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Posts Tagged ‘Melissa Waggener Zorkin’

Women Leaders in PR: Melissa Waggener Zorkin Focuses on ‘Building a Fine Company’

With Women’s History Month just a few weeks away, PRNewser is shining a spotlight on some of the women leaders across the PR industry.

As we’ve talked about here on PRNewser, women make up a big part of the industry and their rise to the executive levels continues. Over the next six weeks, the “Women Leaders in PR” profiles will take a closer look at a few of the women who are running PR departments and PR firms.

We start today with Melissa Waggener Zorkin, president, CEO, and founder of Waggener Edstrom. For Zorkin, personal fulfillment and giving back are top priorities, alongside business results and client successes.

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Susan G. Komen, Women Across the Country Hurt By New Policy

Not the story you thought you’d ever read about Susan G. Komen for the Cure, one of the most noted and respected nonprofits out there. But the other day, it was announced that the organization is cutting funding to Planned Parenthood affiliates, which could leave many women without access to breast exams. Last year, Susan G. Komen (SGK) provided $680,000 in grants to Planned Parenthood groups.

Coverage of issue indicates that SGK made the policy change under pressure from anti-abortion groups and members of Congress. Yesterday, the organization’s founder and CEO, Nancy G. Brinker made the video above to explain why the money has been cut.

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Council of PR Firms Announces the 2012 Board

Speaking of the Council of PR Firms, they’ve announced the 2012 board of directors for the organization. Weber Shandwick president Andy Polansky will serve another year as the chairman of the Council. Also re-elected are Porter Novelli’s Gary Stockman as chair-elect, Airfoil’s Janet Tyler as treasurer, and Laura Tomasetti from 360 Public Relations as secretary.

A number of CEOs and principals will also be joining them as directors: Christine Barney, rbb Public Relations; Amy Binder, RF Binder; Dave Senay, Fleishman-Hillard; Melissa Waggener Zorkin, Waggener Edstrom Worldwide; Sharon Linhart, Linhart Public Relations; Elise Mitchell, Mitchell Communications; Jennifer Prose, CJP Communications; Donna Imperato, Cohn & Wolfe; and Margery Kraus , APCO Worldwide.

Congrats to everyone!

WE Expands in Australia

Waggener Edstrom has invested in Buchan Consulting, a 25-year-old Australian firm with offices in Melbourne and Sydney. The two firms began working together in 2007, with Buchan serving as a Global Alliance Network affiliate. Buchan specializes in investor communications, corporate comms, stakeholder management, and business and economic policy.

Melissa Waggener Zorkin shares her thoughts on the new partnership here.

WE Releases Its Third Annual Corporate Citizenship Report

Waggener Edstrom‘s third corporate citizenship report for 2010 details everything from the firm’s turnover (25 percent), to the amount of charitable work it did ($1.1 million in pro bono services, volunteering, and donating dollars), to its fee revenue ($111 million).

The firm also details its contributions to a vast number of philanthropic organizations, both as a group and as individual staffers. And it breaks down its efforts to be green, with greenhouse gas emissions up a bit from last year (4.8 metric tons in 2010 vs. 4.6 metric tons in 2009), but overall, a decent showing as the firm tries to keep paper usage, travel, and other waste to a minimum.

This week, Melissa Waggener Zorkin, the firm’s CEO, president, and founder, will be attending this week’s Clinton Global Initiative in NYC, so the good works continue. Zorkin talks about the Initiative here, you can get the full corporate citizenship report here, and there’s a video with the highlights here. If you’re looking for a job and want some info about the firm, there’s tons of it in that report.

Melissa Waggener Zorkin: Take a ‘Multi-Local’ Approach

The Council of PR Firms spoke with three CEOs – Burson-Marsteller’s Mark Penn, Hill & Knowlton’s Paul Taaffe, and Waggener Edstrom Worldwide’s Melissa Waggener Zorkin – to gather their thoughts about the global nature of the PR industry and how to be a part of it.

Waggener Zorkin discusses the need to be a part of the community you seek to enter, emphasizing that “what works in one part of the world isn’t necessarily the right approach for every region.”

Penn talked talent. “Clients appreciate proximity and your ability to be with them frequently,” he says, adding that staff members should have a global perspective.

Taaffe highlighted the need to educate new markets and take a “light touch.”

“These markets recoil if Americans come in and suggest they have superior skills,” he says.

Click here to read more.

WE Partners with Mercy Corps and Batonga Foundation for Women’s Initiative

Photo: Thatcher Cook for Mercy Corps

This week, Waggener Edstrom Worldwide announced its partnership with Mercy Corps and the Batonga Foundation for the “Empowering Ethiopian Women and Girls for Peaceful Change” project.  Melissa Waggener Zorkin, WE’s CEO and president attended this week’s Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) Annual Meeting to announce the initiative. The firm’s effort will “empower approximately 450 underprivileged but entrepreneurial girls, women and their families in the Derashe and Konso districts of southern Ethiopia over the next four years,” Zorkin said in the announcement press release. Together, the groups will reach 800 women and girls.

Mercy Corps works in communities around the world to alleviate poverty and provide communities with tools, skills, and support. Batonga supports education efforts for girls in Africa.

The joint effort will give young women in Ethiopia the chance to graduate from secondary school. According to the essay about the partnership, young women make up less than one-third of the enrollment in southern Ethiopia at the secondary school level.

Which Agency Has The Most “Social” CEO?

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All of the major PR agencies continue to move aggressively in regards to social media offerings for their clients. But how active are agency CEOs in social media?

PRNewser decided to take a look at major agency CEOs to see just how “social” they are. We’re not saying these CEO’s have to “walk the walk,” but we were a bit curious to see who is active, and where.

After the jump, our social media audit on 12 agency CEOs. The results may surprise you.

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APCO CEO Margery Kraus Named 2010 Chair of the Council of Public Relations Firms

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The Council of PR Firms announced this morning that APCO CEO Margery Kraus will serve as 2010 Chair of the industry trade group, following Ketchum CEO Ray Kotcher‘s run. The release was issued at the same time the Council meets for its annual high-end Critical Issues Forum.

The PR Council lists exactly a hundred member firms on its website ranging from boutiques with under ten employees to megafirms like Ogilvy, Porter Novelli and Weber Shandwick.

The executive officers joining Kraus are Andy Polansky (Weber Shandwick) as Chair-Elect, Jens Bang (Cone) as Treasurer, Otis Wragg (Wragg & Casas Public Relations) as secretary, and Kotcher as immediate past chair.

The Council also elected new board members Christine Barney (rbb Public Relations), Donna Imperato (Cohn & Wolfe), Jennifer Prosek (CJP Communications), Dave Senay (Fleishman-Hillard), Laura Tomasetti (360 Public Relations) and Melissa Waggener Zorkin (Waggener Edstrom Worldwide).

Waggener Hires Pact CEO Jean-Louis Robadey

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Waggener Edstrom (WE) added Jean-Louis Robadey to its Social Innovation practice this week, as vice president in the Washington, DC office. He will report to EVP and practice lead Matt Reid.

According to the release, Robadey will serve as senior agency contact for corporate, government and NGO clients on initiatives that support communities and drive economic growth in the developing world.

WE has huge clients including Microsoft, T-Mobile, BMC, and Chevron though doesn’t list which ones work with the Social Innovation practice. An article on the WE site by CEO Melissa Waggener Zorkin explains that the challenge of social innovation for corporations is to follow a sustainable, responsible approach and mindset, or, the “confluence of good business and ‘doing good’.”

Robadey was the CEO of Pact, a $150 million non-profit Pact which develops programs for the developing world in the areas of community health, microfinance, good governance and women’s empowerment. Prior to Pact, he worked at Unisys and Arthur Anderson. He speaks English, French and Italian.