More 'Fortune' in Chicago

I read with interest the Chicago Market Focus in the July 10 issue of PRWeek. All in all, it provided an interesting and accurate look at the PR profession in the area.

I read with interest the Chicago Market Focus in the July 10 issue of PRWeek. All in all, it provided an interesting and accurate look at the PR profession in the area.

However, if you'll allow me a bit of civic pride, I believe your Fortune 1,000 list (which appears to include only those companies within the city limits of Chicago) is a bit incomplete.

If you take a look at the entire Chicago metropolitan area, you will notice many significant corporate names that did not make your list. Those companies include Sears, Motorola, Walgreens, Allstate, McDonald's, Abbott, United, Illinois Tool Works, Navistar, Baxter, OfficeMax, Fortune Brands, and CDW, among many others.

In fact, following on the collaborative, Midwestern ethic that you accurately depict in your article, you could look at the total of 62 Fortune 1,000 companies in the state of Illinois, 25 in Wisconsin, 14 in Indiana, seven in Iowa, and others in states throughout the region. Most of these companies contribute to, and draw from, the great PR resources in Chicago.

This minor "geographical indiscretion" in no way changes the fact that your magazine remains a required read for anyone in the PR business.

Jeff Altheide
SVP and MD
Gibbs & Soell Public Relations
Hoffman Estates, IL

Kennedy is a journalist

Stuart Gulbansen's July 10 letter criticizing PRWeek's decision to portray Robert Kennedy, Jr., as a journalist makes for interesting reading, However, Kennedy has written enough articles in magazines of note to qualify for that title.

A journalist today is simply someone who writes and is published. This definition comes from someone who was a journalist in the original sense of the word and published on the front pages of newspapers across the globe.

There was a time when it would have rankled many to see "amateurs" such as Kennedy described as journalists, but in today's media circus, everyone - and that includes blogger and TV talking head - apparently is entitled to recognition as a valid member of the Fourth Estate.

None of this is to say that PRWeek couldn't have found another niche to display comments. Something like "Venter's Corner," perhaps?

Wes Pedersen
Principal
Wes Pedersen Communications and Public Relations
Washington

Corrections

In the July 24 news story on Gund, company president Jim Madonna was mistakenly referred to as Joe. In the same issue's story on Takeda Pharmaceuticals, Jocelyn Gerst's title should have been offered as senior manager of product PR, not production PR.

We regret the errors.

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