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PRSA Houston News, Events Nov. 9, 2010

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Nov. 18: Media Relations 'Stars' Shine at Media Breakfast
You've heard from the media; now hear from Houston's media relations super stars at the next Media Mixer breakfast Nov. 18, 7:30 a.m., at the United Way Community Resource Center.


This year for the first time in Excalibur Awards history, the awards committee reached out to the local media and asked, “Who stands out in the crowd of PR professionals you work with on a regular basis?” The committee received responses from more than two dozen editors, reporters and journalists from all over Houston. Kim Padgett, principal and founder of The Padgett Group, won the distinction of Media Relations Professional of the Year.


Awards also were given to two additional shining stars - Alicia Cahill, public information officer for the City of Galveston, and Heather Saucier, assistant division manager of communication and spokeswoman for the Harris County Flood Control District.


Register Now


Registration is $5 for members; $10 for Non-Members. Refreshments will be served.



Date:           Thursday, November 18, 2010

Time:           7:30 a.m. – 8:30 a.m.

Location:      United Way Community Resource Center

50 Waugh Drive, Houston, TX 77007


Contact:       Paula Ruth, APR, 281-870-1717.


PR Day Discussions About 'Keeping Up with Change,' Government Relations
Don't miss registration savings through Nov. 19
Join us for PR Day 2010 Nov. 30, 2010, at the Hyatt Regency Downtown, for an exciting, one-day, action-packed conference and expo focusing on PRSA: Promoting Relationships, Surviving Adversity.
Register today through Nov. 19, and save money with standard registration rates. Beginning Nov. 20, late registration rates apply.

Breakout Session Highlights

What are some of the challenges faced by those who mediate between government and the press? Sit-in on this Government Media Relations Panel to get the inside scoop. Panelists include Janice Evans, director of communications, Office of the Mayor, Houston; Councilman Corbett Parker, City of Bellaire; and Christopher Newport, Council liaison and public information officer, ARA, City of Houston.

Join Houston's media leaders for a lively conversation about Keeping Up with Change: Get Onboard or Get Left Behind. Yolanda Green, community relations director and host of Outlook Houston and Going Green at KIAH Channel 39 will moderate the discussion. Panelists include Greg Barr, assistant managing editor, Houston Business Journal; Shelby Hodge, editor-at-large, CultureMap; Syd Kearney, editor/producer, Houston Chronicle’s; and Ed Mayberry, business reporter, KUHF 88.7 FM.


Keynote Speakers 


Becca Cason Thrash, a Houston PR pioneer, philanthropist and co-founder of Papercity magazine, will be this year’s Breakfast Keynote speaker.  

Paul Taaffe
, global CEO and Chairman, Hill & Knowlton, will be the Lunch Keynote speaker.


Register online now


Download the Registration Form

Meet the Press Mixer

Beginning at 4 p.m., after the last Breakout Session, mingle and network with several of Houston's leading journalists at the Meet the Press Mixer.

The party continues after the Mixer at PRSA Houston's Holiday Party! (Read more below) Registration is only $10 for Members and includes two drinks and hors d'œuvres. Holiday Party registration is not included in PR Day registration.  
PRSA Houston thanks its generous PR Day 2010 sponsors






PR Day Chair Lady Oliver, 832-866-6608


Communications Chairs - promotions, media

Kristi Krupala: (713) 792-2096;

Kim Miller:


Sponsorship Chairs - sponsorships, vendor exhibits, donations

Osjetta Gascey:


Programming Chair - speakers, program

Cynthia Miller: (225) 610-0592;


Venue Logistics - exhibits, logistics, speaker travel

Meagan Stangle: (713) 243-8879;


After PR Day, Celebrate the Season at PRSA Houston Holiday Party


PRSA Houston cordially invites you to celebrate the holiday season at its Let it Glow Holiday Party Tuesday, Nov. 30, immediately following the PR Day Meet the Press Mixer at the Hyatt Regency Downtown.

This cocktail reception will take place 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.


Register now

Registration is only $10 for Members and includes two drinks and hors d'œuvres. Holiday Party registration is not included in PR Day registration. 

Sponsorships Available

Several glowing opportunities to sponsor are available to help make this year’s event a success:

Star Bright Sponsor - $1,500

Glowing Embers Sponsor - $1,000

Candlelight Sponsor - $500

Download sponsorship details


Thanks to our early-commitment sponsors


Volunteers Needed

Spread a little cheer, and volunteer to help plan PRSA Houston’s ‘Let it Glow’ Holiday Party. This is a great opportunity to flex your creativity and event-planning muscles with other PR professionals.



Date:           Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2010
          5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., immediately following the Meet
                   the Press Mixer on PR Day
     Hyatt Regency Downtown

1200 Louisiana St., Houston 77002


Contact:       Mike Wysatta, 713-751-5557, for all holiday 
                    party-related inquiries.


Survey Participants Needed, Effort Helps Chapter Earn Funds

Complete the survey, receive a free personalized career assessment report valued at $250!


PRSA Houston and Birkman International, one of the world’s leading behavioral research companies, are collaborating to provide our eBlast readers with a free career assessment and the chapter with much-needed funds.

Birkman needs 44 qualified* individuals to complete an online assessment to update its public relations specialist career assessment. Qualified individuals who complete the survey will receive a free personalized career assessment report valued at $250. PRSA Houston will receive $25 for each completed survey. Test results are completely confidential.


*Qualified Individuals:

·         Are 18 years of age or older, an English speaker who can read and write in the English language and who validly complete the questionnaire;

·         Are employed as a public relations specialist as defined by the US Department of Labor: “engage in promoting or creating goodwill for individuals, groups or organizations by writing or selecting favorable publicity material and releasing it through various communications media; and may prepare and arrange displays and make speeches;” and


·         Hold one of the following job titles: Account Executive, Public Affairs Specialist, Public Relations Specialist (PR Specialist), Public Information Officer, Communications Director, Communications Specialist, Public Information Specialist, Public Relations Coordinator, Corporate Communications Specialist, Marketing Director.


Take your free assessment, now.

For more than 50 years, Birkman International’s The Birkman Method® survey results have helped companies maximize human potential and achieve superior, sustainable results. More than 2.5 million individuals have taken The Birkman Method®. Clients include corporate human resources professionals, independent consultants, executive coaches, educational institutions and other not-for-profit organizations.

Contact Birkman International.


Blog Bite: Changing Consumer Mindset about HFCS


“PR pros, I ask you, ‘What would you do if Corn Refiners of America was your client and your task was to rebrand high fructose corn syrup as “natural?’ I’m not a scientist or a doctor, and don’t pretend to understand how different types of sugars react in the body, but what interests me, here, is as HFCS gets rebranded as corn sugar, how can we, the public, even though we know better, be influenced by a good marketing campaign?”


Read more on PRSA Houston’s blog site.


An excerpt from a the blog entry “High Fructose Corn Syrup’s PR Problem” by Esther Steinfeld, public relations manager,, about her research on food PR.


Passionate About PR? Bloggers Wanted


Have an opinion on a PR issue you want to share?  Share your viewpoint with hundreds of PR professionals in the Houston area, and blog for PRSA Houston.  Become a trusted resource on some of the great PR issues of our time — from BP to teabaggers and beyond.  PRSA provides the forum.  You provide the thought leadership. Your followers provide the dialogue. 


Contact:         Mike Wysatta for more information.

Business Directory Offers Great Exposure


What do Newman & Newman, Inc., Mills Agency, The Writing Workshop and Bernstein & Associates have in common? They all recently posted or renewed a Business Directory listing at


These companies know that PRSA Houston site visitors are the ones they need to reach. Business Directory listings at help increase Google search engine rankings. 

A directory listing is just $100, which gives businesses exposure to site visitors for one year. PRSA Houston's site got 11,309 visits and 40,146 page views in the most recent month. Let your business start benefitting from this traffic today.


Contact:       Paula Ruth, APR, 281-870-1717. 

PRopel Your Career at


Thursday, Nov. 11

Anatomy of a 2.0 Release: Write Releases That Get Posted on Portals, Help Google Find Your Site, Reach Readers Online and More


Some studies indicate 55 percent to 97 percent of all news releases sent to media outlets are never used. Want to create press releases that actually get the word out? Join this session, and you’ll walk away with checklists, formats, dos and don’ts, and rules of thumb for effective public relations writing based on the latest research.


Wednesday, Nov. 17

On Feb. 14, 2008, a gunman opened fire on nearly 150 students in a lecture all at Northern Illinois University (NIU). Six died, and 19 others were injured. The NIU Office of Public Affairs’ kept the community connected during the crisis. NIU’s follow-up communications maintained the university’s reputation as a safe, caring institution, inspired an increase in applications and garnered industry accolades. Join Melanie Magara, NIU assistant vice president, public affairs, to learn how to:


·         Orchestrate an effective crisis communications program and strategically use emergency alerts, news conferences and stakeholder engagement to communicate key messages.

·         Develop messaging that communicates facts, preparedness, transparency and compassion.



Nov. 12: TPRA Crisis Communication Conference Covers Everything


Don’t miss the best crisis preparation opportunity in the southwest. This professional development conference is all about the experience. It won’t just be a day of listening to others and taking notes. Come prepared to work. We’ve got it all – government agencies, non-profit, big oil, healthcare, higher ed/school PR, corporate, big events, bigger fiascos. Plus, test your readiness at a hands-on crisis simulation. 


Luncheon Keynote: Ewell Smith, executive director, Louisiana Seafood Board

Thought twice about eating Gulf shrimp these days? Thought much about responding to a crisis created by someone else? Ever had 3.5 billion readers? Come get answers to these questions and more.


Download this registration form to register. Bring your entire team for maximum benefit!


Post-conference Fundraiser/Mixer

After the intensity of the conference, join us for fun and games during Denim & Dice, a casino night fundraiser benefiting the education and professional development of PR students in Texas.



Date:           Friday, November 12, 2010

Time:           8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (training)

5:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. (fun and games)

Location:      Hyatt Regency on Lady Bird Lake, Austin, Texas


Sponsored by

Texas Public Relations Association



El Paso Electric

BizCom Associates

mm2 Public Relations


Public Relations Foundation of Texas


Be sure that the email address you provide is capable of receiving emails from PRSA Houston. Add to your "address book" or "safe senders list." Coordinate with your IT department to allow email from

Erin Schwartz
(713) 563-4920
Author: Erin Schwartz
Phone: (713) 563-4920
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