona State University, a partnership between the university, U.S. Army and private industry focused on development of flexible display technologies.

Zion & Zion, Tempe/Paradise Medspa & Wellness, as AOR for integrated marketing, including social media, traditional PR, interactive and advertising.

Q ad|pr, Las Vegas/Nevada Childhood Cancer Foundation, non-profit, as AOR for PR.


Sterling Communications, Seattle/Washington Technology Industry Association, 1,000-member tech sector group, and, business social networking, as AOR for PR. SC launched Konnects in August and the client expanded the relationship.

J PR, San Diego/Hilton San Diego Bayfront; US Grant Hotel, and Harrah’s Rincon Casino & Resort, for PR.


Capital MS&L, London/Manchester Commission for Economic Development, Employment and Skills, for comms. support for the Manchester Independent Economic Review, an economic study of the city.

Internet Edition, December 17, 2008, Page 6


The Business Coalition on HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria is calling for submissions for its 2009 Awards for Business Excellence.

The honors, which will be presented in Washington, D.C., in June, go to companies implementing “high-level” programs to fight disease. Awards are presented in six categories: workplace program; community investment; core competence; women & girls; performance management, and partnership and collective action.

Past winners included Viacom, Coca-Cola and HBO.

Deadline is Feb. 23, 2009 and winners will be notified by late April.


The Arthur W. Page Society has hired Anuneha Mewawalla as communications manager for the group.

She joins from Antenna Group, San Francisco, where she developed clean technology and renewable energy programs for firms backed by Google, Oak Investment Partners and Idealab.

Earlier, she was anchor and reporter at “STAR News,” News Corp.’s 24-hour TV news network. Mewawalla, a faculty member at San Francisco State’s broadcast and electronic arts unit, also reported for Aaj Tak, TV Today Network, a major player in south Asia.

BRIEFS: SHIFT Communications, Brighton, Mass., is using Certeon’s aCelera software to cut the time it takes to access shared files among staffers in Mass. and San Francisco. The software was deployed virtually from the firm’s Boston area data center and has cut download times and lured back users who considered abandoning the company’s intranet, Certeon said. ...Pro Sports MVP, a sports marketing firm based in Colorado Springs, Colo., is marketing its 10th year. The firm claims to be the largest private provider of sports and entertainment tours to U.S. military personnel in Iraq and Afghanistan. It has recently worked with the National Association of Realtors, Computer Associates and Nat’l Coalition of Associations of 7-Eleven Franchises. Info:, an on-demand media list service, said, an SEO firm, has tapped its PR services. PRwebi claims more than 500K contacts across 85K outlets in print, broadcast and online. ...PR software company dna13 was among the “10 New Media Companies to Watch” as designated by the International Data Company. Krista Napier, an analyst at IDC, noted the rise of digital and social media is “driving a new approach to communications that is real time, and two way...” ...International Association of Business Communicators and the Brazilian Association of Business Communication inked a partnership deal on Dec. 3 to offer expanded benefits to members of both groups. The establishment of an accreditation program for Brazilian communicators, joint research studies and internships are being explored.



Amy Gotzler, who handled accounts at Harriet Weintraub PR, to real estate brokerage Brown Harris Stevens, New York, as director of communications.

Aleis Stokes, media relations and public affairs staffer for the Mortgage Bankers Association, to the Independent Community Bankers of Amerca, Washington, D.C., as director of PR.

Andrea Hofelich, director of media relations at the Generic Pharmaceutical Association since 2004, to the National Pharmaceutical Council, Reston, Va., as director of comms. She was previously comms. director for the Senate Governmental Affairs Commmittee and handled press for its chairwoman, Sen. Susan Collins (R-Me.).

Erik Reynolds, global PR director for Vivendi Games, has re-joined GolinHarris as a VP in Los Angeles to lead day-to-day management of the Yahoo! account.

Stephen Goldstein, copywriter, Cline, Davis & Mann, to Vox Medica, Philadelphia, in that same role. Also, David Reilly, a former agency exec and recent master’s candidate, joins as a copywriter.

Russell Datz, VP for high-end auto PR specialty firm Brandware PR, to Fisker Automotive, Irvine, Calif. as director of PR to oversee worldwide communications. Datz, 38, ran Atlanta-based Brandware’s New York office after managing PR for luxury carmaker Panoz Auto Development in Atlanta. Fisker is slated to unveil the $87K production model of its Karma vehicle at the Detroit Auto Show in January and is taking orders for delivery in 2010.

Lalit Mansingh, who was India’s ambassador to the U.S., has joined APCO’s international advisory board. He also was posted in the U.K., Nigeria, Afghanistan, United Arab Emirates, Belgium, and served as India’s Foreign Secretary. Mansingh held a raft of titles in New Delhi including joint secretary in the Dept. Of Economic Affairs, director general of the Indian Council of Cultural Relations and secretary (west) in the Ministry of External Affairs. That background, according to APCO CEO Margery Kraus, will strengthen the independent firm’s “emerging market insight.”

Bill Rylance, chairman of the Asia-Pacfic region for Burson-Marsteller and vice chairman of global development, will step down at the end of the year. A replacement has not yet been named. B-M parent WPP bought Rylance’s firm, Merit Communications, in 1999.


Amy Palladino Cofone, worldwide account director for the Kodak account at Ketchum, has been named director of the firm’s New York technology practice, a new post. She also assumes responsibilities as account director for Nokia North America.

Chris Perry to executive VP, digital strategy and operations, Weber Shandwick. Perry continues as GM for southern California and will oversee the firm’s digital team around the world. James Warren was upped to chief creative officer for digital, based in London.

Internet Edition, December 17, 2008, Page 7

COURT HELP SOUGHT (Continued from page 1)

Complainants do not need a lawyer to file such a request.

Section 621 says corporations are to keep "complete books and records of account and minutes of the proceedings of its members, board and executive committee…"

It adds that "any of the foregoing books, minutes and records may be in written form or any other form capable of being converted into written form within a reasonable time."

Members have a right to examine such documents at the "office" of the non-profit "during usual business hours."

Complainants say the "complete" record of the 6.5-hour Assembly is a 136-page transcript which was delivered to the Society by a transcription service.

A three and one-quarter page "minutes" of the transcript made available to members fails to accurately capture the lengthy Assembly and is "only a bare hint of what took place that day," says the letter to the Court.

William Murray, president and chief operating officer, has failed to make the transcript available when asked to do so by members, says the letter.

He and VP-PR Arthur Yann have told members that the "sole purpose" of the transcript was to prepare the minutes.

Murray, according to the complaint, has refused to make available the minutes of the executive committee at its meeting on Jan. 25, 2008, although Section 621 specifically mentions that such minutes must also be made available.

Withholding Publicly Criticized

The letter notes that the Society’s withholding of the 2008 transcript, although transcripts for the 2002, 2003 and 2004 Assemblies had been distributed to the press and presumably some members, has resulted in public criticism of the Society.

PR professor William Sledzik of Kent State University, on his blog, called Society leaders "wrongheaded and obstinate" in withholding the transcript and David Scott, author of "The New Rules of Marketing and PR," said the Society "acts like the worst sort of command-and-control operation."

Complainants further said that the Society has a "lengthy record of withholding important information from members" and the matter of the transcript is only the latest example of this record.

They note that one of the biggest decisions the Society ever made, the suspension in 2006 of publication of its annual directory that included the names of 20,000 members and 200 other pages of valuable materials, was done without any consultation with the Assembly or the members at-large.

"Many members feel the current online directory, while useful, is no substitute for the convenience of a printed record of members," said the complainants.

They also note that delegates at the 2008 Assembly were disappointed that minutes of the 2007 Assembly were not provided until the day of the 2008 meeting and the third quarter financials were also provided on the day of the 2008 meeting. A complete list of all the delegates of the 2008 Assembly has never been made available to the entire membership, they also note.

"The Society seems to be getting tighter and tighter with information," say the complainants.

While the 2007 minutes were headed by the notation that the minutes were based on a transcript which was "on file" at Society h.q., there is no such notation on the 2008 minutes.

‘Powers of Annual Meeting’

They note that the bylaws of the Society say the Assembly "shall have and may exercise all the powers, rights and privileges of members at an annual meeting."

The complainants believe that "this certainly entitles the delegates and members at-large to view the transcript of that meeting.

Challenging the conduct of the meeting by leaders, the letter to Judge Silbermann says that for the second year in a row there was no time for a "town hall" at which delegates could question the 17-member board of the Society because leaders had heavily programmed the meeting with various activities.

Two Hours on ‘Strategic Dialogue’

This included about two hours of training in "strategic dialogue" by an outside consultant, the letter notes, even though at least one-third of Assembly delegates would not be present at the 2009 Assembly because of a three-year limit on service.

Delegates who raised topics for discussion during the day were told to hold them until the "town meeting," says the letter.


WPP Group’s Martin Sorrell sees “more hell than heaven” in `09 as the global economy of the developed world remains in the doldrums.

A key `09 priority is to take “headcount” out of the U.S., U.K., France, Germany, Italy and Spain and find the correct level of staffing to service the burgeoning nations of China, India and Brazil, Sorrell told the UBS global media and communications conference in New York last week.

He had expected India to surpass China’s rate of growth next year, but now he does not expect that to happen in the aftermath of the Mumbai terror attack.

Developing world growth, according to Sorrell, provides a big boost to WPP. Since those nations are “under-advertised and under-branded” they shell out marketing dollars at twice the rate of GNP expansion, he explained. In contrast, ad growth in developed nations tracks the GNP.

Sorrell said WPP had been slow in realigning its employment level this year, which crimps its profit margin. The pressure from the recession has been considerable, he noted. Some clients did not move quickly enough to adjust to rapidly collapsing markets. “It’s not that there is a lack of visibility, many just don’t like what they saw,” Sorrell said.

The WPP chief expects Q1 and Q2 of next year to pose major challenges to marketers worldwide.

He anticipates the battered financial sector will smartly rebound in the middle of `09 “when greed overcomes fear.” The “real world” will hit the recovery trail in `10, and that growth will contrast nicely with the poor performance of `09.

Internet Edition, December 17, 2008, Page 8




What is PR’s role (or lack of it) in the current U.S. economic meltdown?

“Information opacity” is the “primary cause of the recent market setbacks,” wrote Pau Herrera, CEO of GrupoBPMO, Spain, in a column for last week.

From afar, and no doubt helped by it, Herrera has put his finger on the main cause of the economic slide although we would use a U.S. term—stonewalling.

“The Enron scandal showed how poor-quality information always ends up being seen for what it is and the resultant rumor mongering leads to a situation of explosive stress,” he further writes. He also noted how “information is choked off” as a crisis starts unfolding. “Tension and uncertainty exacerbate fear and suspicion.” While the U.S. worried about terrorism from abroad, Wall Streeters caused more terror among the entire population than foreign terrorists could ever dream of causing.

We agree that excessive secrecy is at the root of the economic meltdown. Corporate and government interests used PR as a bulwark against information flow rather than something that encouraged it. Much of PR morphed into lobbying and marketing and, at the behest of employers, abandoned its original promise of “answering press questions most cheerfully” (Ivy Lee, 1906). The press conference, long the main interface of organizations and reporters, all but disappeared. As for whose fault this is, PR can’t be any better than the people paying for it.

An indication of the quantity of money being spent on lobbying is in an article in the January Vanity Fair by economist Joseph Stiglitz. He says a $300M lobbying effort brought about the repeal in ’99 of the Glass-Steagall Act that separated commercial banking from investment (speculative) banking.

Commercial banks then embarked on high-risk investments much like Savings & Loans did in the 1980s when they won the right to bankroll projects other than homes. Some 1,700 S&Ls folded because of speculative excess.

Stiglitz, Columbia University professor who is called “the most quoted economist in the world,” says the SEC greased the skids of deregulation by allowing investment banks in 2004 to bump their debt-to-capital ratio from 12:1 to 30:1 or higher, thus “inflating the housing bubble.” He also whacks the Moody’s, Fitch and S&P rating agencies. SEC and others pitched self-regulation but Stiglitz says “self-regulation is preposterous…it can’t identify systemic risk.”

Corporations, fed up with dealing with the ornery press, turned many years ago to D.C. to get their way, employing not only their own trade associations but coalitions of associations. It no longer mattered what people thought as long as arms could be twisted in Congress. The best “marketing” was to pass a law requiring that your product be used (i.e., mandatory helmets for bikers).

Politics has now become the path to a lucrative “PR” career, replacing the press. Interning at a politician’s office, moving up to a paid job at the state or national level, and then to a job at a K st. lobbyist is the way to go.

There are an estimated 30,000 lobbyists in D.C. with $200,000 as the average pay. PR career adviser Ron Culp (12/10 NL) gave three examples of grads getting jobs via this political route. The National Capital chapter of PRS is by far the biggest with 1,400 members. No doubt many members started off locally and followed political leaders to D.C.

Another large section of “PR” became marketing, using press, promotions, events, web, direct contact with customers, indeed, anything at all, in service of the bottom line. PR firms that know their products and markets are thriving as evidenced by the O’Dwyer rankings that track their often 20% and 30% annual growth rates. Conglomerates OMC, WPP and IPG, their ad revenues slashed by the meltdown, are increasingly pushing their PR services.

Corporate PR has turned inward, says WPP’s Sorrell, mostly being used to fight “turf wars” at companies. Such internal political “battles” would “horrify” customers if they knew about them, he said (11/12 NL).

Our views of PR differ from those in PR Society literature but members of the PR Student Society tell us they are not allowed to deal with us—we must go through h.q. (which mostly doesn’t talk to us).

This blocking of students and professors (their PRS faculty advisers don’t respond to us either) from our viewpoints is exactly the kind of educational abuse fought against by the American Assn. of University Professors. It is wrong, says the AAUP website, when “instructors fail to present conflicting views on contentious subjects, thereby depriving students of educationally essential ‘diversity’ or ‘balance.” The AAUP is against students being “indoctrinated” rather than “educated.” It has committees that expose such abuses.

The Wall St. Journal, meanwhile, headlined on 12/12 that “College Bills Wallop Families” (many paying upwards of $50K a year) and the Center for College Affordability complained that bloated bureaucracies are wasting college funds. The ratio of non-instructional staff to teachers has gone from 4.5-to-10 in 1975 to 8-to-10 today, wrote Steven Malanga of RealClearMarkets in the 12/11 New York Post. He says governments are “overinvesting in public universities” and doubts the correlation between education and success. The real correlation, he says, is I.Q. and success.

The need for members of PRS to go to Court to get documents that should be readily available (page one) is a watershed moment in the Society’s history. COO Bill Murray says that neither the board minutes nor the executive committee minutes have to be made public. But two parts of the law say they do if there is “any action or proceeding” against a non-profit or its officers, directors or members” (parts f & g of Section 621)…a Murray e-mail that is part of the members’ complaint says the EC needs privacy “to encourage full and frank discussion of a wide range of matters, some of which may be confidential.” We dispute that. The EC, in the first place, should not be meeting an entire morning when the full board is present, as it was on Jan. 25 this year. It should not be hiding, except in a personnel matter, anything it is discussing...Murray says there were no minutes of the Jan. 26 (Saturday) all-day meeting because it was “a retreat” rather than a board meeting. Astoundingly, the directors spent a day listening to Glenn Tecker of Tecker consultants teach them how to be a “strategic board” (i.e., keep out of the hair of the staff). Whether the nine new directors will put up with such nonsense, including being forced to sign oaths of silence, remains to be seen. If the “09 Nine” have any guts, they will, as of Jan. 1, move to rectify systemic wrongs including rescinding the bylaw that lets the EC act in place of the board; erasing APR from the bylaws; barring chapter officers or directors from serving as Assembly delegates because too many of them are too cozy with national; allowing reporters to join PRS, and ordering Tactics to carry ads for O’Dwyer products. The nine new directors (alpha order) are Lynn Appelbaum, Kathy Barbour, Steve Grant, Catherine Huggins, Don Kirchoffner, Gail Liebl, Gary McCormick, Deborah Silverman and Gail Winslow-Pine.

--Jack O'Dwyer


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