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Internet Edition, February 24, 2010, Page 1


Florida has begun a review process for its $2.5M international PR account to support its Department of Citrus that includes work in the U.S., Europe and Scandinavia.

The state issued an open RFP on Feb. 18 calling for pitches by March 24.

GolinHarris has worked with the department for more than a decade domestically and abroad. It last won a review in 2007 to handle PR in the U.S., Canada and Europe.

To pitch, firms must have offices or existing affiliates in the U.S., Canada, France, U.K., Belgium, Netherlands, and Sweden.

A strong consumer packaged goods background is sought, as well as crisis management experience with overseas countries.

The work ranges from media and community relations to events, research and measurement.

The Dept. of Citrus was set up in 1935 to “protect and enhance” Florida citrus fruit and processed products in domestic and foreign markets.

It is funded by an excise tax on each box of fruit moved.

Download the RFP at


New York’s South Street Seaport is looking for a PR firm to help it “shed the tourist trap mentality” by developing a world-class “signature brand” that pays homage to the port’s past and plays up the “cool and hip events and retail spots to explore,” according to an RFP.

The Seaport had a 14M pedestrian court in `08-`09, a big chunk of those people were tourists or locals on one-time visits.

It wants to be known as a place that has “greater relevance to the New York residents” as new events and cultural performances are staged on the Pier 17 stage.

The PR firm also will tackle the perception that the Seaport is inaccessible, though eight subway lines, bus and ferry service are no more than three blocks away.

Proposals are due Feb. 26. Christopher Amundson is handling questions at [email protected] and 646/822-6933.

Bill Murray, COO of NANA (PRSA), has cancelled as a speaker at the Ragan Social Media conference Feb. 22-24 at Coca-Cola h.q., Atlanta. He was to talk on the decline of traditional media and rise of SM. Ann Subervi of Utopia Comms., chair of the Counselors Academy, will substitute for him.


Publicis Groupe said the “first signs of recovery” appeared in the fourth quarter of 2009 as the French advertising and PR conglomerate reported fourth quarter revenue of 1.26B Euro, down 7.6% from 2008.

The company said, in U.S. dollars, its 2009 revenue would be $6.29 billion, down 8.9% from last year.

Profit slid nearly 10% for the year over ’08 to 403M Euro (about $555M).

President and CEO Maurice Levy called ’09 a “paradox” for Publicis as the ad market was slammed with a double-digit downturn from 12-14%, while his company gained some market share on new business and limited its decrease to 6.5%.

He is banking the future on digital and emerging markets, both of which will add up to 60% of Publicis’ revenue down the road.

Levy, who instituted a pay and hiring freeze, is ready to invest in talent because he believes Publicis is poised to outperform the competition this year and embark on a new phase of margin growth in 2011.

He did warn of “dips and bumps” ahead.

Publicis, which owns PR units like MS&L and Publicis Consultants, took a hit from General Motors’ bankruptcy last year, but the company said the North American region held up on a high proportion of digital services (34.6% of its revenue) in falling 4.2% overall to 2.09B Euro.

Publicis acquired Razorfish last year and owns Digitas.

Like its competitors, Publicis worked to slash cuts last year and personnel costs were down nearly 5% from 2008. The company’s Specialized Agencies and Marketing Services, which includes PR, accounted for 44% of revenue last year, compared with 35% for advertising and 21% for media.


Fleishman-Hillard senior VP Christina Pearson has moved to Microsoft in D.C. as senior director of PR.

Pearson joined F-H last April to handle healthcare public affairs after working both terms of the Bush administration, finishing up as Assistant Secretary of Public Affairs at the Dept. of Health & Human Services.

She previously handled media relations at the American Hospital Association and started out as a deputy comms. director for the Senate Finance Committee during the mid-1990s.

Pearson also spent a year at Policy Impact Communications, the firm set up by top GOP operatives Ed Gillespie and Haley Barbour.


Internet Edition, February 24, 2010, Page 2


Quinn Gillespie & Assocs. has registered Team Toyota as the president of the embattled car company, Akio Toyoda, is slated to face Congressional grilling this week over the recall of millions of its cars for sudden acceleration/braking problems.

Jack Quinn leads the charge for Toyota. He is former counsel to President Bill Clinton and chief of staff to Vice President Al Gore.

Quinn is buttressed by Kevin Kayes (ex-chief counsel to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid), Marc Lampkin (former deputy campaign manager Bush/Cheney, key operative in the Florida recount and ex-aide to now House Minority Leader John Boehner), Elizabeth Hogan (veteran of the Bush White House Office of Presidential Personnel and an organizer of the GOP National Convention in New York) and Drew Cole (alum of former Sen. Don Nickles staff).

QG&A is charged with “general representation” of Toyota, tackling financial regulatory reform and “issues facing the automobile industry.”

Toyota had planned to limit D.C. testimony to executives from its U.S. operation. That changed Feb. 18 after Toyoda received a formal invitation from Rep. Edolphus Towns (D-NY) to testify before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

In his letter, Towns cited “growing public confusion” among Toyota's American customers about whether it is safe for them to drive their cars.

The Congressman is happy Toyoda has accepted the invite to help understand the “actions Toyota is taking to ensure the safety of American drivers.”


Fleishman-Hillard on Feb. 8 won an 18-month pact with Ohio to create a public education effort surrounding unintentional prescription drug overdoses.

But a Central Ohio newspaper has raised questions about F-H's work for Purdue Pharma, the maker of the prescription painkiller Oxycontin which was heavily fined ($700M) by the federal government for its marketing of the drug.

The Omnicom firm was awarded the $353,000 contract over two other entities after an RFP process to conduct research, create collateral materials, and build grassroots coalitions in Buckeye State counties where overdose rates are particularly high. A second phase, slated to begin in July, includes a media relations and public service announcement push, along with events and community outreach to businesses and schools.

Drug overdose deaths now surpass traffic fatalities in Ohio and soared 304% from 1999 to 2007.

A president of a county drug and alcohol board told the Lancaster Eagle Gazette that F-H’s proposal was “impressive” but wondered about a conflict of interest. “If these guys find themselves in a position where they need to take a hard stance where they make their pharmaceutical company contacts uncomfortable, are they really going to do that,” asked the official, Orman Hall.

F-H/Cleveland senior VP Michael Murphy said the Purdue work was handled by another office.


President Barack Obama is rebranding “Operation Iraqi Freedom” to “Operation New Dawn” to reflect his mission of withdrawing the bulk of American forces that are occupying Iraq, according to a memo from Defense Secretary Robert Gates.

Effective Sept. 1, the new moniker is to coincide with the “change of mission for U.S. forces in Iraq,” says the memo that was obtained by ABC, which then posted it on its website.

OND is to be a “strong signal” that OIF launched by President George Bush in 2003 with the invasion of Iraq is over as the number of U.S. forces is scheduled to drop to the 50,000 mark and given a new mission.

Gates believes OND provides PA/propaganda benefits by presenting “opportunities to synchronize strategic communication initiatives.”

The new banner, writes Gates, “reinforces our commitment to the Security Agreement, and recognizes our evolving relationship with the Government of Iraq.”

The seven-line memo was sent to General David Petraeus, commander of the U.S. Central Command.


The Smoky Mountain Convention & Visitors Bureau is accepting proposals through the end of March to guide its marketing and PR efforts over the next five years or so.

A single RFP was issued by Blount County, Tennessee, on Feb. 16 noting proposals for both marketing and PR will be evaluated individually and could be awarded together or to two separate firms. Its average marketing budget for the past three years has been in the $300-350K range.

In the PR arena, the region wants to highlight its spring and fall festivals in regional and national travel media, recruit journalists for an annual media tour, as well as maintain a government relations component to keep in contact with Nashville and state tourism officials.

With an expected contract to run from July 1, 2010, to June 30, 2011, the Bureau said it will offer four year-long options at its discretion.

Deadline for proposals is March 10. Download the RFP at


R&R Partners has won a competitive review process for Utah’s water conservation PR account worth $250K a year.

R&R edged seven competitors, including Vanguard Media, which was the long-term incumbent.

Utah, the second driest state in the U.S. as most of it is desert, set up the Governor’s Water Conservation Team, a public-private group, following a severe drought in 2001 to address conservation in the state.

R&R is based in Las Vegas but has a Salt Lake City office.

A key goal of the effort is to cut 25 percent of the state’s water use. “Slow the Flow” is a tagline for a website created as part of previous efforts.


Internet Edition, February 24, 2010, Page 3


Johanna Fuentes, VP of communications for the Bravo network, has moved up the premium cable tier to Showtime Networks as VP of corporate PR.

SN, in addition to the Showtime cable networks, includes The Movie Channel, Flix and a joint venture with the Smithsonian Institution. It is owned by CBS Corp.

Reporting to executive VP/comms. Richard Licata, Fuentes handles corporate trade and business media relations for programming, marketing, sales, new media and new business.

She joined Bravo, part of NBC Universal, in 2006.

Fuentes previously spent five years at CBS rising to director of entertainment communications and handling campaigns for events and network series like the Grammy Awards and "Survivor."

She started out as an A/E at Arnold PR in Boston.

A Bravo spokeswoman said the network has not named a replacement at this time.


Gary Ginsberg, who stepped down as IR and corporate communications chief at News Corp. at the end of '09, is moving to Time Warner as a corporate affairs and strategy advisor to CEO Jeff Bewkes.

Ginsberg’s entrance follows the announced departure of TW corporate communications executive Ed Adler.

Adler has not yet been replaced and agreed to stay on through a transition.

Ginsberg, 47, was a key advisor to CEO Rupert Murdoch as a member of the seven-person Office of the Chairman at News Corp., where he worked from 1999-2009.

He was said to be Murdoch's liaison with Democrats as Ginsberg is former editor of George and was an advisor to John F. Kennedy Jr.

The News Corp.-owned N.Y. Post first reported Ginsberg's move to TW.


Goldman Sachs’ PR is “basically a stiffly extended middle finger, waved in the air for all to see,” says a blistering article in the New York Observer.

Written by Max Abelson, the piece depicts PR chief Lucas van Praag as Goldman's prickly British “mouthpiece” who is among the reasons why the once-golden Wall Street firm receives such lousy press.

The global head of communications is branded as openly dismissive of the press, ridiculing media critics as “troublemaking simpletons” who are doing their readers a great disservice.

The piece, headlined “Goldman's Rococo PR Prince,” says van Praag has ripped Wall Street Journal coverage as “preposterous effluent.”

A former colleague admitted that van Praag is an amazingly brilliant guy who, in the best of times, comes off as “arrogant, slightly pompous, flippant and condescending.”

Goldman has displayed none of Morgan Stanley or JPMorgan’s “persistent humility” for the financial meltdown. An unnamed business editor told the Observer: “At a time when people perceive banks to be elitist and beneficiaries of the bailout at the expense of average homeowners, to go around and stick your head out of the sunroof of your Bentley and say ‘f--- you to critics’ is counterproductive.”

Van Praag is a graduate of the University of Durham, Britain’s third oldest university. He was a Merchant Navy officer who then spent a decade at Bankers Trust and worked at Brunswick Group in the `90s, where he was said “to be a right-hand man to the PR guru Alan Parker.”

Van Praag declined to talk to the Observer.


Google, king of search advertising, has hired Barry Salzman as chief of media and platforms for the Americas. He is to oversee non-search advertising for Google, YouTube and the DoubleClick exchange.

Salzman had been at DoubleClick before Google acquired it in 2007. Most recently, Salzman was COO of start-up ShopWiki and CEO of YCD Multimedia, a digital out-of-home ad shop.

Salzman reports to Henrique de Castro, Google's VP-global media and platforms.


Sweden-based Cision said North American revenue fell nearly 17 percent in Q4 2009 compared with '08 while continued malaise in its European units and the global recession made for an “intense” 2009.

Cision’s board also announced a rights issue to raise 250M SEK (about $34.8M U.S.) in capital from shareholders.

Revenue for the fourth quarter, reported in Swedish Kroner, was down more than 35% in 2009 across its global operations compared with Q4 of '08 – 315M SEK, or about $43.8M, vs. 487M SEK. Loss widened from 17M to 30M SEK. In North America, revenue slipped about 17% to 187M SEK.

The company, which markets the CisionPoint software suite, has been implementing a cost-cutting and revamp plan that included the divestment of five loss-producing units in Europe and Scandinavia. It has pared 822 employees since Q4 of ’08 to stand at about 1,630 staffers. Further “restructuring” is planned in 2010 mostly in the U.K., Germany and Nordic region.

CEO Hans Gieskes said Cision remains “cautious” about the near-term and noted Q4 of 2009 was similar to Q3 in that the company was "significantly impacted" by the global recession. He was cheered by organic growth (minus goodwill, restructuring and other one-time costs) of 20% in North America for Q4, down from 23.4% in Q4 of '08.

For the year, revenue fell more than 17 percent from ’08-09 to 1.5 billion SEK.

The company remains bullish on so-called media intelligence in the long-term however, noting the value of brands continues to increase making monitoring and PR software crucial for companies in traditional and new media.

(Media news continued on next page)


Internet Edition, February 24, 2010, Page 4


Joe Galloway, military and political columnist for McClatchy Cos. is retiring after a 50-year stint that began at the Victoria (Texas) Advocate.

After becoming state bureau chief for United Press International, Galloway was dispatched to Vietnam in 1964, where he made his mark as a war correspondent.

He also covered coups, intrigue and natural disasters in Laos, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, India, Pakistan, East Timor, Afghanistan and the USSR.

Galloway is co-author of “We Were Soldiers Once … And Young” along with the sequel, “We Are Soldiers Still,” covering his return visit to Vietnam.

Galloway has been writing a weekly opinion column for McClatchy since 2003. He has been a fierce critic of the U.S. invasion of Iraq.

Galloway wrote in his farewell piece: “I will still write an occasional op-ed piece when the bastards in Washington, D.C., blast across the line into moron territory, and there's always another book waiting to be written.”

Quoting Kenny Rogers’ line, “You’ve got to know when to hold ’em, know when to fold ’em,” Galloway adds, “After 50 years, it’s time to fold ’em and move on with the rest of my life.”


Fairness and Accuracy in Media is circulating a petition to press cable news channels to identify the corporate ties of pundits who pontificate on affairs of the day.

The move follows a report in The Nation (March 1) that found at least 75 registered lobbyists, PR pros and corporate officials appeared on CNN, Fox News, Fox Business Network, MSNBC and CNBC to promote the financial or political interests of a client without being identified.

The petition calls for “clear guidelines regarding conflicts of interest for contributors and guests – and that you enforce those rules to ensure that viewers aren’t being exposed to corporate PR masquerading as ‘analysis.’”

The Nation’s Sebastian Jones takes special umbrage with MSNBC for allowing former Public Strategies Inc. exec Richard Wolffe to serve as fill-in host for Keith Olbermann on “Countdown.” That seat was later taken by former Vermont Governor Howard Dean, who does consulting work for drug companies.

FAIR also takes issue with loophole-riddled guidelines such as MSNBC disclosing corporate ties on its website rather than on-the-air.


DC Entertainment president Diane Nelson has named Jim Lee and Dan DiDio co-publishers of its flagship DC Comics unit in her drive to integrate its characters throughout Time Warner properties.

Lee had been editorial director and artist for comics featuring Batman and Robin. Starting his career at Marvel Comics, Lee worked on the X-Men franchise.

DiDio was senior VP/executive editor of DC Universe, developing story lines for Superman, Wonder Women and others.


Charlie Gasparino has left CNBC for a senior correspondent post at Fox Business Network, which reaches less than half as many households.

Kevin Magee, executive VP at FBN, praised Gasparino's in-depth reporting and ability to break news.

Gasparino was senior writer for Newsweek and has been on-air editor for CNBC for the last four years.

He is author of “The Sellout: How Three Decades of Wall Street Greed and Government Mismanagement Destroyed the Global Financial System.”


Parade is adding “Back Page” to its editorial line-up to spotlight the “best untold stories unfolding across our nation,” according to executive editor Lamar Graham.

BP will feature a rotating line-up of writers including CNN political commentator David Gergen, “Late Late Show” host Craig Ferguson, Cleveland Plain-Dealer columnist Connie Schultz and “Tuesday with Morrie” author Mitch Albom. It launched Feb. 21.

“Our Towns” is also new at Parade, which debuted Feb. 7 with a piece about the weekly bluegrass breakfast at the Prairie Winds Café in Molt, Mont., a place of less than 20 people.

Future pieces will deal with the “challenges and triumphs that happen every day” in cities big and small, according to Parade, which has more than 74M readers.


The New York Times Co. is launching T Qatar, a bilingual English/Arabic magazine to deliver the latest style news and trends to the middle east region. The venture is a partnership with Oryx, a publisher of Qatar Today and Woman Today.

The T Qatar publication is pitched as the “right platform to connect ‘buyers of the best.’”

Gloria Brown Anderson, VP-international editorial development of the NYT News Services, says T Qatar “will be able to reach new segments of readers within the Middle East, bringing the magazine's global perspective on style to Qatar's burgeoning fashion and design community.” T Qatar will run bimonthly this year and monthly in the next.


Joe Gillespie, who was responsible for and its CNET operation, is exiting the company, according to a report in All Things Digital.

The Wall Street Journal unit posted a memo from Neil Ashe, chief of CBS Interactive, explaining the reorganization that will result in Gillespie’s end of month departure.

The tech & news and business units are being combined under Greg Mason, who joined CNET in 2000.

The new entity includes CNET,, CBS MoneyWatch, BNET, ZDNet and TechRepublic to concentrate on capitalizing on the “natural synergies between the content and audiences.”

Gillespie is pursuing new opportunities.

Internet Edition, February 24, 2010, Page 5


Two former Foreign Service officers and veteran D.C. PR hands have set up an Arlington, Va., firm to handle PR, marketing and communications in what they describe as an “increasingly risky political and media environment that demands greater openness and accountability.”

The firm, led by Donald Hamilton and Gregory Lagana, is dubbed LaganaHamilton.

Hamilton, a U.S. Information Agency veteran, was communications director for Ambassador Paul Bremer and worked with the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq for a year. He also handled comms. for Drug Czar William Bennett and later was deputy director of the Oklahoma City Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism.

Lagana served as director of press and public affairs for Latin America at the State Department and was deputy director for Central American affairs. He was also associate director of global comms. in the Bush White House from 2001-05 and later served as senior VP for comms. for government contractor DynCorp. International.



MS&L has added Joan Cetera (senior VP/consumer home & wellness leader) and Jeff Bodzewski (VP-corporate branding) to its Chicago office.

Cetera, who was at Ogilvy PR Worldwide, will handle relationships with Procter & Gamble, Delta Faucets and Daisy (Wasa, Crispbread). In a 13-year career, Cetera worked with Microsoft, Chase, McDonald’s and Jim Beam Brands. Her resume includes stints at Edelman, JSH&A and Golin/Harris.

Bodzewski will look after corporate relationships with DeVry and Kellogg School of Management and bolster MS&L’s word of mouth marketing practices. He had been at Ketchum’s Zocalo Group doing WOM duty for Capital One, Midas and Infiniti.

Joel Curran is in charge of MS&L’s Midwest operation.

BRIEFS: ...Hill & Knowlton opened a Bogota, Colombia, office on Feb. 2, the firm’s eighth in Latin America. ...Insight Circle PR, a Capitola, Calif., firm that works with start-up and emerging growth tech companies, and Principor Communications, a D.C., public affairs shop, have formed a partnership to serve clients looking to raise their D.C. profile and influence policy decisions as the Obama administration and Congress play “an active role in the marketplace.” ...Mary Beth West Consulting, Maryville, Tenn., has aligned with digital agency Blue Media Boutique, Knoxville, for a joint venture to provide social media consulting for clients’ marketing comms. The two firms have collaborated on projects since 2008 and are formalizing an agreement with the deal announced this month. ...The South Florida PR Network has added media directory publisher Gebbie Press and Galindo Publicidad, a translations vendor, as sponsors. Info:


New York Area

Ketchum, New York/World Triathlon Corp., which owns the Ironman Triathlon event and brand, as global AOR for PR. The works covers several events as well as corporate initiatives and brand licensed products with companies like Timex, Ford and Foster Grant. WTC comms. director Blair LaHaya said the group’s business model has changed significantly in the last year and it is looking to build a global comms. strategy.

Susan Magrino Agency, New York/Raffles Paris, Le Royal Monceau, to handle U.S. PR for the luxury hotel that has received a complete renovation and redesign.


Warschawski, Baltimore/City of Baltimore and the United Way of Central Maryland to develop a website for The Journey Home, a push to end homelessness in the next 10 years.

Crossroads PR, Raleigh, N.C./xTuple, open-source enterprise resource planning software, for PR targeting analysts, media, bloggers and other “influencers.”

E. Boineau & Co., Charleston, S.C./Silverman Consultants, advisers to jewelry businesses, for PR, including national media relations, marketing comms. and Internet marketing.


Zeno Group, Chicago/Zhu Zhu Pets, as AOR for the toy maker. Zeno guided the China-made Zhu Zhu line of toys by St. Louis-based Cepia through a crisis last Christmas when a consumer group questioned the safety of the product before later backing off the claims. The toys were among the best sellers for the 2009 holiday season. Zeno’s New York and Los Angeles offices will assist with the work. Natalie Hornsby, VP of marketing at Cepia, said the firm understands its position as a “highly entrepreneurial” company “embracing the challenges and opportunities that comes with our product’s success.”


Duo PR, Seattle/Dream Dinners, meal assembly chain with 115 U.S. locations, as AOR; SousVide Supreme, for PR and social media support after launching the appliance designed to make the “sous vide” cooking technique accessible, and the Fremont Fair, Seattle neighborhood festival that draws more than 100,000 annually.

Bob Gold & Associates, Los Angeles/Olympusat, Spanish-language, faith and family, and emerging TV network developer, for PR representation of its 10 Hispanic TV networks.

j. simms agency, San Diego/Liquid Living Magazine, bi-monthly lifestyle publication, for branding, marketing and sales as it launches at the 2010 Nightclub & Bar Convention and Trade Show in Las Vegas in March.


Hanmer MS&L Communications, India/Aditi Technologies, software and application development services, for PR following a competitive pitch process with seven agencies.

Internet Edition, February 24, 2010, Page 6


TechRadium, a Texas-based company which provides mass notification and emergency alert services, has sued PR services companies News USA and Global Media Fund for fraud alleging the vendors misrepresented their capabilities, used inflated readership figures, and fell short of promised news coverage goals.

In a suit filed in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia on Jan. 28 and alleging three counts of fraud, the client said it signed a contract in April 2005 with the two companies after meeting with their respective presidents – Rick Smith of News USA and Don Rose of GMF.

Smith’s attorney, Jonathan Schraub of Sands Anderson in McLean, Va., said he has seen the suit but it has not been served. “Substantively, the suit is silly,” he said. “To say it’s factually untrue is an understatement.” Schraub said he wouldn’t get into the details of the suit but said News USA has “nothing to do” with the claims. “The plaintiff doesn’t even know who to sue,” he said. “The whole thing is wrong.”

A voice mail left for Rose at Global Media Fund has not yet been returned. [Smith sued Rose in 2007 in civil court for fraud and breach of contract over $400K in receivables. The matter was settled before it went to trial. It’s unclear whether the two companies still work together.]

TechRadium alleges that the companies misrepresented their capabilities, networks and size of their operations, according to the suit.

The suit says that the defendants placed only 20% of the articles called for under TechRadium’s contract and knowingly used “inflated placement, circulation, readership and advertising rates.”

TechRadium says that less than $2M worth of newspaper and radio features were placed, while the contract called for distribution of $10,000,000 worth of nationally syndicated newspaper or radio features. In exchange, the client was to pay $9.9M in shares and $100K in cash.

The client also questioned the placements that were attained. “In fact, GMF failed to place many feature articles on TechRadium in nationally syndicated newspapers,” claims the suit. “Instead, GMF placed features in local newspapers and advertising papers that were extremely unlikely to attract clients for TechRadium.”

The suit claims damages in excess of $75K and charges two counts of fraud and a single count of breach of contract. TechRadium seeks actual, consequential and punitive damages, as well as attorney fees.

BRIEFS:, an online database of PR pro profiles and feedback from clients, said it dropped its membership fee Feb. 17 to become a free resource. The service relies on a 10% commission on awarded business to offset its operation costs. ...Front Row Analytics estimated the value of media exposure for Cowboys Stadium from the 2010 NBA All Star Game on Feb. 14 at $1.28M. Eric Smallwood, VP of project management at Front Row Marketing Services, said a naming rights partner would have received that amount in media exposure.



Stephanie Koze, senior VP and deputy practice leader at MS&L, New York, to Porter Novelli, as executive VP to manage its Shire Pharmaceuticals Group account. Koze is a former senior VP at Edelman and was a VP at Chamberlain Healthcare PR.

Jonathan McGrain, former comms. counsel at Catinat and director of marketing and comms. at VinaCapital Investment Management, to PHH Corp., Mt. Laurel, N.J., as senior VP of corporate comms. Earlier, he was senior VP, marketing and comms., at Clayton Holdings.

Maris Segal, co-founder of marketing and public affairs firm Prosody Creative Services, to Widmeyer Communications, New York, as a senior VP. She’ll oversee the D.C.-based firm’s PreK-12 education practice in the Big Apple.

Matthew Della Croce, senior VP for MWW Group, to Allison & Partners, as managing director of its corporate communications practice, based in New York. He’s counseled clients like DHL, NASDAQ, Sun Microsystems, and Deloitte & Touche, and handled transactions and deals including Cendant/Orbitz, DHL/Airborne, JP Morgan/Chase and UPS’ IPO.

Kevin Borland, founder and managing partner of Roundtable Strategies, to Peritus PR, Louisville, as a senior strategist. He previously managed DCI Group’s tax, trade, health and financial services practice group and was director of government affairs for Polar Air Cargo.

Jennifer Swint, founder and president of Nine Dot Strategies, to APCO Worldwide, Washington, D.C., as a senior VP and business development director for North America. She was previously president of the Atlantic Media Co.’s Atlantic Live and director of National Journal’s Policy Council. She is a former executive VP and director of administration at Powell Tate and spent five years at John Adams Associates.

LaVonne Turner, a freelance comms. consultant, to Marx Layne & Co., Farmington Hills, Mich., as senior A/E. She was previously with the Int’l Assn. for Organ Donation and DGM & Associates.

Kevin Horsley, a veteran U.K. and Switzerland communications pro, has moved to Gibbs & Soell as managing director of its Switzerland operation, Gibbs & Soell GmbH. Horsley oversees the agency’s client service and day-to-day operations from Zurich. He held senior positions and consulted at companies like Clariant International, F. Hoffman-La Roche and Perkins Engines, part of Caterpillar Inc. He ran his own B2B and consumer shop with clients like Audi UK, Rand Worldwide and TRW Aeronautical Systems. Horsley started out his career with 12 years in journalism in the U.K.


Internet Edition, February 24, 2010, Page 7


Tiger Woods, in his first public remarks since a November PR meltdown, apologized for his “irresponsible and selfish behavior” and said he is “embarrassed” for being unfaithful to his wife.

“What I did was unacceptable and I am the only person to blame,” he said.

Woods did not take questions from the few reporters present and the board of directors for the Golf Writers Association of America boycotted the "press conference."

The golf pro’s mother, the commissioner of the PGA and “friends” attended the statement at Sawgrass Country Club Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. His wife was not present, media reported.

Woods said he could return to golf as early as this year but his immediate plans are to return to rehabilitation.

Reaction from PR pros on Twitter trended from critical to negative, with a few statements of support.

“Tiger’s apology was fine, if you consider the strategy his handlers have employed,” tweeted Kevin Mercuri, who heads Propheta Communications in New York. “He came out of the bunker, apologized then reentered.”

Christina Bello, a senior A/E at Euro RSCG Worldwide PR, asked “Where was Tiger’s PR team when he needed it? Woods needs a lesson in public speaking 101! Outright painful.”

Farrell Kramer, a New Jersey PR pro, said Woods’ conference was “too much, too late.” Kramer said Woods “reignited” the story by waiting so long to speak.

MWW's Mike Sacks said Woods spoke “like a robot” and came off “hollow.” “But shaming the media for harassing wife/kids was a good move,” he added.

Several pros said Woods came off as stiff. But the reaction wasn’t all negative. “I think Tiger delivered much more than expected with that statement,” said Rachel Kay, who heads her own boutique firm. “Good move.”

Adam Dalezman, an assistant A/E at Beckerman, reflected other PR pros who have seen and heard enough of Woods and his private life: “Can Tiger’s family issues now remain within his family?? I don't care anymore. I just want to see him return to golf already!!!”

ESPN called Woods “watery-eyed and contrite.”


Estee Lauder Cos. has recruited Christopher Werle as VP-global communications for its Aveda hair, skincare and makeup line that is made from pure plant and flower-based ingredients. He takes the post at Blaine, Minn.-based Aveda on March 1.

Werle was executive VP-consumer products at Weber Shandwick and group marketing manager at Microsoft in charge of games/home and retail division.

He reports to Dominique Conseil, global president of Aveda, salon and pharmacy channels and Marianne Diorio, senior VP-global brand communications at Estee Lauder Cos.

The New York-based cosmetic giant reported a robust 62 percent rise in Q2 net to $256M on an 11 percent increase in net to $2.3B.

CEO Fabrizio Freda expands to accelerate corporate momentum via stepped up investment for more effective advertising, merchandising and sampling programs.


AdFarm, a PR and advertising agency focused on the agricultural sector, has defeated nine other firms with California operations in a competitive pitch process to help “reconnect” Golden State consumers with growers.

A coalition of agriculture groups led by the Western Growers Association issued an RFP in December for the three-year, $357,500 account and received 10 proposals.

Managing director Bob Wilhelm, based in St. Louis, and Kathryn Pinke in AdFarm's North Dakota outpost, lead the account, according to a WGA official.

Also vying for the work were Nuffer, Smith, Tucker (San Diego), Precision PR (Sacramento), Fleishman-Hillard (Sacramento); Saint Somewhere Marketing (Jamul), DVBE Communications; Huntington Marketing (San Marino); Brown Miller Communications (Martinez); Stacey Doss Doherty PR (Irvine), and The Communications Department (Watsonville).

The group, which calls itself the California Agricultural Communications Coalition, was looking for a firm with experience in handling diverse coalitions and guiding, crisis, consumer, and traditional and new media.


The Indy Racing League and key sponsor IZOD have brought in GolinHarris to broaden PR efforts beyond the sports media.

Amy Konrath, director of media relations for the IRL, told O’Dwyer’s that GH’s focus will be national, non-sports media outreach to get exposure for IRL drivers in mainstream press. She said IRL and IZOD jointly issued an RFP for the work and noted the league last worked with Dan Klores Communications to promote the May 2009 Indianapolis 500.

“We are excited about what GolinHarris will be able to do for us off the sports pages,” said IRL commercial division president Terry Angstadt, in a statement provided by Konrath. “Our goal is to make all of our drivers stars in the mainstream landscape, and the hiring of GolinHarris is one of the first steps in doing so.”

The IRL runs two racing series: Izod IndyCar Series, which includes the Indy 500, and the Firestone Indy Lights. A third, a revival of the U.S. F2000 National series, is in the works for 2010.


Lou Hammond & Associates won marketing communications agency of record duties for Rail Europe, the New York based promotion entity for railroad travel in Europe, following a competitive pitch process.

Three firms pitched for the account. New York-based Nike Communications was the incumbent.

Rail Europe has been based in the Big Apple since the 1930s and is part of the French and Swiss national railroads marketing European travel on 35 railroads to North Americans. It claims to assist more than one million visitors each year.

In a statement, RE president and CEO Frederic Langlois said the entity wanted an agency with a track record in trade and consumer media. He said LH&A allows the rail organization to “reach and influence a wide audience.”


Internet Edition, February 24, 2010, Page 8




Tiger Woods’ belated performance last Friday was a bad day not only for Tiger but for PR.

Friday is the day of choice for those releasing bad news. Saturday readership plummets.

Best day for those wanting attention is Monday.

So crude is the PR advice surrounding Tiger that we believe they actually thought a Friday was the best day to “bury” this story (as though a hurricane could be “buried”).

Reaction is mostly negative to this fake “press conference” and deservedly so.
Tiger reading from a script reeked of insincerity. He was over-programmed, like much of PR these days.

Amazing is the charge that the media was spreading lies about what happened in the early morning hours after Thanksgiving when the Tiger story was nothing but lies about that night.

The claim was made that Woods was only in a “minor” car accident.

How minor is an accident where the driver winds up unconscious on the road after smashing into four objects and driving in his bare feet?

Massive stonewalling ensued which is a form of lying. The cops whiffed, never analyzing Tiger’s blood and taking part in the coverup.

Tiger should have faced the press a couple of days after the accident and confessed all. Stonewalling was the advice he got and is about par for the course these days for much of PR which has morphed into marketing.

There was a monumental failure in intelligence-gathering by Nike, Accenture, Pepsi and other big sponsors.

Had their “PR” people been in touch with the right press, the right nightclubs, the right sports hangouts (instead of cringing under their desks), they would have learned years ago about Tiger’s philandering. They would have “waved off” their employers from having anything to do with Tiger.

For the first time, an audience saw Tiger without a display of the Nike logo, which his contract called for him to wear even when promoting other products. That harsh contract no doubt won a lot of points for some marketer at Nike.

The PR/press gap is wider than we have ever seen it and the victims are not only PR clients but the public.

Some PR Firms Shun Rankings

The annual O’Dwyer PR firm rankings will be published next week.

Many of the firms had declines in 2009 but are putting out their figures anyway.
They know that many companies shopping for PR use the rankings as their initial guide.

If you Google “healthcare PR” or “beauty PR firms” or any such combination for any of the 12 specialties ranked by O’Dwyer, the O’Dwyer rankings will come up near the top.

They are the only rankings that we see appearing on Google. They have become the gold standard for PR firm measurement over the past 39 years because client companies know they are based on tax documents—the top page of the firm’s income tax return and the W-3 showing total payroll.

PR has migrated to the specialties in the past couple of decades. Those who talk about PR in general don’t realize that when companies start shopping for PR they can go to firms with practices in the appropriate area.

PR has become specialized like law. You go to a real estate lawyer, maritime lawyer, criminal lawyer, divorce lawyer, corporate lawyer, copyright lawyer, telecommunications lawyer, etc., depending on the need.

Most “PR,” meaning dealing with the public forum and press, has moved from corporations and institutions into the agencies where a lot of special practices have sprung up. The O’Dwyer rankings have helped to define these practice areas over the past 20 years and win business for the firms taking part in them.

Such areas as healthcare, tech, financial/IR, food, beauty/fashion, sports/leisure and travel require lifelong career specialization.

Firms in the O’Dwyer rankings are those that are seeking more business and have the staff to handle it. Firms that don’t need the rankings and don’t help to support them will not be in them.

The Ragan Communications social media conference at Coca-Cola h.q. in Atlanta this week will not have one of its featured speakers—Bill Murray, COO of NANA (nee PR Society), who pulled out the week before the conference. He was to have talked about the decline of traditional media and the rise of SM. Ragan execs said no particular reason was given except that he “couldn’t talk.” We don’t approve of major speakers at a conference pulling out at the last moment. Reclusive Murray has never addressed any New York PR group and basically hasn’t talked to us since his first couple of weeks in office in 2007.

The conference at Coke is dramatic because First Lady Michelle Obama has just launched a drive to rid schools throughout the nation of sweetened drinks.

Atlanta is close to being the “fat capital” of the U.S. The South in general is by far the fattest area in the nation, according to the “fat map” published by the Centers for Disease Control.

We’re hopeful that Coke officials will talk to reporters at the conference about Michelle’s campaign and other issues.

One is the use of high fructose corn syrup in Coke and other sodas.

Nutritionists claim that “sugar” made from corn syrup is harder to digest than cane and beet sugar.

President Obama is having a hard time putting across his health insurance plan but an even greater impact on the health of America could result if Americans change eating habits that have made about two-thirds of them overweight.

Nutritionists say that non-hereditary diabetes could be wiped out if over-use of sugar of all types and obesity were curbed.

BevReview, taste-testing “Pepsi Throwback” sweetened with beet and cane sugar vs. Pepsi made with corn syrup, declared that the latter tasted like “swill” when compared with the former.

Pepsi/corn syrup “starts out a bit watery, with a bit of chemical flavor,” while Pepsi Throwback “is cleaner, producing a consistent cola taste from the first sip, while it passes over your tongue, and eventually the aftertaste as it goes down your throat,” says BevReview.

The website estimates that nine of ten people would prefer Pepsi Throwback, which was only being marketed for a couple of months to this week.

Soda companies switched to corn syrup decades ago because it is cheaper than cane and beet sugar.

Another Coke issue is its deficient “Online Social Media Principles” that tell Coke allies to identify themselves on SM “at the outset” but don’t get around to this advice until the third page.

--Jack O'Dwyer


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