If the demographics of the Northern Arizona University PRSSA chapter meeting I (Scott, that is) recently attended are an indication, women will continue to enter the PR industry in an overwhelming majority while men will shy away from it.
There were about 30 students at the meeting and the only males in the room were Jerry Thull, the chapter’s faculty advisor, and me, the chapter’s professional advisor.
The board of directors of Phoenix chapter of the PRSA is about the same: 15 women and three men.
HMA Public Relations is no different, as I am the only male on the team.
At the international level, there is slightly different mix. The executive committee of the Public Relations Global Network is comprised of seven men and four women.
Conor Horgan of Cullen Communications in Dublin, Ireland, conducted an extensive study on the issue as part of his MBA a couple years ago. His research found that PR agencies employ 70 percent women. (Clients are 60 percent male).
He states, “many practitioners hold an optimistic view that as public relations matures and gains more acceptance as an indispensable business function, it will naturally attract males. Unfortunately, this optimism isn’t borne out by demographic trends.”
I can certainly attest to that.