NEW YORK: The Council of Public Relations Firms unveiled its officers and directors for 2014 on Wednesday.
The industry association re-elected chair Dave Senay, president and CEO of FleishmanHillard, to serve through November 2014. Kathy Tunheim, Tunheim Partners' chief executive, will continue as secretary, and Jens Bang, Cone Communications' chairman, will remain treasurer.
During Senay's previous tenure, the Council developed initiatives including the video contest Take Flight with PR and Ethics as Culture, a resource guide and training module designed for PR firms on ethical business decision-making.
Looking forward, the Council wants to be very aggressive in engaging clients and other stakeholders on the subject of procurement, according to Senay.
“We are just now agreeing on certain guiding principles with regards to procurement,” he said. “Once we agree on those, we expect to educate and equip our membership with stronger techniques and procedures for negotiating with procurement departments, which seem to be on the rise in our industry.”
New board members include: John Echeveste, founding partner of VPE; Bryan Harris, COO and managing partner of Taylor; Maureen Lippe, founder and CEO of Lippe Taylor; Aaron Schoenherr, founding partner of Greentarget; and Renee Wilson, president of MSLGroup North America.
Continuing directors, who are all CEOs or principals at their firms, are: Chris Graves of Ogilvy Public Relations; Matthew Harrington of Edelman; Jason Mandell of LaunchSquad; Marian Salzman of Havas PR; Renzi Stone of Saxum; Mark Thorne of Hill+Knowlton Strategies; Scott Chaikin of Dix & Eaton; Dorothy Crenshaw of Crenshaw Communications; Ron Hanserof Hanser & Associates; and Andy Polansky of Weber Shandwick.
Over the next year, Senay will specifically target diversity in the PR industry, hoping to inspire and celebrate advancements through various initiatives.
“Diversity is a big issue for us, and overall, it fits into an initiative to make our industry more attractive to young people from all disciplines, walks of life, and areas of study, making PR a truly desirable and viable career option,” he said. “That is the broader picture.”
The Council will also continue to pursue its agenda in positioning agencies as “uniquely qualified” to handle social and digital media. Additionally, it will be “working as a catalyst” within the industry to get agreement on measurement standards, Senay said.