How I define Public Relations:
We help businesses and organizations tell their story to the people that need to know it.
Hat you most identify with:
A conductor’s hat I take my role as leader and mentor to our team very seriously, making sure that we deliver creative and quality programs and results to our clients. I am responsible for making sure we “stay on track” at all times.
Who knew that when I organized a picket line in front of my elementary school in support of a sixth-grade graduation dance that resulted in my first television interview, it would turn out to be a career-beginning move?
As a student at Arizona State University, I was enrolled in business classes and was not a very happy camper. My creativity and writing skills were not being tested. It wasn’t until one tearful conversation with my parents that the idea of a career in journalism/public relations became a reality.
Immediately upon transferring to the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism, I found my passion. Upon graduation I did an internship with The Pointe Hilton Resorts where I honed my writing and event-planning skills. For five seasons I served as the assistant director of public relations for the Fiesta Bowl, where I was responsible for public relations and promotions for the bowl’s 60-event festival.
I met Scott while I was working at the Bowl and when I started my own marketing communications and event management firm, he was one of the first people to hire me as a consultant. When the opportunity came to join his firm full-time, I jumped at the chance – that was 1993 and I’ve been here ever since.
Working with our account team, I oversee a wide variety of strategic marketing communications programs including media relations, digital communications, special event management, community relations, issues management, crisis communications and marketing promotions. We have clients in both the private and public sectors, including such industries as healthcare, banking and financial services, education, legal, real estate, government affairs and tribal affairs, as well as not-for-profit organizations.
Active in the community, I am a past president of the Phoenix Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America and a member and past board member of the Public Relations Society of America’s Counselors Academy. I have received awards from the PRSA, including the Patrick Jackson Award for Distinguished Service to PRSA and the Phoenix chapter’s highest honor, the Percy Award, the Arizona Festivals and Events Association, International Association of Business Communicators and the City of Phoenix Mayor’s Commission on Disability Affairs.
I am a past member of the board of directors for the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale and Florence Crittenton Services of Arizona and was a founding board member of the Arizona Festivals and Events Association and served as its president for two years. I am a Class XVII graduate and past president of Scottsdale Leadership and received its Hodges Alumni Achievement Award in 2010.
I was the recipient of the Junior League’s Valley Impact Award, recognizing my volunteer efforts in the community, was a finalist for the Golden Heart of Business Award, presented by Arizona Woman magazine, and was the 2010 YWCA of Metropolitan Phoenix Philanthropy Leader of the Year. I was named one of Phoenix’s Top 25 Dynamic Women in Business by the Phoenix Business Journal.
I serve as our agency’s primary media and digital communications trainer and am often called upon to present to a wide variety of business and civic organizations on such topics as media relations, social media and digital communications strategies, issues/crisis communications and special events management.
I have a master’s degree in mass communications and a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism/public relations from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism at Arizona State University. I have been an adjunct faculty member at the Center for the Advancement of Small Business and the Lodestar Center for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Innovation and am currently teaching an online public relations course at the School of Community Resources and Development at Arizona State University.
My little dog, Hildy, and I reside in Scottsdale. I am originally from St. Paul, Minnesota.