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Internet Edition, March 3, 2010, Page 1


The Federal Emergency Management Agency is preparing an RFP for marketing, advertising and PR for its National Flood Insurance Program.

The 42-year-old program provides flood insurance to property owners who live in municipalities or regions that have committed to flood plain management and disaster mitigation.

J. Walter Thompson won a review in 2003 for the roughly $13M account in a competitive process that included both advertising and PR agencies and continues to handle the work, said a contracting official.

An RFP should be released in the next two weeks.

The NFIP paid out $3.2 billion in claims in 2008 with the majority of those funds going to claims in Texas and Louisiana.


California’s Orange County wants a firm to run its “Rethink Your Drink” social marketing campaign aimed to encourage people to choose “healthy” beverages.

The county’s Health Care Agency has issued an RFP for an agency to propose a plan to reach its three million residents, which includes different ages and “diverse communities” in English, Spanish and Vietnamese media.

The tagline was developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to highlight low-calorie alternatives to common unhealthy beverages – i.e. skip the 20-ounce soda and go with a bottle of water or diet soda; seltzer with a splash of fruit juice rather than a glass of ginger ale.

Similar campaigns are running throughout the country, including in California’s Northcoast region (Napa, Sonoma, Humboldt…) and Los Angeles County.

The RFP says key messages will include how to choose a healthier beverage, as well as messages that influence individuals to do so.

The county anticipates a two-year contract for the campaign. Proposals are due by April 1.


Ogilvy PR Worldwide has recruited MS&L’s global healthcare director, Monique da Silva, to head the WPP unit’s North America health practice as executive VP.

Da Silva is charged with heading business development, recruiting and managing staff for the unit while also playing a role on key global accounts and leading the expansion of its women’s health practice.

She has worked with sector blue chips like BD, sanofi aventis and Roche after 13 years at MS&L, part of Publicis.


Interpublic posted a 38 percent decline in fourth-quarter net to $129.4M as the recession battered Michael Roth’s ad/PR combine. 

Revenues slipped 5.3 percent to $1.8B.

IPG’s “organic revenues” took an 8.2 percent hit in Q4, and a 10.8 percent decrease for the full-year as clients such as General Motors reeled in spending.
The firm owns PR firms like Weber Shandwick, MWW Group and GolinHarris.

Roth says a “strong focus on cost discipline” helped IPG steer through the economic mess. Salaries and related expenses dropped 8.8 percent to $4B for ‘09.  Office and general expenses dropped 14.5 percent to $1.7B.

The New York-based firm has spent $214M during the last five quarters to cover the cut of 6,400 people, 14 percent of overall workforce.

Looking ahead, Roth sees more stabilized economic conditions as “clients are beginning to re-focus on their brands and the tone of the business is one of cautious optimism,” according to a statement. IPG is poised to “grow in step with a broader economic recovery.”

The firm had cash/marketable securities of $2.5B at yearend ‘09, compared to $2.3B for the earlier year.

Total debt stood at $1.95B vs. $2.12B in ‘08.


Goldman Sachs has reached out to Public Strategies Inc. to buff an image tainted by the grant of hefty executive bonuses in the aftermath of a U.S. bailout and its role in devising exotic financials that helped put the world’s financial system on the brink.

The 140-year-old Goldman is using PSI, which is headed by former President Bush counselor Dan Bartlett, an alumnus of Karl Rove & Associates, to “improve its perception in the marketplace,” according to the New York Post.

Though CEO Lloyd Blankfein piloted Goldman to a record year, some investors are concerned about the impact that negative headlines have on future earnings.

The PR makeover includes a questionnaire sent to clients and Wall Street analysts to rate Goldman’s standing to rivals such as JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, Bank of America, UBS and Barclays, reports the Post.

Currently, Goldman is defending hedging agreements put into place for Greece, which is seeking a bailout from the European Union.

On Feb. 21, Goldman posted on its website an explanation of the 2000/2001 Greek dealings, saying they were “consistent with the Eurostat principles governing their use and application at the time.”


Internet Edition, March 3, 2010, Page 2


Five agencies and a non-profit group of broadcasters won portions of a $2.1M account to inform Floridians about the 2010 census, following a highly competitive RFP in the Sunshine State.

An RFP issued by Gov. Charlie Crist’s office in November divided the campaign into 12 demographics, essentially creating a dozen accounts up for grabs.

A partnership between Tallahassee’s Moore Consulting Group and Ketchum won the most categories – five – including two regions of African-American outreach, college/university students, rural areas, and part-time Florida residents.

Terrie Ard, senior VP at MCG who is heading the account there, confirmed the win with O’Dwyer’s. Ketchum confirmed that its D.C. office collaborated with MCG on the pitch.

Ron Sachs Communications of Tallahassee edged competition in three sectors in the RFP, including outreach to American Indians, Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders, and migrant farm workers.

The work includes grassroots outreach, integrated PR and media services. Any advertising used will be from the federal census effort.

Salter Mitchell, which has Tallahassee and Orlando outposts, won a pact to reach disabled persons, including veterans, and MGSCOMM of Miami picked up two pieces to reach Hispanics, the largest demographic at 40%.

Dozens of firms and entities submitted proposals for pieces of the account, including agencies like Burson-Marsteller and Poller & Jordan.

A segment of the account to reach homeless Floridians was awarded to the Florida Association of Broadcasters, a non-profit group of media entities in the state that have collaborated on efforts like the digital TV transition.


Huntsworth CEO Peter Chadlington reported flat revenues of $240M and pre-tax profits of $36M in 2009, a year of repositioning for the British PR giant.

Chadlington noted the 2009 results were chalked up during the “height of the global financial crisis,” and compare favorably to the company’s record performance in 2008.

He says clients were cutting budgets at the beginning of last year and shifting from retainer to project work. Huntworth’s average fee income per client dipped to $75K to $66K.

Chadlington sees stronger days ahead as the plan to reduce the corporate portfolio from 26 to four brands – Grayling (global PR), Citigate (financial), Red Consultancy (consumer products) and Huntsworth Health – is completed.

The rebranding program aims to put Huntsworth in a better position to land global accounts, producing annual fees in the $5M range.

Huntsworth is off to a good start in 2010 as net new business wins in January are up 108 percent over last year’s period.


Judith McHale, the nation’s global PR chief as Undersecretary of State for Public Diplomacy, has been touting education exchange programs as a means to mutual understanding among nations in a tour of Asian countries this month that follows visits last year by Sec. of State Hillary Clinton.

McHale, the former head of Discovery Communications, lauded the 60th anniversary of the U.S. Fulbright program in Thailand on Feb. 18, part of a speaking tour that has included stops in India and Bangladesh. She also highlighted the program in India earlier in the month repeating a quote of Sen. William Fulbright: “Of all the joint ventures in which we might engage, the most productive, is educational exchange … probably the most important and potentially rewarding of our foreign policy activities.”

Noting Thailand’s king was born in the U.S. and his father studied at Harvard, McHale said 2,000 Thai students and scholars have studied in the U.S. under the program and more than 1,000 Americans have done the same in Thailand.

The country’s chief justice of its supreme court was a Fulbright scholar at Southern Methodist Univ. and the president of Silpakorn Univ. is the country is also an alumnus of the program.

“We must recognize that solutions to the global challenges we face, from food security to climate change, depend on robust scientific and technological partnerships across sectors and nations,” she said in Thailand.

At Dhaka University in Bangladesh on Feb. 7, McHale extolled technology as a means for the country’s citizens to seize control of their future. Noting 45M Bangladeshis use mobile phones, she said such tools will provide a “powerful force for creativity and change.”

McHale, who followed up the speech with a visit to a madrasa where a State Dept. program is in place, said she supports a goal to grow the number of Bangladeshi students studying in the U.S. from 2,700 now to 20,000.

The country is among the most under-developed in the world, according to the U.N.


ICR is working with Japanese restaurant chain Benihana Inc. as the company faced down opposition from a hedge fund opposing its plans to raise money through a share sale.

Benihana’s board and management prevailed Feb. 22 after a special meeting of shareholders voted in favor of the company’s merger with a subsidiary that would increase the number of shares to 12.5M.

Heirs of Benihana founder Rocky Aoki have also come out against the move, opposition which was followed by Coliseum Capital, which owns about 10 percent of the company.

A statement from ICR senior VP Raphael Gross said the board, which unanimously supported the share move, was “very much aware” of concerns about potential dilution of shares but believes it would be “foolhardy” not to take action.


Internet Edition, March 3, 2010, Page 3


The Washington Post Co. earned a $3.2M operating profit for the fourth-quarter of 2009, compared to a $14.4M loss in last year’s period. The Q4 profit was the paper’s first in about two years.

The newspaper division lost $163M for the full-year, which compares favorably to the $193M `08 loss. The Post posted a smaller revenue decline for Q4 (-4% to $193M) than for the entire year (-15% to $680M).

The good news was largely a result of relentless cost-cutting. At the Post, 221 staffers accepted a voluntary retirement incentive program in `09, costing the company $57M.

That followed a voluntary layoff plan in `08 that accepted 231 staffers at a cost of $80M.

Daily circulation declined 5.9 percent to 595,800 in `09, while Sunday circ slipped 4.7 percent to 831,300. registered an eight percent decline in revenues to $99.6M during the year. Online display revenues grew a skimpy two percent during Q4, but 13 percent for the full-year. Classified ads dipped 24 percent and 17 percent for the year and quarter, respectively.


The New York Times has promoted Richard Berke, assistant managing editor, to the national editor slot effective March 22. He replaces Suzanne Daley, who will return to a reporting post covering Europe.

The 51-year-old Berke served as national political correspondent for a decade. He was Washington editor before moving to New York.

Daley was education editor and spent eight years as a foreign correspondent in Johannesburg and Paris.


Barton Gellman has joined Time as contributing editor at large to focus on government, politics, national security and technology. He also will launch a column for Time’s website called “Counterspy” dealing with privacy and security in the digital age.

Gellman spent more than 20 years at the Washington Post. He is the author of “Angler: The Cheney Vice Presidency.”

Gellman also will be a part of New York University’s Center on Law and Security at the school’s Washington Square Park law school.

As senior research fellow, Gellman will oversee a program for reporters and researchers interested in defense and intelligence policy.


Quincy Smith, ex-chief of CBS Interactive, has launched Code Advisors, an investment and advisory outfit.

He is responsible for CBS’ acquisition of CNET and the launch of its video portal.

Smith is joined by Mike Marquez, former head of corporate and business development at CBS Interactive, and Fred Davis, of the entertainment law firm Davis, Shapiro, Lewit & Hayes.

CBS is a client.


ABC News President Dave Westin says the time has come to “rethink” the way the Disney property gathers, produces and distributes the news, according to his memo to employees.

That rethinking is expected to result in loss of 400 jobs as ABC responds to “unexpected transitions in our programs and to the economic realities of our business.”

Westin wants to “anticipate change” and sees a “rare opportunity to get in front of what’s coming” in the age of digital information.” The broadcaster can no longer just seek “less expensive ways to replicate what we’ve always done.”

By the end of the year, ABC News will “undergo a fundamental transformation that will ultimately affect every corner of the enterprise.”

Westin ticked some areas in which change is coming. He wants ABC News to emulate “Nightline” staffers who shoot and edit their own material.

ABC will combine operations of “Good Morning America” and “World News.” The network will step up use of freelancers and rely on program staff to cover unexpected events.

Retraining staff for the digital world is a top priority. Job descriptions will be different and new skill sets may be required. “We won’t just be preparing people for the new world; we will be living in it,” wrote Westin.

To “ease the transition,” ABC is offering voluntary separation packages to full-time, U.S.-based, non-union employees. Westin admits the overhaul won’t be easy, but he is certain that ABC can have a successful future if it “embraces what is new, rather than being overwhelmed by it.”


Two law firms have filed a class-action lawsuit against online user review site Yelp for extortive ad sales practices.

The suit, filed in U.S. District Court by Beck & Lee in Miami and The Weston Firm in San Diego, alleges that Yelp sales reps contact local businesses and ask for money in the form of advertising contracts. In exchange, the reps promise to remove comments disparaging the business on the popular review site.

In this case, the lawsuit alleges that Yelp tried to coerce $3,600 out of a Long Beach veterinary hospital over the course of 12 months in return for the deletion of negative reviews of the business on the site, a practice attorney Jared Beck referred to as “high-tech extortion.”

“The victims tend to be small businesses, such as our client, who often have no choice but to pay Yelp exorbitant sums in order to prevent further harm to their livelihoods,” he said.

Last year, Yelp was the focus of an in-depth exposé from Oakland-based East Bay Express that accused the company of running an extortion racket. In the article, “Yelp and the Business of Extortion 2.0,” East Bay Express interviewed local business owners who said they received calls from Yelp employees who offered to hide negative customer reviews in return for ad sales.

(Media news continued on next page)


Internet Edition, March 3, 2010, Page 4


Paul Mylrea, a government communications executive in the U.K., will join the BBC in April to head its press office, the world’s largest broadcaster said.

Mylrea, who will serve as the government-backed public service network’s official spokesman, takes over as head of press and media relations on April 6 for Donald Steel, who moves into the role of associate fellow for the BBC Academy and chief communications adviser after 10 years heading the press division.

“The BBC has a unique relationship with both the public and the media and faces the challenge of constant and increased scrutiny,” Mylrea said in a statement.

A 20-year Reuters veteran, Mylrea, who is president-elect of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations in the U.K., was director of communications for the Dept. for International Development, a government entity that provides overseas aide and development similar to USAID in the U.S. He held senior communications posts at Oxfam, Transport for London and Reuters, where he set up the Reuters Foundation's online charity, AlertNet.

He’ll report to Ed Williams, director of communications for the BBC, with oversight of the network’s approach to press and media relations, as well as PR strategy.

Mylrea will also be the BBC’s official spokesman.


Twitter might be an “ego-massaging time-drain,” but New York Times contributing technology writer David Pogue said social media serves a higher purpose than a glorified chat room.

Pogue was the key speaker at the third Annual Ragan Social Media for Communicators at Coca-Cola World Headquarters in Atlanta, GA., February 22-24. He described social media as a “unique new channel, combining real-time, two-way public and private communications” where “no middleman separates the celebrity from the fan ... or the company from its customers.”

A 10-year contributor of the Times and author of one of its most popular blogs, Pogue’s Posts, Pogue was there to give his opinion and keen insight regarding the the Twitter evolution. Does Pogue have a problem with a Twitter user being limited to 140 characters in each submission? Basically, he thinks it’s both limiting and wonderful. But a microblog it’s not.

“It forces you to be concise and clever. It’s a challenge that you have to rise up to meet,” he said. “It lends itself to certain kinds of conversation such as jokes, thoughts, observations, questions, greetings, headlines, jokes and riddles.”

Pogue said the syntax constraints also make Twitter much easier to consume. "When you have a minute and you’re on the receiving end of these things they aren’t daunting at all," he said.

“You can sit down and duck in and read a few and then duck out,” he continued. “It’s not like e-mail where each one can be pages long, just like an albatross around your neck.”

Pogue compared Twitter to more discussed recent technological advents such as Google Buzz, Gmail’s social networking application that allows users to post Facebook and Twitter status updates via email.

“They’re just two different things ... like should you use a spoon or a fork. Twitter remains great for lightweight, fast and witty submissions whereas Google Buzz doesn’t force people to be as concise,” he said.

How exactly has social media’s ubiquity impacted printed media, and to what extent will it continue? Pogue lamented the “fast decline” of print but stated that “there are pros and cons for either way and ... with each having its place.”

“You would be hard-pressed to find a college student who has a subscription to a newspaper or magazine. The reason is becoming quite obvious. You can go online and many are just free. They’re in your phones and in laptops,” he said.

Pogue hopes that newspapers will continue, both as news-gathering organizations and a lens through which to understand and filter the world.

“They’re going to always be there, but in probably different delivery formats,” he said.

Each week, Pogue contributes print and e-mail columns and an online video. He also is an Emmy award-winning tech correspondent for CBS News, a frequent guest on NPR’s “Morning Edition” and a regular on CNBC. He’s also one of the world’s best-selling how-to authors. He wrote or helped write seven books in the “For Dummies” series. In 1999, he launched the “Missing Manual,” a line of humorous computer books that includes 60 titles.

Ragan Communications and PRSA were sponsors of the three-day Atlanta conference, where tickets drew a cost of $1,195 (or $945 for Ragan "members").

Top billing was given to Coca-Cola, which hosted the meeting. Coke SVP-PA Clyde Tuggle discussed how Coke uses social media to enhance its reputation, build brands and engage employees. — Richard Bracker


SeaWorld resumed shows featuring killer whales three days after the Feb. 24 death of a trainer killed by one of the 12,000-pound mammals.

The Orlando, Fla.-based theme park, bought with other properties by Blackstone Group last year for $2.7 billion from InBev’s Anheuser-Busch division, said on Feb. 26 that trainers would not go into the water with the animals as they review the procedures for the shows.

The “Shamu Believe” show, named after the park's most famous killer whale, an industry icon, started up again Feb. 27 after SeaWorld president and general manager Jim Atchison said it will resume at a news conference a day earlier. Atchison said similar parks around the country have been asked to participate in the inquiry.

The company’s blog featured a video tribute to the trainer, Dawn Brancheau, and SeaWorld said it is working to set up a memorial fund for her family. Its Twitter account, branded with the name of its famous orca, Shamu, has gone idle “at this difficult time,” says a tweet there. The company is using its SeaWorld_Parks Twitter stream to cover the aftermath of the incident and interact with well-wishers.

Internet Edition, March 3, 2010, Page 5


inVentiv Health, the healthcare communications holding company, said fourth quarter 2009 revenue slipped three percent to $275M compared with Q4 of ’08 as it posted a $16M profit for the quarter.

For the full year 2009, revenue fell 4% to $1.07 billion over 2008. inVentiv’s communications division, which includes units like Chamberlain Healthcare PR, Chandler Chicco Cos. and Stonefly Communications Group, saw revenue slide 9% for the year to $310M, but revenue was up 17% in the fourth quarter to $86.1M compared with Q4 of ’08.

The company said marketing spending by clients stabilized during 2009. It forecasts 2010 revenue in the $1.1-$1.4 billion range.


FTI Consulting, parent company to PR agency FD, said fourth quarter revenue at its strategic communications operations fell more than 12% to $45.3M, down from $51.6M for the same period of 2008 as M&A activity continued to slump and retainer clients shifted to a project basis.

FTI said it is taking a $25M charge in the first quarter of 2010 as it terminates 150 employees and consolidates three offices. The company said the moves intend to eliminate redundancies from acquisitions over the last two years. FTI cut staff last year at FD but said “core resources” were retained to handle an expected upturn in activity. Profit rose 21.3% in Q4 to $36.6M.

Following the results, shares of the company were battered to a 12.6% decline to $36.74 on Feb. 26.

Fourth quarter revenue overall at FTI was up 6.2% to $342.9M compared with ’08. For the year, strategic communications slipped to $180M in ’09, compared with $224M in 2008, while overall revenue rose 8.3%.

President and CEO Jack Dunn said there is still “a great deal of uncertainty regarding the direction of the world’s economies and financial markets” as some regions rebound and others stumble.

Reflecting the environment, revenues at FTI’s corporate finance and restructuring division were up 16.5% for the quarter to $124.9M while its economic consulting unit rose 18.5% to $63.2M.

BRIEFS: Lou Hammond & Associates has won a review for Virginia's travel and tourism PR account as the state moves from a project-based PR plan to a retainer model. Hammond had worked with the Virginia Tourism Authority on projects over the past year. An RFP was issued in November and the firm was tapped Feb. 6 for a year-long contract with three option years. The work includes media relations, social media and other PR outreach for the Old Dominion. ...Minnesota’s I-94 Corridor Commission, the entity set up last year to oversee a crucial transportation and economic corridor, is seeking proposals through mid-March to develop a strategic communications plan. Budget for the work (PR and communications plan, guidelines for social media and a website) is capped at $50,000. RFP is at


New York Area

Rubenstein PR, New York/Mount Airy Casino Resort, for PR and messaging for the Pocono Mountain resort.


Greenough Communications, Boston/Virtusa Corp., to develop and execute a strategic marketing and PR plan for its corporate identity and IT practices.

MS&L, Boston/Keurig, single-cup brewing systems, as AOR for PR.

IMRE, Baltimore/Susquehanna Bancshares ($14B in assets), for PR, community relations and social media; PHH Arval, for PR, social media and digital, and Injured Workers’ Insurance Fund, for a new website.

Widmeyer Communications, Washington, D.C./National Association for the Self-Employed, for a PA campaign to highlight its legislative priorities on issues from promoting entrepreneurship to “realistic” health reform.

CRT/tanaka, Richmond, Va./T-System, clinical information technology, for PR and marketing counsel.


Attention, Alpharetta, Ga./Siteminis, mobile website platform, for PR.

NewmanPR, Miami/ProChile, for PR at the Cruise Shipping Miami convention slated for March. Five agencies pitched.


Ogilvy PR Worldwide, Chicago/VTech, electronics marketer, as AOR for its Electronic Learning Products division.

Parris Communications, Kansas City, Mo./Midwest Research Institute, non-profit research organization, as AOR for PR, including brand management, internal/external comms., PA and business development efforts.


Vantage Communications, San Francisco/American Hometec, tankless water heaters, as AOR following its work for the client at the 2010 AHR Expo.

Pollack PR Marketing Group, Century City, Calif./INADA, Japan-based massage chair manufacturer, as AOR for PR.

The Bohle Company, Los Angeles/DePaul University, Game Developers’ Association of Australia, and TimeGate Studios, for gaming PR.

Jensen Communications, Los Angeles/Big Star Media Group, entertainment company, for PR, marketing and strategic services.

Rogers & Cowan, Los Angeles/Advanstar Communications, to manage PR for the 2010 Licensing International Expo., slated for June in Las Vegas.


Grayling, London/International Federation for Animal Health, Brussels-based non-profit representing makers of veterinary medicines, vaccines and other health products, for a global communications study. Grayling won the business following a four-way competitive pitch. The work covers Europe, North and South America, and Japan.

Internet Edition, March 3, 2010, Page 6


The International Association of Business Communicators has brought in "fresh thinking" with two top hires to guide marketing and professional development for the organization at its San Francisco h.q.

The group has added Michele Cushnie from the Univ. of California Berkeley as VP of professional development and veteran association marketer Paige Wesley as VP of marketing and communication.

IABC membership fell 7.2% last year to 15,037 as of December 2009. Professional membership was down 8.1% while students ticked up. Renewal rate for professionals was 71%.

Cushnie was manager of instructional delivery and e-learning at UC Berkeley's Technology Transfer Program, handling profdev programs and promoting distance learning technologies. She has a doctorate of philosophy in human resource development and two master's degrees.

Wesley was director of corporate partnerships and marketing in a 12-plus-year career at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.

Wesley, who has a degree in conflict management and communications from George Mason Univ., was recently director of communications and marketing at Spirit Rock, a non-profit international retreat center.

Julie Freeman, president of the group, said both hires bring experience and “fresh thinking” to IABC.


United Business Media, the U.K.-based parent company of PR Newswire, has acquired a New Zealand-based online video game advertising agency for an initial $1M in a deal that could reach $7M.

Game Advertising Online is a four-year old banner ad agency that caters to gaming publishers on a self-service, auction-based system to place ads on gaming sites. GAO's network claims 50M unique users.

UBM says the buy will bolster its TechWeb division which includes its Game Developer Group and Information Week, along with events and research services.

UBM expects revenue of $4M from GAO in the 12 months to March 2010.

BRIEFS: TEKGROUP International has partnered with D Simon Productions to provide social media-ready video for clients of TEK's online newsroom services. The companies said clients can also integrate broadcast downloadable video into press rooms as well. …Business Wire said it formed a referral agreement to collaborate with video press release production and marketing services company MEDIAmobz. The companies note an eMarketer projection of 188M online video viewers in the U.S. by 2013. ...Medialink veteran John Tuttle has joined newscast US to lead the company’s West Coast client services team from Los Angeles. He was previously project and operations manager for Teletrax and an A/M at Medialink. He was also managing editor at U.S. Newswire, previously part of Medialink.



John Menditto, director, investment relations, Medco Health Solutions, to New York agency Imagination, as head of investor relations for Imagination The Americas. He was perviously VP at Roth Investor Relations and director of IR at Novartis.

Joanna Puglisi-Barley has been named PR manager at The Simon Group, Sellersville, Pa., where she has freelanced since 2002. She was previously director of PR for The Iron Shop and director of marketing and PR for North Penn Hospital. Other PR stints included Dorney Park & Wildwater Kingdom and Tattar/Cutler.

Bill Prickett, former director of comms. at the American Heart Association and public information officer at American Medical Response, to Certified Payment Processing, Dallas, in a new post handling media relations, internal communications and online content.

Lauren Sammerson, senior communications specialist and corporate spokeswoman, Lincoln Financial Group, to Luquire George Andrews, Charlotte, N.C., as VP of PR. She was a comms. manager for ING DIRECT and handled accounts at RT&E Intergrated Communications Agency in Delaware.

Kate Cox, public information officer, American Medical Assocaition, to Cushman/Amberg Communications, Chicago, as a senior consultant. She was previously with Jasculca/Terman and Associates.

Rick Roth, VP of global marketing, ProLogis Corp., to SquareTwo Financial, Denver, as chief marketing officer. He was VP of global marketing and comms. at Level 3 Communications and VP/marketing and IR, Corporate Express.

Kelly Koehler, 2010 grad of California State Univ., to Westbound Communications, San Bernardino, Calif., as an A/C.


Jennifer Marcus was promoted to A/E at Goodman Media International, New York. The firm has also hired 2009 NYU alum Jenny Brod as an AA/E. Marcus was at Baxter Healthcare before joining Goodman in July 2008.

Scott Beaudoin to North American director of MS&L’s cause marketing & corporate social responsibility unit in New York.

Jonathan Wilson to president and Deborah Cohen to COO, Chamberlain Healthcare PR, New York. Richard Chamberlain, current president who founded the company in 1993, gives up his day-to-day duties on March 1 and will continue as an adviser to the company.

Danielle Hurtt to VP and director of marketing, Fleishman-Hillard, St. Louis. She’s in charge of marketing the firm’s brand worldwide. Hurtt joined the firm in 2003.

Michele Tomlinson to senior director, Warschawski, Baltimore. She’s been with the firm since 2003.


Internet Edition, March 3, 2010, Page 7


Wall Street bonuses rose a healthy 17 percent to $20.3B in 2009, growth sure to fuel more populist rage against the financial service sector. The payout followed a surge in Wall Street profit to $55B, almost triple the size of its previous all-time high. The industry lost $42B in 2008.

Compensation at Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, and JPMorgan Chase Investment Bank increased 31 percent in 2009. Average comp rose 27 percent to more than $340,000.

New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli, who released the financial figures, acknowledged that “for most Americans, these huge bonuses are a bitter pill and hard to comprehend.” He believes there is much resentment against the Street due to its role in the global meltdown: “Taxpayers bailed them out, and now they’re back making money while many New York families are still struggling to make ends meet.”

DiNapoli, however, noted that Wall Street is vital to New York’s economy and the bonuses help the Empire State and NYC’s bottom line.


Shell Oil, the sole oil major remaining in the U.S. Climate Action Partnership, is using Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld for global warming issues.

The Partnership, a venture of corporate and environmental groups, was rocked with news Feb. 15 that ConocoPhillips, BP and Caterpillar decided not to renew membership.

Jim Mulva, ConocoPhillips CEO, took a swipe at USCAP, saying that its plan for climate and energy legislation that passed the House, “left domestic refineries unfairly penalized versus international competition.”

The House bill also “ignored the critical role” that natural gas can play in cutting global warming gas emissions.”

Akin Gump’s duties include climate change, CO2 management, carbon capture and sequestration, economic stimulus and other oil and gas company concerns.

USCAP members are General Electric, Natural Resources Defense Council, Deere, Environmental Defense Fund, DuPont, Pew Center for Climate Change, Honeywell and General Motors.


Matt Labov has stepped down as co-president of entertainment firm B|W|R PR a month after being promoted to that role alongside Leslie Sloane Zelnik.

BWR is part of WPP-owned Ogilvy PR Worldwide.

Labov, who represents actors, plans to start his own shop, taking with him clients like Jack Black, Steve Carell, Will Ferrel and Seth Rogen, among others.

He was named co-president last month along with Zelnik at BWR, which has offices in Los Angeles and New York and made the promotions as it sought to integrate its various units like fashion and corporate PR.

In a statement, Labov praised his 16 years at BWR, while founding partner Nancy Ryder said BWR partners have “embraced his entrepreneurial spirit” and decision to exit.


The Philippines has extended its six-month $500K pact with Covington & Burling, outreach that is headed by Stu Eizenstat, chair of C&B’s international practice and a key member of the Clinton and Carter Administrations.

The contract, which runs through Aug. 15, promises to work with Congress on a bipartisan basis to improve ties between the Obama and Arroyo Administrations.

Eizenstat's team includes Mike Barnes, former Democratic Congressman from Maryland; Marty Gold, aide to then Republican Majority Leaders Howard Baker and Bill Frist, and Bill Wichterman, former chief of staff to Republican Representatives Joe Pitts and Bill Baker.

C&B is focusing on foreign assistance, bilateral trade, military/anti-terrorism cooperation, and veterans' benefits. A key priority is to push for compensation for Filipino soldiers who fought with American troops during WWII.


Outcast Communications handled the splashy Feb. 24 news conference that introduced start-up Bloom Energy's fuel cell, a device pitched as an affordable power source to allow users to generate electricity on-site, removed from the utility grid.

California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and former Secretary of State Colin Powell, a Bloom board member, participated in the unveiling at the Sunnyvale, Calif., headquarters of eBay. The auction company has been testing Bloom fuel cells and reports a $100K savings in power cost since installation in July.

Bloom says users can expect a three-to-five year payback of its cells. The company announced charter customers of Coca-Cola, Bank of America, Google, FedEx, Staples, WalMart and eBay.

The Wall Street Journal reported the unveiling “follows almost a decade of stealth development,” and that Bloom boasts its technology is “nothing less than a breakthrough in weaning the world off conventional power.” Venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers is Bloom Energy's big financial backer.


Harvey Greisman, a corporate PR veteran, died of a heart attack Feb. 20. He was 61.

The New York City native spent nearly 25 years in key posts at GTE Corp. and IBM. His 16-year stint at the telecom company ended with his departure as senior VP-PA & communications and member of GTE's executive leadership committee.

At Big Blue, Greisman led PR for its global services and software operations, which generated about two thirds of overall revenue.

Greisman took on the group executive worldwide communications job at MasterCard Worldwide in early `06. He was responsible for global media, executive/internal PR, public policy and charitable giving. Greisman left MasterCard last November.

The Greisman family has established the Harvey Greisman Memorial Fund at the American Heart Association to honor the late PR exec.


Internet Edition, March 3, 2010, Page 8




Someone has finally come out to do public battle with us over our quest to make certain firms in our rankings cough up some money.

A lot of e-mails and phone calls have gone back and forth among members of the Council of PR Firms and Counselors Academy of NANA (nee PR Soc.) about our challenge to certain PR firms to pay something for our rankings and access to our website or face removal from the rankings.

Compiling the rankings and posting them for a year on is expensive. The site has to be maintained including stuffing it with news and data all day long. Firms that get business leads from the rankings have got to support this and most of them do so voluntarily.

Ann Subervi of Utopia Communications, Eatontown, N.J., chair of the Counselors Academy, says our insistence on getting paid for rankings “smacks of pay-for-play and is highly unethical.”

Her remarks were posted on her blog called “The Ethical Optimist” (

The firms we have made this demand to are firms with $2M to $25M and more in fees that give us minimal business.

Not Just a Matter of Money

This is far from just being a matter of money.

Waggener Edstrom, with $119 million in revenues in 2008, 843 employees, and No. 2 on our rankings, has only one web/NL sub at $295. It refuses to pony up a nickel more.

We just don’t fit into their “marketing plan,” a marketing executive told us. Several other large ranked firms have the same attitude.

So we’re booting Wagged and the others off the rankings. They’re not”PR” firms.

Rather than having any sense of community, they only have a sense of what's in it for them. They don’t like independent media that can challenge them. They don’t live up to the term, “public.”

Why are we forbidden reading material at Wagged? What are they afraid of? PR people should not be afraid of news and information about their own industry.

Cutting Noses to Spite Faces

Hardliners are going to be cutting off their noses to spite their faces because the O’Dwyer rankings are epidemic on Google. They're the only ones we find there.

If you Google “healthcare PR firms,” you'll see the O'Dwyer ranking of 96 healthcare PR specialists at the top of the unpaid listings.

We searched the next 30 listings on “healthcare PR firms” and there were no other rankings. This is true for the 11 other specialty PR practices ranked by rankings are either at or near the top.

Firms Are Agreeing with Us

Most of the firms we have contacted on this are agreeing with us. We're asking for a $2,000 budget for those with $2M in fees, $3,000 for those with $5M-$10M in fees, and $5,000 for those with $10M and more.

They get a site license so all their employees can legally access; assurance that their ranking data will be used by us (assuming they follow the rules), and $2,000-$5,000 in the form of O’Dwyer ads during the year at no extra charge.

The future of PR is in the specialties and not social media. Even SM buffs must know SM in the specialties that are now well defined.

PR Orgs Don’t Support Us

We have to get support from the PR firms because we're getting almost nothing from the PR trade associations.

We should get a lot from the Council of PR Firms. It’s supposed to support the entire PR counseling industry and not just its 97 members. Our website helps bring business to PR firms so CPRF should be one of our staunchest allies.

CPRF, which had $822,842 in cash/savings as of Dec. 31, 2008, gives us one $1,000 ad for our Directory of PR Firms each year. It has shown gross favoritism to PR Week/U.S., which was founded (not accidentally) in 1998, the year of CPRF’s birth.

During one five-year period to mid-2007, CPRF spent more than $150,000 in ads in PRW (one-third page ads once a month). The O’Dwyer magazine got one $650 ad in the same period.

Conglomerate PR firms, meanwhile, spent $307,000 in ads in PRW from November 2005 to September 2006 while we got one $1,400 ad in the O’Dwyer magazine from these same firms.

When we complained about the imbalance of CPRF ad spending to COO Kathy Cripps (2008 salary $277,020; $16,965 retirement), she said CPRF’s ad budget was exhausted and she would stop ads in PRW.

Well over half of CPRF’s nearly $1M in dues comes from conglomerate PR firms. Just about all such firms (16) are in CPRF plus 81 independents. Seven of the 18 current directors are from the conglomerates. Fifty CPRF members were in the 2008 O’Dwyer rankings.

The Arthur W. Page Society ($581,688 in cash and savings at the end of 2008) will not give a nickel to the Directory of PR Firms (PR’s biggest research project each year) nor will the Institute for PR (cash/savings of $305,071). We don’t expect anything from PR Seminar, on which about $1M is spent each year. PRS members control Page.

We’re disappointed in the IPR since it claims to love PR research.

CPRF Tried to Steal Our Rankings

Subervi says “Most of the larger holding company [PR firms] no longer rank because they don't wish to submit their documentation.”

Those PR operations have not ranked with us since 2001 because their conglomerate owners won’t let them.

CPRF, in early 2000, announced it was too confusing to their members to have to give different rankings info to the O'Dwyer Co., PR Week/U.S., and Paul Holmes.

This was an astounding posture since PR firms ordinarily tailor a complicated story to a dozen or more media.

Suddenly, it became onerous to deal with three PR trade publications.

CPRF sent out thousands of its own tax ranking forms to PR firms throughout the nation in a bald attempt to steal from us the rankings that we had built up over 30 years.

More than a dozen of the big conglomerate-owned firms refused to give us any data, forcing us to get such data from CPRF.

CPRF rules were pitiful. Commissions on corporate ads, forbidden in our rankings, were allowed up to 10% of the fee total. Profits were allowed from graphics, printing, events and video production-basically anything a PR firm did.

There were no demands for tax documents such as top pages of corporate income tax returns or W-3s. Account lists were not required. When Sarbanes-Oxley was passed in 2001, providing for jail terms and fines for false financial reports by public companies, the conglomerates pulled their PR firms out of the rankings. CPRF immediately stopped collecting data for the independent.

We have invited Subervi to visit our offices where we will give her a brief history of the rankings.

--Jack O'Dwyer


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