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Archives: July 2010

Waggener Edstrom Worldwide Hires Suzanne Zurn


Waggener Edstrom Worldwide has hired Suzanne Zurn as vice president, digital advocacy. Zurn will focus on public affairs in her new role, which she took on earlier this month.

She has worked at Washington, D.C.-based Xenophon Strategies, at The George Washington University, and on the campaign staffs of Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., and Sen. Sam Brownback, R-Kan.

She has also consulted for clients including ExxonMobil Corp., Southwest Airlines Corp., Anheuser-Busch Companies Inc., Air Transport Association of America Inc., Property Casualty Insurers Association of America, American Academy of Family Physicians, Associated General Contractors of New York State and AOL Inc.

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Kekst Promotes Larry Rand to Chief Executive; Gershon Kekst Moves to Advisory Role

Day to day operations of the powerful IR and M&A PR shop Kekst, Inc. will no longer be handled by namesake Gershon Kekst. Senior partner Larry Rand will become Chief Executive effective September 1st, while Kekst moves to the advisory role of executive chairman.

Kekst founded the firm 40 years ago, and sold it to Publicis Group SA two summers ago. Publicis combined its PR holdings including MS&L Worldwide, Publicis Consultants Worldwide, PublicisLive, Publicis Meetings, Emotion, Freud, and Kekst & Co under the name MS&L Group last November.

Full text of the Rand and Kekst’s memos to staff are after the jump:

Read more

Utah Firm Drops Trou During Heat Wave

Richter7 No Pants_Creative Directors Ryan Anderson and Gary Sume.JPG

I can say from personal experience that donning a suit and tie to see a client in 100-degree heat is an exercise in futility and torture. Utah firm Richter7 agrees, and for the third summer in a row is forcing staffers to drop trou in the name of comfort.

The thirty five employees must wear shorts to work, and to client meetings or face a 25 cent fine. All donate at least one pair of pants to charity during the four week period ending August 20th.

We checked with partner Tim Brown to see what clients think of the policy. After some brief awkwardness, they all come around. One client, the Healthy Marriages board now refers to the firm as the “shorts people.”

[Photo: Richter7 creative directors Ryan Anderson and Gary Sume, sans pants]

Revolving Door: 7.29

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Here are this week’s PR and media highlights from mediabistro’s Revolving Door Newsletter:

Deborah Needleman has been named editor-in-chief at WSJ. She had been consultant for The Wall Street Journal.

Monica Herrera has been named news editor at She had been associate editor there.

Ellen Rosenbush has been named editor at Harper’s Magazine. She had been acting editor there.

Aaron Gell has been named managing editor, online, at New York Observer. He had been editor-in-chief at Hemispheres.

Click here to receive’s Revolving Door Newsletter via email.

DJ Steve Porter Tackles ‘The Decision,’ Sports Pressers

DJ Steve Porter has done it again. We loved his “Jam Wow” whack at Vince Shlomi, the ShamWow king (and Lizzie Grubman client). We really love his latest look at the theater that is sports press conferences and faux-angry, faux-remorseful superstar interviews. Above you’ll see LeBron’s “descision” and Tiger’s apology mixed with classics of the past. Enjoy, be a man, put your name on it.

RELATED: LeBron James’ Publicist Speaks

[h/t Deadspin]

Comcast Employees Give Video Tribute To Frank Eliason

Frank Eliason, Comcast’s Senior Director in National Customer Operations, or as he’s better known, the man behind @comcastcares on Twitter is leaving the company to join Citigroup.

His employees put together this farewell video for him, which even includes Comcast founder Ralph Roberts.

Paul Buckman Joins FDA Office of Communications


The FDA has hired Paul Buckman as division director, office of communications. He comes to the FDA as it looks at launching a drug safety blog and Facebook page, according to reports.

He last worked at Scripps Interactive, where he was director, broadband video programming and original content. He has previously worked as senior producer at, and as a Fox News field producer.

The Ticker: Corp. image catastrophes;; Entrepreneurial journalism; Sherrod vs. Breitbart

Conde Nast is Calling: Glamour Seeks New Associate Director of Public Relations


glamourmag072910.jpgThe makeup, the clothes, the style… Glamour has it all and now you could be a part of its top-notch team. The Conde Nast title is in search of an associate director of public relations to devise and execute PR strategies for the monthly magazine and its daily website content.

If hired, you’ll pitch story ideas to media, and partner with the mag’s online and marketing departments on press plans, brand extensions and more. You’ll handle all the media events for the title, book national TV appearances for editors and be responsible for training and cultivating on-air talent. Nothing you can’t handle, right?

If you have a solid background in PR, consumer magazine experience and an enviable database of contacts, this could be the perfect fit for you. Already a subscriber? Even better — you’ve already done your homework. If this sounds like your dream job, apply here.

RELATED: Attend Mediabistro Career Circus on August 4 in New York City to find out where the jobs are, develop a career plan and engage with media peers and leaders.

President Obama On His Twitter Account: ‘Some 20-year-old is Doing a lot of the Tweeting’

Here’s some proof that it’s ok to have a social media ghost writer. [We kid!] The President has one, obviously. President Obama appeared on ABC’s “The View” today, and talked a bit about his social media presence.

“I don’t tweet on a regular basis,” said Obama. “I think there’s an official president’s tweet, but some 20-year-old is doing a lot of the tweeting.”

In the video above, White House communications director Dan Pfeiffer explains the decision making behind Obama’s appearance on “The View.” TVNewser has more.