Board of Directors Candidates - SELECT FOUR
Karen Naumann Blanchard, APR
Karen Naumann Blanchard, APR, has more than a decade of experience in the field. She has led public relations efforts for organizations in a broad range of industries, including government, energy, technology, healthcare, real estate, and non-profits.
Blanchard is an active member of the Public Relations Society of America, from which she earned APR status in 2003. She serves as 2006 Accreditation Chair for the Houston chapter. In past years, she has served on the chapter''s Excalibur Awards Committee.
Blanchard is a native of New Orleans and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Mass Communications from Louisiana State University.
Mike Breslin, APR
Mike Breslin, APR, is the General Manager of the Houston office of Hill & Knowlton. Breslin has two decades of experience in the communications field, with specializations in litigation communications, issues management, crisis communications and corporate communications. He held key management positions with Publicis Dialog and Ketchum before assuming his current position.
Breslin has held key public and private sector positions in both corporate and agency settings, working in Dallas, Washington D.C., Seoul, South Korea, and elsewhere.
Breslin holds a Master''s Degree in Mass Communications from Texas Tech University and is an accredited public relations practitioner. He is a former vice president of the Dallas PRSA chapter and is currently involved with PRSA and the Texas Public Relations Association.
Catherine Burch Graham, APR
Catherine Burch Graham, APR, has 18 years of public relations, marketing and media experience. Graham serves as director of communications for LifeGift Organ Donation Center, where she oversees all aspects of communications as well as the work of a community relations liaison.
Graham formerly served at Texas Instruments, Incorporated (TI), where she teamed with the leaders of 10 business units to enhance a media relations program aimed at sustaining TI''s marketing momentum between major announcements. Other positions include serving as director of public relations for the Memorial Hermann Healthcare System, as well as positions at Pierpont Communications and The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center.
Graham committed hundreds of hours to the Houston Chapter of the Association for Women in Communications and served as its president in 1995-1996. She also has served as program chair for PRSA Houston, in addition to other volunteer activities with the organization. She is a graduate of The University of Texas.
Suzanne Lammers graduated from the University of Missouri - St. Louis in 2000. She moved to Houston that fall to begin her career in public relations with Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Recently, she has advanced her career with a move to Nevada Gold & Casinos, Inc. Suzanne is actively involved in PRSA. She chairs the chapter''s growing New Professionals Group, which sponsors professional development or social events monthly. Lammers also is a board member of the PRSA Foundation and volunteers with the Girl Scouts of San Jacinto by assisting senior scouts in earning their Public Relations Interest Project Award.
Ryan Rice serves as an account supervisor at VOLLMER, where he provides marketing and public relations services for clients in the non-profit sector. Previously, Rice led the American Heart Association''s communications efforts in Los Angeles, where he was responsible for conveying the Association''s messages in seven media markets, as well as assisting in national media relations for the West Coast.
Prior to this, he was the Senior Communications Director for the American Heart Association in Houston, where he managed various aspects of the Association''s key communications and advocacy efforts.
Rice is a graduate of Texas A &M University and is currently a board member of the Friends of the Sterling C. Evans Library at Texas A &M University. He is also a volunteer for the American Heart Association, both in Houston and Los Angeles, as well as for the Pride Committee of Houston.
Susan Richardson has more than seven years of professional experience in corporate communications and journalism. Her experience has focused on media relations, issues management, financial communications, web site design and management, and television news production.
Richardson recently joined Anadarko Petroleum Corporation as senior public affairs advisor. Prior to joining Anadarko, she held several positions of increasing responsibility in the Marathon Oil Corporation public affairs group, including manager of corporate communications. As an active member of PRSA since 2004, Richardson served as co-chair of PR Day 2005 and is the webmaster for PRSA Houston. Richardson holds a bachelor''s degree in Mass Communications from Emerson College and a MBA from University of Colorado at Colorado Springs.
Carol C. Ward, APR
Carol C. Ward, APR, a 20-year public relations veteran, is the Public Relations Director for Longnecker & Associates, an executive compensation and corporate governance consulting firm in Houston. In addition, she provides freelance public relations, branding, advertising and marketing communications services.
Before joining Longnecker, Ward served as senior public relations specialist for Williams in its Tulsa, Okla., headquarters office. While living in Tulsa throughout much of her career, Ward was president, accreditation chair and program co-chair of the Tulsa Chapter of PRSA. She has earned numerous PRSA Silver Link awards, IABC Bronze Quill awards, Tulsa Addy award, Edison Electric Institute legislative award, Oklahoma Governor Henry Bellmon State of Excellence Awards, and volunteer awards from Clark Elementary in Tampa, Fla.
Ward earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in communications with emphasis in public relations and advertising from the University of Tulsa in 1983.
Bill Zander, communications specialist at Texas Children''s Hospital, is a current PRSA Houston board member who was appointed in 2005 to fill a vacated position. He served as co-chair of the 2005 Excalibur Awards.
Zander has been a member of the Houston Chapter since 1995. He is a PRSA mentor to a college student, has served on the planning committee for PR Day and has judged other PRSA chapter competitions.
Zander previously worked for Pierpont Communications. He has received numerous awards from PRSA Houston, IABC Houston and the Texas Public Relations Association. He is a 1993 journalism graduate of the University of Missouri and received a master''s degree from the University of Texas in 1995.
Assembly Delegate Candidates - SELECT TWO
Sharon Dotson, APR
Sharon Dotson, APR, has practiced public relations since 1986 and established Bayou City Public Relations in 2001. She is a former journalist who held a number of editorial positions before entering the PR field, including a two-year stint as a Houston Business Journal columnist.
Dotson joined the PRSA Houston chapter in 1989 and earned accreditation in 1993. She has served on the boards of both the PRSA Houston chapter and the Texas Public Relations Association (TPRA). Dotson''s previous experience includes public affairs director of the Mental Health Mental Retardation Authority (MHMRA) of Harris County and public relations director of the Sam Houston Area Council, Boy Scouts of America.
Dotson is past president of Houston Financial Council for Women and serves on the 2006 board of the Houston Production Managers'' Association. Dotson attended the University of Missouri School of Journalism and is a journalism graduate of the University of Houston.
Sally I. Evans, APR
Sally I. Evans, APR, Public Relations Counsel, advises the managements of small publicly traded companies, as well as companies involved in mergers and acquisitions, in private equity portfolios, and in planning to grow.
She served 10 years as an Assembly delegate for PRSA Houston and was instrumental in getting the national office to provide more complete financial information on a timelier basis. Evans'' past chapter positions include accreditation chair, newsletter editor, secretary, director and scholarship committee chair. She also has served as chair, vice chair, and treasurer for PRSA''s Southwest District. Evans also has been involved with TPRA, the Houston Chapter/National Investor Relations Institute and the Women''s Finance Exchange. She serves as executive director of the Houston Private Equity Association.
Evans holds an MBA in finance from the University of Houston and a BSJ (with honors) in public relations from the University of Florida.
Pat Frank, APR
Pat Frank, APR, is an accredited public relations professional with 20 years of experience in corporate, agency and non-profit settings. She is director of internal communications at CenterPoint Energy, where she has worked for the past five years and directs all communications to the company''s 15,000+ employees and retirees. Other career highlights include serving as a vice president at Vollmer Public Relations and director of public relations at a local United Way agency.
As a member of the Houston PRSA Chapter, she has served on the board of directors and held various chapter leadership roles over the years, including membership, resume referral and accreditation chair, as well as co-chair of the Excalibur Awards. Pat is actively involved in several community organizations, including serving on the Board of Directors at The Lighthouse of Houston, volunteering as a "Dream Partner" with I Have A Dream-Houston, and working as a member of the Palacios Revitalization Committee.
Frank is a graduate of the University of Houston.
Barbara D. Langham, Ph.D., APR
Barbara D. Langham, Ph.D., APR is founder and CEO of Renaissance House International, a 22-year-old, full-service communications firm. She joined PRSA and also received her accreditation in 1986. She has served the Houston Chapter as Public Relations Committee Chair; Accreditation Committee Chair; President-Elect; President; Board Director; and Immediate Past President.
At the national level, Langham is an active member of the Counselors Academy and, as an alternate delegate, represented the Houston Chapter at the National Assembly in 1997. Prior to forming her firm, she was associate dean for American Educational Complex, operating campuses in Korea and Japan and before that was an assistant professor at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale. She is a contributing author to the Encyclopedia of Public Relations, edited by Robert Heath.
She attended Southern Methodist University, earned her Bachelor of Arts at Furman University in Greenville, South Carolina, and her Master of Arts and Doctor of Arts degrees at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Kay Kendall, APR
Previously in her 25 years in public relations, Kay Kendall, APR, was executive vice president, managing worldwide publicity when McDonald''s opened its first restaurant in Russia, vice president of public affairs for American Express Canada, and vice president of Hill & Knowlton. Since 1993, she has directed communications at the Institute of Biosciences and Technology, part of the Texas A &M Health Science Center in Houston''s Texas Medical Center.
During 24 years of PRSA membership, Kay has chaired the program committee of two chapters and served as the Houston chapter president and assembly delegate. She also chaired the Southwest District of PRSA and the Public Affairs Advisory Committee of the Texas Medical Center.
A member of Phi Beta Kappa, Kay earned her B.A. with highest distinction with majors in English, Russian and Soviet Studies from the University of Kansas. She was a Woodrow Wilson Fellow at Harvard University''s Graduate School of Arts and Sciences and earned her M.A. and completed coursework for her doctorate in Russian history at the University of British Columbia.