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March ePro, the monthly newsletter of PRSA Houston


What better time than spring to update your wardrobe of PR skills and give your career a facelift.  Your employers will benefit from the new ideas, professionalism and visibility they gain.  There''s never been a better time to get involved in PRSA Houston.

PRy 2006-Registration Extended to Today!

Are you new to the Public Relations Profession?  A recent graduate with a PR degree?  You cannot afford to miss this upcoming professional development program designed to help new professionals and PR students stay ahead of the latest trends, hear experts in related fields, and prepare yourself for the future of the public relations profession.  Or, would you like to interview a summer intern?  Plenty of candidates will be available.



ReShonda Tate Billingsley, Reporter, KRIV Fox 26

Brad Deutser, President and COO, Yaffe Deutser

Julie B. Fix, APR, Fix & Associates, Inc. Public Relations

Yolanda Green, Community Relations Director and Host of “Outlook Houston,” KHWB 39

Frank Krystyniak, Director of Public Relations, Sam Houston State University

Carole Lieber, Senior Market Director of Communications, American Diabetes Association

Graham B. Painter, APR, Executive Vice President, Corporate Communications, Sterling Bank—Luncheon Speaker

Wanda Reyes, Ph.D, Assistant Professor of Mass Communications, Sam Houston State

Sharmagne Taylor, President and CEO OnSite Partners

Pat Trahan, Press Secretary, Houston City Mayor Bill White

Tony Wyllie, Vice President of Communications, Houston Texans--Luncheon speaker



DATE: Friday, March 31, 2006

TIME: 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

LOCATION: University of Houston-University Center,

                  4800 Calhoun Rd., Houston TX 77004


Register at


Registration deadline is today, March 29, 2006. Thanks to Stage Directions for being an AV sponsor for this event and Enbridge Energy and Texas Southern University Jones College of Business for its support.


Student registration is $20  Professional registration is $30 for members; $40 for nonmembers. Saki Indakwa, Texas Southern University, is the chairman of this event.  Please contact her at or Paula Ruth, APR, at for sponsorship information.




Hear about the "Smartest Guys" in April


Be "One of the Smartest People in the Room" by making your reservation now...for PRSA''s April luncheon.  Professor, lawyer, author, legal expert and consultant Gerald Treece, KHOU-TV legal analyst and Dean of the South Texas College of Law, will be our special featured guest speaker.  Dr. Treece will discuss the Enron case and its impact for Houston.  Dr. Treece has explained the legal aspects of  the case with media representatives from all over the world and will help us sort it out over lunch on April 5 at the Courtyard on St. James. Thank you to KHOU-TV Channel 11 and LifeGift Organ Donation Center as sponsors of this event. You won''t want to miss this luncheon with your PRSA friends and colleagues. 


To register, click here. For more information on sponsorship opportunities, please call Paula Smead at 713.664.8526 or Paula Ruth, APR, at 281.870.1717.





 Excalibur Entries Due April 12

PR Day 2006: Expect the Unexpected 

 Plan! Prepare! Execute!

Houston''s civic and business leaders faced challenges and opportunities as varied as a record hurricane season, rising fuel costs, and a winning baseball season. All brought national attention. The PR Day 2006 committee chose as its theme for the Thursday, Sept. 21, event: “Expect the Unexpected: Plan! Prepare! Execute! Evaluate!” Its program should reflect the challenges and opportunities facing PR professionals in guiding their organizations through difficult terrain.


This year’s luncheon keynote speaker,  Mayor Bill White, has dealt with many issues in which he has been challenged to expect the unexpected. Mayor White will share his insight as he looks back one year later at aftermaths of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, making the luncheon a "must-attend" event.


PR Day is the Houston Chapter’s largest professional development event of the year and is traditionally one of the chapter’s most well-attended events. Each year, PR Day offers valuable programming, fresh PR direction and advice, the ability to network with fellow professionals, and directly interact with journalists. There are plenty of opportunities to be involved in the planning and sponsoring of this event. Bacons has already committed as a vendor. For more information about PR Day 2006, contact PR Day Chair Stephanie Dedeaux, APR, at 713.563.0000 or For sponsorship information, contact Paula Ruth, APR, at






Invest in Yourself!  Get Accredited! 

Did you miss the Jumpstart Accreditation program earlier this month?  Or, did you go, but realize you needed a brush-up in certain areas?  PRSA Houston is here to help.  Thanks to Karen Blanchard, APR, The Padgett Group, Accreditation Chairman, PRSA Houston will be offering a series of Friday afternoon seminars to equip you for the exam.  Beginning April 7, these optional programs will zero in on specific areas likely to be covered by the accreditation examination.  Each session is a nominal $10 to cover the cost of copies and facilities at 2100 West Loop South.  Please register online for each date.  Register early because our space holds a maximum of 20 people. The schedule of topics to be covered follows:

April 7:     Basic Concepts

April 21:   Publics and Public Opinion

May 5:      Communication Theory

May 12:    Research 1

May 19:    Research Methods

May 26:    Planning

June 2:    Diffusion

June 9:    Law and Ethics

June 16:   IT

June 23:   Case Problems

July 7:      Business Literacy

July 14:    Personal Presentation


Register for each event at



Location:  Corporate Office Centers

                 2100 W. Loop South, Ninth Floor, Houston, TX  77027 




 How Do You Know if it Worked?

Research-based measurement is a critical part of effective communication activities and programming because it helps answer the all-important question, “Is anyone out there getting our message?”


On June 2, 8 am – 11:30 am, join Peter Hollister, APR, Fellow PRSA, CPRC, and Patricia Trubow, APR, Fellow PRSA, CPRC, as they present a professional development workshop on Communications Effectiveness Studies. Location to be announced.


The Communication Effectiveness Study (CES), often referred to as a communications audit, has been developed over the years by Hollister, Trubow & Associates to provide an effective and efficient set of methodologies and processes to measure communication effectiveness.


The CES is a method for diagnosing the strengths and weaknesses of communications activities, barriers to effectiveness and ways to reach and motivate key audiences.  The CES provides meaningful and useable information to a management concerned with the efficiency, credibility and economy of their communication policies, practices and programs. 


This seminar covers why, when and how a CES is conducted as well as who and what is studied. At the conclusion of the seminar, participants will . . . .


* understand the purpose and procedures of a CES

* be familiar with the steps in conducting a CES

* be knowledgeable about what measurement can be done by staff and what requires research expertise

* be more familiar with the use and application of  evaluation and measurement methodologies such as surveys, focus groups, depth interviews, etc.

* know how to apply the results of a CES to improve communication effectiveness 


The cost of the workshop is $75 for members, $85 for non-members. Sponsorships are available for this workshop – please contact Terri Larson, 713-353-6317, or Paula Smead, 713-664-8526, or Paula Ruth, APR, at 281-870-1717 or for more information.


Sponsors to Date: A Brink & Co.  Others available.


Save the Date:


Speaker:   Jim Lukaszewski, ABC, APR, Fellow PRSA

Topic:       Risk Mitigation Communications:Building and Maintaining Community Trust

Date:         November 8, 2006

Time       8 am – 11:30 am

Location:  TBD



New Pros Social Promotes PRSA


The PRSA New Pros group recently hosted a social at the Scott Gertner Skybar''s “Latin Night” that included complimentary salsa dancing lessons.  From public relations to graphic design, professionals who work in various capacities came out to make the Skybar event a huge success!   


The PRSA New Pros group continues to look for ways to refresh the skills and strengthen the relationships of its members who are professionals with five years or less experience.  Join us at the special events planned for later this year.  The event lineup can be found below.  Stay tuned to the PRSA Houston web site for further details at   


May 2006:  Public Relations Campaign Development Seminar with the Houston Texans

June 2006:  Social at Jillian’s in the Marquee Entertainment Center

August 2006:  “Meet the Media” Panel Discussion, Question & Answer

September 2006:  Social – Location TBA

December 2006:  Effective Writing Techniques Seminar and Holiday Mixer



Get More Business by Listing Your Firm in our Business Directory


Do you own a public relations firm?  Are you a freelance writer?  A graphic designer?  A photographer?  Do you do research?  Media Training? No matter what your firm does for PR firms and buyers, use PRSA Houston''s website to promote it.  For the low advertising price of $100/year, your firm can be featured on a website that gets about 20,000 visits/month of bona fide buyers of your services.  Because of our web marketing, PRSA Houston ranks in the top five of most search engines bringing traffic to your site

through ours.  Find out why those who list in the business directory are renewing! Design your own ad and choose your category.  Pay with a credit card. Questions?  Call Paula Ruth, APR, at 281-870-1717.




New Members





Last Chance for a Taste of PRSA


The final days of the "Taste of PRSA" membership promotion end this week, so if you have been thinking about joining PRSA, do it now!  During this special promotion, PRSA will waive the $65 initiation fee and award you a $20 voucher towards professional development programs or gift items from the PRSA store. This offer is valid for those joining as full members only. To download a membership application, please visit  You must mark the promotion code as "TASTE2006" to get all the benefits and give the chapter credit in the competition.


Member News












Rachel Riley (left) and Sabrina Markle (right) of our March sponsor, The Creative Group,  join PRSA Houston President Sally Ramsay, Pierpont Communications, after the March luncheon. 





Thank You Sponsors!

Thank you to El Paso Corporation and The Creative Group as sponsors of our March 3 luncheon. We also would like to thank KHOU-TV Channel 11  and LifeGift Organ Donation Center for sponsoring our April 5 luncheon (back at the Courtyard on St. James). We also would like to thank Enbridge Energy Company as the printing sponsor for PR to the Y Day and Stage Directions for supplying some of our audio visual needs.

Our luncheon sponsors make it possible to fund post cards to the membership and to bring in other speakers and still maintain a break-even luncheon price for our members. To purchase a table for the April 5 luncheon or be a sponsor at any luncheon or professional development event, please call Paula Ruth at 281-870-1717 or send an email to




If you should choose to sponsor more than one luncheon in a calendar year,
the sponsorship price for two luncheons is $900, three times is $1,200 and
4 times is $1,400. These multiple luncheon sponsorships do not include
special events such as PR Day. Please call Paula Ruth at (281) 870-1717 or email her at to choose your month.




As public relations professionals, we all know the importance of a timely, well written newsletter to communicate with our constituents.  PRSA Houston would like to offer a member the chance to work with our outstanding leadership team in producing an outstanding newsletter each month. A commitment to take FREE training on the Schipul software is a must for the position.  Guidelines have been prepared by Lauren Hammit, who edited the newsletter for several years.  Bring your vision, creativity, and writing talent to this volunteer position and be rewarded with new friends and a great network.  A good editor will set aside significant time each month to work on the project and avoid the temptation to procrastinate.  Interested?  Email Sally Ramsay, president, at or Paula Ruth, APR, at if you are interested.

Submit items for next month''s ePro to Paula Ruth, APR, at by April 19.


Please be sure that the email address you provide is capable of receiving emails from PRSA Houston. With the growing number of email viruses and unwanted solicitation, many companies now have filters in place that prevent newsletter and HTML emails.

Here are a couple of things you can do to help make sure you''ll not miss delivery of your PRSA newsletters and email notifications:

Add to your "address book" or "safe senders list." Some filters will not deliver email to you unless the sender is in your address book.

Coordinate with your IT department to allow email from Legitimate emails are often blocked, and most IT departments are willing to help correct these types of problems.

Or, set up a private email address with Yahoo, Google, or other services that do not have strict email blocking standards.



 A Look at PRSA Houston in March




Bruce Connery, vice president for investor relations and public relations for El Paso Corp. and sponsor of the March luncheon, introduces Neil Nixon at the Doubletree Downtown.



Neil Nixon led a seminar on testing communications crisis plans. Those who stayed through the end of the luncheon were treated not only to seminar highlights but also to great practitical advice about what to do and not to do when media show up.










PRSA Houston Webmaster Susan Richardson is now Senior Public Affairs Advisor with Anadarko Petroleum.

Christina Moreland, PR Day Co-Chair, is now Senior Account Manager for Stevens/FKM.

PRSA Houston Vice President Petri Darby, APR, is now the proud father of Finley Joseph Darby who weighed in at an even 7 pounds 19 inches long. Petri operates darbyDarnit Communications.

Former PRSA President Margot Dimond, APR, is now vice president for development of S.E.A.R.C.H.

Emily Oberton is now external affairs representative for Shell Chemical LP.

PRSA debuted its on-line issue of PR Tactics in March with an article from Houston Chapter member Kelli Newman, APR.  "Defining the Comprehensive Value of Broadcast Public Relations" provides an updated definition of broadcast PR as a strategic subspecialty of our profession and outlines its important applications.  The article may be viewed at Ms. Newman, vice president, Newman & Newman, Inc., and a member of PRSA''s national speaker''s bureau, was also the featured presenter at a March 22nd meeting of the Association of Fundraising Professionals, Dallas Chapter.  Approximately 80 AFP members attended her presentation on "Converting the Power of Emotion into Donations."

If you have news you wish to share, please send it to Paula Ruth, APR, at

If you would like more information on membership and membership benefits, please contact Melanie Brenneman at or Paula Ruth, APR, at


Jennifer Reynolds-Sanchez

Media Rel Spec

University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston

301 University Blvd

Galveston, TX 77555-0144

tel: (409) 747-0794


Yadira Asenett Gonzalez

3505 W Dallas 446

Houston, TX 70019

tel: (713) 523-7900 fax: (713) 523-7930


Laura H. Mayes

Dir, P R

Marion Montgomery Inc

2412 South Blvd

Houston, TX 77098

tel: (713) 523-7900 fax: (713) 523-7930


Susan Oakland

Sr P R Acct Mgr.

Marion Montgomery, Inc.

2412 South Blvd

Houston, TX 77098

tel: (713) 523-7900 fax: (713) 523-7930


Joanne (Jodi) A. Sinclair

2016 Main St, Apt 1613

Houston, TX 77002-8844


Paula Ruth
(281) 870-9939
Author: Paula Ruth
Fax: (281) 870-9939
Category: newsletter | Sub Category: newsletter