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10153847_10152753195603349_1643563042937709037_nFor more than a decade, Abbie had that “All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten” poster hanging in her office. So, it made sense to title this very special post “All I Really Need to Know I learned from Abbie.”

Why, you ask?

Unless you are living under a rock, you know that this week marks our Abbie’s big 50th birthday.

In honor of “#AbbieFest50,” our team got the idea to do a little homage to her by reaching out to friends, family and colleagues to find out what they’ve learned from Abbie – a huge proponent over the years of being a mentor, teacher and student.

So, here goes! And, if you missed the chance to provide what you have learned from Abbie, feel free to leave yours in the comments.

What I Learned From Abbie:

That I don't have to be professional and formal all the time (This is a work in progress).

-Rachel Brockway

I learned that building long-lasting relationships is the key to success! Abbie and I have known one another professionally and personally for more than 25 years and her enthusiasm, passion and knowledge for what she does is completely infectious!

-Ilana Lowery

Abbie is the epitome of a true leader and selfless community volunteer. She taught me to always make time to give back to our community by serving in leadership roles and being active in local organizations that make a difference. Whether she is offering her time and expertise with Scottsdale Leadership, Public Relations Society of America or one of other the many organizations she’s involved in, Abbie is a stand out among her peers and colleagues. I am fortunate to have known Abbie for a number of years and aspire to make a difference in so many people’s lives as she has already done and continues to do so.

-Tatum Louma

I learned from her and am continually reminded by her that your initial instincts are usually right.

-Scott Hanson

I have learned from Abbie that in the cookies of life, sisters are the chocolate chips. There is no better friend than a sister. And, there is no better sister than you.

-Sandy Fink

I’ve learned a ton, but I would say the most important thing is how to be thoughtful. She’s the most thoughtful person I know. She sees something she thinks you will like and she sends it to you, unexpectedly. I mean, it’s HER birthday and she hands me stationery that has bicycles on the front. I LOVE that, but who does that? She’s a very good friend.

-Gini Dietrich

I’ve learned from Abbie that you really don’t need to know what you are talking about, just need to sound like you know what you are talking about.

-Barton Deane Richardson alias Rick

You can't learn much from a 10 page fax that you can from a Face to Face meeting.

-Eric Schechter

If you want something, like a certain change in position or title, show you can do it by just doing it. Let the promotion follow the action.

-Jenny Brooks

Abbie taught me how really HOT and very NICE Donny Osmond really is and that it is possible to actually befriend your lifelong crush...so she taught loyalty and perseverance, and the power of love.

-Carol Bailin

Share your knowledge with others.  It multiplies and comes back to you in wonderful ways.

-Susan de Queljoe

The thing I learned from Abbie is confidence. No matter the situation or the circumstance, Abbie’s confidence always shines through. Whether she is leading the PRSA Phoenix chapter or leading a client event, Abbie is always on. That is the one thing I appreciate about her and always strive to achieve. Happy 50th Abbie!

-Marina Renneke

It’s always worth making the effort to see your out-of-town PRSA Counselors Academy friends whenever you possibly can!

-Ken Jacobs

To make everyone feel important.  Abbie is so charming!  She listens to you and responds so you know she actually did hear you and is interested in what you have to say.  So many times we get caught up in what WE have to say, but forget that we gain so much more by just listening and responding most of the time.  Abbie does that so well and it’s something I constantly remind myself to do!

-Becky Lynn Ottinger

Abbie, Abbie, Abbie…taught me several important things, including: when in doubt, always order a second bottle of wine; always wear pants when going to business meeting; think twice before ordering champagne and chocolate for a client celebration; and friends and family always come first.

-Mark Stanton

How to operate a darned good company.

-Aaron Blank

That Headquarters Cafe in Maricopa has some of the best Mexican food in the greater Phoenix area.

-Kendra Riley

Not only have I learned everything PR from Abbie, I learned how to be a killer book tour coordinator from my very first days of working with her and HMA. And I believe I learned how to bake dog treats from her as well when I toured with the owners of Three Dog Bakery. We do what we have to do for the good of the client.

-Laura Capello

When I first started my business, I attended an Ahwatukee Chamber networking event and Abbie was the guest speaker. She shared tips on how to get the media's attention. She said when she wanted to get a hold of a morning TV producer; she'd wake up at the crack of dawn and call/email the producers because she knew that was a great way to get their attention. I've used this advice many times over the years and it works. THANKS Abbie for all you've done to help the local business community and PR Pros.

-Charlotte Shaff

Abbie has taught me that it is ok to ask questions (even the most random ones!). It is encouraging to have a mentor that is always there to listen…and answer the most random questions that pop into my head.

-Kelly Potts

I’ve learned a lot from Abbie both professionally and personally. She’s taught me that making goals are important, but it’s how we work to reach those goals that’s even more important. She’s a great role model as she always makes good decisions and does the right thing. I think that’s a great quality for a leader to have as it motivates others to choose the right.”

-Shelby Ray

How to put a brand – in our case, the Arizona Commission for the Deaf and the Hard of Hearing – on the map!

-Sherri Collins

Abbie is an inspiration in both business and life. She’s mastered that fine art of how to be the utmost professional who everyone respects, while also being an all-around fun person. She’s such an inspiration as an advocate for the community and people around her, and I’ve always admired how she can take charge of a situation. And then, of course, there’s cruising—I learned how to share my photos and enthusiasm for time sailing on the sea!

-Michelle Glicksman

I was anxious to take on a large role in PRSA. Abbie informed me that I'm surrounded by good people who wouldn't let me fail - that the opportunity would stretch me and I'd grow my leadership skills. Looking back, I didn't realize how meaningful that conversation would prove to be true. Happy 50th birthday, Abbie!

-Kari Mather

I have learned the importance of surrounding myself with great people that are smarter than me that constantly push me to be better, that chocolate is the secret to get through any day and to always laugh and be carefree, it keeps you young at heart.

-Whitney Liem

When people say think outside the box – with Abbie there isn’t even a box – great thinker and great innovator.

-Steve Davidson

She is a very successful businesswoman, but she has taught us the importance of family always comes first.

-Mom and Dad

Work is just business—it’s always there. The other stuff in life is what really matters—family, friends and fun!  Anything is possible; just ask for directions or guidance from someone who’s done it before. How to hit on hot firemen while rescuing a dog on the side of the road. How to tell the person you are dating is going to be your life partner—he wears matching shirts to a staff holiday party where he knows no one, as a 3rd date. The best way to order the BBQ chicken salad from Duke’s.

-Jo Pullen

With the right amount of imagination, passion and determination, anything is possible.

-Ryan Narramore

What I learned from Abbie is a deeper love and appreciation for my animal family members and how to stay on a Grind back-less bar stool after LOTS of wine.

-Traci Thompson

I have learned from Abbie that red wine will get you drunk!

-Allen Thompson

The power of kindness and respect in public relations can never be underestimated. Abbie always knows when to be soft with her approaches and when to bold – and when a human touch can change a life. That is such a rare and powerful quality that I only hope to learn.

-Virginia Anderson

Abbie was one of the first PR Pros that I looked up to when I started in the industry. She is resilient and a true leader when it comes to women in business. She showed me that loving what you do and the hard work that you put into it is key when it comes to being a frontrunner in the PR industry.  I’m sure if you asked any female pro in town who to go to for advice; their answer would most likely be “What Would Abbie Do?”

-Ashley Oakes Scott

I learned the true meaning of a rising tide lifts all boats. Abbie is a major part of the heart and soul of the Phoenix (and beyond) PR scene and has always been one of the most approachable people I’ve ever met. She also loves cheese curds and dogs. That is a bonus in my book.

-Ken Reinstein

Even hard core, tell it like it is, strong, loud women like me can be excellent leaders. She is an inspiration to me and I want to be just like her when I grow up.

-Bridget Daly

That often silence is golden, but talk ain’t exactly cheap – make your voice heard, especially in other’s times of need – communicate! That there is no one right way to do anything. That cruising rules. That wine rules. That loyalty in business still means something. That relationships matter – people matter. That is you are going to dive into something – be it a new business opportunity, volunteer opportunity or relationship – really dive in. Be present. Never shy away from leading when called upon. That giving back matters. That family matters. That everyone’s life matters.

-Alison Bailin Batz

To always stay true to what YOU believe in. Especially from a professional standpoint, the reason I stay true to marketing and publicizing stories I believe in is because of Abbie. This translates to all areas of life and Abbie has always been an advocate for that. Love you Abbie!

-Andrea Omer

I have learned so much from Abbie that it is hard to pinpoint one thing. I always appreciated her desire to collaborate and truly work as a team. She also taught me how to problem solve and execute a darn good PR plan. She is truly amazing and my start in PR is due to her giving me a chance and believing in me. Further, she gave me the tools I needed in my toolbox to succeed as well as professional development support that I will always be thankful for. I will always value her advice and guidance. She is the best of the best.

-Jennifer Kaplan Stein

Making friends is better than making contacts. Instead of just establishing business relationships, Abbie showed me to make peers your true friends.

-Amy Fleishans McConnell

I learned that Sun Devils and Wildcats truly can be great friends and work well together!  Abbie also taught me how to #BearDown and get things done in PR land.  Oh, and that winning (or losing) the rivalry game can only be made better at the Chuckbox!

-Mike Kintner

Abbie taught me that relationships are everything from the moment she took a chance on me as an intern. She taught me the ropes of client management (and basically everything as a newbie PR practitioner); the importance of being an involved citizen; how to be a badass businesslady with a heart; and she showed me the simple joy of I-buy-you-fly Rubio's fish tacos.

-Beth Wilkinson

Alison Bailin
Alison Bailin
Senior Account Executive Alison has a lot to say…about pretty much everything...all the time. From the current state of public relations to the social media impact on Shark Week to crisis communications in the sports world, Alison’s blogs are focused on “amusing through her PR musings,” and then some. Check out Alison's full bio

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