Contact O'Dwyer's: 271 Madison Ave., #600, New York, NY 10016; Tel: 212/679-2471; Fax: 212/683-2750
O'Dwyer's Inside News of Public Relations & Marketing Communications -
ODWYERPR.COM > Jack O'Dwyer's Newsletter return to main page

Return to this week's newsletter & back issues list

Jack O'Dwyer's NL logo
Internet Edition, March 2, 2011, Page 1


Porter Novelli is acquiring 11-year-old Voce Communications, a tech-shop founded by Miller/Shandwick alumni with about 60 staffers and $12M in revenue.

The firms have shared business with accounts like Yahoo, HP and Hitachi.

Voce was founded by Richard Cline, David Black and Matthew Podboy in 1999 and has offices in Sunnyvale, Calif., San Francisco and Orlando. It will retain its name as “Voce, a Porter Novelli company.”

Cline, who served as president of Voce, takes the reins of PN's global technology practice and sits on the firm’s executive committee. Cline said the deal provides deeper services for its clients and greater opportunities for staff.

PN CEO Gary Stockman cites Voce’s reputation in digital communications campaigns and said its culture and leadership fits well with the Omnicom unit.


Former New Mexico Governor and U.S. Energy Secretary Bill Richardson has been named chairman of APCO Worldwide's Global Political Strategies unit.

The goal of GPS is to “provide counsel to companies and institutions at the highest levels as they globalize activities.”

GPS Members include Citigroup vice chair and ex-Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez, former U.K. Secretary of State for Defense Jonathan Hutton, ex-Indian Ambassador to the U.S. Lalit Mansingh, former President of Poland Aleksander Kwasniewski and First Lady Laura Bush’s chief of staff Anita McBride.

Richardson, who ran for the Democratic nomination for president in 2008, also served as Ambassador to the United Nations, Congressman, and hostage negotiator who freed Americans from Cuba, North Korea, Iraq and Sudan.

Mark Medish, is managing director of GPS and executive VP at APCO.

He was senior director of the National Security Council during the Clinton administration and deputy assistant secretary of the treasury under Robert Rubin and Larry Summers.


Interpublic on Feb. 25 reported a 50.5 percent increase in Q4 net to $195M on an 11.7 percent jump in revenue to $2B. Organic growth rose 11.2 percent.

Buoyed by that robust performance, CEO Michael Roth announced a $300M share buyback program and declared a six cent quarterly dividend to “signal confidence in the sustainability of our competitive offering.”

Roth said IPG enjoyed “organic growth at the top end of its peer growth” during the past year and anticipates “aggressive margin expansion” for 2011.

Harris Diamond, CEO of IPG’s constituency management group and Weber Shandwick, told O’Dwyer’s that PR growth was up 6.5 percent for the year, spread among the WS, GolinHarris, Rogers & Cowan and DeVries units.

Solid gains were made in both traditional PR and social media, he added.

Severance expense during Q4 dropped to $54.7M from $70.6M for last year’s period.

For the full-year IPG earned $271.2M vs. $93.6M in 2010. Revenues rose 8.4 percent to $6.5B.


Bill Ruder, co-founder of Ruder Finn, died Feb. 22. He was 89. He is remembered as a “dear friend” and “consummate businessman, with the ability to shake every hand in the room without making anyone feel slighted,” according to a remembrance penned by David Finn.

The childhood friends capitalized on a shared interest in art, establishing Art in Industry that was run out of a linen closet at Manhattan’s Lombardy Hotel in 1948.

RF made its mark in the entertainment field by promoting the records of Perry Como.

The partners built on their corporate experience to branch out in healthcare, technology, engineering and environmental programming, remembers Finn. Ruder remained a RF board member until his last days.

He is survived by his wife, Betty, and six children. A memorial service is slated for March 30 at 2 p.m. at a location still not determined. Donations in Ruder’s honor should be sent to the International Multiple Sclerosis Research Center at 521 W. 57th St., New York, 10019.


Internet Edition, March 2, 2011, Page 2


Monique da Silva Moore, former global healthcare director for MSLGroup, filed a class action sex discrimination suit Feb. 24 against the PR firm and its corporate parent Publicis Groupe, charging that women staffers are denied equal pay, promotion and other opportunities.

Filed in U.S. District Court for Southern District of New York, the suit seeks to certify female employees at MSLGroup from 2008 to the date of judgment. Damages and legal expenses of at least $100M are sought.

Da Silva Moore is now executive VP of North America healthcare at Ogilvy PR Worldwide, part of WPP.

The suit notes that women account for 70 percent of Publicis' workforce, but only a fraction hold management positions. On the PR side, women account for 15 percent of leadership positions.

Da Silva Moore says she suffered discrimination first-hand. Rising to the “director” spot after six years, da Silva Moore charges that she “hit the glass ceiling that suffuses the conglomerate.”

From 2004-10, da Silva Moore says, Publicis re-titled her position as “managing director,” “North American director” and “global director.” Those “new labels never corresponded with any real advancement,” contends the suit.

Publicis terminated da Silva Moore’s as part of its overall reorganization of its PR practice “immediately upon her return from maternity leave in January 2010,” according to the suit.

The suit alleges that Publicis used the reorganization to promote male staffers, while terminating, demoting and reassigning females.

“All employees have their place: males come before women,” the suit claims.
Publicis’ corporate communications chief Peggy Nahmany referred a request for comment to MSLGroup.

The PR firm said: “We generally do not comment on pending litigation, but we can say that the fact that the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission dismissed Ms. da Silva’s charge reflects the lack of merit to her claims.”

Janette Wipper, da Silva Moore’s lawyer, says the EEOC’s investigation has no bearing on the lawsuit. She added that the EEOC “did not issue any finding concerning our client's charge and did issue a right to sue letter.”


Christina Koh, senior VP-communications & sustainability at DHL Express, is joining Grayling next week as managing director of its Singapore operation.

The Bonn-based Koh calls Grayling the “next big thing in PR” and is happy to return to her home in Singapore.

Koh had handled DHL’s Asia/Pacific corporate affairs operation for five years before moving to headquarters in 2007. Prior to DHL, Koh worked for Burson-Marsteller in Hong Kong on brand marketing and corporate accounts.

Grayling is part of Huntsworth.


The University of Utah, looking to raise its national and global profile through the media, is on the hunt for a media relations firm with an open RFP process through March 24.

The 160-year-old Salt Lake City-based university wants an agency that will work with its PR staff to showcase “the quality of its teaching, research services, and commercialization activities in national and international media,” according to a copy of the RFP.

Key to the effort will be story placement, so U of U wants experience in development a strategic media relations campaign, as well as national and international contacts, and a track record in media events and press conferences.

Undergraduate enrollment in 2010 was 23,371, along with 7,448 graduate students for its 1,500-plus-acre campus. It houses the Beehive State's only medical school, as well as a law school, and its athletics programs (the Utes) compete in NCAA Division I.

The school, founded 42 years before Utah achieved statehood, is planning a contract from award through December with two option years. Alumni include politico Karl Rove, JetBlue founder David Neeleman, and pro basketball player Keith Van Horn.


Glass Agency, Sacramento, is guiding a six-figure PR and social media push to keep the NBA’s Kings in the California capital amid overtures from Anaheim, Louisville and possibly Seattle.

“Bottom line, we care about the culture of Sacramento and, in our book, a professional sports team is a part of that culture,” said agency president Amber Williams, who noted the city was dealt a blow in December when the Sacramento opera canceled its season and suspended production because of poor ticket sales.

A billboard showing a deflated basketball forming the “O” in the phrase “Game Over” has been erected on I-5 South in Sacramento pointing to a Facebook campaign dubbed

The team, based in Sacramento for 26 seasons, is reportedly considering a move and has until March 1 to file a request with the league to relocate next season. It has been unable to get funding for a new arena.

Williams said the owner of the NHL’s Anaheim Ducks offered a $100M loan to cover moving costs to that city, which is bracing for the possible exit of the NFL's Chargers for nearby Los Angeles.

So far, 2,100 people have signed on to a Facebook page,, leading the campaign, which will run for four weeks at a donation-funded cost of about $150K.


Internet Edition, March 2, 2011, Page 3


David Eun, president of AOL Media, is exiting the company, with the $315M takeover of Huffington Post.

Arianna Huffington has assumed his chief content officer responsibility in her role as editor-in-chief of the Huffington Post Media Group, which includes AOL’s businesses. Jon Brod, who was chief of AOL’s venture capital unit, is COO of HPMG.

In a memo to staffers, Eun noted that he had discussions with AOL CEO Tim Armstrong about a continued role at the merged company, “but ultimately there isn’t a role that matches what I am seeking to do.”

He is available to Armstrong “throughout the integration planning process.”


CNN has broken up the duo of Kathleen Parker and Eliot Spitzer after a four-month stint, announced a memo written from U.S. president Ken Jautz.

The “Parker Spitzer” program, which generated lackluster ratings, is being recast this week as “In The Arena” with an ensemble sharing the spotlight with New York’s former Governor.

Parker, a columnist for the Washington Post, “has decided to return to a schedule that will allow me to focus more on my syndicated newspaper column and other writings,” she said in a statement.

She is “extremely proud of the show we created, and the subject matter and level of discourse Parker Spitzer promoted every night.”

Jautz said In The Arena will feature many different viewpoints, including the thinking of E.D. Hill, a former Fox anchor, and Will Cain, ex-columnist for the National Review.


The State Department on Feb. 24 warned journalists in Libya who have not been approved by the Qaddafi government that they run the risk of being arrested as Al Qaeda collaborators.

Libya officials delivered that message to U.S. diplomats. They cannot vouch for the safety of reporters who are not affiliated with CNN, BBC Arabia and Al Arabiya, outlets okayed to report happenings on the ground.

The officials say reporters who have entered the country illegally and are now branded as terrorists.

From the State Dept.: “Be advised, entering Libya to report on the events unfolding there is additionally hazardous with the government labeling unauthorized media as terrorist collaborators and claiming they will be arrested if caught.”


Detroit Media Partnership, which runs the Detroit Free Press and Detroit News, has kicked off a $10,000 contest soliciting ideas from employees and readers for improving the papers.

“We are committed to getting as many ideas from as many sources as possible,” said Susie Ellwood, CEO, Detroit Media Partnership. “The best way for us to serve our community is to solicit feedback and understand what they want and need in this ever-changing media environment.”

The papers, which lose millions each year despite claiming an audience of 1.9M including their respective websites, want community and staffer input on enhancing news coverage, ways to save people time and money, and improving the community. The project has been dubbed IdeaQuest 2011.

The prize money will be split among the top two ideas submitted by an employee and member of the public.

A judging panel is made up of Domino’s Pizza CEO Patrick Doyle, USA Today senior VP Myron Maslowsky, and Detroit Media CEO Susie Ellwood.

Doyle noted turnaround success came to Domino’s after to asked for customer feedback.

Gannett owns the Free Press and is the general partner in the DMP.


Bonnie Hoxie, the 34-year-old former assistant to Disney’s corporate communications chief, was sentenced to four months of home confinement, three years of probation and 100 hours of community service on Feb. 22 after pleading guilty to wire fraud and conspiracy to commit securities and wire fraud.

Hoxie admitted to leaking a talking points memo about Disney’s earnings to her boyfriend, who shopped the document to 33 hedge funds, according to the FBI. The boyfriend, Yonni Sebbag, was previously hit with a 27-month jail sentence.

Hoxie appeared in Los Angeles district court last week to receive the sentence. She faced up to 10 months in prison.

Hoxie, who said she didn’t know her boyfriend’s plans for the document, served as executive assistant to Zenia Mucha, executive VP of corporate communications for The Walt Disney Co.


CBS has inked a two-year deal with Netflix to allow its programming to be streamed over the video service. The deal, which goes into effect in April, covers classics such as “Cheers,” “Star Trek,” “Twin Peaks” and “Frasier.”

Scott Koondel, of CBS Television Distribution, believes the agreement “recognizes the increasing value of our content in today’s marketplace.” He will continue to pursue other distribution partners.

The transaction could generate revenues of $200M for CBS.


Peter Goldstone has been named president of Atlantic Media’s Government Executive Media Group, a top information source for federal managers.

He is a former executive at Cowles Business Media and its subsequent owner Primedia Intertec Publishing, where he managed 15 titles including Folio and Direct.

Most recently, Goldstone was at Hanley Wood’s business media operation.

(Media news continued on next page)


Internet Edition, March 2, 2011, Page 4


Randy Rothenberg has been reappointed president of the Interactive Advertising Bureau after a two-month stint as chief digital officer at Time Inc.

The former New York Times ad columnist was recruited to Time by CEO Jack Griffin, who was bounced from that post last week because his hard-driving management style did not mesh with the Time Warner unit’s culture.

Griffin, the former Meredith magazine chief who took over for Ann Moore in August, had touted Rothenberg as the ideal exec to position magazines like Sports Illustrated as innovators in the tablet and other emerging digital categories.

Rothenberg held the executive VP/chief digital officer post at the No. 1 magazine publisher.

Time’s new leadership of Howard Averill, Maurice Edelson and John Huey had hoped Rothenberg would stay, according to a staff memo.

They said Rothenberg’s departure “will be mitigated by his assurances that he will continue to work closely with Time Inc.” in his capacity as IAB prexy.

Bob Carrigan, IAB chairman and CEO of IDG Communications, welcomed Rothenberg back to the fold.

He credited Rothenberg's four-year reign as helping the New York trade group to become the “central trade association for marketing and media.”

The IAB represents more than 450 media and technology companies that account for 85 percent of online advertising in the U.S.


A Merrill Lynch analyst predicted the collapse of the Irish real estate market, but ML squashed the damaging report about the Ponzi scheme after Ireland’s top banks threatened to take their business elsewhere, according to Michael Lewis, who wrote the blockbuster piece, “When Irish Eyes are Crying,” in the current Vanity Fair.

ML’s Philip Ingram, who is described in his late 20s and a bit quirky, discarded the positive PR spin put forward by Ireland’s Big Three banks—Anglo Irish, Bank of Ireland and Allied Irish Banks—and discussed their practices to insiders in the commercial property market. They warned him that Ireland’s bankers were making far riskier loans in Ireland than they were in the U.K. and were simply considered the “nuttiest lenders around.”

Ingram published his report in March `08, quoting verbatim what insiders told him about loans made to the real estate sector. Within a few hours, Ingram’s report “was the hottest read in the London financial markets, until Merrill retracted it,” wrote Lewis, author of “Liar’s Poker” and “Moneyball.”

He notes that Merrill was lead underwriter of Anglo Irish’s bonds and corporate broker to AIB, earning “huge sums of money off the growth of Irish banking.”

The banks loudly complained to Merrill about Ingram’s report and his superiors “hauled him into meetings with in-house lawyers, who toned down the report’s pointed language and purged it of its damning quotes from market insiders, including its many references to Irish banks,” wrote Lewis, VF’s contributing editor. Everything “Ingram wrote about Irish banks was edited, and bowdlerized by ML’s lawyers.” Merrill fired Ingram at the end of `08. A ML staffer apologized to the company’s investment banking team for the trouble that Ingram caused them.

ML went on to write a report for Ireland’s Finance Dept, in which it said all of the Irish banks are profitable and well-capitalized. It suggested that the problem was not in bad loans but panic in the market. The Irish taxpayers shelled out 7M euros to Merrill for the report.

The PR department of Bank of America, which now owns ML, declined comment about the Vanity Fair article.

Blodget Rebuts Lewis

Henry Blodget, former ML analyst who now operates “The Business Insider,” said in his blog Feb. 14 that ML’s lawyers did not “muzzle” Ingram or change his opinion about the Irish banks.

He says they “did sanitize his original report and make it less vivid and startling and buried his conclusion. But this sanitization did not alter the fundamental conclusion of Ingram’s survey—which still said that the Irish banks had very risky lending practices.”

Another criticism of Ingram was that his report had a number of unattributed quotes which is unacceptable practice in such reports.

Critics of the Lewis story also said that Ingram was a junior researcher and was fired when ML cut about a quarter of its research staff in that area. He was not replaced with anyone from Bank of America, which purchased ML, nor was he fired because of the report, critics said.

Blodget was accused of fraud by former New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer who said Blodget’s written research did not reflect his “true opinions” about the stocks he was covering.

He paid a $2M fine and $2M for “disgorgement” and was banned from the securities industry in 2003.

BRIEFS __________________________

Kathy Kristof was named a contributing editor for Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine, effective March 1. She writes regularly for the Los Angeles Times, CBS MoneyWatch, among other publications.

ABC’s “Good Morning America” has named James Goldston to replace executive producer Jim Murphy, who left for Anderson Cooper’s new program.

Goldston, who oversaw “Nightline” and “This Week with Christiane Amanpour,” takes the title of senior executive producer. “Nightline” senior producer Jeanmarie Condon takes over Golston’s slot for that program.

NBC News’ Adam Verdugo has joined “Meet the Press” as a senior producer. He recently was as a “digital journalist” covering the midterm elections.

Internet Edition, March 2, 2011, Page 5


Publicis has acquired its Taiwan-based PR and social media affiliate Interactive Communications after a seven-year association.

The deal marks the Paris-based advertising and PR conglomerate’s fourth PR acquisition in Asia over the past five months.

The 30-staffer firm will be folded into MSLGroup and renamed ICL MSL, pending approval by Taiwan’s Ministry of Economic Affairs. Founders Cindy Chou and Mario Fang will stay on board to head the unit under MSLGroup Asia president Glenn Osaki.

In a statement, Chou said joining MSL allows the firm to focus on expanding its role in the Greater China market.

ICL has worked with Procter & Gamble, The Coca-Cola Company, the Hong Kong Tourist Board and Bristol-Myers Squibb among others.

MSL Group’s Greater China operation now counts eight offices and 225 staffers, following the latest deal.

Earlier this month, Publicis reported a 23% surge in profit for 2010. Revenue for Asia was up 23.8% to 617M euro as CEO Maurice Levy noted a “significant recovery” in the region.


Cleveland-based Dix & Eaton has set up a “reputation valuation” practice and hired a behavioral economist to help clients maximize the positive aspects of their reputations.

Pamela Cohen, a Ph.D. who co-founded Fleishman-Hillard’s CCW unit and previously led the Ernst & Young Center for Business Innovation’s intangible valuation group, has been hired to lead the new unit. She specializes in helping companies or organizations measure the impact of reputation on outcomes like financial performance.

D&E CEO Scott Chaikin said reputation and “other nonfinancial drivers” can account for more than half of a company’s value.

He said Cohen’s model can predict which individual components of a company's reputation can have the greatest impact on each outcome and what that impact will be.

The methodology for the practice has been dubbed the D&E Impact Index, which will be customized for each client with data from several sources, including social media.


Tamika Humphrey, former PR director for the American Basketball Association’s SETX Mavericks, has set up CEO PR in Beaumont, Tex., to handle PR for professional athletes.

Services include PR, biography development, branding, media relations, and public appearances management, among other tasks.

Start-up clients include Anthony Collins (Cincinnati Bengals) and the Lake Charles Tournament of Stars.




Horn Group, San Francisco/Pervasive Software, publicly traded data management and analysis software developer, as PR firm in the U.S. VP Erin Zehr heads the account.

K/F Communications, San Francisco/SimpleGeo, which makes infrastructure for location features in applications; Alacritech, high-speed network interface cards; Talari Networks, WAN virtualization, and Edgewater Networks, IP-based voice and video delivery, for PR.

Trippe & Company, Westminster, Colo., and Robert Ferri Partners, San Francisco/Roundtable Media, digital and live content developer for girls and women, for capitalization, branding, and comms. support.


Allison & Partners, Washington, D.C./Alzheimer’s Association National Capital Area Chapter’s new women's initiative, for marketing and publicity activities to include traditional, online and social media, community outreach and networking events, including the main event on May 3.

Susan Davis International, Washington, D.C./Martin Luther King, Jr. National Memorial Foundation, for strategic and special events and comms. counsel as well as producing, and managing the summer 2011 dedication of the Dr. Martin Luther King Memorial on the National Mall, working with GEP Washington; Army Historical Foundation/Army Commemorative Coin, to promote the sale of commemorative coins to help build a National Museum of the United States Army to open in 2015, and the Washington Ireland Program, for PR and special events counsel and production, a renewal.


rbb PRb Miami/Baltus Collection, high-end furniture line from Spain with U.S. showrooms in Miami, Chicago, Los Angeles and New York, for brand management counsel, strategic PR and comprehensive media outreach to consumer and trade audiences in the U.S.

New York Area

Allison & Partners, New York/The World Police & Fire Games, as 2011 AOR for PR to increase awareness of the games, drive sponsorships and build excitement for the biennial event slated for August 28 through Sept. 5, 2011 in New York. More than 15,000 police officers and firefighters from more than 70 countries are expected to participate.

Feintuch Communications, N.Y./, media and advertising technology company focused on buying and selling of radio ads, as AOR to implement a strategic communications campaign.

ICR, Westport, Conn./Zuoan Fashion Limited, for IR as the China-based casual menswear company went public on the New York Stock Exchange Feb. 14 selling 6M shares which rose from $7 to $7.04 in the first day of trading.

Columbus PRCo, New York, and ZFL PRCo UK/Sandy Lane Barbados, luxury hotel, for U.K. and U.S. campaigns in the year of its 50th anniversary.

— Greg Hazley

Internet Edition, March 2, 2011, Page 6


Vocus has acquired social media marketing software provider North Social in a $7M cash deal, highlighting the rise of Facebook in the marketing mix.

The $7M price tag could stretch as high as $18M if earn-out benchmarks are met.

The year-old NS counts 1,300 subscription customers like Coca-Cola and Falcon Motorcycles for its 19 Facebook applications, which help users set up pages on the social network and launch campaigns using tools like video and Twitter.

Vocus CEO Rick Rudman said Facebook is becoming an “increasingly important channel” for engaging customers. He sees NS software becoming an important component of Vocus’ marketing product suite.

The deal is Vocus’ fifth acquisition in the past year.


Critical Mention said last week it now has Spanish-language broadcast monitoring services which can digitize every word spoken from broadcast signals in all major markets.

The company said it will ingest Spanish-language broadcast content 24/7 and make it searchable in real-time.

CEO Sean Morgan noted that U.S. viewership of Spanish stations is surpassing those in English for the first time.

“Any marketer or PR professional not paying attention to this portion of our population is missing out on an opportunity to connect with these consumers and grow their brand,” he said.


Lorilee Victorino, producer, anchor and reporter for WHSV-TV3 (Harrisburg, Va.), has joined radio PR company Strauss Radio Strategies, Washington, D.C., as an assistant A/E.

As a producer and anchor, Victorino was in charge of revamping the station’s morning show, which doubled in ratings by the next ratings period and continued to grow during her time there, Strauss said.

She is a former desk assistant at CBS Radio Network News in New York.


Michelle McCormick, communications manager at law firm Bracewell & Giuliani, Houston, has been elected president of the city’s 450-member PR chapter.

Ed Davis, director of media & public relations at United Way of Greater Houston, is president-elect.

McCormick said she’ll focus on finding ways for members to get directly involved in the chapter through programming and volunteerism.

Other new principals are Lisa Dimond Vasquez (DoubleDimond PR), VP; Meagan Stangle (Hopkins & Associates), secretary, and Don Young, VP/comms., International Facility Management Assn., treasurer.

Stephanie Dedeaux, communications lead at Hess Corp., is past president.

The chapter was founded in 1950.



Jeremy Rosenberg, senior VP of digital production for Porter Novelli, to Cohn & Wolfe, as senior VP to co-head the firm’s New York digital team with SVP Tyler Pennock. Rosenberg also has responsibility for corporate and consumer programming. Prior to PN, he held posts with Deutsch, Saatchi & Saatchi and Ogilvy & Mather.

Rebekah Alperin, who ran her own PR/marketing shop, has joined music publisher client Kobalt Music Group, New York, as senior VP, communications and marketing, worldwide.

Rachelle Damminger, who led brand repositioning and PR for Big Brothers Big Sisters Southeastern PA, to Subaru of America, Cherry Hill, N.J., as manager of corporate communications. She was previously director of corporate communications for architecture and engineering firm EwingCole.

Robert Wyman, public affairs officer for the U.S. Coast Guard’s Atlantic Area command, to NASA’s Langley (Va.) Research Center, as news chief, responsible for all interactions with print, broadcast and social media, as well as overseeing the creation and distribution of information about its activities.

Gregg Sloate, who handled IR and corporate communications for Fortune 500 computer hardware and software distributor Merisel, to mining company Tamerlane Ventures, Bellingham, Washington, as director of IR and corporate comms. He previously held posts at Tanox and Univar.

Syreeta Mussante, who headed Spark PR’s Connected Technologies practice to, Lewis PR, San Francisco, as a VP. She is a former director for Blanc and Otus and will oversee the San Francisco office for Bite.

Tom Kelley, former head of PR at Target Corp.'s Mervyn’s unit, to Gray Suit Marketing, San Diego, as a partner. Earlier, he was special assistant to Rep. Bill Boner (D-Tenn) and senior staff director at the American Insurance Association. He also headed political affairs at the National Restaurant Assn. and was a lobbyist for five years.


Rachel Honig, a 12-year veteran of New York-based G.S. Schwartz & Co., has been named chief operating office of the agency. President and CEO Jerry Schwartz said Honig will play a lead role in guiding the “growth and direction” of the firm while continuing to manage its digital unit, Digital Power and Light. Honig joined the firm as a senior A/E in 1998 and had recently been an MD.

Daniel Cruise, who heads public and government affairs for Alcoa, Pittsburgh, was elected a VP and officer of the company by Alcoa's board. He joined in 2009 and previously was at Clark & Weinstock and Albright Stonebridge Group.

— Greg Hazley


Internet Edition, March 2, 2011, Page 7


Attorneys for Ketchum and Dezenhall Resources on Feb. 18 filed motions to dismiss a civil suit brought by Greenpeace against the firms and clients Dow Chemical and Sasol North America.

Lawyers from the Omnicom unit’s Washington, D.C., firm, Latham & Watkins, submitted the 48-page motion in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, blasting Greenpeace’s 55-page complaint as a “mix of unsupported speculation, innuendo, and serial non sequiturs.”

Greenpeace claims in the November 2010 suit that Ketchum and Dezenhall violated racketeering and corruption laws in an illegal campaign to steal confidential information about the group from 1998-2000 for Dow Chemical and Sasol North America. The environmental group said the firms hired a private security contractor to conduct surveillance and “dumpster dive.”

Ketchum’s legal team, among several challenges to the suit, says the case fails to meet minimum pleading standards, is beyond statutes of limitations, and doesn't show harm – economic or competitive – to the environmental group sufficient to bring the claim.

Attorneys for the PR agency, which was hit with seven claims by Greenpeace, also said the vast majority of the suit has “nothing whatsoever” to do with Ketchum.

Dezenhall’s attorneys from D.C. law firm Kirkland & Ellis make similar arguments and said the facts of Greenpeace's suit “do nothing more than depict a lawful retention of a licensed investigative firm.” They argue the complaint also does not show claims that the PR firm committed wire fraud as federal law requires.

Motions to dismiss the case were also filed by Dow Chemical and Sasol.
Greenpeace has until March 25 to respond.

The environmental group claimed in its original complaint that documents including its global warming strategy, genetically modified organisms campaign, climate campaign ship tour draft schedule, and preservation of whales campaign were obtained illegally. It sees a scheme that “in all likelihood, included the unlawful breaking and entering into Greenpeace offices” to secure documentation.


Sarah Pang, senior VP of corporate communications for Chicago insurance giant CNA Financial Corp., was named to Mayor-elect Rahm Emanuel’s six-person transition team in Chicago.

Emanuel, a former Congressman who stepped down as President Obama’s former chief of staff to run in the Chicago race, won a 54% victory on Feb. 22. He takes office in May.

Pang is a former aide to outgoing Mayor Richard Daley and one of six officials on the transition team. She was a deputy chief of staff Daley for nine years and earlier served as executive assistant to Sen. Alan Dixon (D-Ill.). CNA had revenue of $9.2B in 2010.

Ben Labolt, an assistant press secretary in the Obama White House, is Emanuel’s communications director and spokesman.


FTI Consulting, the business advisory company that owns FD, said fourth quarter 2010 revenue rose nearly four percent to $356.2M while its strategic communications business jumped 10.2% to $49.9M.

The company said its PR business was lifted by the Americas and Asia-Pacific, offsetting a small decline in the U.K.

President and CEO Jack Dunn said Q4 continued a positive momentum felt in Q3 as gains in technology and forensic/litigation consulting offset declines in its restructuring operations.

For the year 2010, revenues were essentially flat at $1.4B while profit was halved to $71.9M from $143M in 2009.

Strategic Communications for the year hit $193M, up from $180M in 2009.
The company previously said it took a $21.8M charge to consolidate its operating units under the FTI Consulting brand.

The company has $385 million in cash.


Michigan’s film industry has engaged Lansing PR firm Truscott Rossman to help fend off significant cuts proposed to the state’s three-year-old film tax incentive program, which the industry says has brought hundreds of millions in revenue to the Great Lakes State.

Gov. Rick Snyder, pointing to a $1.4B state budget deficit, has ordered a $25M cap on the program, a cut which would represent a fraction of the millions refunded under the program each year.

Film producers and other creative ventures like video games and Internet software can get a 40 percent refund for expenditures in the state under the program. From July through Dec. 2010, 26 projects were approved requesting credits of $65.7M on an investment in the state of $168.6M.

Films and shows shot or produced in the state last year included “Gulliver’s Travels,” “Hostel: Part III,” ABC’s “Detroit 1-8-7” and HBO’s “Hung.”

Sharon Emery, VP at Truscott Rossman, confirmed the agency is handling PR for Michigan Film First, an industry-backed effort formed in November that is stepping up its campaign to save to tax credit program. She said the agency is coordinating with MFF’s lobbying team to build support for the program and fend off the proposed cuts.

The Detroit Metro Convention and Visitors Bureau and CVBs in Grand Rapids, Ann Arbor and Travers City recently commissioned a report by Ernst & Young that, the groups said, shows the incentive program is benefitting the state’s economy – about $6 for every $1 spent on the incentive.

The governor’s proposed cut to the program must be approved by the state legislature.


Internet Edition, March 2, 2011, Page 8




The spread of revolts in the Mideast shows how hard it is to topple an entrenched regime no matter how corrupt it may be.

Insiders have their hands on the army, the treasury, usually the press, and most importantly the flow of information.

Some members of the PR Society of America staged their own revolt last year via the “Committee for a Democratic PRSA” (CDP).

The name said that the Society itself was not democratic (in spite of a Code that champions “democracy”).

The revolt against 35 years of a monopoly on Society leadership by APRs went nowhere. Only 305 signatures were obtained in six months.

The PRS board wouldn’t let the CDP e-mail the 21,000 members, a list reserved for pitches to members for seminars and webinars.

Tactics online never mentioned it. A story in printed Tactics finally appeared in September.

The board itself was cool, only favoring the APR proposal that had already been defeated in 2009.

The revolt against the APR monopoly is 11 years old (proposed in 1999 by the Strategic Planning Committee).

Abuses at PR Society

Following are 20 abusive practices that damage the image of PR, the Society, and all APRs.

1. Refusal to listen to or dialogue with members including Fellows who send questions to the board.

2. Elected officers who spend the year dodging questions and speak to a half dozen or fewer of the 110 chapters and never to the New York chapter. Schedule of 2011 chair Rosanna Fiske is unavailable. No one is available to pitch the “Business Case for PR.”

3. Failure to post throughout the year the list of Assembly delegates with their e-mails (reachable by a single e-mail).

4. Refusal to audiocast the Assembly when it would be cheap and easy to do so.

5. Failure to supply a transcript of the Assembly since 2005 after doing so for many years.

6. Substandard and misleading financial reporting marred by booking dues as cash and providing late reports (IRS Form 990 not given to Assemblies).

7. Lack of financial information in the web press room. Financial reports available to members only.

8. Cronyism on the board now lets any member return indefinitely-negating the intent of the founders who barred returnees.

9. Making huge decisions such as canceling the printed members' directory and moving to downtown New York without any input from the Assembly.

10. Refusal to discuss providing a PDF of the membership list which would be cheap and easy.

Press Dodged

11. Failure to have a press conference. Last conference involving CEO and board was in 1993.

12. Interference with coverage of 2010 Assembly including barring photos or recording any part of the Assembly-new policies instituted in 2010.

13. Refusal to let the only reporter who has covered the Assembly for the past 15 years (Jack O’Dwyer) attend the 2010 Assembly lunch.

14. Refusal to give this reporter credentials to cover the 2010 conference although credentials were given to us for the Assembly (a contradictory policy that defies explanation).

15. Ignoring bedrock Robert’s Rules (that make the Assembly the “ultimate” authority and bar proxy voting) while pledging obedience to RR.

16. Ignoring the Assembly which asked for an investigation of e-mail elections (BigPulse would handle such votes for a few thousand dollars).

17. Wining and dining chapter presidents-elect, district and section chairs in New York each June at a cost of $100K-plus when this should be a Spring Assembly.

18. Refusal to settle with the authors it ripped off from 1980 to 1994, a practice that earned it hundreds of thousands of ill-gotten dollars.

19. Excessive costs of staff and the isolated downtown h.q. that requires airport-level security checks to enter. Staff of 50 or so has 22,000 sq. ft. to rattle around in. All but seven of staff names are now hidden.

20. Roadblocks put in way of member interaction including removal of the former single list of 110 chapter presidents. Visits to 110 websites needed to get such info.

Society Committed Theft

There’s no question that the Society committed massive theft of the intellectual property of authors from 1990 to 1994.

Chief victim was the O’Dwyer Co., whose articles comprised up to a quarter of the materials in some of the 1,000 packets that were sold at prices up to $55.
To those Society members and leaders who ask us why don't we also cover the positive aspects of the Society, we reply that if some neighbor stole something valuable from their house and wouldn't return it, there would be nothing good to say about that neighbor.

The victim would not want to hear about how hard the head of the family works, nor how kind he or she is, nor what his or her charitable activities are.

The victim wants the property back or adequate compensation paid for it.

Lying and Thieving at National Level

Lying and thieving at the national level is responsible for the three-year recession that has caused severe pain to many Americans and lesser pain to the rest.

The Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission concluded that the meltdown was avoidable and not due to inexorable economic forces.

The cause was Bernard Madoff-type corruption in the banks and big Wall St. houses and complicity with government regulators who abandoned their responsibilities.

Banks gave mortgages to almost anyone because they could off-load them to Freddie and Fannie.

Greed and selfishness triumphed.

One duty of PR is to be a “corporate conscience.” It’s supposed to be more than just a tool of business. It’s not supposed to be “a secret weapon,” as treated by Kraft CEO Irene Rosenfeld.

PR’s largest group of PR people should be setting an example of openness, honesty and democracy.

The Society needs outside counsel but can't have it because no PR firm would allow its name to be identified with such member and press-dodging and stonewalling.

None of the major CPA firms will work for it, either. Deloitte & Touche and Ernst & Young split more than ten years ago.

New leadership of this “revolt” is needed. Acting head Art Stevens says he and the CDP are on “winter break.

— Jack O'Dwyer


Copyright © 1998-2020 J.R. O'Dwyer Company, Inc.
271 Madison Ave., #600, New York, NY 10016; Tel: 212/679-2471