QUESTIONS & ANSWERS: Steve Haweeli

Steve Haweeli, a bartender turned PR pro, describes his agency, WordHampton Public Relations, as ’the largest restaurant PR firm on Long Island.’ Here, he waxes philosophic on testosterone, spirituality and gravedigging hijinks.

Steve Haweeli, a bartender turned PR pro, describes his agency, WordHampton Public Relations, as ’the largest restaurant PR firm on Long Island.’ Here, he waxes philosophic on testosterone, spirituality and gravedigging hijinks.

Steve Haweeli, a bartender turned PR pro, describes his agency,

WordHampton Public Relations, as ’the largest restaurant PR firm on Long

Island.’ Here, he waxes philosophic on testosterone, spirituality and

gravedigging hijinks.





What is the secret of your success? 17 years of bartending.



How do you make a difference? I bring testosterone - and the tension

that comes with it - to an otherwise female office.



Tell us something interesting about your agency In the summer, I’ve been

known to leave the office for a half hour in the middle of the day to

hit the beach for a dip.



What was your proudest moment? Doing the PR for adman Jerry Della

Femina’s restaurants in Manhattan and East Hampton.



What was your most embarrassing moment? Charging dollars 50 for my first

press release, and having no idea what my hourly rate was.



How did you get into PR? I started the company with no PR training and

no agency experience, and I never took a PR class in college. Ten years

ago, I was bartending in NYC and I sent out a letter out to my bar

patrons that described my honeymoon. That letter turned into a direct

mail piece which led to me writing direct mail for downtown restaurants.

When someone asked me if I had ever written a press release, my answer

was, ’What’s a press release?’



Who do you most look like? A cross between Babe Ruth and Marlon

Brando.



What would you do on a desert island? I’d eat vanilla almond ice cream

for breakfast, coconut pie for lunch and lemon tarts for dinner. Then

I’d proceed to the Viennese table ... you said dessert island,

right?



Name one thing about your past that people would be surprised to

learn.



That I was a gravedigger and once buried a man upside down. True

story.



What would you do if you didn’t do what you do? Be a Benedictine

monk.



With which historical figure do you identify? St. Paul, the patron saint

of publicists.



What are your hobbies? Lure-making, surfcasting and breaking chops.



What will be the next big thing to hit PR and why? Publicists will

become celebrities in the same manner that chefs have.



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