Dirty laundry. He said, she said. “We don’t comment on pending litigation (but if I could I would tell you that the slime bucket suing us….).” The news media is relentless in its pursuit of a controversial story that attracts widespread public attention, and public opinions are quickly formed based on the initial slant of the news stories. The truth and facts are often lost in the heat of a sensational story involving a known public figure or an unfortunate individual caught in the public spotlight.
If you are that public figure or individual, who do you call to protect or salvage your reputation? Meet Joe Householder, director for Public Strategies Inc. Householder has engaged in these battles for more than 15 years, most recently counseling City of Houston Councilwoman Carol Alvarado during the city employee pay bonus scandal. He will be the keynote speaker at the April 4 luncheon providing insight on how to manage clients in a hostile public environment that labels you “Guilty, until proven innocent.”
Prior to joining Public Strategies, Householder served as communications director for U.S. Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, successfully navigating the challenging media climates of both Washington, D.C., and New York. Previously, Householder was director of public affairs for Varoga Rice & Shalett, a Houston-based public-policy firm, and served as communications director for the successful re-election campaign of Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack and Lieutenant Governor Sally Pederson.
Householder also worked as media relations manager for the Vinson & Elkins law firm, where he helped raise the firm’s profile and provided assistance to both its attorneys and clients. During his tenure there, the firm allowed Householder a one-month leave of absence in order to act as press secretary for Houston Mayor Lee Brown during a contentious runoff re-election. Householder’s work was successful and high-profile; his assistance at that critical time during the campaign is still remembered among Houston political circles.
Householder began his career as a market-climbing broadcast reporter. He worked in Birmingham, Alabama, and Orlando, Florida, before reaching a ten-year stint at Houston’s powerhouse radio news channel, KTRH. Householder rose through the ranks at KTRH to become assistant news director and was well-regarded for his work as a genuinely fair and knowledgeable radio reporter for the station.