NE District Conference – Call for Speakers

Each year, the PRSA Northeast District Chapter brings together more than 200 communications professionals from across the northeastern United States for a one-day conference exploring the newest technologies and practices to emerge in the field of public relations.

This year, we’re headed to Buffalo—home of the original Buffalo wings, a burgeoning craft beer scene and a short ride to Niagara Falls. But we’re really looking forward to a day of inspiration with you, as nearly two dozen of our colleagues from throughout the northeast chapter present their best, most interesting, and practical recipes to help you foster Integrated PR success wherever your work takes you.

Marketing, social media, public relations, advertising – you do it all. Your role as a communicator is constantly evolving, the mediums we use to tell our stories are changing faster and the lines between these functions are even less clear. All while you’re expected to do so much more with much less.

The Buffalo/Niagara PRSA Chapter proudly invites you to join us Friday, June 1 at the 2018 PRXNE District Conference—Communication Convergence: The Integrated Communicator.

Join us for this one-day conference and we’ll tackle emerging content marketing trends, share valuable insights for strategic planning, help you master the art of storytelling and give you all the tools you need to be successful in whatever communication role your job takes the next day.

Call for Speakers Now Open

If you’re interested in presenting at PRXNE 2018—or if you know someone who may be interested—we’re now accepting presentation proposals that explore the following topics:

  • Communication Convergence
  • Content Marketing
  • Internal Communications
  • PR Writing
  • Website Writing
  • Calculating ROI on Communications
  • Net Neutrality
  • Making Video Work
  • Crisis Communications
  • Understanding Financials
  • AP Style Updates
  • Fake News
  • Brand Credibility
  • AR/VR Storytelling

Of course, we’re open to other ideas, too!



2018 Yankee Officers

The following officers were elected to lead Yankee PRSA for 2018 at the chapter’s annnual meeting on December 5.

2018 Yankee Chapter PRSA Officers

President, Mark Elliot, APR, PR Consultant

President-elect, Andrew Morse, Concord Regional VNA

Past President, Tom Bebbington, Diocese of Manchester

Secretary, Mary Ellen Hettinger, APR, Breathe New Hampshire

Treasurer, Stefanie Phillips, American Heart Association

Assistant Treasurer, Ashley Januszewski, The NHHEAF Network Organizations

Director, Roz Whitaker-Heck, APR, Champlain College (term expires 12/31/18)

Director, AnnMarie French, New Hampshire Fiscal Policy Institute (term expires 12/31/18)

Director, Grace Lessner, New Hampshire Housing Finance Authority (term expires 12/31/18)

Director, Seth Wheeler, New Hampshire Electric Cooperative (term expires 12/31/18)

Director, Shane Perry, EMHS (term expires 12/31/19)

Director, Amber Bedi, Mt. Ascutney Hospital and Health Center (term expires 12/31/19)

Director, Mackenzie Kreitler, Student Loan Hero (term expires 12/31/19)



Buffalo/Niagara PRSA Chapter Looking for Input on PRxNE 2018

The Buffalo/Niagara PRSA Chapter is proud to be hosting the 2018 PRxNE District Conference, Communication Convergence: The Integrated Communicator, on June 1, in Buffalo, NY.

Marketing, social media, public relations, advertising – you do it all. Your role as a communicator is constantly evolving, the mediums we use to tell our stories are changing faster and the lines between these functions are even less clear. All while you’re expected to do so much more with much less. Join us for this one-day conference and we’ll tackle emerging content marketing trends, share valuable insights for strategic planning, help you master the art of storytelling and give you all the tools you need to be successful in whatever communication role your job takes the next day.

Please take a few minutes to answer this brief survey, by November 27, so we can better serve our members during this conference.

In the meantime, if you have any questions, please contact us at

Be sure to visit regularly for the latest news and updates on the conference.


Getting Your Boss to ‘Yes’: Gaining Employer Approval to Join PRSA

In today’s economy, we know that you need to justify every expense, including spending time and money to join professional associations and attend events, both in-person and virtual. Follow these step-by-step instructions to gain approval from your management to join PRSA, a community of more than 21,000 public relations professionals.


PRSA Offers Certificate in Reputation Management

Interactive Live Online Course Focuses on Providing Management-level Communicators with Best Practices and Fundamentals for Effective Reputation Leadership 

The Public Relations Society of America (PRSA), and Reputation Economy Advisors have partnered to provide a unique series of  online classes aimed at equipping management-level communicators with industry resources to strengthen their credentials, gain greater credibility and advance their career through a cumulative eight-week certificate program in reputation management.

Corporate reputation management is a concept at the core of the communications profession — one that has matured into a management discipline over the past 20 years and extends beyond the traditional domain of the function. As reputation management has expanded into the realm of business strategy and corporate governance, communicators are seen as the go-to experts inside their organizations.

To equip management-level communicators with advanced perspective, best practices and resources to meet the changing expectations of senior management for reputation leadership, this brand-new professional development offering is designed as a certificate-of-completion program. The live, online series of eight modules will launch on May 10, 2017 and run through June 28, 2017, airing each consecutive Wednesday from 3–4 p.m. EDT. All modules will be recorded so that participants can review them after the live date.

Additionally, participants who are PRSA members will be given access to PRSA’s Reputation Management Community, an exclusive online forum offering private access and interactive dialogue with other members taking this course.

After successfully completing a 16-question, multiple-choice test at the end of the series, registrants will be awarded a certificate-of-completion and digital badge for their LinkedIn profile and resume.

The eight-week Reputation Management Course modules include:

  • Your Reputation Champion’s Path: (Anthony Johndrow, CEO, Reputation Economy Advisors & Laura Kane, Chief Communications Officer, PRSA)
  • KPIs and Collaboration, the Reputation Journey: (Leigh Horner, Vice President, Corporate Communications & Corporate Social Responsibility, Hershey)
  • Measurement Discipline—Solve the Reputation Value Equation: prove it – using analytics to quantify impact of Communications efforts (Billy Mann, Partner, Quadrant Strategies)
  • CSR and Reputation – Establishing a Vision: (Pamela Gill Alabaster, SVP Corporate Communications & Corporate Social Responsibility, Revlon Inc.)
  • Reputation and the CEO: (Leslie Gaines-Ross, Chief Reputation Strategist, Weber Shandwick)
  • Digital Reputation: (Jim Issokson, Senior Vice President/Group Head, North American Communications, MasterCard)
  • Corporate Diplomacy and Executive Leadership: (Mike Fernandez, CEO, Burson-Marsteller USA)
  • Reputation and the Communicator’s Career: (Lisa Ryan, SVP, Heyman Associates)

For more information.


Presentation of Pat Jackson Award – April 12

The Yankee Chapter will honor Van McLeod, posthumous recipient of the of the 2017 Patrick Jackson Award on Wednesday, April 12, at the Capitol Center for the Arts in Concord from 5:30 – 7 p.m.

There is no charge for this gathering. Learn about the history of the Patrick Jackson Award and the man who was a national PR leader at this cocktail reception and tribute to this year’s recipient, Van McLeod.


Report from PRSA Leadership Assembly

PRSA’s annual meeting of the Leadership Assembly was held on Saturday, October 22nd, in conjunction with the International Conference being held in Indianapolis on the following three days.  The Assembly is the Society’s legislative body, and 203 delegates representing Chapters from around the country and the world gathered to hear reports on the state of the Society from its leadership and to vote on the Society’s incoming leaders as well as proposed bylaws changes.  Delegates from the Yankee Chapter were current President Liz LaRose and President-elect Tom Bebbington.

The Assembly voted to elect Anthony W. D’Angelo, APR, Fellow PRSA, chair of the Society for 2018. D’Angelo, professor of practice, public relations, at Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Public Communications, Syracuse, N.Y, will serve as PRSA’s chair-elect on the National Board of Directors in 2017.

In addition to D’Angelo, several other candidates selected by the PRSA National Nominating Committee were elected to the PRSA National Board of Directors today for two-year terms beginning in 2017. The new board members are:

Treasurer: Debra D. Peterson, APR, vice president, external communications and community relations, CenturyLink, New Century, Kan.
Secretary: T. Garland Stansell, APR, chief communications officer, Children’s of Alabama, Birmingham, Ala.

District Representatives:

  • Director, Tri-State District: Andrew McCaskill, APR, senior vice president, global communications, Nielsen, New York, N.Y.
  • Director, East Central District: Richard J Batyko, APR, Fellow PRSA, senior vice president, marketing, communications & development, Team NEO, Medina, Ohio
  • Director, Western District: Michelle Olson, APR, general manager, Scottsdale office, Fingerpaint, Scottsdale, Ariz.
  • Director, Northeast District: Jo Ann S. LeSage Nelson, APR, vice president, client services, Pierce Communications, Albany, N.Y.
  • Director, Mid-Atlantic District: Samantha Julie Villegas, APR, president, SaVi PR, LLC, Washington, D.C.

Director At-Large:

  • Robert T. Hastings, Jr., APR+M, Fellow PRSA, executive vice president, communications & government affairs, chief of staff, Bell Helicopter, Fort Worth, Texas

They join incumbent Board of Directors members returning for 2016, including:

  • Chair: Jane Dvorak, APR, Fellow PRSA
  • Immediate-Past Chair: Mark W. McClennan, APR
  • Amy T. Coward, APR, Fellow PRSA, vice president, public relations, Palmetto Health Foundation, Columbia, South Carolina
  • Bonnie P. Upright, APR, senior vice president, Olympus Foundation Management, Orange Park, Florida
  • Don Hale, vice president for public relations and marketing communications, Georgia State University, Atlanta, GA
  • Joyce A. Lofstrom, MS, APR, senior director, corporate communications, HIMSS, Chicago
  • Ronele M. Dotson, APR, president, RAD Strategies Inc., Reno, Nevada
  • Sam James Morrey Sims, APR, director of public relations and marketing, US Fleet Tracking, Edmond, Oklahoma

Also of note: the Yankee Chapter’s own Jane Law, APR, was elected as a national 2017 national delegate-at-large. Delegates-at-large serve a one-year term and represent PRSA members who are not affiliated with a chapter.

There were three proposed bylaws amendments before the Assembly as well, each requiring a 2/3 majority to be enacted:

Amendment 1601 proposed changing the bylaws to allow the Leadership Assembly to vote remotely if it should be impractical to do so in person, e.g., in the event of a severe weather event at the meeting location that makes travel hazardous or impossible. The Board of the Yankee Chapter recommended a yes vote on this proposal. The proposal passed 183-14.

Amendment 1602 proposed changing the bylaws to allow the current Board of the PRSA to interview and recommend officer candidates, duties that previously were the responsibility of the Nominating Committee. The Board of the Yankee Chapter recommended a no vote on this proposal. The proposal passed 159-52.

Amendment 1603 proposed changing the bylaws to enable the Board to modify the Society’s bylaws, duties that heretofore had been in the hands of the Assembly. The Board of the Yankee Chapter recommended a no vote on this proposal. The proposal did not pass, 125-81.

Jane Law, APR

Congratulations to Jane Law, APR National Delegate-at-Large

Yankee Chapter’s own Jane Law was elected to the position of 2017 national Delegate-at-Large at the PRSA Leadership Assembly on October 22. Delegates-at-large serve a one-year term and represent PRSA members who are not affiliated with a chapter. The delegate-at-large positions require that the candidate hold an APR or serve or have served as a board member of a Chapter, District or Section. To be considered for the position, candidates should be outstanding in their ethical conduct, their participation in and commitment to PRSA and their professional achievements and recognition. Characteristics of each candidate also include leadership experience with PRSA and/or other professional associations; in-depth knowledge of PRSA, including an understanding of PRSA’s governance structure and broad knowledge of the public relations profession.

In her application, Jane noted “I strongly believe that PRSA members who have no chapter or section affiliation should have as much of a voice in the strategic direction and operations of the association as those who do have a more direct, closer affiliation with PRSA (through a chapter, district or section). As a Delegate-at-Large, I could help provide that voice for those unaffiliated members.”

Congratulations, Jane!


Call for Speakers – NESHCo

The New England Society for Healthcare Communications, is seeking speakers for its 2017 spring conference.

If you are interested in giving a presentation at the conference,  download the Call for Speakers form.

Deadline for submission of proposals is Oct. 17, 2016.

If you proposing are more than one session, complete a form for each session. Send your proposal electronically only to:

Proposals will be acknowledged and speakers notified by December 12, 2016.

If your presentation proposal is accepted you will be required to meet the following deadlines:

  • Conference/speaker registration: March 1, 2017
  • Book hotel room: May 5, 2017
  • Prepare one-page PDF describing your presentation: May 1, 2017
  • Submit full presentation to NESHCo: May 1, 2017

NESHCo will send you the appropriate forms to be completed by the deadlines above.

Questions? Please call (401) 443-2361 or e-mail us at


It’s time to nominate for the Patrick Jackson Award

The Yankee Chapter seeking nominees for it annual Patrick Jackson Award that will be presented at the chapter’s annual meeting in November.

The Patrick Jackson Award


Patrick Jackson

The award was established in 1988 designed to recognize a professional who is not in the public relations field but nonetheless successfully uses public relations principles to benefit his or her organization and society. The purpose of the Patrick Jackson Award is to recognize excellence in the practice of public relations and demonstrate a track record of building relationships which earn trust.

Patrick Jackson, APR, Fellow PRSA was a founding member of the Yankee Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America and one of the leading thinkers and practitioners of his day. Information on Jackson may be found at

In light of the fact that an organization’s success in relationship management often is a result of a team, the award may recognize the head of an organization or movement, or, if appropriate, an organization (for-profit or not-for-profit) which exemplifies the principle of sound public relations. (Previous Recipients)

Click here for to go to the 2016 Jackson Award nomination form. 

Award Criteria
Nominees must have a proven record in at least one of the following areas:

  • Building relationships that earn trust which contributes to organizations effectiveness or
  • Demonstrating leadership in a crisis by using public relations principles, or
  • Bringing about changes in society by finding accommodation with public needs, or
  • Showing concern for the common good, not just concern for the success of the movement or organization

The nominee (individual, or in the case of an organization, its CEO, or functional organizational head) must agree to be present at the award presentation. The nominee should be based in the Yankee Chapter PRSA service area of Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont.

Submission deadline is October 10, 2016.

Questions? Contact Pat McGee, Yankee PRSA Awards Chair