This summer, our members are engaged in work that reflects well on all of us!

Let's reflect on how a year of upheaval is being turned into opportunities at every level. So many things are out of our control - remote learning for students, cancelled events, social distancing and much less in-person engagement. 

But as a highly engaged organization of communicators, we have reasons to c elebrate:
  • Our 75th Anniversary year is undoubtedly memorable.
  • Our Annual Meeting and Happy Hour brought us closer together.
  • Our Hall of Famers led a drive to raise more than $1,000 for our PRoactive partner, College Possible.
  • Our programs will continue this summer focusing on digital info and education.
  • Our new board members will take office Sept. 1.
  • And we built a new 501(c)3 Foundation this spring that is now fully seeded to boost our programming and to allow for long-term, tax-exempt partnerships. (See donation and volunteer info below.)
I want to thank the 2019-2020 Board of Directors who did an amazing job! Please salute our outgoing board: President-Elect London Faust; Vice President for Communications Beverly Volpe; Vice President for External Affairs Jaime Martorana; Vice President for Membership Michelle Sonsino; Vice President for Programs Kellsey Turner; Treasurer, Lauren Woodard; Secretary, Anthony Stipa; Immediate Past President (Chair), Nina Scimenes Rodebaugh; Directors Sarah Maiellano, Susan Buehler, Melissa Fordyce and Hope Corse; Past Presidents Adam Dvorin, Bonnie Grant, and Christopher Lukach.

We're excited to have London Faust as the 2020-2021 PPRA President. Read and watch a welcome from her  here!

This newsletter is packed with info so I will close by saying - Stay well, my friends!

Deirdre C. Hopkins
2019-2020 President
Philadelphia Public Relations Association
2020 Annual Meeting

PPRA's 2020 Annual Meeting was held virtually on July 7. Participants toasted our outgoing and incoming Boards with the signature 'French 75' gin cocktail, we announced the new PPRA Foundation, saluted this year's award winners, reconnected with many friends and colleagues and watched our 75th Anniversary video. In case you missed the 75th video, check it out here.

Our discussion on "Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion" on Tuesday, June 30 was attended by more than 80 people. David W. Brown, Diversity Advisor to the Office of the Dean at Temple University, led an open forum with Queen Muse, Digital Contributor for Philadelphia Magazine, and Sabrina Ram, Founder and President of Blu Lotus.If you couldn't join us, read all about it in this blog.
The long-anticipated Philadelphia Public Relations Association Foundation (PPRAF) is a reality! We received notice of our first significant donation from the Sylvia Kauders Foundation, founded through the benevolence of our late Hall of Famer. PPRAF is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, educational and charitable organization dedicated to advancing public relations in our region. Now fully seeded the PPRAF  works under the fiscal sponsorship of the Urban Affairs Coalition (UAC). Thank you to our founding board members for stepping up and to Suzanne Aumack of Aumost Design for our logo.

Interested in getting involved?  Email PPRAF Board Member Bev Volpe at Committees will be formed this summer. 

PPRA members are also encouraged to make a tax-deductible contribution. Board members are donating $75 each in honor of PPRAs anniversary year. Donations are being accepted through the Urban Affairs Coalition   here.  

Vice President for External Affairs Jaime Matorana led this year's Awards Committee, which included Director Melissa Fordyce and members Daniel Davis, Bill Wedo and Samantha Byles. The winners are:

Dr. Jean Brodey Student Achievement Award
Hall of Famer Gregg Feistman nominated Haniya Shariff for this honor which is given annually to a college junior or senior. The winner exhibits outstanding professional promise in PR, has an excellent academic track record and contributes to his or her community.
PPRA Fast-Track Award
Vice President Programs Kellsey Turner is a PPRA member who has contributed greatly to the organization, profession and the community. She exemplifies our vision for the future and was selected based on a nomination from Past Presidents Adam Dvorin and Nina Rodebaugh.

PRoactive Community Service Award 
Hall of Famer and past president  William L. Cowen, IV founded our PRoactive Partners in 2009-2010. To mark PRoactive's 10th anniversary, Bill suggested a new award--one to honor community service. The first-ever winner is  Bev Volpe who was recognized for supporting the betterment of the community and who is an exemplary model of selfless service. She was nominated by Nina Rodebaugh.

PPRA's blog "Between You & MEdia" offers insight, tips and tricks and fun facts learned from members of the media through our informal interviews with them.

This month, read all about Marc Narducci, Sports Writer for the Philadelphia Inquirer, as interviewed by Melissa Fordyce.

Get to know 
who leads the 
public relations practice at
Garfield Group.  

Get involved and make a difference! Volunteer to help develop your association. Make this the year that you make the most of your membership by creating opportunities for your personal and professional development while advancing PPRA!  Our committees include:

The Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau recently announced the PHL Health Pledge - an initiative designed to increase awareness of Philadelphia's readiness in safely welcoming back visitors as our destination gradually reopens. The PHLCVB has partnered with Dr. David Nash, Dean Emeritus of the Jefferson College of Population Health, as the PHLCVB's Chief Health Advisor.

AKCG Public Relations Counselors recently named  Leonard S. Greenberger as Senior Counselor and head of the firm's new Washington, D.C.-area office . Greenberger brings more than 25 years of experience to the firm and will help grow AKCG's presence in the nation's capital.
Alexa Johnson, Sr. Marketing Manager at Visit Bucks County, secured Gritty and his Philadelphia Flyers' "Summertime Caravan" to stop in Bucks County on July 14. Alexa utilized the power of her PPRA colleagues to find the right contact and foster a connection for this appearance! 

Leo Manning, a digital marketing strategist with PPRA member Slice Communications tells us all you need to know about Social Media Day 2020 here. There's still time register for the virtual event on 7/30.  
Cari Feiler Bender was mentioned in the July/August issue of Philly Ad News for her selection into the PPRA Hall of Fame. In the same issue, Deirdre Childress Hopkins' letter "PPRA News: How Nimble Communications Organizations can Flourish in this Year of Disruption" was featured.
Kerri Del Collo of Cashman & Associates told us of the firm's newest division, Snack PR. Offering a bite-sized version of the award-winning solutions to lifestyle businesses of all sizes with short-term, project-based campaigns guaranteed to deliver cost-effective results in 90 days or less.

Gregg Feistman was quoted in the article "CSR Examples: These 7 Organizations Prove That CSR is Alive (and Evolving)" on Read it

Jeff Shields of PJM Interconnection told us the company formed  State Policy Solutions, a group focused on working with states to help advance their energy policy initiatives. Also  Darlene Phillips, Sr. Director - Operations Engineering Support Advisory Committee was reappointed to the U.S. Department of Energy Electricity board and Mike Bryson, SVP System Operations, who spearheads PJM's COVID-19 response, testified before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission about maintaining reliable electricity service amid the pandemic. 
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