August 2012 PR Visions Posts

President’s Letter

On behalf of Cincinnati PRSA, I would like to express my sincere appreciation to Jill Isaacs Dunne for serving as our Chapter’s membership chair for the past several years. Jill did a fantastic job in managing our roster of 210+ members. She is expecting her first child in the coming weeks and has decided to step down from her Cincinnati PRSA Board position. Please join me in thanking Jill for her dedication to our members.

Jonathan Kissell

Cincinnati PRSA President

Message from the Editor

It’s an exciting time to be in Cincinnati. The communications team from the World Choir Games – the international choral event that overtook the Greater Cincinnati region in early July – will be presenting to Cincinnati PRSA in September. They will share insights into how the Games came to Cincinnati (the first ever time they were hosted in the U.S.) and how the press and social media teams managed everything behind the scenes. (Full disclosure: I am a Vehr Communications employee and worked in the social media center throughout the Games.)

The Cincinnati Enquirer is implementing some changes this fall, and Cincinnati PRSA is lucky enough to get a sneak peek from Enquirer Editor and Vice President Carolyn Washburn on Wednesday, Aug. 29 at 8 a.m.

Stay tuned for further details, including registration information, for both events.

Megan Haughney
Newsletter Editor

Upcoming Programs

Preview the changes coming to the Cincinnati Enquirer

Some big changes are coming to the Cincinnati Enquirer this fall – including a smaller format, paid access to online content and adjustments to editorial coverage – and Cincinnati PRSA is working hard to ensure the city’s public relations pros stay informed. We’re pleased to announce a free, members-only meeting to discuss these changes and more with Enquirer Editor and Vice President Carolyn Washburn on Wednesday, Aug. 29 at 8 a.m. Final location details are pending. Stay tuned for registration details. 

World Choir Games PR team to share lessons learned

When Cincinnati hosted the 2012 World Choir Games in July, it not only marked the first time ever the event was held on U.S. soil, it also marked one of the most prestigious international events held in Cincinnati to-date. So how did the World Choir Games arrive in the Queen City, and how did the public relations and social media team manage the event behind the scenes?

Join Cincinnati PRSA as we take a look at all facets of the World Choir Games communications strategy, from the initial announcement to the closing ceremony, with Michael Perry of Vehr Communications and Julie Calvert and Randie Adam of the Cincinnati USA Convention and Visitors Bureau. The World Choir Games communications team will share details of its approach to planning this massive communication undertaking, results of the team’s diligent planning and lessons learned along the way. Details of this September program are still being finalized, but it should be an interesting and exciting luncheon. Please plan to attend!

Lauren Doyle

Vice President, Programming

Membership Update

Welcome to our new membership chair

Cincinnati PRSA welcomes its new membership chair, Maureen Richmond, APR, of First Group America, Inc. Maureen most recently served Cincinnati PRSA as its job bank coordinator. Please contact Maureen with any Cincinnati PRSA membership questions.

Know someone who would benefit from a PRSA chapter membership?

Whether it’s volunteering, participating in events or stepping into leadership roles, members dedicate their expertise to the PR profession. Through the end of August, PR professionals will receive a FREE one-year local Chapter membership when they join PRSA. (That’s a $55 savings.)

This special membership promotion is for a limited time only. National annual dues and initiation fees still apply. This offer is not available for Associate or current members.

Visit and use promotion code:SUMMER12.

Maureen Richmond, APR

Membership Chair

Social Media Update

Welcome to our new social media chair

Taylor Wiegert has been appointed to social media chair of Cincinnati PRSA. He currently leads the social media team at Powerhouse Factories, where he helps create social brands by establishing consumer relationships, mobilizing advocates and inspiring online word of mouth. Taylor works with clients including Michael’s Arts & Crafts, Lenscrafters, Marzetti and Meijer.

Taylor shares his personal thoughts and insight on social media marketing on his blog at, where he also hosts a weekly podcast of the latest news in social media marketing.

Taylor Wiegert

Social Media Chair

Save the Date

2012 Cincinnati PRSA {Social} Media Day: Dynamic Relationships in the Digital Age

Mark your calendars now for Tuesday, Oct. 2 – Cincinnati PRSA’s biggest event of the year – {Social} Media Day. This year’s event is bringing exciting changes, big-name speakers and thought-provoking panels. The schedule continues to grow, but to-date includes:

  • Keynote speaker Caroline Giegerich@DailyMarauder, previousSXSW panelist, discussing “Is Social Killing Social?”
  • Reputation management panel featuring speakers from Macy'sFifth Third BankRumpke and CVG 
  • Local media panel with Josh Pichler from Cincinnati Enquirer and Lane Michelson from WCPO and others
  • Blacksmith masters, with previous winners highlighting their case studies and sharing best practice for award submissions
  • National media panel, speakers to be announced soon
  • Local media roundtables, back by popular demand, offering attendees the opportunity for small group discussions with their target media contacts

Watch your email and mailbox for your chance to register! Follow #MediaDay to stay up to date on event details.

Meghann Craig & Rodger Pille

Media Day Co-Chairs

APR Corner

Thinking about earning your APR?

Your timing is perfect. The Cincinnati Chapter’s APR preparation course will begin Wednesday, Sept. 12 and run for six weeks through Wednesday, Oct. 17. Classes will be held from 7 – 9 p.m. It will take place at Catholic Health Partners, located at 615 Elsinore Place (just north of downtown Cincinnati).

Course content will follow the APR Study Guide developed by the Universal Accreditation Board. The prep course is structured to help APR candidates prepare to take their Readiness Reviews on Saturday, Nov. 3.

Contact the chapter’s APR chair, Debbie Copeland-Bloom, APR with any questions and/or if you are interested in attending the Cincinnati Chapter APR preparation course.

Debbie Copeland-Bloom, APR

Accreditation Chair

Blacksmith Awards

Enter the 2012 Blacksmith Awards

Is your PR work the top in the Tri-State? Find out through this year’s Cincinnati PRSA Blacksmith Awards, presented by the Eisen Agency. Cincinnati is home to some of the best and brightest PR professionals, and it’s time for the stars to come out and shine.

Click here for the entry brochure or visit the Blacksmith Awards page for additional details. Entries are due by 5 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 10, 2012. The Blacksmith Awards event will be held on Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012 at 6 the Hyatt Regency – Cincinnati

New this year – check out the Chapter’s YouTube page for entry tips and best practices from past winners, including Jonathan Kissell and Gail Myers, APR.

2011 Blacksmith Highlight

Each month leading up to the annual Blacksmith Awards, we’ll highlight one of last year’s winners and share a tip to help you with your 2012 entries. 

2011 Silver Award winner for Special Event:

Bethany House Services and M. Gail Myers, APR, for Bethany House Services Ripple Effect Cabaret

Bethany House Services (BHS) is a Cincinnati area nonprofit that collaborates with others to provide a full range of housing, education and assistance programs for homeless and disadvantaged women and children. As with many nonprofits, its funding has decreased, and Bethany House was looking for a new fundraising event. Susan Emerson Ansel, vice president of Private Health News, is a professional singer-actress, having toured with many Broadway shows and performed extensively in regional theater. She has been a volunteer and friend of BHS for several years and agreed to create a cabaret performance to benefit BHS. The theme was “The Ripple Effect: One Person Can Make a Difference.” The first performance was in 2009. At that time, it was presented as a public performance. In 2010, The Ripple Effect was repeated, this time as a private event only, as that was the most successful portion of the 2009 event.

BHS set aggressive fundraising and attendance objectives based on its 2009 event and invited a targeted list of potential friends, future donors and volunteers. Invitees paid admissions and received a donation card asking for additional help in “making a ripple.” The event was a success with both fundraising and attendee objectives met. 

Shara Clark and Stephanie Honan, APR

Blacksmith Awards Co-Chairs

New Pros

New pros host blogging event

Join the new pros on Thursday, Aug. 23 at 6 p.m. to learn from top Cincinnati bloggers. You will learn blogging best practices, how to pitch bloggers and much more. The event will be held at Coffee Emporium, located at 110 East Central Parkway.

Please RSVP to by Monday, Aug. 20. Hope to see you there!

Kristen Marshall

New Pros Chair

Featured Member

Name: Debra DeCourcy, APR

Current position: Vice president and director of corporate communications at Fifth Third Bancorp

How long have you been a Cincinnati PRSA member? Since I moved to Cincinnati in 1997 (Editor’s Note: Debra served as Cincinnati PRSA President in 2003.)

What do you find most beneficial about Cincinnati PRSA? Cincinnati PRSA has given me the opportunity to build and deepen relationships with some of the most well-respected PR professionals in the country!      

What social media outlets do you use? I’m pretty basic in my social media tastes. I use LinkedIn for professional networking and Facebook for social engagement with friends and family. Personally, I don’t tweet. My husband, on the other hand, has over 20,000 Twitter followers.

Whom do you suggest your fellow chapter members on Twitter and why? I guess I’m biased, but I would suggest Mike DeCourcy, @tsnmike, for his college basketball expertise. I also would suggest Kevin Dugan, @prblog, whom I’ve known for years, for his insights on all things PR. And finally, I’m on the Board of Women Helping Women, @WmnHelpingWmn, a wonderful support organization in Hamilton County.

You’re in PR, which means you’re interesting by default! Tell us one fun fact about you: You’re never too old to learn something new. Since I can remember, I’ve always wanted to play the piano. Nearly two years ago, at age 50, I started taking lessons.

New Member Welcome

Name: Shawn Maus

Current position: Shawn is a communications coordinator and webmaster for Finneytown Local School District.

Previous experience: Shawn previously worked as a corporate trainer in public relations for CGI, Inc. and as a district training manager for Blockbuster.

Education: Shawn has a bachelor’s degree in Electronic Media from the College-Conservatory of Music (CCM).

Twitter handle: @Shawn479

Shawn lives in Colerain Township. He is a photographer and has produced two short films, one of which has won several film festival awards. He is an avid theatergoer who volunteers at the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park.

Name: Bridget Coughlin

Current position: Bridget is the communications manager for the Warren County Convention and Visitors Bureau (WCCVB). She oversees the bureau’s communications efforts, including media relations, social media management and public relations activities.

Previous experience: Bridget previously worked as the publications and online media manager for the Cincinnati Nature Center. In 2010, she was a member of the interactive marketing team at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio.

Education: Bridget has a bachelor’s degree from the Scripps School of Journalism at Ohio University.

Twitter handle: @hbridgetc

Bridget lives in Mariemont with her puppy, Wrigley. She enjoys hiking, canoeing, camping and volleyball. Bridget loves to travel and tries as many local foods as she can when visiting a new place. Bridget is currently busy preparing for her September wedding.

Copyright Webinar

Need a refresher on copyright and how it applies online? Check out this webinar

One of the new benefits of PRSA membership this year is free webinars, including on-demand access online if you miss the live webinar. I strongly recommend you take advantage of these – they’re great webinars, and if you just tune into a couple, you’ve covered the cost of membership.

In July, I took advantage of a copyright compliance webinar, which covered things like copyright owners’ exclusive rights, how to avoid risks and damages, fair use and attribution of online content, how to combat piracy, case studies and best practices.

One of the most interesting and useful parts of the discussion was the questions that followed. Here are a few of the questions that were asked:

“I see lots of documents posted online that you are encouraged to print or share--but I don't think I've ever seen a disclaimer about print a single copy for personal use.  Does that give you any more latitude to share them more widely?”

“If you just send a link, how much of the subject matter could you include to make sure the recipient has an idea of where they are being directed?”

Want to hear how the questions were answered? Tune in to the webinar on- demand on the PRSA website. This particular webinar is under the “Crisis and Reputation” category and is called “Copyright Compliance.” Enjoy!

Gail Myers

Ethics Chair

PR News Around Town

“The Rise of Niche Networks” webinar

Cincinnati PR professionals are invited to attend a free webinar on Wednesday, Aug. 15 from 11-11:45 a.m. Hosted by Powerhouse Factories, the webinar will focus on what niche social networks are, how top niche networks are enticing users, what this trend means and how to respond. Register here.