Polansky, Stockman elected to top PR council roles

NEW YORK: Weber Shandwick president Andy Polansky has been elected to his second consecutive term as chairman of the Council of Public Relations Firms.

NEW YORK: Weber Shandwick president Andy Polansky has been elected to his second consecutive term as chairman of the Council of Public Relations Firms.

The group also elected Porter Novelli CEO Gary Stockman as chair-elect, Airfoil president Janet Tyler as treasurer, and 360 Public Relations CEO Laura Tomasetti as secretary.

“From an overall perspective, I'm excited to take on the second term, and I think it's a very dynamic time in our industry with lots of business opportunity,” said Polansky.

He added that the group will continue to promote the message of how PR firms play a key role in social media, as well as focusing on diversity and collaboration with other industry groups.

“We've always been at the heart of conversations, story telling, engaging multiple constituencies, and that certainly puts us in a strong position to help clients navigate the evolving media environment,” Polansky added. “We're going to continue to focus on diversity and inclusion and how we continue to attract and retain ethnically diverse talent.”

The council also elected a number of new board members, all of whom are principal or CEO at their respective firms. These include Jens Bang of Cone, Scott Chaikin of Dix & Eaton, Dorothy Crenshaw of Crenshaw Communications, Ron Hanser of Hanser & Associates, and Kathy Tunheim of Tunheim Partners.

"[Polansky] runs a global company, and this is a big time commitment, but he's shown tremendous leadership in his first year and has put forth a very aggressive platform," said Kathy Cripps, president of the council. "The board feels that two years is a much more reasonable amount of time to make progress on those platform issues."

Founded in 1998, the organization works to advocate for and advance the PR industry.

Each of the council's board members serve a three-year term. Continuing directors include Christine Barney of Rbb Public Relations, Amy Binder of RF Binder, Donna Imperato of Cohn & Wolfe, Margery Kraus of APCO Worldwide, Sharon Linhart of Linhart Public Relations, Dave Senay of Fleishman-Hillard, and Melissa Waggener Zorkin of Waggener Edstrom Worldwide.

"These are people who run firms, and their involvement in the council and their time commitment has really helped to move the council forward," Cripps said.

In the next year, the council will focus on four platform issues that were established in the past year: social media, talent and diversity, measurement and analytics, and procurement.

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