Nanci Ryder
Nanci Ryder

Nanci Ryder, who co-founded BWR Public Relations with Paul Baker and Larry Winokur, died of ALS on June 11.

Over the course of her career, she has represented such entertainment industry figures as Renée Zellweger, Reese Witherspoon, Courteney Cox, Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Lopez.

Her career in Los Angeles started at talent agency David Shapira & Associates, and she also worked at Goldberg-Ehrlich Public Relations and Michael Levine Public Relations.

Ryder started up Nanci Ryder Public Relations in 1984, with actor Michael J. Fox as her first client. BWR was formed in 1987. When it was sold to Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide in 1999, the firm reported annual billings of $8 million.

Earlier this year, BWR’s parent company Burson Cohn & Wolfe, folded the agency into its own entertainment division.

Ryder was diagnosed with ALS in 2014. After her diagnosis, she rallied supporters, who were known as Team Nanci, in the search for a cure. In 2018, Ryder received the ALS Hero Award from the ALS Association.

In lieu of flowers, multiple outlets report that donations can be made in Ryder's memory to, which supports the ALS Association Golden West Chapter.