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Internet Edition, May 26, 2010, Page 1


GolinHarris has fended off a challenge from 10 firms to continue guiding international PR for Florida's Department of Citrus.

The state issued an open RFP in February for the $2.5M account as a mandatory three-year review required by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Pitching the account were Edelman/Chicago, Grayling Global, Hill & Knowlton, Ketchum, Fleishman-Hillard, Tonic, Porter Novelli, Burson-Marsteller, Bray Leino (London) and Beattie (London). GH, Edelman, F-H and PN were the high scorers.

GolinHarris has worked on the account for years and last won a review in 2007 covering the U.S., Canada and Europe. The RFP required firms to have offices or affiliates in the U.S., Canada and Europe.

The account is funded by an excise tax on fruit.


Dubai’s Dept. of Finance signed a $300M a-month contract with Brunswick for international PR work as the cash-strapped member of the United Arab Emirates restructured its massive debt load this year.

Dubai World, the emirate’s conglomerate, rocked the financial markets via its 2009 decision to stop paying interest on its debt. It reached an agreement May 20 with a consortium of 90 lenders to revamp $23.5B in debt.

The New York Times called the deal a willingness among western banks to take a short-term hit to maintain ties “in a part of the world that, despite Dubai’s debt hiccup, is sure to remain a fruitful place to do business.”

Dubai-based Brunswick Gulf’s three-month agreement began Feb. 1 calls for “immediate scenario planning,” “anticipating potential issue areas,” messaging, positioning, media training and events.


Anita McBride, former chief of staff to First Lady Laura Bush, has joined APCO Worldwide as senior counselor in its global political strategies operation and as a member of its international advisory council.

She advised Bush on initiatives like global health, literacy, education, historic preservation and youth outreach.

McBride also served President George W. Bush as senior advisor to the State Dept.’s Bureau of International Organizations. She worked in the Reagan and Bush I White House and served as director of the speaker’s bureau for the U.S. Information Agency.


People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals plans to educate the winning firm in the pitch for the six-figure Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus account that “it’s in their best PR interest” to cancel the deal, David Pearle, senior media coordinator told O’Dwyer’s.

That doesn’t sit well with Feld Entertainment, parent company of Ringling Bros. Steve Payne, VP-corporate communications at Feld calls PETA’s move an “absurd attempt to impose themselves” into the PR selection process.

“We have received excellent proposals from a number of quality firms that have done their own due diligence on PETA,” he said. None of those firms have quit the competitive pitch, Payne told O'Dwyer's.

According to Pearle’s e-mail, PETA plans to share “backstage video footage showing Ringling trainers beating elephants, behind-the-scenes photos showing the inherent cruelties involved in training baby elephants.”

PETA has already sent emails to CEOs of top firms calling Ringling Bros “a PR nightmare waiting to happen.”

Executive VP Tracy Reiman is quoted as saying: “There’s not a PR team in the world that is slick enough” to overcome the various alleged abuses by Ringling “all for the sake of a few cheap tricks.”

Ringling refutes charges of animal abuse. It operates a conservation center for elephants, animals that it refers to as “pampered performers” that star in the “greatest show on Earth.”

Hill and Knowlton had the Ringling Bros account for the past six or seven years, but parent company, Feld Entertainment decided to take a another creative direction, according to Payne.

Feld wants a firm with a strong presence in New York, Los Angeles and Washington, D.C.

A two-year contract with a 30K monthly retainer is planned.


The enforcement unit of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which is being pressured by Congress to reform its operations, has put out a feeler for PR through June 2.

The Office of Law Enforcement, which oversees fishery laws and has been hit for what critics say is selective and haphazard enforcement, issued a “sources sought synopsis” asking for interest from firms in a tactic that is often used as a precursor to an RFP.

Capabilities go to NOAA contracting specialist Shirley Johnson ([email protected]).


Internet Edition, May 26, 2010, Page 2


Burson-Marsteller’s Prime Policy Group unit has signed on with the National Rifle Association to protect the Second Amendment rights of Washington, D.C. residents, freedoms that the gun group believes are threatened by over-zealous city officials.

The NRA is upset that local lawmakers have drawn up a series of rules the group says makes gun ownership a bureaucratic nightmare.

Those measures include registration of gun owners, limit on the number of bullets a gun can hold and restrictions on the types of firearms that D.C. residents can purchase.

The rules went into effect following the 2008 Supreme Court decision that lifted D.C.’s more than 30-year ban on handguns. The NRA believes the D.C. regulations fly in the face of the Supreme Court decision.

The May 17 Wall Street Journal quoted Wayne LaPierre, executive VP of the NRA, saying: “Can you go out and buy guns in D.C. and defend yourself as the Supreme Court said you should be able to? No.”

Vickie Walling, former chief of staff to Rep. John Tanner (D-Tenn.) is handling the account at PPG. She played a role in the creation of the Blue Dog Coalition, an organization of conservative Democrats. [Tanner is not seeking re-election.]

The NRA had used Ogilvy Government Relations, B-M’s sister firm, for lobbying work. It terminated Ogilvy in January after paying $360K in 2009 fees.


San Diego, which has been under a drought alert for the past year, is seeking pitches for its water conservation public information account with an RFP through early June.

The San Diego region averages from only nine to 10 inches of rain annually and faces a rising population for a limited supply of water. The city, which sells water to several surrounding communities but imports as much as 90 percent of its water, wants to pitch water as “our region's most precious resource,” according to the RFP released May 13.

The contract with the city’s Public Utilities Department is set at $200K per year and is expected to run for three years with two options.

It is the first review of the PR account since the city consolidated the San Diego Water Dept. and the Metropolitan Wastewater Dept. to form the new utility serving water to more than 1.3M people across 200 miles and handling wastewater for 2.2M.

“No Time to Waste, No Water to Waste” has been the tagline for its recent public information efforts.

The outreach focuses on consumers and businesses in the region and should include PR, public service announcements and partnerships to spread the message of conservation.

Outdoor water use for gardens and lawns is a key target as the city says 55% of residential water use is used for such irrigation and 18% of urban water use is attributed to over-watering. Download the RFP at


A federally backed effort to map broadband and wireless service in the state of Vermont to identify tech-lagging areas of the rural state is seeking pitches for a PR plan to gain cooperation and increase public awareness of the public, private and academic program.

The Vermont Broadband Mapping Initiative, fostered by the non-profit Vermont Center for Geographic Information based in Waterbury, issued an RFP on May 17 for the work.

The VCGI received a $1.2M grant from the federal stimulus bill in October to map the telecom services for use in outlining development objectives for the state, particularly in rural areas.

“VCGI is seeking professional consulting services to help us articulate a clear message outlining the benefits broadband providers will gain by cooperating with the mapping effort, and develop a public relations strategy and materials that will convey the message to them,” reads the RFP. Pitches are due June 18.

RFP is at


Alan Mayer, who co-wrote “Spin: How to Turn the Power of the Press to Your Advantage” with Michael Sitrick, has joined the lawsuit that has been lodged against the west coast crisis PR heavyweight.

Mayer, who heads the strategic communications unit of entertainment firm 42West, worked at Sitrick & Co. from 1997-06. He has signed on to the suit filed by Richard Wool last month that charged the Sitrick & Co. CEO with manipulating shares of the firm's employee stock ownership plan, or ESOP. Wool had headed S&C's New York outpost.

S&C dismisses the complaint as groundless and is working to deny Wool and Mayer standing for other ESOP members.

Mayer is a former reporter for the Wall Street Journal, senior editor of Newsweek and founding editor of Buzz.


Robinson Lerer & Montgomery has gone to bat for Ivy Asset Management as the New York financial entity was hit with a civil suit from New York’s attorney general this week claiming senior officers “hid the truth” about Bernard Madoff’s Ponzi scheme operation.

RLM partner James Badenhausen and principal Craig Brown are handling the media for Ivy, which is part of BNY Mellon Asset Management.

Cuomo filed suit May 11 against Ivy, its former CEO, Lawrence Simon, and former chief investment officer, Howard Wohl, for “deliberately misleading clients” about investments tied to Madoff, alleging Ivy and the two execs “kept their clients in the dark” about damaging financial information about Madoff so the firm could bring in millions in advisory fees.

Kekst and Company is working with Wohl and said the allegations will not hold up in court. Ivy, via RLM, said it is cooperating with the AG investigation and intends to defend itself against the claims.


Internet Edition, May 26 2010, Page 3


Jill Abramson, managing editor for news at the New York Times, is stepping down for six months to focus on digital operations.

Executive editor Bill Keller wrote in an e-mail that Abramson’s “six-month detour” will enable her to master all aspects of the digital operation.

The ME job is to be split among Susan Chira, foreign editor; Larry Ingrassia, business editor and Dean Baquet, assistant managing editor.

Keller explained that one of the reasons for the move is to “gives these editors a break, a diversion, a cobweb-clearing, an adventure.”

The ME substitutes will return to their respective departments “a little smarter and a little refreshed,” while Abramson will be ready to “guide the final lap of newsroom integration.”

Abramson joined the NYT in`97 from the Wall Street Journal, where she was deputy bureau chief of its Washington office. She assumed the ME slot in 2003.


Yahoo has acquired Associated Content in a deal worth more than $100M to offer low-cost “crowd-sourced” material in a bid to broaden its portal offering.

AC material is provided by free-lancers who are paid as little as $5 per-submission.

Founded by Luke Betty in 2004, AC gets more than 16M unique visitors per month and more than 50K articles, images, audio and video material submissions for review by its editors.

Carol Bartz, CEO of Yahoo, called the combination a “game-changer” that will “open up new and creative avenues for advertisers to engage with consumers across our network.”

AC also has distribution deals with Thomson Reuters, Cox Newspapers and USA Today.


Maggie Murphy becomes editor of Parade and editorial director of Parade Publications on June 14. She was executive editor of People, People Country and Life.

Previously, Murphy was assistant managing editor at Entertainment Weekly and InStyle and senior editor at US. Murphy reports to Jack Haire, Parade CEO, who respects her “keen insight into American culture.”


Campbell Brown, a CNN anchor, is leaving her program so the Time Warner unit can figure out how to bolster viewership in her key prime-time slot.

“Campbell Brown,” which airs at 8 p.m., competes with Fox News Channel’s Bill O’Reilly and MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann. It draws about 600K viewers, while MSNBC gets 1M and Fox tops 3.3M.

Brown says she is leaving on her own accord because she feels that she is unable to go head-to-head with the other opinion shows.

“The simple fact is that not enough people want to watch my program, and I owe it to myself and to CNN to get out of the way so that CNN can try something else,” she wrote in a statement.


The Corporation for Public Broadcasting is giving “Frontline” a $6M two-year grant to expand its investigative reporting.

The outlay means that Frontline will produce seven or eight new programs to allow it to skip the usual summer break.

The new shows will have three stories an hour, rather than hour-long pieces that Frontline is noted for.


“I did not spend one penny on advertising,” talk show host Conan O’Brien said in a Q&A at Google’s headquarters discussing the social media push that fueled his sold-out comedy tour and planned return to TV.

O’Brien noted that his sold-out comedy tour was promoted by a single dispatch via Twitter: “I sent out one tweet that directed people to a web site where you could buy your ticket. That was it. And the show sold out in a couple of hours across the country. And that’s got everybody, a lot of people rethinking how things are marketed.”

O’Brien, in a 48-minute session with Google employees posted on Youtube, said he didn’t have to do radio interviews or “hawk my show” at all.

“I think people are starting to understand that the world has completely changed,” he said.

O’Brien talked about NBC’s reactions to the Internet wave of support for him as the network installed Jay Leno back at the helm of the “Tonight Show,” with O’Brien noting the network thought he was orchestrating the campaign and wanted him to stop it.

“They just didn’t understand what was happening,” he said. “I think they still don’t understand what’s happening.”

O’Brien said his studio bosses considered muffling his tweets but realized the “absurdity” of shutting down his Twitter account.

O’Brien talks about TV’s “dismissive” attitude toward the ‘Net noting “they tend to deride what they don’t understand.”


Forty-four percent of online news consumers get updates from emails or posts from social networking sites, according to the Pew Project for Excellence in Journalism.

Pew looked at a year of data on the top news stories discussed and linked to on blogs and social media pages, seven months’ worth of content on Twitter, and a year of the most viewed news-related videos on YouTube for its recent study.

The study found the stories and issues that gain traction in social media differed greatly from those leading in the mainstream press. Of 29 weeks tracking all three social platforms, blogs, Twitter and YouTube, they all shared the same top story just once from June 15-19, when the Iranian election protests were featured.

Full report is at

(Media news continued on next page)


Internet Edition, May 26, 2010, Page 4


MySpace is searching to fill its top corporate communications post following a high-profile departure last month as the social network works to woo back disgruntled users of rival Facebook.

The News Corporation-owned social network, based in Los Angeles, is looking for a pro with eight to 10 years of experience to fill the senior VP post, which oversees a team of 10, in addition to its PR agencies, which include Weber Shandwick.

VP Dani Dudeck left the company last month for Zynga, which develops applications popular on Facebook.

The top PR slot vacancy comes as MySpace works to capitalize on a backlash against Facebook over that dominant social network’s privacy policies. While Facebook has been bombarded with criticism in recent weeks, an online movement has slated May 31 for a mass exodus from Facebook in protest over its use of personal data.

MySpace last week announced it would streamline its privacy settings to enable users to protect information with a single option – a move to gain back users it lost amid Facebook’s rapid rise.

“MySpace’s core value of allowing self-expression and representation of yourself remains true, without the fear that your unique contribution to MySpace will be unknowingly used for an alternative purpose,” MySpace co-president Mike Jones said in a blog post Monday in an apparent swipe at Facebook.

And a public backlash isn’t Facebook’s only problem. The Wall Street Journal reported that regulators are also eying the network.

“The company can't afford not to act,” wrote the Journal’s Jessica Vascellaro. “The Federal Trade Commission is taking a close look at how online social networks are using people’s data, and people close to the matter say it is increasingly focused on Facebook.”

MySpace, which revamped this year to focus more on entertainment and gaming, was the top social network and still growing when News Corp. bought it for $580M in 2006.

Facebook surpassed its user base in April 2008.


“One of the advantages of the new fragmented media landscape, particularly online, is you can get very rich, specific sites that are enormously passionate,” said Tony Fox executive VP of corporate communications for MTV Networks Entertainment Group, said at a Center for Communication panel of TV PR executives. “If you can marshall a crowd like that, you can drive your ratings.”

John Murphy of Murphy PR said in a similar vein that consideration has to be paid to the pass-along effect of certain media. He gives the example that “The View” might not have the ratings of “Good Morning America,” but the female-driven talk show gets a lot of pick-up online and a placement there could resonate more, even though the shows ratings aren’t on par with GMA.

“In the old days you had a film premiere or a television premiere, you sent out the tape and you kind of got reactions from everybody before they wrote their reviews,” said Murphy. “So you could get a sense of whether ‘this would sink or fly.’ Now it happens almost instantly.” Video is at


The Oahu Visitors Bureau and its PR firm Stryker Weiner Yokota are hosting a small contingent of travel writers for the first time in a few years to capitalize on an up-tick in tourism.

A tourism official told the Honolulu Star-Bulletin “economic tides are turning” so they decided to try the PR tactic out again.

Publications taking part include La Opinion, the Spanish-language daily, in-flight mags from American Airlines and Virgin Blue Airlines,,,, a travel and lifestyle website; and regional lifestyle mags from Los Angeles, Aspen and San Francisco.

The Honolulu Advetiser reported the number of visitors to Hawaii climbed for the fourth straight month in March to more than 607,000, a 9.3 percent rise over March 2009.

Hawaii officials have been debating how to boost the islands for consideration as a business travel destination. As KHON-TV’s Jai Cunninham pointed out last week, “Make no doubt about it Hawaii is seen as a great getaway, but businesses sometime fear holding conventions or meetings here because of the appearance no work will get done. How can we change that image?”


An elaborate but phony news release purporting to be from Royal Dutch Shell was disseminated May 17 announcing that the oil giant was suspending its offshore drilling off Nigeria.

The company produces 40% of the oil-rich country's petroleum and has drawn scrutiny for years by critics who cite alleged human rights abuses there.

The hoax, which is being investigated by the company, came a day before the company’s annual meeting in The Netherlands and included a media phone line answered by a staffer who identified herself as “Shell media relations.”

Reuters reported that the spokeswoman named on the bogus release said the company was responding to pressure from groups like Amnesty International. Reuters said she seemed surprised when asked about the reasons for staging the hoax and told the news agency that “I’ll have to see what’s going on.”

The stunt recalls the “Yes Men” troupe that has exploited PR tactics to rail against corporations in the past, although there has been no claim of responsibility.


Free Press, a media watchdog group, has built a website for media mistakes—MediaFail— to “expose the worst in American media.”

The site, which invites user submissions, asks users to give a virtual “fail” by clicking on an icon next to its articles and videos.

Internet Edition, May 26, 2010, Page 5


Hill & Knowlton has won a global competitive pitch to guide media relations for the solo round-the-world yacht race, The Velux 5 Oceans, a 30,000-mile circumnavigation run every four years.

H&K’s sports unit based in London will coordinate the assignment with offices in eight countries reflecting both the race route, key markets for the sponsor, Velux Group, and the nationalities of its participating captains – France, South Africa, New Zealand, Australia, Brazil, U.S., Germany and Poland.

Tim Kelly, U.K.-based sports PR consultant who serves as race director of communications, said H&K was tapped following a “competitive tender process around the world.”

He said the WPP unit’s global network suits the “international nature” of the event and noted the firm will engage press on the national, regional and local level to pitch stories coming out of the race.

The 26-year-old race, starting on Oct. 17, features five ocean “sprints.” The first runs from La Rochelle, France, to Cape Town, So. Africa, then to Wellington, New Zealand; Salvador, Brazil, and Charleston, S.C., before crossing back to France.

The race, which can take more than four months, was previously known as the Around Alone and, earlier, as the BOC Challenge, for its sponsor, BOC Gases. Velux took over sponsorship in 2006.


Organizations remain cautious on PR spending in 2010 as the industry emerges from a tough 2009, according to a biennial study by the University of California’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism.

But while a survey of spending by the school shows that ’09 wasn’t as painful to PR as previous recessions, budgets are expected to increase only incrementally this year.

Jerry Swerling, director of PR studies and the Strategic PR Center at USC, said the recent recession wasn’t as calamitous as the downturn that leveled tech PR at the turn of the last decade. He said the industry came out of last year in relatively decent shape for a recovery.

“The dot-com phenomenon was really a PR bubble that, when it finally burst hit the profession the way this recession hit the housing industry,” he said. Swerling noted that PR is much better established today as a key strategic player (“rather than just a hype machine”) and added that social media and the “fishbowl” environment play to PR’s strong suits.

The USC study, known as GAP, an acronym for Generally Accepted Practices, found that nearly 21 percent of PR budgets rose last year while 42.5% fell. A large percentage—36.6— saw little or no change, the study found.

Swerling said solid numbers reported in the first quarter of 2010 by ad/PR holding companies are a good sign for the year, but he noted the GAP study’s finding that clients expect budgets to increase a mere 1.6% this year. Corporate respondents to the study cited an expected 1.9% increase.


New York Area

Krupp Kommunications, New York/Armando Montelongo, real estate expert who hosts A&E's "Flip this House," for brand management consulting and national media relations.

Propheta Communications, New York/Unified Help, humanitarian aid group; vBookz, e-reader platform that converts text to voice, and ToneFuse, marketing for the online music vertical, for PR.

Whitegate PR, New York/Bling Bone, jewelry for pets and “their people,” as AOR for PR, including strategy, marketing materials, social media outreach and media relations, and Artists in the Kitchen, as AOR for its Hell’s Kitchen artist in studio tours this month.

Resound Marketing, Princeton, N.J./ SHL, workplace talent assessment solutions, for media and analyst relations for the company’s U.S. operations.

Swordfish Communications. Vorhees, N.J., and Adamus Media, Williamstown, N.J./Innova Health & Rehab, rehabilitation and subacute care facility operator, for PR and advertising, respectively.


Shift Communications, Boston/Sony Online Entertainment, as its first AOR for corporate communications following a competitive pitch. Principal Todd Defren said the “big-time” win emphasizes the firm's ability to compete in the “major leagues.” He added the firm pitched Intuit’s account when SOE’s Scott Gulbransen was there. The firm’s consumer lifestyle unit handles the work.

Depth PR, Atlanta/CONIX Systems, payment processing solutions for the financial services industry, for PR.


The Eisen Agency, Newport, Ky./Smith & Schaefer, laboratory and healthcare equipment and furnishings, for PR.

Mountain West

Verde PR & Consulting, Durango, Colo./PrimaLoft, R&D for clothing insulation technologies, as AOR for PR, including social media.


Atomic PR, San Francisco/DG Fast Channel, digital media services for the advertising, entertainment and broadcast sectors, as AOR for PR. The hire followed a project with Atomic developing and promoting company announcements at the April 2010 National Association of Broadcasters tradeshow in Las Vegas.

Allison & Partners, Los Angeles/The Los Angeles Sparks, WNBA team, as AOR for PR, including cause marketing and community relations.

Teena Touch PR, Berkeley, Calif./CameraRenter; Tripping; Vyew; iDev3, and I-Contain.

JWalcher Communications, San Diego/Tapestry Resorts, hospitality management division of ResortCom International, for PR services to launch and “brand” the new division.

The Phelps Group, Santa Monica/Panera Bread, eatery chain, for strategic comms. in the Los Angeles, Orange County, Ventura County and Inland Empire markets starting earlier this year, and Goodwill Southern California, job placement, for integrated marketing comms. services.

Internet Edition, May 26, 2010, Page 6


Larry Thomas, a former top executive at broadcast PR titans Medialink and MultiVu, has set up his own video PR company with a “matchmaker” model to handle broadcast, web and mobile assignments.

Thomas said he’ll lean on a network of senior advisors to assemble a team for each project, which, he says, creates a custom approach without carrying unnecessary overhead.

“The business model will let us deliver a higher level of service at below market rates,” he said of the new firm, called Latergy.

Thomas launched PR Newswire’s broadcast and multimedia division MultiVu in 2002 and left three years later for the chief operating officer slot at Medialink, where he remained until its sale to The NewsMarket last year. New York-based Latergy handles services like SMTs, corporate video and live events, as well as digital video.


Tom Morrissy, former publisher of Entertainment Weekly and OK! Magazine, to Synaptic Digital, New York, as executive VP, North America sales.

The company said the move is part of a series of strategic hires at the new brand resulting from the recent integration of Medialink and The NewsMarket.

Jim Lonergan, CEO of Synaptic Digital, said Morrissy brings understanding of the media and communications business that will "help us add to our blue chip client base as we aggressively ramp up our sales and marketing operations."

Morrissy helped launch and the magazine's entertainment event business before he was recruited from Time Inc. by OK! Magazine.

Morrissy recently ran her own consulting shop handling clients in online video, social media, entertainment events and cloud research technology.

He said said Synaptic has "tangible growth potential” and noted its digital capabilities.


VNR-1 Communications kicked off this month, a service to provide broadcast and web media better access to story assets in a single product.

The service claims downloadable broadcast-quality and web-ready video, audio, photography, text and graphics supporting releases.

Jack Trammell, president of Arlington, Tex.-based VNR-1 said PR professionals now want to reach consumers and media directly.

Trammel added that the new digital service sends hits consumers, online media, bloggers and print with equal emphasis in reaching broadcast media, which he says is something that is not currently addressed in the industry.



Ellena Friedman, senior VP, Feinstein Kean Healthcare, to MS&L Group, as senior VP, director of the healthcare and life sciences practice and deputy managing director in Boston. Christine Abbott, who handled grassroots pharma campaigns, joins as senior VP, healthcare, in New York. Trine Hindklev, who oversaw media relations at Chandler Chicco Agency for six years, joins MS&L as senior VP, media relations. Jeff Young, a Burson-Marsteller staffer, joins as VP, editorial services in the healthcare practice.

Laura Burton Capps, a veteran Democratic communications aide, has moved to Blue Engine Message & Media, D.C. She had recently been senior VP for government affairs and comms. for the Ocean Conservancy and communications director for the Alliance for Climate Protection, Al Gore’s non-profit.

Adam Kirby, associate editor of Hotels magazine, to Plan A PR & Marketing, as director of client comms.

Joe Arellano, spokesman and communications director for San Francisco Mayor Gavin Mewsom, to the Bay Area Council, San Fran., as VP of communications. He was with Newsom since 2006 and earlier was a district rep for State Sen. Jackie Speier.

Rich Terry, founder/creative director at Rich Terry, to Rawle Murdy, Charleston, S.C., as creative dir.

Mark Rossolo, public outreach and advocacy manager for the Green Building Initiative, to the Greenguard Environmental Institute, Atlanta, as director of PA.


Kyle Reilly to associate VP, Rasky Baerlein Strategic Communications, Boston. He joined in April 2007 and is a member of the firm’s healthcare, non-profit and academic practice groups.

Christa Carone to VP, marketing and communications, and chief marketing officer, Xerox Corp., Norwalk, Conn.

Mark Pfiefer to head of marketing and corporate communications, General Growth Properties, Chicago. He was VP of strategic comms. after joining in 2002.

Amy McGahan and David Hertz to senior VPs, Dix & Eaton, Cleveland. McGahan joined in 1997 and handles media relations, while Hertz, former editor at the Akron Beacon Journal, has been with the firm since ’06.

Laura Clementi to senior associate, Carmichael Lynch Spong, Minneapolis. She joined the firm in 2008 as an associate after interning.


Marie Hardin, associate director for research at the John Curley Center for Sports Journalism at Penn State and who was recently named associate dean for graduate studies of PSU's College of Communications, has been tapped as the new director of the Arthur W. Page Center for Integrity in Public Communication at Penn State.


Internet Edition, May 26, 2010, Page 7


Publicis Groupe has acquired eight-year-old London-based healthcare firm Resolute Communcations and will merge its operations into its Life Brands division.

The France-based ad/PR conglomerate said Publicis Life Brands Resolute will employ nearly 100 staffers. Resolute founders – Paul Blackburn, former managing director of Fleishman-Hillard’s U.K. operation, and Ketchum alum Anna Korving – were named joint managing directors reporting to Publicis Healthcare Communications Group chief Alain Sarraf.

Resolute also has a New York outpost headed by Porter Novelli vet Michael Durand, and a “satellite office” in Pittsburgh.

Sarraf said Resolute’s strategic and PR capabilities blend well with the Life Brands units’ digital and advertising offerings.


New York-based independent healthcare firm HealthStar PR has added two senior executives under newly installed president and CEO Erinn White.

Gregory Tarmin, senior VP at MS&L Worldwide who was previously in house at American Express, has joined the firm as executive VP and general manager.

And David Rosen, senior manager at Meridian Health with experience on the client and agency side in the healthcare PR sector, is now senior VP at HealthStar. He directed PR at Bristol-Myers Squibb and worked in PR at DuPont after agency stints at Ogilvy PR Worldwide and Burson-Marsteller.

White, the second employee at HealthStar when it opened in 2003 and a Ketchum alum, took the reins of the firm in March after founder Helene Ellison left for Burson-Marsteller.

The firm, which posted $9M in revenue in 2007, recently moved into a 7,500-square-foot space on Madison Avenue. Its clients run the gamut of healthcare from Merck and Roche to Genentech and Nycomed.


The entity overseeing oil and gas production in Texas is on the hunt for PR and social media help to bolster a program from its new alternative energy division with public outreach touting a $12.6M initiative implementing propane vehicles in the Lone Star State.

The 119-year-old Railroad Commission of Texas based in Austin created an alternative energy unit in October and this week issued an RFP for a firm to develop web content, public education materials, create media events, and put together a social media community of current and potential propane vehicle users.

The state, which now operates about 10,000 propane vehicles, including school buses and light trucks, is running the program with a multimillion-dollar grant from the U.S. Dept. of Energy.

Texas is the leading crude oil producing state in the U.S. and also leads the nation in natural gas production and wind power production. It produces and consumes more electricity than any other state, and per capita residential use is significantly higher than the national average, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Among the details of the PR work planned are a minimum of 20 blog postings per month and 10 media events per year. Trade show assistance and other assignments are also included, as is “demonstrated expertise with creating social media communities,” according to the RFP. Pitches are due June 3.

Download the RFP at


Gail Winslow-Pine, national director of PRSA representing the Northeast district, resigned as VP of corporate communications, marketing and philanthropy, Catholic Medical Center, Manchester, N.H.

Also resigning at the same time was Kevin Kilday, chief financial officer of CMC.

The resignations appeared to be connected but the hospital was refusing any explanation.

The New Hampshire Union Leader said May 20 it has been unable to reach Winslow-Pine, noting that her home phone is no longer in service and her CMB cell phone no longer includes her personal message.

A call to Winslow-Pine’s CMC number was answered by Marcia Ouellette of the communications department. She would not comment on the departures of Winslow-Pine and Kilday.

The Union Leader said Kilday had salary and bonuses of $275,800 for 2008, making him one of the highest paid employees of CMC. Winslow-Pine’s pay was not listed.

Winslow-Pine Had Job, PR Firm

This NL found in 2009 that Winslow-Pine had a website listing her firm, “Gail Winslow-Pine PR, Strategic PR, Planning & Implementation,” while at the same time holding down a full time job at CMC.

The site was active March 15, 2009.

She said at the time that she created the site for her firm in 2002 when she was an “active independent” and has not “actively used this website in more than seven years and although I list it on my LinkedIn profile, it was more so people can get a sense of what molded my professional experience and the type of relationship building I strongly believe.”

She added that this website was “correct in the implication that it does not adequately project my current professional status” and said she has updated her LinkedIn profile to make sure no one is confused.

CMC was accused of making $1.7 million in Medicare overcharges in 2003 by the Inspector General of the U.S. Health & Human Services Dept.

However, the National Government Services, a government contractor, ruled on June 4, 2008 that “all claims were beyond the four-year recovery period and no recovery can be made.”

CMC had sought unsuccessfully to block public disclosure of the complaint.

BRIEF: The Fleishman-Hillard-supported U.S. bid for the FIFA World Cup in 2018 or 2022 tapped President Bill Clinton has its honorary chairman on May 17, adding global heft to the push in its final months.


Internet Edition, May 26, 2010, Page 8




The Committee for a Democratic PRSA is going nowhere unless it develops a political machine that can match the one operated by APRs and national staff.

That machine pitched a shut-out against the last reform movement—the bid by Central Michigan in 2006 to model Society governance after that of the ABA and AMA.

No other chapter supported CM.

APRs/h.q. staff have a lot of carrots and sticks at their command including a hefty supply of national titles and committee appointments; funds for chapter travel and other expenses; special promotional help to chapters; the $500 stipend for attending the annual June “Leadership Rally” in New York; new business and job tips, and actual jobs on occasion.

The Counselors Academy has written that the “No. 1 question” that h.q. receives each month is “Where can I find a PR firm or consultant?” Who do you think gets those tips—critics of the Society?

There’s no percentage at all in annoying national and lots to be gained by being pals with it.

Reformers Need Lists of Members

The reformers, who have only obtained 109 signatures after two weeks towards their goal of 5,000, need political whips in each chapter who will obtain membership lists, form pro-democracy committees, and educate members about the debacle that APR is. Slogan should be “Free PRSA Elections This Summer.”

Free election supporters should raise funds and take ads in chapter websites; stage press conferences; gather statements by PR leaders; conduct chapter meetings on the issue, and send APR “white papers” to all the members by e-mail and regular mail.

Staff/leaders will try to block or limit discussion of the issue for the next four months just like they did with the bylaws re-write last year. The committee took its sweet time in unveiling its proposals and never once held an in-person discussion with a chapter.

Even if leaders are successful in blocking use of the “Leadership Rally” June 4-5 as an Assembly, one could easily be called in June or July since delegates can vote by proxy. No travel at all would be required.

APRs see such removal of the APR rule for office-holding as the end of APR and they’re right.

Almost no one takes this $385 process anymore. Only 900 new APRs of the Society have been created in the past six years or 150 each year. That is less than one per cent of the 17,000 eligibles. No amount of PR experience is required of applicants. There used to be a five-year minimum.

The multiple-choice, computer-corrected test is a travesty of what PR involves. There is no testing of writing skills or creativity. At the “Readiness Review,” applicants show lots of work but who knows who did what? Also, local politics can affect whether someone passes the RR or not. No media would ever hire a writer based on clips alone. There would be a “live” test and a deadline.

The term “PR” is hopelessly outdated in corporations and organizations. “Communications” has been the norm there since the 1970s. Agencies still use the term “PR.” But newer titles that bring job offers incorporate such terms as “interactivity,” “internet,” and “social media.” Accredited in Social Media is a designation that might have some traction in today’s market. Only 51 of the 767 members of the New York chapter of the Society are APR or 6.6%.

Non-APRs need to be educated on how wasteful the APRs have been with their money and how irrelevant it is to current PR professionalism.

The APR program, from 1986 to 2002, lost a net of $2,926,080. Total cost was $5,056,075. A big cost ($183,136 in 1999 and $207,147 in 2000) was having outsiders correct an afternoon of writing.

They had no knowledge of PR but graded the tests based on the use of “key words.”

Worst loss was in 2000 when total cost was $591,541 and the net cost per new APR was an astounding $1,794. Suppose this person then quit the Society? That would be a waste of $1,794.

Meanwhile, during this entire period, there was no “PR for PR” program. There was only one full-time PR person on the staff one from 1980 to 2000. Volunteers had no time to conduct such a program.

Non-APR political “whips” at chapters must circulate these and a host of other facts that will put the APR Sacred Cow out to pasture at long last.

We can help the Committee for a Democratic PRSA compile such a white paper if its leaders will let us. We will point out how much better, operationally and ethically, the Society was run when major figures from major corporations and PR firms were the elected leaders.

The last PR dept. head from a blue-chip to head the Society was Joe Vecchione in 1994. He was VP-PR, Prudential.

Since then there has been a succession of volunteers who are either solo practitioners or in minor PR posts. They may mean well but they are breakfast for the staff that is now devouring 53.9% of revenues for pay/fringes ($5.36M). This should be about 35%, says the ASAE.

In the 1960s and 1970s the Society had such leaders as George Hammond and Kal Druck, both CEOs of large PR firms; Kerryn King, VP-PR, Texaco; Don McCammond, VP-PR of American Can; Jon Riffel, VP-PR, Pacific Gas & Electric, and Frank Wylie, VP-PR, Chrysler.

Hammond, Druck, et al would not have allowed staff/leaders do such things as:

—Sell hundreds of thousands of copies of authors’ works without their permission and then refuse to talk to the authors once this was exposed.

—Toss hundreds of Silver Anvil entries during the 1980s because of violations of nit-picking rules such as one for a three-inch binder (“three-inch” binders are 3.5 inches on the outside which is how PRS measured them); entries fees were pocketed.

—Move h.q. downtown for 13 years with no warning to members or vote in the Assembly while leaving no midtown facility for New York members.

—Cancel the printed directory of members after 50 years with no warning or input from members or Assembly while refusing to provide a PDF of this or even say why they won’t.

—Stop publishing as of 2005 the transcript of Assemblies, again with no input from members or the Assembly.

—Stop publishing as of 2007 the list of Assembly delegates, also with no input from members or the Assembly.

--Jack O'Dwyer


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