The eight page weekly is the only PR newsletter on LEXIS/NEXIS.
Edition, January 14, 2009, Page 1
$300K TOUR PACT
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 Californias
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&TCs
advertising and marketing initiatives.
Californias 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
Bianca Williams is contracts manager. She is at 916/444-4429
and [email protected].
STODDER SEEKS RETRIAL
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 convictedalong with his ex-boss Doug Dowieand
sentenced in `06 to 15 months in jail. Both men are free
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. attorneys
office, said prosecutors were unaware of any connection
between the cases, according to a report in the Los Angeles
Dowie is expected to join Stodder in the appeal.
QORVIS PROMOTES SAUDI AID
Qorvis Communications is distributing a release from the
Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Washington, touting the
Kingdoms 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 Arabias
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 Embassys 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.
THE JOANS REUNITE
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 & Knowltons
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 TDGs travel/tourism, wine & spirits and lifestyle
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 firms
travel/lifestyle clients include Greenland, U.S. Virgin
Islands, Frommers and Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of
Margi Booth told ODwyers her firms 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
His partnership-building and social media skills are going
to help clients develop stronger brand positioning in the
marketplace, said Booth.
Edition, January 14, 2009, Page 2
CUTS COSTS TO SAVE STAFF
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 IPGs 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.
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
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
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 IPGs top client.
Cook urged staffers in
the memo not to be overly concerned, stressed
that GHs 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
RAYTHEONS LYNN TO PENTAGON
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 Washington Post
predicts Lynn will oversee Defense Secretary Robert Gates
program to overhaul DODs weapons acquisition activity.
Prior to joining Raytheon,
Lynn was the Pentagons comptroller and chief budget
officer. He also was director of DODs program analysis
Lynn joined the Pentagon
in`93 after serving as Sen. Ted Kennedys legislative
PHILLIES HURLER BRINGS IN
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.
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 [Romeros]
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 firms
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.
WHITMAN HIRES PR FIRM
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.
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 Schwarzeneggers
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.
THOMPSON JOINS BEACON
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
Edition, January 14, 2009, Page 3
RESIGNS WAPO POST
Phil Bennett, managing
editor of the Washington Post, has resigned after
a four-year run as the papers 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
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 papers
Latin America correspondent and foreign editor.
BUFFALO NEWS OFFERS BUYOUTS
The Buffalo News,
which is owned by Warren Buffetts 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
The latest offer begins
at $60K and rises according to length of time spent at the
MEREDITH CLOSES COUNTRY HOME
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
Stephen Lacy, CEO, noted
that publishing and broadcast advertising generates 60 percent
of the companys 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.
JRC SELLS CONN. PAPERS
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 ADDS SHARP, LAZERNIK
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 C-SPAN.org and coverage on C-SPAN 3. He started out at
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-SPANs 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.
PRUITT PUTS OUT D.C. SHUTDOWN
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.
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
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
chains continuing commitment to providing outstanding
regional, national and international news coverage.
NPR posted a correction
on its website and edited the line from Hentoffs 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. McClatchys stock
trades at $1.80.
MACROVISION CUTS NEW TV GUIDE
Corp. is now selling its TV Guide Network and TVGuide.com
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
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
Hiltons My New Best Friend Forever for MTV.
news continued on next page)
Edition, January 14, 2009, Page 4
RIPS PR AS BIZ OF HYPE
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
reviewed Hollywood publicist Howard Bragmans book,
Wheres 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.
Top Chef judge hammered Bragmans point
that the press agents 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.
who appears on Bravos food reality show, writes that
Bragmans 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.
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 youre hosting a fund-raiser for the local
SET FOR PRINTED NYT
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.
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.
doesnt expect much outrage over the end of the printed
Times because "the public at large has been trained
to undervalue journalists and journalism."
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.
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 journalisms brand, by making the newspaper feel
wrote: "The fluff is more fun to read than the loss-leading
reports about starvation in Sudan, but it isnt 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
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
columnists such as Paul Krugman, Tom Friedman and Andrew
Ross Sorkin will be worth a great deal as "brands of
one" on the Internet.
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."
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.
RETURNS TO BOOST WAXMAN
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.
former legislative director to the California Congressman
has served the past decade as director of corporate affairs
of Australias 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.
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
a former governor of the American Chamber of Commerce in
Australia, moved there in `91.
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 Waxmans panel will be responsible
for enacting a significant part of Obamas legislative
program. Those issues deal with energy, climate change,
healthcare and broadband access legislative matters. The
57-year-old Wolpe also worked in Hill & Knowltons
IT and telecommunications practice in Australia, and plans
to return Down Under after his work in Washington is done.
Home Entertainment plans to market
a four-hour DVD of CBS News coverage from Barack Obamas
successful run for the White House.
compiled the DVD from two years of coverage by 60
Minutes, much of it exclusive, and said the video,
titled Obama: All Access Barack Obamas
Road to the White House, will hit stores in February.
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.
Edition, January 14,
2009, Page 5
OF PR FIRMS
FORMALIZES GREEN UNIT
Washington, D.C., has launched a sustainability and clean
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 Energys 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
Current clients of the
firm in that space include CSA International, Electric Drive
Transportation Association and the World Wildlife Fund.
It has worked on Chevrolets Volt electric car and
3Ms Recycled Post-It Notes.
FTI ACQUIRES TURNAROUND FIRM
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 TRAINS IN SOCIAL
CommCore Consulting Group,
an independent D.C.-based firm, said it is offering basic
and advanced social media training services to meet demand
Howard Greenstein, a social
media consultant who runs his own shop, Harbrooke Group,
is serving as principal consultant and program developer
for CommCores 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.
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&Ps new Atlanta
outpost as well as its D.C. office.
New York/Childrens Education Network, Internet software,
as AOR for strategic communications.
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.
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 Intl Toy Fair (Feb. 15-18 in N.Y.).
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.
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.
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
Philadelphia/Tozour Energy Systems, HVAC and building automation
provider, for a regional marketing campaign promoting its
commerical and green building services.
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
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.
Valley, Calif./Movero Technology, managed mobility services,
as AOR for PR. Moveros 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.
& Schmid, San Diego/D.W. Morgan, logistics and
transportation management firm, for PR including market
research and media relations.
Edition, January 14, 2009, Page 6
ADDS STAFF IN D.C., N.Y.
Medialink has added two
account management professionals in Washington, D.C., and
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
IABC MEMBERS FEELING HEAT
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 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.
SIMON PREDICTS TOUGH
SLEDDING INTO Q3
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, dssimonvlogviews.com.
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.
Adjchavanich, VP of PR for Kiehls, 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.
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.
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 Bradleys presidential run in Missouri.
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 DOTs 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.
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.
Sophaon, an A/E for Walek & Associates in New
York, has been named director of client services in the
firms new Hong Kong office, its second location. She
was formerly a recruiter for law firms.
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 FWVs
founding in 1997, said hell 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 FWVs 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.
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.
Jansen and Rebecca
Stein to A/E, Goodman Media International, New York.
to associate dean for marketing and communications, Georgetown
Universitys McDonough School of Business, Washington,
Edition, January 14, 2009, Page 7
OR ENGLISH DEGREE ADVISED
A recent graduate, who
earned an MA in Journalism and Mass Communication with a
concentration in PR, is finding job-seeking a difficult
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.
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. Its the one piece of advice I wish
someone would have given me in high school.
She has had three internships
and says they were good. She has never heard
any teacher mention any ODwyer products. She was familiar
with the name ODwyer because there is a section in
"The Practice of PR" by Fraser Seitel that quotes
Jack ODwyer 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 grads
essay is at odwyerpr.com.
On Job Training
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 couldnt
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 dont 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
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
"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.
FIRMS PITCH FALL OF WATERFORD
Powerscourt is handling
U.K. and international media surrounding the collapse of
Irelands Waterford Wedgewood, the 250-year-old luxury
brand that fell under pressure of the worldwide economic
Deloitte LLP has been
appointed an administrator of the company that also owns
the Royal Doulton brand.
WW chair Tony OReilly,
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. OReilly 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.
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
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
VOLES EXITS FANNIE MAE
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 schools
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.
HUGHES SHIFTS TO MARINA MAHER
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).
Edition, January 14, 2009,
of regulators to regulate, watchdogs to watch and corporate
to moralize is at the root of current calamitous financial
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.
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."
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
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.
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
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
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.
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
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
Either the board
rescinds these bans or it doesnt. The 09 Nine
are Lynn Appelbaum,
and Gail Winslow-Pine.