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Internet Edition, January 14, 2009, Page 1


The California Travel & Tourism Commission is circulating an RFP worth $300K for PR to increase the number of domestic and Canadian visitors to the Golden State. Edelman has the account and will pitch.

The CT&TC says tourism pumps nearly $100B into California’s economy, generating about $6B in state and local tax revenues. One million jobs are tied to tourism.

The Commission reports a 3.1 percent decrease in `07 visitor stays, though the number of out-of-state travelers jumped 16 percent. (Californians account for 82 percent of visitation.)

It is looking for a one-year program to “develop and execute a comprehensive, targeted and creative and brand-aligned PR program using a variety of channels and leveraging CT&TC’s advertising and marketing initiatives.”

California’s branding campaign is based on four core strategic messaging platforms: attitude (hedonistic, laid-back and open-minded with an anything goes mentality), snow (an alliance with ski resorts), wine & food and insider (scoops on living the California lifestyle).

The Commission wants interested parties to contact it by Jan. 28. Final proposals are due Feb. 25. Work begins July 1.

Bianca Williams is contracts manager. She is at 916/444-4429 and [email protected].


Former Fleishman-Hillard executive John Stodder filed court papers in U.S. 9th District Circuit of Appeals last week seeking a retrial of the fraud case connected with bilking Los Angeles’ Dept. of Water and Power.

He was convicted—along with his ex-boss Doug Dowie—and sentenced in `06 to 15 months in jail. Both men are free on appeal.

Stodder contends that a key witness, Monique Moret, in the case brought against him had a previously undisclosed reason to lie.

He claims Moret, the F-H staffer who was granted immunity, had a strong reason to curry favor with the prosecutor because her father was under criminal investigation in another case.

Louis Moret, who had denied any wrongdoing, wound up as a witness in that case and was not prosecuted.

Thom Mrozek, a spokesperson for the U.S. attorney’s office, said prosecutors were unaware of any connection between the cases, according to a report in the Los Angeles Times.

Dowie is expected to join Stodder in the appeal.


Qorvis Communications is distributing a release from the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Washington, touting the Kingdom’s humanitarian aid to the people of Gaza.

The initiative is dubbed the “Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Campaign to Provide Humanitarian Relief to the Palestinian People in Gaza.” It is part of a broader humanitarian effort to provide assistance to the “Palestinian people during this difficult time.”

The campaign is a venture of King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz, who kicked off the effort with an $8M donation; Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Culture and Information; Chambers of Commerce and Industry and provincial governments.

Saudi Arabia sent two cargo planes filled with 20 tons of medical supplies to Gaza on Dec. 30. and airlifted injured Palestinians to Saudi hospitals.

King Abdullah visited wounded Palestinians at the King Faisal Specialist Hotel, according to the Jan. 4 release from the Embassy’s press office.

Adel Al-Jubeir, Ambassador to the U.S., describes the campaign as an “effort by the Saudi people to help alleviate the tragic humanitarian situation of the people in Gaza.”


Travel veterans Joan Brower and Joan Bloom, who ran M Booth & Assocs.’ travel and lifestyle unit, have moved to The Dilenschneider Group.

Brower and Bloom jointly managed Hill & Knowlton’s travel & leisure operation prior to joining Booth in `01. The duo worked with TDG CEO Bob Dilenschneider when he headed H&K. They will now concentrate on beefing up TDG’s travel/tourism, wine & spirits and lifestyle client roster.

Before PR firm life, Brower edited Signature, the monthly Diners Club publication, and Bloom worked as a radio broadcaster reporting on travel and food/wine.

At Booth, Brower and Bloom were senior VPs. The firm’s travel/lifestyle clients include Greenland, U.S. Virgin Islands, Frommer’s and Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce.

Margi Booth told O’Dwyer’s her firm’s travel unit will not lose a step following the departure of “The Joans.” She is thrilled to replace the duo with Brad Laney, a 13-year travel PR veteran who has been with Booth since `02.

His partnership-building and social media skills are going to help clients develop stronger brand positioning in the marketplace, said Booth.


Internet Edition, January 14, 2009, Page 2


GolinHarris is trimming costs in an effort to avoid cuts that could “negatively impact” its rank and file, according to CEO Fred Cook.

GH, one of the five key PR units of IPG’s Constituency Management Group, is eliminating company meetings, cutting down on travel and keeping an eye on new business costs as part of an overarching strategy to cut costs, according to a memo sent by Cook on Jan. 5 to managing directors of the firm.

Interpublic’s CMG division also includes Weber Shandwick, MWW Group, DeVries and Carmichael Lynch Spong.

PR staffers across the IPG firms who are scheduled for yearly salary reviews will now have to wait 16 months; 18-month reviews are extended to 24 months, and reviews conducted every two years have been suspended.

“Our competitors and many other companies have already initiated much more drastic measures,” Cook said in the memo. “It is our hope to avoid any cutbacks that would negatively impact our people, but it has become increasingly clear that we must respond appropriately to the budget reductions we are receiving from some of our clients.”

Cook has not returned a call about the memo.

Harris Diamond, who heads CMG and its Weber Shandwick unit, has not returned a call.

A Reuters report in December said IPG CEO Michael Roth planned to cut up to 2,000 staffers from the IPG ranks, although IPG declined to comment on that dispatch.

IPG competitors Omnicom (3,500 slated to be cut) and WPP have both said they will eliminate headcount in 2009. The struggling auto sector has particularly affected marketing business and General Motors is IPG’s top client.

‘Strong Headwinds’

Cook urged staffers in the memo not to be “overly concerned,” stressed that GH’s “core business” is “solid,” and noted the firm just finished one of its best years on record. “But we are facing strong headwinds in 2009 which will require us to redouble our efforts to keep our current clients happy while aggressively looking for new ones,” he wrote.

Group directors at GH had “team meetings” on Jan. 6 to address the new salary policies.


William Lynn, senior VP-government operations at Raytheon, has been tapped by Barack Obama as deputy defense secretary. He had been a registered lobbyist for the defense contractor until June. Lynn will be in charge of day-to-day Pentagon operations, if Congress approves the nomination.

The Washington Post predicts Lynn will oversee Defense Secretary Robert Gates’ program to overhaul DOD’s weapons acquisition activity.

Prior to joining Raytheon, Lynn was the Pentagon’s comptroller and chief budget officer. He also was director of DOD’s program analysis and evaluation.

Lynn joined the Pentagon in`93 after serving as Sen. Ted Kennedy’s legislative counsel.


J.C. Romero, a pitcher for the World Champion Philadelphia Phillies, has retained West Coast PR firm Outside Eyes as he handles the fallout from a positive drug test for steroids and 50-game suspension from Major League Baseball.

Romero’s suspension has raised eyebrows around the sport because his positive test came during the baseball season and he was able to pitch in the deciding game in the World Series because of an appeal, which was denied this week.

A Philadelphia Inquirer report said MLB offered the left-handed relief pitcher a shorter suspension if he forfeited the right to pitch in the postseason. “I think a scientist will tell you that the [banned] substance was no longer in [Romero’s] system, but the appearance of it - you prefer to avoid,” MLB executive VP Rob Manfred told the Inquirer, adding that he did not believe the Phillies’ title is tainted.

Outside Eyes, based in Newport Beach, has a roster of consultants and says it builds a custom team for clients. The firm said crisis management is a major part of its business and that all clients come from word of mouth referral.

Bonnie Bernstein, a reporter for ESPN and ABC Sports, is listed as a member of the firm’s strategy team but she is not working on the Romero account.

OE, which is owned by The Crawford Group of Naples, Fla., was founded by Reed Dickens, a White House assistant press secretary who worked in the current Bush administration.


Former eBay CEO Meg Whitman has brought in Sacramento-based Randle Communications as she reportedly mulls a run for governor of California.

Randle is the PR firm led by Jeff Randle, a veteran Golden State Republican political operative who was chief of staff to ex-Gov. Pete Wilson and a top advisor for Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Randle’s current clients include the California Realtors Assn., University of Phoenix and the Golden State Water Company. Mitch Zak, a partner of the firm who directed coalitions for Schwarzenegger’s campaigns, is handling media relations for Whitman.

Schwarzenegger is barred from running again in 2010 because of term limits.

Whitman, who backed Sen. John McCain for president and was believed to be a likely cabinet pick if he won, stepped down from the corporate boards of eBay, Procter & Gamble and DreamWorks Animation SKG at the end of 2008.


Lou Thompson, long-time CEO of National Investor Relations Institute, has joined Beacon Advisors as its D.C. representative.

He is to counsel publicly traded companies on governance, disclosure, environmental and social responsibility issues.

Since exiting NIRI in ’06, Thompson was IR consultant to Genesis Inc, and managing director at former SEC chief Harvey Pitt's Kalorama Partners.


Internet Edition, January 14, 2009, Page 3


Phil Bennett, managing editor of the Washington Post, has resigned after a four-year run as the paper’s No. 2 editor.

The 49-year-old Bennett said the appointment of Wall Street Journal veteran Marcus Brauchli as executive editor last summer makes it a “good time to do something new.”

Brauchli and Post publisher Katharine Weymouth both asked Bennett to stay, but he decided work with Washington Post Co. CEO Don Graham on a project regarding the future of journalism for a few months before plotting his next career move.

Brauchli had succeeded Leonard Downie, who held the executive editor job for 17 years.

Bennett joined the Post in `97 as deputy national editor in charge of national security, and become assistant managing editor for foreign news before taking the managing editor post.

He reported for the Boston Globe for 13 years, rising to become the paper’s Latin America correspondent and foreign editor.


The Buffalo News, which is owned by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, is offering buyouts to a third of its staff.

The paper has identified 300 people who are eligible for the offer, but does not plan to let go that amount of staffers.

The BN offered buyouts to a little more than 100 people last year. A dozen of them accepted.

The latest offer begins at $60K and rises according to length of time spent at the newspaper.


Meredith Corp. is closing Country Home magazine effective with the March issue due to the recessionary economy. The company will take $16M charge, which covers the shutdown and the shedding of 250 staffers companywide.

Stephen Lacy, CEO, noted that publishing and broadcast advertising generates 60 percent of the company’s revenue stream. He expects the economy will remain soft through the year.

Des Moines-based Meredith employs 3,500 workers. Its magazines include Better Homes and Gardens, Ladies’ Home Journal, Family Circle, Fitness, Family Circle, More and American Baby.


The Journal Register Co. has entered a deal to sell the Bristol Press, The Herald of New Britain and the Sunday Herald Press to Central Connecticut Communications, a group headed by a former Newsday executive Michael Schroeder.

The sale includes three weeklies: Wethersfield Post, Newington Town Crier and Rocky Hill Post.

Schroeder looks forward to “building upon the rich history of these properties as local businesspeople.” He plans to work with local communities to create newspapers and websites that educate, inform and entertain readers. The JRC is headquartered in Yardley, Pa. The newspaper group employs 90 staffers.

Phil Murray of Dirks, Van Essen and Murray handled the transaction.


C-SPAN has recruited two news and PR veterans to its ranks and promoted a veteran staffer to managing editor. Adam Sharp, deputy chief of staff and communications director for Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.), joins the public affairs network as executive producer, digital services, handling editorial development and oversight of and coverage on C-SPAN 3. He started out at NBC News.

Richard Weinstein, who has been with the network for 18 years, was named managing editor to serve as operations deputy to programming VP Terence Murphy. C-SPAN’s field department and assignment desk report to Weinstein.

Ira Lazernik, production manager for WTTG-TV, a Fox affiliate in Washington, D.C., has also joined C-SPAN as director of production operations.


McClatchy CEO Greg Pruitt moved quickly to shoot down a false report that the troubled newspaper chain is shutting down its well regarded D.C. news bureau.

Nat Hentoff, the legendary columnist who was just let go by the Village Voice, told National Public Radio on the morning of Jan. 3 that he was “stunned” to hear McClatchy closed the bureau.

Pruitt quickly issued a statement to say “any suggestion that McClatchy would close its Washington bureau is completely unfounded and false.” The D.C. outpost represents the Sacramento-based chain’s “continuing commitment to providing outstanding regional, national and international news coverage.”

NPR posted a correction on its website and edited the line from Hentoff’s interview on subsequent feeds.

Pruitt believes he will see and hear “more rumors, misinformation, misstatements about McClatchy” and promises the company will do its best to set the record straight. McClatchy’s stock trades at $1.80.


Macrovision Solutions Corp. is now selling its TV Guide Network and properties to Lionsgate Entertainment rather than One Equity Partners and Allen Shapiro as announced last month.

The $255M price tag is the same but offers a quicker closing time and better terms in regard to future financial performance obligations.

Jon Feltheimer, CEO of Lionsgate, says the deal will allow his company to channel its content into the 83M homes that have access to TV Guide Network. The website has an audience of 15M unique visitors a month.

Lionsgate properties include “Mad Men” for AMC and “Weeds” for Showtime. It also produces “Crash” for Starz, the horror anthology “Fear Itself” for NBC and “Paris Hilton’s My New Best Friend Forever” for MTV.

(Media news continued on next page)


Internet Edition, January 14, 2009, Page 4


The PR business is nothing more than a “hype machine” in which executives spend day and night engaged in the “unsavory business of exaggerating the value of their clients or their clients’ products,” according to Toby Young, who penned the “Bookshelf” column in the Jan. 5 Wall Street Journal.

Young reviewed Hollywood publicist Howard Bragman’s book, “Where’s My Fifteen Minutes,” which was dismissed as a tome with “fairly obvious advice” such as avoid having a 400-pound doctor pitch a diet book.

The “Top Chef” judge hammered Bragman’s point that “the press agent’s job is to make sure his clients always tell the truth, thereby guaranteeing that the public has a clear grasp of their strengths and weaknesses” as complete rubbish.

Young, who appears on Bravo’s food reality show, writes that Bragman’s tips on how ordinary people can gain recognition are based on stratagems that “involve a degree of flimflam or chicanery, much of his advice contradicts the wholesome image of PR he is keen to promote, lending the book an unintentionally comic aspect.” The funniest passages are when Bragman “inadvertently slips into PR blather.”

Young does find one useful nugget in the book: “any Hollywood star can be persuaded to show up at your event if the price is right.” Young sniffs: “Good to know, but not much use if you’re hosting a fund-raiser for the local public school.”


The death of the print edition of the New York Times will be a "severe blow to journalism" but perhaps not a long-run disaster, according to Michael Hirschorn of The Atlantic.

He believes it is inevitable that the Times will ditch the newspaper and become a web-only platform, a move that will require slashing staff by 80 percent.

Hirschorn doesn’t expect much outrage over the end of the printed Times because "the public at large has been trained to undervalue journalists and journalism."

Also, the rise of the Internet has eradicated "meaningful distinctions among newspaper brands" as a story that pops up as a Google alert could have come from anywhere, according to Hirschorn.

The writer faults the business strategy of the Times as practiced since Abe Rosenthal became editor in the early '70s. Rosenthal began a "steady march toward temporarily profitable lifestyle fluff" that helped pay for foreign coverage and five-part articles. That effort, however, "hollowed out journalism’s brand, by making the newspaper feel disposable."

Hirschorn wrote: "The fluff is more fun to read than the loss-leading reports about starvation in Sudan, but it isn’t the sort of thing you miss when it is gone. Not many people would get misty-eyed over the closure of, say, ‘Thursday Styles,’ fascinating as its weekly shopping deconstructions are."

The best journalists will thrive in a web-only Times. They will no "longer be weighed down by the need to fold an omnibus product into a larger lifestyle package that might turn out to be one in which actual reportage could make the case for why it matters, and why it might even be worth paying for."

Times columnists such as Paul Krugman, Tom Friedman and Andrew Ross Sorkin will be worth a great deal as "brands of one" on the Internet.

The biggest losers in the post-print NYT era are the "thousands of smart middle class writers, journalists and public intellectuals who have lived semi-charmed lives of the mind." They will lose a "certain kind of quasi-bohemian urban existence."

The end of the printed NYT could come as early as May as the New York Times Co. faces heavy debt obligations, though Hirschorn believes the company could be bailed out by David Geffen or Michael Bloomberg who could buy the paper as a trophy property for less than $1B. A takeover deal would only delay the day of reckoning.


Bruce Wolpe is returning from Australia to become a top advisor on strategic communications issues to Congressman Henry Waxman, the newly minted chairman of the powerful House energy and commerce committee.

The former legislative director to the California Congressman has served the past decade as director of corporate affairs of Australia’s Fairfax Media, owner of the Sydney Morning Herald, Canberra Times, Sun-Herald, The Land and Australian Financial Review. The company also owns The Dominion Post, The Press and The Sunday Star-Times in New Zealand.

Wolpe’s return to D.C. follows the resignation of Fairfax CEO David Kirk, who has been replaced by Brian McCarthy. Fairfax is in the midst of a major overhaul, highlighted by 500 job cuts.

Wolpe, a former governor of the American Chamber of Commerce in Australia, moved there in `91.

In a memo sent to Fairfax staffers, Wolpe said the election of Barack Obama as U.S. president “is for me, the political calling of our times, and I want to be a part of it.” Wolpe noted Waxman’s panel will be “responsible for enacting a significant part of Obama’s legislative program.” Those issues deal with energy, climate change, healthcare and broadband access legislative matters. The 57-year-old Wolpe also worked in Hill & Knowlton’s IT and telecommunications practice in Australia, and plans to return Down Under after his work in Washington is done.

CBS Home Entertainment plans to market a four-hour DVD of CBS News coverage from Barack Obama’s successful run for the White House.

CBS compiled the DVD from two years of coverage by “60 Minutes,” much of it exclusive, and said the video, titled “Obama: All Access – Barack Obama’s Road to the White House,” will hit stores in February.

Promo materials say that Obama “may be the greatest American political story ever told.” Retail price is $19.99. Bender Helper Impact is working with CBS.

Internet Edition, January 14, 2009, Page 5


Environics Communications, Washington, D.C., has launched a sustainability and clean energy practice.

Frank Walter, former VP of PR at MCI who had been running his own shop, Impala Communications, has joined Environics as a senior VP to lead the new unit. He has counseled wind power company Greenlight Energy and Austin Energy’s Plug-in Partners environmental advocacy push. He is also former director of PR and marketing at Reading Is Fundamental.

Bruce MacLellan, president of Environics, noted the firm is expanding its services in the “green” space as other agencies retrench because environmental issues and markets continue to evolve even in the current economic climate.

The firm, which claims to be the first North American PR firm to achieve carbon neutrality, said its practice will counsel clients who advocate behavioral changes that help the environment, market sustainable products and services, or provide clean sources of alternative energy.

Current clients of the firm in that space include CSA International, Electric Drive Transportation Association and the World Wildlife Fund. It has worked on Chevrolet’s Volt electric car and 3M’s Recycled Post-It Notes.


FTI Consulting, the parent company to FD, has acquired Dallas-based crisis management and turnaround firm CXO, L.L.C.

Twelve senior executives of the firm, which handles assignments like bankruptcy advisement and restructuring consulting mainly in the telecom and media sectors, will be added to FTI's communications and media practice. Principals Mike Katzenstein, Brian Kushner and Stephen Dube take up senior managing directors roles with FTI. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.


CommCore Consulting Group, an independent D.C.-based firm, said it is offering basic and advanced social media training services to meet demand from communicators.

Howard Greenstein, a social media consultant who runs his own shop, Harbrooke Group, is serving as principal consultant and program developer for CommCore’s training services.

CommCore CEO Andrew Gilman said that organizations can no longer pass off social media as a trend or narrow application.

Greenstein noted that there are new protocols for using SM to build trust and loyalty online that differ from traditional rules of communication.

BRIEF: Allison & Partners, Los Angeles, has opened a seventh U.S. office, in Atlanta, and set up a national healthcare and biotechnology practice with the addition of a senior exec. The firm has added Brian Feldman, principal of The Edison Group in D.C., to its senior leadership ranks. He will head A&P’s new Atlanta outpost as well as its D.C. office.


New York Area

Krupp Kommunications, New York/Children’s Education Network, Internet software, as AOR for strategic communications.

Consulting for Strategic Growth 1, New York/Janel World Trade, logistics management services like freight transportation and customs brokerage, for strategic counseling and investor/media relations focused on its business development in China, as well as the U.S. and Europe.

G.S. Schwartz & Co., New York/New York Wine Expo (Feb. 27-March 1 in N.Y.); Kitchen/Bath Industry Show & Conference (May 1-3 in Atlanta), and the American Int’l Toy Fair (Feb. 15-18 in N.Y.).

Harrison Leifer DiMarco, Rockville Centre, N.Y./
Developmental Disabilities Institute, for development of a new website. The firm has handled PR, marketing and media services for the client in the past.

Stern + Associates, Cranford, N.J./SimulConsult, medical decision support software; “Chasing the Rabbit” (McGraw Hill 2008) by Steven Spear, and “The Services Shift” (FT Press 2009) by Robert E. Kennedy with Ajay Sharma.

Lisa Lori Communications, Greenwich, Conn./
School of American Ballet at Lincoln Center, for PR for two upcoming events: its Winter Ball on March 9 and its “Workshop Performance Benefit” on June 1. The school is marketing its 75th year in 2009. LLC has also picked up AOR for PR duties for three brands of Cognac Ferrand-USA, including Pierre Ferrand Cognac, Citadelle Gin and Mathilde Liquer.


Jack Horner Communications, Philadelphia/Tozour Energy Systems, HVAC and building automation provider, for a regional marketing campaign promoting its commerical and “green” building services.

Publicity Matters, Washington, D.C./Silver Eagle Group, indoor sports shooting venue and training facility in Virginia, and Pulsar Advertising, which is AOR for D.C.’s downtown bus services known as the DC Circulator.

French/West/Vaughan, Raleigh, N.C./WaterBrick International, developer of a container for delivering water, food and supplies to disaster zones and developing countries, as AOR, including media relations, government comms. and event coordination. Out of the Box Records has tapped FWV for PR representation of Dave Mason, co-founder of the band Traffic. FWV is handling his new solo album. The firm has also added musician and celebrity chef Mel Melton as a media relations client.


Nadel Phelan, Scotts Valley, Calif./Movero Technology, managed mobility services, as AOR for PR. Movero’s CEO, Melanie Gray, said NP will help the company communicate the benefits of a “strategic approach” to mobile IT services for businesses to a “wide and influential audience.”

Cook & Schmid, San Diego/D.W. Morgan, logistics and transportation management firm, for PR including market research and media relations.

Internet Edition, January 14, 2009, Page 6


Medialink has added two account management professionals in Washington, D.C., and New York.

Tomeka Rawlings, president of the D.C. chapter of International Association of Business Communicators, has joined Medialink as a senior account manager in the capital.

Larry Moskowitz, president/CEO of Medialink, said Rawlings brings savvy in the D.C. marketplace to the broadcast and digital PR company as the incoming Obama administration draws the focus of business clients and other groups to the capital.

Rawlings has held PR posts at the National Medical Assn., The Navy League of the U.S. and the Corsortium for Oceanographic Research and Education.

Nellie Chung, a senior A/M at Vidicom, has joined Medialink in New York as an A/M. She was previosuly with The Nielsen Company and Encompass Media.


More than 75 percent of IABC members across the world say they are feeling the impact of the financial slump, according to a survey answered by more than 1,440 respondents.

Forty percent in the November survey said they are feeling a “significant, considerable or drastic” impact of the economic crunch, while 37 percent are reporting a “moderate” effect.

Nearly half (47 percent) had some concern about losing their jobs in the next year, IABC reports.

IABC members are not reporting that the crisis has drastically affected engagement and trust among employees, however. Thirty-seven percent said there was no impact, while 35 percent reported a slight impact and 19 percent saw a moderate affect.


Doug Simon, president of New York-based broadcast PR company D S Simon Productions, offered up several predictions for PR, public affairs and the economy in 2009.

Simon said communications industry growth will slow for the first three quarters of the year as advertising, marketing and PR compete for the same tightened budgets.

He did predict a lift from the "tough sledding" by the fourth quarter of '09, however, and also sees robust public policy spending on PR in the coming year.

Simon also forecasts that so-called "infomercials" will gain more prominence and attention from marketers looking to reach more people to tout lower-priced products for less money. He said the PR Society will make progress this year under Mike Cherenson, "but will fail to improve the image of PR to the public."

Simon posted his predictions on his video blog,

BRIEFS: Arnold Huberman, while remaining active in his executive recruiting business, is undergoing radiation treatment for the next eight weeks following a recurrence of prostate cancer which he had two years ago. Odds of success, he says, are about 60/40.



Charlotte Adjchavanich, VP of PR for Kiehl’s, to Jurlique, Irvington, N.Y., skin care products company, as VP of global PR. Casey Sangmeister, previously with New York firm The Thomas Collective, has joined Jarlique as manager of U.S. PR reporting to Adjchavanich. The company parted ways with its AOR LaForce + Stevens at the end of 2008.

Robyn Ungar, A/S at Mosaic Health in New York, to Gregory FCA Communications, Ardmore, Pa., as associate VP. She was previously a senior A/E at Manning Selvage & Lee and A/E for Cohn & Wolfe. She handles real estate, financial and consumer product accounts at Gregory FCA.

Sara Howard, national media relations specialist for the Service Employees Inernational Union, to The Vandiver Group, St. Louis, as a senior team leader. She was previously communications director for Sen. Mark Dayton (D-Minn.), and assistant press secretary for Bill Bradley’s presidential run in Missouri.

Wes Irvin, former associate administrator for congressional affairs and communications at the Federal Transit Administration, part of the Dept. of Transportation, has joined APCO Worldwide as a VP. He was previously director of congressional and public affairs at the DOT’s Maritime Administration. APCO has also added former Mexican ambassador to the U.K. and Sweden, Andres Rozental, to its international advisory council. He founded a consulting firm focused on Mexico and Latin America after retiring from active government service.

Ally Arguello, PR specialist for Epicor Software, to Guidance Software, Pasadena, Calif., in the new post of PR manager. PR Talent, Los Angeles, handled the search.

Sophie Sophaon, an A/E for Walek & Associates in New York, has been named director of client services in the firm’s new Hong Kong office, its second location. She was formerly a recruiter for law firms.


David Gwyn, who is entering his 10th year at French/West/Vaughan, has been named president and a principal of the firm. Richard French, 46, who has been president and CEO since FWV’s founding in 1997, said he’ll retain the CEO title and add a chairman role with the firm. Gwyn takes on a larger role in managing day-to-day operations of the firm and adds oversight of FWV’s New York office. Chief marketing officer Jack Glasure, EVP Lauren Taylor, and senior VP Natalie Best have also been named principals and granted equity stakes in the firm.

Doug Spong, CEO of Carmichael Lynch Spong, to managing partner of parent agency, Carmichael Lynch. Spong is one of three execs making up a management transition team as CL CEO John Caloasanti prepares to leave in April.

Carly Jansen and Rebecca Stein to A/E, Goodman Media International, New York.

Chris Kormis to associate dean for marketing and communications, Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business, Washington, D.C.


Internet Edition, January 14, 2009, Page 7


A recent graduate, who earned an MA in Journalism and Mass Communication with a concentration in PR, is finding job-seeking a difficult task.

Those thinking of majoring in PR/communications should think about majoring in journalism or English instead, the graduate, Glorious Hightower, advises.

If she had it to do over, she would have gone to college part-time and worked. Currently, she is saddled with a “huge debt.” She feels she would be “much further ahead in my career” if she had done that.

“Experience seems to be a lot more important than education in this field,” she said, adding: “I see a great deal of job postings that say they will waive education requirements for experience. I have not seen any that say education can be used in lieu of experience. It’s the one piece of advice I wish someone would have given me in high school.”

Had Three Internships

She has had three internships and says they were “good.” She has never heard any teacher mention any O’Dwyer products. She was familiar with the name O’Dwyer because there is a section in "The Practice of PR" by Fraser Seitel that quotes Jack O’Dwyer and this book was used in a course.

Most of her teachers were “very knowledgeable about PR” although some who were journalists “did not care too much for PR and those classes made it difficult to learn anything worthwhile. More often than not I had great experiences with my professors and I am pleased with the education I received.”

The “most effective” teachers, she said, were also working PR pros. The grad’s essay is at

On Job Training is Best

Another recent grad who studied liberal arts and worked for a major PR firm said she got fed up with endless calls to media in one department but found that work in the "new media" department was entirely different. "This unit came up with clever, low-cost programs that clients, provided they followed through, could institute for a fairly significant gain in value," she told O'Dwyer's.

"What new media did was far more valuable than an entire account team calling magazines all day and asking if this or that couldn’t be included in a gift guide or whatever," she added.

The recent grad is now with a news medium but says her time on the PR side taught her a lot.

"Knowing how PR works is unbelievably important in journalism," she said. "Too many journalists don’t understand that there are people on the other end of the phone working quite hard to do their jobs well, and who will help you to do your job better."

Think Small, Forget PR Lessons

Said the grad: "I would encourage people to forget everything they learned about PR, if in fact they majored in PR. They should seek jobs in small, progressive, digital firms, instead of a large agency.

"This is an environment where moving quickly and understanding trends deeply is important. No one wants to be pushed, no one wants a ‘relationship’ with a brand, at least not in the way the term is currently used at PR firms.”


Powerscourt is handling U.K. and international media surrounding the collapse of Ireland’s Waterford Wedgewood, the 250-year-old luxury brand that fell under pressure of the worldwide economic slump.

Deloitte LLP has been appointed an administrator of the company that also owns the Royal Doulton brand.

WW chair Tony O’Reilly, former H.J. Heinz CEO and Irish press baron, had been trying to recapitalize the glassware and china maker, but BankAmerica reportedly refused to postpone an interest payment for the fourth time. O’Reilly and his brother-in-law pumped about $400M into WW over the last few years, and control 60 percent of the company, which employs about 2,000 people in the U.K. and 800 in Ireland. Jack Walsh, mayor of Waterford, said it would be a “national disaster” for Ireland if the crystal factory in that city is shut down.

London’s Powerscount is headed by Rory Godson, a former Sunday Times business editor and Goldman Sachs corporate affairs director for Europe, Middle East and Africa. The firm has worked for BP, Bank of Ireland, Goldman, Shell Oil, Aer Lingus and BAE Systems.

Dublin’s Dennehy Assocs. handles the Irish press. Michael Dennehy has counseled WW since 1972.

U.S. private equity group KPS Capital Partners has agreed to buy some Waterford Wedgwood assets.


Lorraine Voles, senior VP of communication and marketing services for Fannie Mae, will move to George Washington University as VP of external relations, a new role, in early February.

Amy Bonitatibus, senior media relations manager for Fannie Mae, told O'Dwyer's that Voles' post will not be filled.

Voles is a 1981 journalism graduate of the university and will serve in the new role starting February 2 to combine communications and government relations into a single operation to raise the school’s profile.

Voles exits Fannie Mae after several tumultuous months for the government-backed mortgage entity. She joined FM in May of 2008 reuniting with Charles Greener, who was chief of staff to FM CEO Daniel Mudd and headed Porter Novelli when Voles was a senior counselor there for nearly a decade.

More recently, Voles served as director of communications for Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) and earlier for Vice President Al Gore, in addition to working as a press deputy in the Clinton White House.


Keith Hughes, who has more than 20 years of PR savvy, has moved from Fleishman-Hillard to Marina Maher Communications.

At the Omnicom unit, Hughes was global managing director/marketing communications and global account director for Procter & Gamble.

Hughes also handled P&G work at MS&L Worldwide as global director of innovation and development for P&G North America. He also did work for Philips Electronics. At MMC, Hughes will work on its P&G products (Head and Shoulders anti-dandruff and Aussie shampoos).


Internet Edition, January 14, 2009, Page 8




Failure of regulators to regulate, watchdogs to watch and corporate consciences to moralize is at the root of current calamitous financial situation.

Regulators simply didn't step up to the bat and say, "This is wrong."

Greedy investment bankers and stock manipulators are to blame but the SEC, for instance, was asleep at the switch even after corruption was revealed by the Enron, Worldcom and other scandals of the early 2000's.

Sarbanes-Oxley proved to be no antidote to the current bust. All that talk and rules about mandating disclosure were not worth the paper they were printed on when Wall Street came up with derivatives, credit default swaps and collateralized debt obligations.

Investor Harry Markopolos hounded the SEC for years, pointing out that $50 billion scammer Bernie Madoff's returns were not mathematically possible. The SEC looked at his stuff eight times in 16 years and ducked each time. His 2005 letter to the SEC was headlined: "The World's Largest Hedge Fund Is a Fraud."

In the PR industry, no trade group or any of their chapters will stand up and say this or that practice is wrong or that an individual did wrong, fearing lawsuits. But lawsuits are highly unlikely. That would only prolong a controversy and unearth all sorts of things in the "discovery" period that were better left buried. Courts have the power to subpoena witnesses and perjurers can be jailed.

The one U.S. group that makes a lot of noise about ethics is the PR Society. Its Code of Ethics mentions "ethical" or "ethics" 12 times on its first page. 2009 chair Mike Cherenson told "For Immediate Release" Dec. 19 that PRS is the "standard bearer for the code of ethics at least here in the U.S."

Cheryl Procter-Rogers, 2006 chair, said PR pros must be "champions of ethics" and "must have the moral courage to insist that our employers or clients simply do the right thing" (3/29/06 NL).

PR pros at one point said they performed a "corporate conscience" role. With marketing so dominant these days, we don't hear that phrase too much any more.

PRS got out of the job of saying something was right or wrong in 1999 after the board itself was accused of five code violations in ordering staff and leaders not to talk to this NL. The boycott was lifted in 2000.

So it falls to us to say something is right or wrong and take any blows that might be forthcoming. Here's some of our current opinions:

• It is wrong of lawyer Dan Abrams' new PR firm to display working journalists on its website (1/7/09 NL).

• It is wrong of ESPN sportscaster Bonnie Bernstein to allow her name/picture on the web of Outside Eyes PR (page 2 this issue).

• It is wrong and unjustified under accounting rules for the conglomerates to withhold staff counts and payroll totals of their thousands of ad agencies and PR firms.

• It is wrong for the conglomerates to refuse to deal with critical reporters, especially those who point out the five congloms have $12 billion in long term debt.

• It is wrong of analysts to be so one-sided in their buy-sell recommendations (58 changes on Omnicom since 1999 but only one "sell"). OMC is half its 1999 price.

• It is wrong of Omnicom CEO John Wren to pull the annual meeting out of New York five years in a row, allow only three press interviews, and take $60M+ from OMC when its stock is half of what it was in 1999.

• It is wrong for (PR) Seminar to be so secretive, failing to share the speeches by top journalists, professors, corporate executives and others.

• It is wrong for the journalists (from New York Times, Time, Washington Post, Wall St. Journal, Fortune, etc.) to appear at (PR) Seminar and never report its existence.

• It is wrong for PRS to withhold Assembly transcripts, vote totals in the Assembly, and the list of Assembly delegates.

• It is wrong for PRS to refuse to run the essay by senior members and PR professors demanding a vote on bringing back the printed member's directory. It was wrong to suspend the directory without a discussion and vote by members and the Assembly.

• It is wrong of the PRS board to allow COO Bill Murray to keep details of his current contract secret including whether it was renewed.

• It was wrong of PRS to move downtown in 2005, robbing New Yorkers of use of h.q. and signing a 13-year lease (especially with office rents now plummeting). Occupancy costs were $802,756 in 2007, up from $393,586 in 2000. Staff costs are running at $5M. Both totals would be fractions of this in Des Moines, where PRS’ heart is.

• It is wrong for PRS to tell PRS Student chapter leaders and members not to listen to pitches from us or anyone but refer them to h.q. Accepting this ban are their PR professors and faculty advisers. None of the advisers will deal with us and we're especially disappointed at religion-based Brigham Young University where we thought faculty would know right from wrong.

• It was wrong of 2008 chair Jeff Julin to attack Andrew Cohen of CBS-TV when Cohen questioned the veracity of PR pros. Julin should have lunched with Cohen who lives not far from Julin.

• It was wrong of PRS not to criticize APR member John Philbin when he presided over the "fake" FEMA press conference Oct. 23, 2006. Philbin himself admitted he should have stopped the conference as soon as he found no reporters were present.

This only scratches the surface of the rights and wrongs we cover. Companies and institutions that allow these wrongs to fester are going to end up paying for it just like government and certain institutions are paying big now for turning a blind eye to abuses.

An unenforced code is no code at all. The German Council for PR (German PR Assn., Assn. of German PR Agencies and German Press Officers), makes ethical judgments involving members and non-members and publicizes them.

The group is not afraid to do battle over ethical issues. It also believes there is no expiration date on righting wrongdoing. It took many decades for victims of the Nazis to get paid.

What the U.S. needs is a joint PR/press ethics body like the German Council for PR.

The new board of PRS will meet Jan. 23 in New York and we'll see what it does or doesn't do.

The nine new members constitute a majority so they have the power if they want to exercise it. Two wrongs are banning this reporter from PRS membership and banning O'Dwyer ads from PRS publications and website. PRS's members should know about the five O'Dwyer news and information products.

Either the board rescinds these bans or it doesn’t. The “09 Nine” 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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