The eight page weekly is the only PR newsletter on LEXIS/NEXIS.
Edition, December 24, 2008, Page 1
Holidays to all our readers. The next issue of the newsletter
will be Jan. 2. Follow breaking news on odwyerpr.com.
OMC MAKES CUTS
CEO Michael Roth is expected to cut payroll up to 2,000
in an effort to cope with the advertising depression.
Cunningham, spokesperson for IPG, told ODwyers
the firm has not commented on that report that ran in Reuters.
during an October presentation, vowed to manage IPG conservatively
and remain competitive on a margin basis with WPP and Omnicom.
He said General Motors, IPGs No. 1 client, was a big
CEO John Wren is cutting about five percent or 3,500 people
from its 70,000 workforce. The firm has been hurt by cutbacks
at Chrysler and the loss of the Pepsi business. That ad/PR
conglom issued the following statement: Given current
economic conditions, our companies have reviewed their staffing
levels as they relate to their current business requirements.
Some, but not all, will have to make adjustments.
chief Martin Sorrell already has announced plans to reduce
headcount in `09 in mature markets such as the U.S. and
BORRA MOVES TO
Borra, president of the International Food Information Council
Foundation for the past two years and IFIC president for
the prior 15 years, has switched to Edelman as executive
VP/managing director of nutrition, food & wellness,
a new position.
will provide counsel and coordinate activity among Edelmans
food & nutrition, PA, bio science communications, consumer
health, health PA and health media operations.
will be based in Washington, and also have an office in
Chicago. Her resume includes president of the American Dietetic
Assn., chairman of the ADA Foundation, and member of a National
Academy of Sciences subcommittee.
to joining the IFIC, Borra was director of consumer affairs
at the Food Marketing Institute.
Shandwick has tapped Mark MacGann head of its EU
public affairs operation beginning in March. MacGann, director
general of Digital Europe, also worked at Brunswick, handling
international mergers and acquisitions from its office in
London, Paris and New York.
Earlier, he held key jobs
at Alcatel-Lucent including VP-strategic affairs for Alcatel
Space and head of its European government affairs operation.
SAN BERNARDINO SEEKS ECODEV
San Bernardino County,
a 20K-mile swath in southern California abutting Los Angeles
that is home to two million people, is looking for PR support
for its Economic Development Agency.
The EDA covers programs
in workforce training, community and housing development
and attracting investment to the region.
San Bernardino and Riverside
Counties make up a region of California known as the Inland
Empire. A 2007 Brookings Institution report predicted the
fast-growing region needs to appeal to skilled workers and
industries and build on the optimism that has led
many newcomers to the region.
The county plans to award
a 12-month pact with a one-year option.
Deadline for proposals
is January 13 with questions due by Dec. 30. The RFP is
H&K SCORES OLYMPIC GOLD
Hill & Knowlton is
the highest paid consultant to the Chicago 2016 Olympic
bid, according to the Chicago Tribune.
The WPP Group unit has
received $2.1M since July 2006 from the Olympic committee.
WPP tops No. 2 on the
list, Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, the Windy City architectural
firm that has collected $1.1M.
The U.S. Olympic Committee
tapped Chicago as U.S. bid city for the Games on April 14,
`07. The International Olympic Committee will select the
host for the `16 Games next October.
Chicago 2016 estimates
the economic impact of the Games will total $22.5B of activity
in Illinois, of which $13.7B will be in the city.
The organization predicts
the Games will create 315K jobs from`11 to `21.
Tootelian & Assocs.
complied that study. The results were announced Dec. 11
and discounted business and tourism that is anticipated
whether or nor Chicago wins the Games.
Chicago 2016 got into
the Christmas spirit last week with the opening of the official
city bid merchandise shop in the Macys on State Street.
Edition, December 24, 2008, Page 2
HITS PENTAGON PR PROGRAM
Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense in charge of the Pentagon
PR program America Supports You was operating
the campaign in a questionable and unregulated manner
while spending millions on an outside PR firm, according
to a Defense Dept. audit.
said the program, which was run by PR firm Susan Davis International
up until the fall, created confusion with the creation of
a private non-profit under the Defense Dept.-backed ASY
name to solicit private funding (against DoD policy) and
opening the possibility for misuse of funds.
said issues that were found were referred to the Defense
Dept.s Inspector General for investigation of potential
misconduct of senior officials.
Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Liaison
and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Internal Communications,
Allison Barber, oversees the four-year-old ASY program.
Auditors said that office provided broad statements of work
and inadequate oversight for nearly $9M in charges by Susan
Davis Intl for its work.
report noted that in fiscal year 2007, the Assistant Secretary
procured the equivalent of more than 11 full-time PR managers
and executives from the PR firm at rates from $312K to $662K.
It also said SDI was reimbursed for charges not allowed
under federal rules.
than $9M in funds for the ASY program were inappropriately
transferred from the Stars and Stripes newspaper,
part of the American Forces Information Service, the audit
statement said, and officials from the newspaper have lost
visibility of $4.1M transferred to the PR program.
report on the ASY program, completed at the request of the
Deputy Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs, coincides
with another audit released Dec. 12 detailing inappropriate
funding between the PR and propaganda units of the Defense
The report outlines the
lush spending by the Defense Dept. on the ASY program. From
2005-07, $9.2M was appropriated from the AFIS ($5.4M) and
the Global War on Terror ($3.8M) supplemental budget. Another
$3.1M was kicked in for 2008 from the War on Terror budget.
The audit said the SDI
PR firm received six contracts from 2004-07 for more than
$8.8M, in addition to a six-month bridge pact and a new
contract in May 2008 that couldve stretched to five
years and $15.3M had it not been cut in the wake of the
DOW CORNING SHINES ON APCO
APCO Worldwide is serving
as Dow Cornings Washington representative as the joint
venture of Dow Chemical and Corning Inc. seeks federal support
for its solar power initiatives.
In May, DC opened its
solar solutions applications center in Freeland, Mich. to
evaluate and develop materials used to manufacture solar
On Dec. 15, CEO Stephanie
Burns announced a $3B investment with Hemlock Semiconductors
to expand production of polysilicons in Hemlock, Mich.,
and at a new plant slated for Clarksville, Tenn.
EPISCOPAL CHURCH GETS NEW
The Episcopal Church,
which has faced turmoil over doctrine and homosexuality
in its Anglican congregation and clergy, has brought in
a new chief strategist for internal and external communications
based in New York.
Ann Rudig, VP and creative
director for Cincinnati firm Northlich and a member of the
churchs southern Ohio diocese, was unanimously recommended
by a search committee and tapped by presiding Bishop Katharine
She steps into the role
vacated by Canon Robert Williams, who led communications
for four tumultuous years before resigning in June.
The church, which has
2.4 million followers in the U.S., saw hundreds of conservative
U.S. congregations split from the national denomination
to form an independent church last year over disagreements
in ritual and doctrine, as well as a rift that started in
2003 when a gay bishop, Gene Robinson, was consecrated in
Jefferts Schori, the only
female leader in the worldwide church, has allowed same-sex
unions in dioceses of the U.S. church, which is also facing
criticism from millions of members abroad.
Rudig takes the title
of director of communications and supervises a staff of
15 people at the Church Center in Manhattan, which houses
its Episcopal Books and Resources, Life Media, digital communications
and public affairs units. She had worked pro bono on communications
for the churchs southern Ohio diocese.
Earlier, Rudig held posts
in Ohio and New York as creative director for LexisNexis
and a senior executive for HSR Business to Business.
She was chosen by a search
committee comprised of communications execs and church officials
from around the U.S.
FD, JF WORK CONSTELLATION
FD and Joele Frank, Wilkinson
Brimmer Katcher are working Constellation Energys
sale of a $4.5 billion stake in its nuclear energy operations
to Electricite de France SA.
EDF Development, a subsidiary
of the French energy company, is taking a 49.99 percent
stake in Constellation Energy Nuclear Group, which includes
the Calvert Cliffs plant in Maryland and New Yorks
Nine Mile Point station, among other nuke power facilities.
In addition to in-house
teams for the companies, Joele Frank directors Barrett Golden,
Kelly Sullivan and Eric Brielmann in New York are supporting
media relations for EDF in the U.S. regarding the deal.
FDs Kal Goldberg
in New York and Michael Geczi in Chicago are working analyst
and investor relations for Constellation Energy.
The deal allowing Constellation
to stay independent comes after Warren Buffett buoyed the
company amid a cash crisis earlier this year with a $1 billion
investment and a September agreement to take over the company
for nearly $5 billion.
The New York Times noted Dec. 18 that Buffett will more than double the $1
billion he invested from a deal break fee, cash and stock.
Edition, December 24, 2008, Page 3
is not anti-democratic because it frustrates the will
of the people, writes Newsweek columnist Robert
Samuelson in the Dec. 22 issue.
he says, it is an expression of democracy because
lobbyists sharpen debate by providing an outlet for
more constituencies and giving government more information.
notes that political scientist James Thurber of American
University has estimated the size of the lobbying community
in Washington, D.C., at 261,000.
includes 16,000 registered lobbyists who are required to
report under the 1995 Lobbying Disclosure Act, a gain of
50% since 1998.
community also includes hordes of PR consultants,
ad managers, Internet advisers, and policy experts,
Work for Politicians
Ron Culp, Ketchum executive
who operates the culpwrit.com career advice blog, recently
cited three PR grads who have started careers in political
One took an unpaid press
internship with the office of the Chicago mayor, worked
at a utility, and is now President-Elect Barack Obamas
Illinois press secretary.
Another landed a job in
the office of First Lady Laura Bush and then a post with
the Energy Dept., while a third is now legislative assistant
to Rep. John Shimkus (R-Illinois).
Lobbying is modern
marketing: trying to transform a groups narrow interest
into something perceived, rightly or wrongly, as serving
the broad public interest, says Samuelson.
He notes that while business
has powerful lobbyists, so do others such as
AARP for retirees, the AFL-CIO for unions, and the Center
on Budget and Policy Priorities for the poor.
He expects the lobbying
community to expand under Obama.
Bara Vaida, lobbying reporter
for the National Journal, has predicted the Obama
Administration will be a bonanza for K street,
where many lobbying firms are located.
Says Samuelson: There
will be a vast mobilization of interests, from radiologists
to renewable-energy producers; from mutual funds to hospitals.
The National Capital Chapter
of the PR Society, with more than 1,400 members, is by far
the biggest of the 109 PRS chapters.
In second place is the
Georgia chapter with more than 800 members.
AP STAFFERS STAGE BYLINE STRIKE
Associated Press reporters
and photographers went on a byline strike Dec. 16 to protest
contract talks between their union and AP management.
AP staffers say management
proposals would threaten job security, dramatically raise
medical costs and freeze wages. The News Media Guild represents
the 1,400 editorial, technology and support staff at AP.
Staffers point to solid
revenues for the AP over the last two years but management
fears a rough patch in 2009. The AP is also facing a potential
challenge from CNN, which has said it is assembling its
own wire service. Management has said it welcomes that challenge.
The union and management
have been in negotiations since Oct. 21. Management proposed
a wage freeze for the first year of a two-year pact, with
a two percent boost in the second year. The Guild countered
with a 10 percent pay hike but says it is willing to negotiate.
the tough times, but they also understand that quality journalism
at AP means attracting and retaining the best employees,
said Guild president Tony Winton, in a statement.
Staffers were also refusing
to use personal vehicles, phones and other equipment as
part of the protest, which began Dec. 14 and was scheduled
to extend through the end of the week.
TRIBUNE ADDS KINDLE TITLE
Tribune has launched a
consumer and personal finance magazine distributed exclusively
for the Amazon Kindle, its second title published for that
electronic device. The title, CASH: Personal Finance for
Real People, is published weekly and is available for $.49
an issue or $1.49 a month.
It is the second Kindle
title for Tribune Media Services, the syndication arm of
Tribune, after the previously launched Opinionated journal
Content is drawn from
TMS titles like U.S. News and World Report, Kiplingers and the Los Angeles Times.
MERIDA TO WAPO AME POST
Kevin Merida becomes assistant
managing editor for national news at the Washington Post on Jan. 5.
The 15-year WaPO veteran
joined from the Dallas Morning News. He has covered
the White House, Capitol Hill and politics. Merida co-authored
books on Clarence Thomas and Barack Obama.
Another WaPo author, Rajiv
Chandrasekaran, has been upped to associate editor to guide
national security stories.
He wrote Imperial
Life in the Emerald City, based on reporting from
Baghdads Green Zone.
TONER DIES AT 54
Robin Toner, the first
female national political correspondent at the New York
Times, has died of colon cancer. She was 54.
Toner spent almost 25
years at the Times, covering a range of issues includes
taxes, healthcare and Social Security.
The NYT obit praised Toners
fact-checking and attention to detail. Of 1,900-plus articles
with her byline, only six corrections needed to be published.
Toner was the NYTs
lead reporter on the Bill Clinton campaign in `92. She began
her career at the Charleston Daily Mail in West Virginia
and reported for the Atlanta Journal and Constitution before moving to the NYT.
Toner was married to Peter
Gosselin, chief economic correspondent for the Los Angeles
news continued on next page)
Edition, December 24, 2008, Page 4
MEDIA TACKLE CHANGES
dropped a bombshell on TVland earlier this month with the
announcement that Jay Leno will become prime-time fare.
That news was tossed on a broadcast business undergoing
a profound overhaul.
media reps told an Entertainment Publicists Professional
Society workshop in Los Angeles this month what the restructuring
TV business model is changing clearly faster than anyone
thought, said Joe Adalian, deputy editor and columnist,
TV Week. The writers strike set that up, and
I think we are going to see more events like this happen
like this over the next year. Some people say it was a negative,
while others will say it is a reflection of the business.
all about making sure your audience can turn to your site
to get the story, whether you are two minutes earlier or
later than the competition, said Adalian who also
writes for Variety and the New York Post.
gone are the days where you hold stuff, said Melissa
Grego, executive editor, Broadcasting and Cable, who said
she was working on breaking three major stories.
really are driven weekly by a cover story, which is a multi-paged,
in-depth report you cant replicate like breaking news
such as the Leno deal, said Grego. The timing
of the attacks in Mubai was tricky for a lot of the U.S.
TV organizations to cover. Marissa Gunthery, who covers
the TV business, did a nice job in an analytical piece that
showed how all those foreign news budget cutbacks came into
play with the lack of coverage in Mubai. It was a huge story.
1,200-word story was posted online and got so much interaction
at various journalists websites; we took excerpts
and printed some of the talk backs from the conversations
online. The most fun part of the story was encouraging our
readers to go back online, explained Grego.
you can push a story ahead in the print edition of our magazines
it gives the story legs beyond what you have to print on
a day-to-day basis online, explained Alan Frutkin,
correspondent/producer, Nielsen Business Media (Hollywood
Reporter, Billboard, MediaWeek, and Backstage).
was caught in a middle of doing a feature on NBCs
Night Rider when the news came down it was cancelled: I
was invited out to the set to do a video report on the executive
producer and the Night Rider show, but before we packaged
and uploaded our story, it changed to NBC cutting back on
the episodes. Its tough and thats how fast news
job has changed too for Frutkin. In addition to writer,
he also produces video reports online for all of Nielsons
platforms. It indicates how quickly the industry and
trade journalism is changing to meet the needs of what users
and readers want, he said.
a little jealous, because breaking news is not really something
we can do, Juan Morales, editor-in-chief of Emmy
Magazine, which publishes six issues a year for mostly
subscribed TV and Arts Academy members. We do more
of analysis and compiling of the TV events, and were
all connected in the sense of being the media, we focus
on what it means when NBC Chief Jeff Zucker announces hes
doing away with primetime television. Realistically since
we are a bimonthly, we really cant do anything until
February or when the new show (Jay Leno) premiers.
also said in regards to the NBC fallout announcements, Strictly
as an observer of the industry I thought it was interesting
that there are a lot of appendages of stories, not only
the announcement itself, but what about the story about
competition for bookings between Leno and Conan OBrien
being on the West Coast, at the same network.
admitted that the Emmy Magazine doesnt have the resources
to covering breaking news, but does have a website
and we rely on publicists to provide us with the information
so we can provide to our members.
MURDOCH ABANDONS NYSE
News Corp. is transferring its stock listing from the New
York Stock Exchange to the NASDAQ on Dec. 29.
The move, according to
Reed Nolte, senior VP-IR, is to ensure that our stockholders
have access to the most current trading technology possible.
That is coupled with a cost-effective structure.
The Big Board contends
that NASDAQ bought the listing with a significant
advertising commitment to News Corp, Richard Adomonis,
senior VP at the NYSE, told the New York Times.
He speculates that NYSEs
proposal to increase advertising in News Corp. properties
such as Fox News, Fox Business News and the Wall Street
Journal did not measure up to the deal offered by the NASDAQ,
which does not discuss advertising strategy with the press.
Shares of News Corp. trade
at $8.93, off a $21.90 52-week high. The company is still
waiting for a return on its $5.6B acquisition of Dow Jones
and Co. made a year ago.
News Corp. does not break
out earnings for its newspaper operations, but noted the
DJ&C unit reported a $4M operating loss during its first-quarter
CARNEY TAKES BIDEN COMMS.
Jay Carney, deputy Washington
bureau chief for Time, is jumping to PR as director
of communications for Vice President-elect Joe Biden.
Carney is married to ABC
News senior correspondent Claire Shipman and joins traveling
campaign press secretary and transition communications chief
Linda Douglass as the second national reporter to join the
Obama administration. Douglass was an ABC correspondent.
Carney, whose full name
is James, has written about politics for 15 of his 20 years
He moved to Washington
in 1993 to cover the Clinton White House was on Air Force
One covering President Bush on Sept. 11, 2001.
Carney also served as
Moscow and Miami bureau chief.
24, 2008, Page 5
OF PR FIRMS
ALIGNS WITH CRISIS PLANNER
IPREX global network of independent PR firms said it has
partnered with U.K.-based OCTO, a crisis management and
response planning firm.
sees its services as a complement to its communication offerings.
was a focus of a recent meeting of the groups Europe,
Middle East and Africa partners in London, where it launched
a handbook by members of crisis case studies. OCTO has worked
with Shell, Pfizer and BAE Systems, among other clients,
along with the British and Irish governments. It is not
a communications firm but works with PR professionals, including
IPREX London partner Surrey House.
FINEMAN IDs 08 GAFFES
AIGs retreats and
clueless auto chiefs topped San Francisco-based Fineman
PRs annual top 10 list of PR blunders.
Private emails at the
U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs that appeared to play down
high suicide rates among vets, David Lettermans verbal
assault on Sen. John McCain after the candidate canceled
an appearance on his show, and Nikes diss of the winning
runner in the San Francisco Womens Marathon rounded
out Finemans top five.
In other news, the firm
has branded its three-year-old Latino and multicultural
communications unit as Mosaico. Fineman said it made the
move in response to growing interest in the sector and to
mark the firms 20th anniversary. Juan Lezama was named
director of the unit. Xoom Corp., a Net-based money
transfer company, is its first client as it expands to Mexico.
PIERCE MATTIE TABS BEAUTY
Pierce Mattie PR, New
York, identified its top 10 ingredients that consumer will
here more about in 2009.
The firm says among the
trends for the upcoming year will be argan oil for skin
and haircare, acai, a Brazilian berry used in anti-aging
products, Goji berries, a Himalayan berry used in perfumes,
and blueberries, expected to be used in anti-aging products.
Also on the rader is myrrh,
tumeric, probiotics, baobab, acerola and palmitoyl tripeptide-3,
a so-called cosmeceutical used to fight facial
lines and wrinkles.
Corbett, past president of the International PR Association
and PR Societys New York Chapter, and current chairman
of Corbett PR, received the Make a Difference Award
from Hempstead, N.Y., town supervisor Kate Murray. The attorney
was cited for his pro bono legal services to families and
local churches, as well as service as a Boy Scout leader
and other endeavors. Corbett is a former Nasaau County assistant
district attorney. Info: corbettpr.com.
New Orleans, won a Gold Davey Award for work on the Campaign
for Your Cause, a web-based competition that had Louisiana
residents determine how a $200K grant from a local Burger
King would be divided among non-profits. The competition
garnered more than 700K online votes. The International
Academy of the Visual Arts gives out the Daveys.
York/DataMotion, formerly CertifiedMail, data flow solutions,
as AOR for PR and analyst relations.
New York, and Fisburn
Street Systems, for PR and analyst relations starting in
January. The firms take over for London-based Metia.
PR, New York/Dr.
B. Todd Schaeffer, consmetic and endoscopic surgeon, for
PR for his practice.
New York/Oregon Aesthetic Technologies, for PR for its ANSR
and ANSR topical line of acne treatment.
N.J./CURE Auto Insurance and NJ PURE Medical Malpractice
Insurance, sister companies, for a public information and
media relations campaign including the expansion of CURE
Visitor Center Corporation, as marketing agency of record
over several competing agencies. The Center, located across
from the Liberty Bell, provides regional event and attraction
information about Independence National Historical Park,
the City of Philadelphia and the countryside.
Washington, D.C./Society for Human Resources Management,
trade group, to boost its I AM SHRM advertising
campaign. The work includes ad testing, branding,
advertising and media planning.
Smith Business Development,
Washington, D.C./dna13, PR software, as AOR for PR. Mike
Smith is a former technology VP at Edelman. His firm will
be working with Ottawa, Ontario-based dna13 as it launches
new software and services.
Washington, D.C./Garden State Ethanol, N.J.-based renewable
fuel developer, for government relations focused on appropriations
and transportation funding.
industrial design and styling software developer, for PR
during its acquisition by Michigan-based Altair Engineering.
The firm is handling ongoing media relations, speaking,
awards, marketing comms. strategy and counsel for the client.
& Young Marketing and PR,
Ardus Medical, as AOR, including development and implementation
of an ongoing, integrated marketing, PR and sales support
& Brinker PR,
Dallas/The Beck Group, developer, as AOR for PR. L&B
will focus on its construction and design services, technology,
sustainability efforts and global humanitarian work.
Marketing & PR, Irvine, Calif./Malibu Fish Grill,
fast-casual seafood eatery chain based in Huntington
Beach, Calif. MM is handling media relations and overall
Edition, December 24, 2008, Page 6
VETS ONLINE SAMPLES
Marketing Research Association said it has launched a research
company review program to vet and standardize online sample
program includes self-review by sample providers and an
internal review by an independent researcher tapped by MRA.
Results will be posted on the MRA website, mra-net.org.
group said it is aiming to provide more transparency in
online research and create a clear understanding of panel
supplier practices and data quality.
has also posted a guidebook online for clients of online
ARA CURBS COPY WITH SERVICE
ARAcontent, a feature
article and placement service, said it is offering a Quick
Read program of condensed, 250-word articles to answer
a trend toward truncated copy online.
ARA points to the Project
for Excellence in Journalisms recent State of
the News Media report noting more than half of newspapers
say that their average story length decreased in the past
A year earlier, the PEJs
report said the top reason people cited for not reading
the newspaper was lack of time. The Quick Read service includes
two high-res photos, online access to reports of placements,
hard-copy and electronic clippings. Cost is about $5K per
SIMON AIMS FOR ONLINE VIDEO
D S Simon Productions,
New York, has unveiled an Internet media tour service aimed
at placing video content on the Net with a midrange
President Doug Simon said
he is trying to fill the middle ground between a simple
multimedia release and an elaborate online endeavor like
JC Pennys recent Beware of the Doghouse
The so-called IMT includes
creation of a social media-enabled microsite, outreach to
bloggers and online journalists, placements on social media
and news websites, syndication to leading portals, a digital
release and strategy consultation.
the recent spin-off from Philips Electronics that operates
the Teletrax media monitoring service, said that Teletrax
is expected to deliver more than 40 percent year on year
growth for 2008 compared with 2007. Philips is a limited
partner in the spin-off, which is backed by Prime Technology
Marketing Communications, Johnstown, Colo., has teamed
with San Franciscos AMI
Conference Management to provide an event management
and marketing package. The firms have worked together at
NVidia NVision, itSMF USA Fusion Conferences and the Hewlett-Packard
Software Forum and said they sought to formalize the relationship.
Services include strategic planning, site selection, theme
development, design, registration and attendee services,
speaker management and press relations. Info: Johnny Hyde, [email protected].
Brophy has left Ketchum for a senior VP, media relations,
slot at GolinHarris in Chicago. She also serves as national
media director for the firm. In Washington, D.C., GH has
reorganized its public affairs operation under the GolinHarris
Public Affairs. Lane
Bailey, a 10-year GH veteran who heads the firms
D.C. office, was named president of the unit with Susan
Corsini as managing director.
Sanders, former enterprise reporter at Atlanta
Journal Constitution and city editor at the Augusta
Chronicle, to Hayslett Group, Atlanta, as senior counsel.
He was a PR major at the Univ. of Georgias Grady School
of Journalism. Dori
Moss, former academic affairs director for the Consulate
General of Israels Atlanta office and a recent masters
degree graduate, jonis as an A/E.
Tornetta, account manager at Godfrey, to the American
Red Cross Penn-Jersey Blood Services Region, as regional
Pasco, account director at PCGCampbell, to Hermanoff
PR, Farmington Hills, Mich., as manager of client services.
He manged the Ford account in 10 years at PCG.
Johnson, a finance and IR executive in a 32-year
career at J.C. Penny Corp., to grocery market chain SUPERVALU,
based in Minneapolis, as VP of investor relations, starting
January 5. David Oliver,
who held the post on an interim basis, continues in a leadership
role in its finance unit.
Womack to executive VP, Southern Company, and president
of external affairs, effective January 1, 2009, overseeing
federal and state affairs and corporate communication initiatives.
He is EVP, external affairs for Georgia Power, SCs
Zale to VP of investor relations, Moodys Corp.,
New York. She leads all IR, including communications and
outreach to its global shareholders. She formerly led IR
at DealerTrack Holdings.
Vadala to VP, Warner Communications, Manchester-by-the-Sea,
Mass. She was former North and Latin America PR manager
for Aspen Technologies.
Gessert to VP, marketing and communications, REVShare,
a Temecula, Calif.-based cost-per-action advertising network.
Neumeier, a principal at Atlanta-based Arketi Group,
was elected president of PR Societys Georgia chapter
for 2009. In addition to president-elect, he was treasurer,
secretary and at-large board member of the chapter. With
nearly 1,000 members, Georgia is the second-largest chapter
of PRS behind the National Capital group.Timothy
Hussey, director of marketing for the Emory School
of Law, was named president-elect for 2009.
Blum, senior VP of public affairs for Yum! Brands,
was named to the board of directors for Kindred Healthcare,
Louisville, Ky. He serves on the $4 billion healthcare services
companys compliance and quality, and audit committees.
Edition, December 24, 2008, Page 7
CASE SPARKS PR RESPONSE
staff and outside firms are working with financial institutions
wrapped up in the alleged multibillion-dollar fraud scheme
by former NASDAQ chairman Bernard Madoff.
told employees that losses from his apparent Ponzi scheme
could hit $50 billion, according to the FBI. Fairfield Greenwich
Group, a New York-based hedge fund that has worked with
Madoff for nearly 20 years, issued a statement from its
director of communications with Sitrick and Company on Dec.
12 to say it was examining the extent of potential losses
like numerous other money managers and investors who
appear to have been similarly victimized.
$7.5 billion of its $14.1 billion in assets under management
were invested in vehicles connected to Madoff as of Nov.
1 FGG said.
firms are also stepping up communications as the opportunity
for shareholder class action suits surfaced. Two firms,
Millberg and Seeger Weiss said Dec. 12 that they have already
signed up dozens of clients who they say are victims of
the stunning fraud. New York-based Strategy
XXI is advising on PR for the law firms.
Hastings Group, an Arlington, Va., PR firm, is working with
the Securities Investor Protection Corp., the Congressionally
funded reserve fund that helps investors at failed brokerage
Auletta & Co. is helping Sterling Equities, a real estate
venture owned by the Wilpon family, deal with Madoff. The
Wilpons have admitted to investing millions with Madoff
over a number of years.
Auletta told the New York Times Dec. 18 that Sterling
is shocked by recent events and, like all investors,
will continue to monitor the situation.
Lohnes Government Strategies dropped Bernard L. Madoff Investment
Securities from its roster on Dec. 12. It inherited that
account in September after key staffers at Lent, Scrivner
& Roth joined the firm.
Lent III, executive VP at DLGS, headed the Madoff business.
is son of the former New York Congressman who established
LS&R, which received more than $500K from Madoffs
operation since 2000, according to federal records.
CKPR RUNS FOR THE ROSES
CKPR and sister unit Cramer-Krasselt
will run PR for the Run for the Roses this year.
The independent agencies have been tapped by Churchill Downs
Incorporated to develop a communications plan and brand
identity for the Kentucky Derby and its companion race,
the Kentucky Oaks.
The 135th Derby will run
on May 2, 2009, and the Oaks will be held a day earlier,
on May 1. CKPRs New York office leads the account
with support from the advertising unit.
CHI said the work will
have a strong emphasis on PR as well as integrated marketing
Dave Tompkins, senior
VP for CHI, said CK will help with a broader strategy
to help promote horse racings premier events
as well as introduce the races to people not familiar with
FD GAINS AT BRUNSWICKS
Dow Chemical has yanked
PR business from Brunswick Group in the wake of a $5M insider
trading charge brought against the husband of a BG partner
who allegedly used confidential information from his wife,
Nina Devlin, who was not charged. The chemical giant consolidated
its financial PR account at FD.
A Dow spokesperson told
the Financial Times that it is "shocked and disappointed
by the recent events." Dow has "taken the prudent
action of temporarily suspending all business relationships
with Brunswick Group, pending the outcome of the investigation
by the Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange
Brunswick has hired a
law firm to carry launch and internal probe, and claims
that it has received "phenomenal support" from
The U.S. attorney's office
for New York charged Matthew Devlin, a former Lehman Brothers
sales rep, along with two day traders, a brokerage sales
exec in the scheme. Devlin pleaded guilty on Dec. 16 to
four counts of conspiracy to commit insider trading and
one count of securities fraud.
"The husband of a
Brunswick employee has been arrested by U.S. authorities
for using information obtained illegally from her and without
her knowledge, which has then passed to third parties,"
Brunswick said in a statement.
Nina Devlin was previously
with Citigate Dewe Rogerson and Taylor Rafferty. She handles
M&As, proxy fights and other financial assignments.
PR FIRM AMONG DREIER CREDITORS
Drier LLP, the bankrupt
New York law firm whose founder stands accused of bilking
as much as $380M from investors, apparently cant pay
its PR bills.
Dreier founder Marc Dreier
was arrested Dec. 7 for his alleged role in defrauding investors
of as much as $380M.
Van Prooyen Greenfield,
a New York PR firm that specializes in legal communications,
is owed more than $270K by the 250-lawyer firm, Dreier LLP,
according to its Chapter 11 filing.
Amy Greenfield, managing
partner at VPG, is a former VP in Edelmans issues
and crisis management practice and earlier was at Fleishman-Hillard.
She told ODwyers that the law firm was a client
for five years.
VPG is claiming it is
owed $273,991.77 and is among the law firms 30 largest
creditors, including, among others Westlaw ($441K) and American
WWE WRESTS ZIMMERMAN
World Wrestling Entertainment
has hired Robert Zimmerman as VP-PR & corporate communications.
He is a 17-year veteran
at Dan Klores Communications and Edelman, where he handled
corporate, media affairs and crisis work for clients such
as Howard Stern, Sean Diddy Combs, Bill OReilly,
and Donatella and Allegra Versace.
Zimmerman also was spokesman
for Fox News from '98 to '04 serving as VP-media relations
handling the channel, radio, Internet and overall press
Edition, December 24, 2008,
REVIEW OF 2008 ____________
PR scene in 2008 was dominated by the bursting of the hyped-up financial and housing bubbles in the last
quarter. Corporate and agency employment came under heavy
own terrorists in Wall Street caused loss of jobs,
homes, college educations, etc., on a scale unimagined by
foreign terrorists. Health and lives will be lost because
of inability to afford healthcare.
PR veteran Ted Pincus, who has weathered seven downturns,
told PR firm owners to skip their own pay to keep clients
articles analyzing the collapse were in the December and January issues of Vanity Fair which noted, as
did syndicated columnist Michelle Malkin, that many sub-prime
loans went to minorities including illegal aliens. "Diversity"
was practiced in home loans with catastrophic results.
for the debacle were numerous but the best and shortest
was: Americans had always paid their mortgages.
shenanigans involved in credit default swaps, collateralized
debt obligations, derivatives, etc., boil down to one word-hype-which
many also consider to be the definition of PR. Financial
instruments were oversold on a massive scale and the few
doubters were ignored.
was a big ingredient. Not only were regulators and
reporters kept out of the loop, but many financiers lost
track of what was going on.
responsibility was also the main game as big Wall
St. houses went public. John Gutfreund, ex-Salomon Brothers,
agreed with Michael Lewis in the Dec./Jan. Portfolio that
the move shifted risk from the partners to the public.
investment bank owned by its employees would have
levered itself 35-1 or held $50 billion in sub-par CDO's,"
gave mortgages to homebuyers on the flimsiest grounds and shifted the problem of collecting to others. The morally
bankrupt rating agencies (Moodys, Fitch, S&P)
blessed the rotten fruit, said Portfolio.
spent hundreds of millions via PR wire services supposedly
practicing disclosure. Zillions of releases
went out with mostly inconsequential news while financial
disclosure was absent where it was needed most.
era of the electronic release, which mostly displaced PR/press personal relationships, may be over since the SEC
has said companies, in some instances, may put news on their
own websites. Companies can also now just send a few words
via the PR wires with a link to their own sites, cutting
down on per-word charges.
ranked Lorry Lokey, co-founder in 1961 of Business
Wire with his wife Eva, as No. 26 among "American Philanthropists"
with gifts of $433M from 2004-2008.
in a remarkably candid profile in the magazine of
his alma mater, Univ. of Oregon, said his profits were obscene-amounting
to $100K every workday. He said PR Newswire
in 1986 said to him, You will be run over
were really trying to kill us, if he didn't sell out
other companies are no doubt told they will be run over by bigger competitors
which is one reason for all the mergers. Lokey disappointed
us by not mentioning Eva's 29 years with BW in telling its
story to UofO. They divorced in 1990.
for the near-death of the U.S. auto companies abound
including high labor and health costs, better-made foreign
we recall the line from King Kong. It wasn't
bullets that killed the beast, but beauty.
It wasn't economics or even [slightly] better foreign cars
that killed U.S. automakers, but fashion-it became smart
to own a foreign car. People are defined by the car they
letter to the New York Times said tax credits should be given to those who buy cars from the Big
Three. But public sentiment is heavily against U.S.
automakers, GM VP Steve Harris told the Institute for PR.
spent $8 million over nine years to Nov. 2008 to
have Tiger Woods sell Buicks (average age of purchasers
is 68). Derek Jeter continues to help Ford but this pair
was no match for all the James Bonds who drove Astin-Martins
in 22 movies.
ad congloms, whose stocks were battered more than most (down
50%+), turned to PR for salvation. WPPs Martin Sorrell
spoke at the Institute for PR on the renaissance
of PR (who said it had disappeared?). Omincom gave a bevy
of hitherto private statistics and even named some of its
acquisitions. It listed 32 banks it owes $3.1 billion to.
gave a mixed message in appearing at the IPR's signature event. He preached the gospel of social media
but did not socialize himself. He skipped the cocktail party
and dinner and spoke non-stop for 50 minutes without allowing
questions. He praised interactivity but did not practice
is a social butterfly compared to John Wren of OMC who has given four interviews in six years and has taken
the annual meeting out of New York five years in a row.
We hired reporters in those cities to question Wren but
they were rebuffed.
and Wren have made life difficult for their many PR operations by not letting them reveal revenues and staff
sizes since 2001. More than 200 independent PR operations,
meanwhile, document fees and staff every year. Many are
up 20% and more. Conglom PR units also miss out on the 12
switched to h.q. to Dublin, cancelled its London-traded shares and issued new ones to avoid new U.K. taxes.
It even changed its name from WPP Group to WPP. Its annual
meetings must now be in Dublin. But the U.K., hit by the
downturn, may cancel the taxes and negate the reason for
told the Financial Times June 30 that WPP may have
acquired too many companies (300+) since it was "difficult"
to control the "warring factions."
He also said much corporate
PR is focused on internal politics. It could be "argued,"
he said, that "most of the communication we coordinate
for clients is aimed at internal audiences rather than external
ones." PR's job is to keep everyone "on message"
and make sure no one talks to the press.
Committee to Protect Journalists, which tracks their
murders, in-action fatalities, and persecutions, lists 31
groups that contribute. None are PR.
PR Society board, dominated in 2008 by members from
the South, Southwest and West (13 of the 17) in 2009 will
have four new directors from the East-Steve Grant of D.C.,
Gail Winslow-Pine, Brentwood, N.H., Deborah Silverman, Buffalo,
and Lynn Appelbaum, New York.
of CCNY, is the first NY director since Phil Ryan served in 2004. He was robbed of a regular three-year term
by anti-NY politics. Appelbaum is a most reluctant director,
only taking the post after two nomination deadlines had
Yorkers were robbed of use of PRS h.q. by the move downtown in 2005. The chapter office was booted from h.q.
in 1992. Non-New Yorkers are exultant that they have taken
control of PRS in the so-called "Communications Capital
of the World" and the epicenter of East Coast liberalism.
It's partly a Red State vs. Blue State thing.
Donofrio, of Bethany, Conn., repped the Tri-State district in 2007-2008 and did nothing to push the unique
needs of NYC, whose PR/IR population dwarfs that of any
other city. PRS could easily afford a midtown library/info
center but staff/OOT directors would block it. PRS/NY, with
about 600 members, has not grown in ten years.
use of a Hunter College class to push the agenda of the Int'l Anticounterfeiting Coalition by using the fake
theft of a non-existent Coach handbag enraged some professors
and put the spotlight on corporate use of PR classes. Hunter
profs wanted students to hear about the labor abuses of
Coach as well as those of the counterfeiters.
wrote about the German Council for PR which publicizes
its enforcement activities, says PR is about "dialogue,
discourse and debate," and that there is no expiration
date on organizational wrong-doing. Maybe we should move
for PR of PRS consisted of chair Jeff Julin telling public figures to obey the PRS Code. He chastised
Scott McClellan for admitting he lied in behalf of President
Bush and sent copies of the Code Pledge to the Presidential
campaign teams, urging them to sign the pledges and stop
the mud-slinging. Julin and the board then flung a page
of mud at me in the September Tactics.
moves backfired. Andrew Cohen of CBS-TV was in stitches
over what he said was the equivalent of burglars having
a code against stealing. Neither campaign even acknowledged
Julin's request. The Denver Business Journal noted
that both already had "truth squads" to combat
The Congressional Quarterly noted Julin's quest but started off its article with, "They
are called flacks and spin doctors and it's usually not
meant in a nice way."
people who keep telling us to forget the past we
are responding with three quotes: "The past is never
dead. It's not even past" (Faulkner); "So we beat
on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into
the past" (Fitzgerald), and "Those who do not
remember the past are condemned to repeat it" (Santayana).
about the financial troubles of newspapers, James
Surowiecki said in the New Yorker (12/22) that the
audience is to blame. "We want access to everything,
we want it now, and we want it for free," he wrote.
country is in a pretty fix now because U.S. leaders forgot about 1929 and again let Wall Street run amok.
those who provide opinions are often attacked, Mark Twain
said in "The Privilege of the Grave" (reprinted
in 12/22 New Yorker) that the only way to have truly
free speech is to publish after death.