A press kit premiering the movie “Dumbo,” a stereograph, Edward L. Bernays’ wooden in-box and
history-making PR artifacts and books were all part of PRSA Maryland’s live and customized virtual tour of The Museum of Public Relations in New York. The tour included a focus on famous Maryland PR execs, as well as women in PR, to mark Women’s History Month in March.
Tour leader and museum founder Shelley Spector reminded attendees of an important Maryland chapter milestone with national significance. The Maryland chapter is known for having one of the first female chapter leaders in the nation and doing so a year ahead of National.
That leader was Virginia H. Pie, APR (later Virginia Pie-Pistolesi, following her marriage to Domenic “Tony” Pistolesi).
Chapter members were saddened to be reminded that Virginia passed away from cancer in 1991 at age 57 at her home in Hedgesville, W. Va.
Pronounced PEE-AY, Virginia Pie-Pistolesi’s obituary in The Sun noted that she was a special events and promotions officer at Red Cross headquarters in Washington, D.C. and had been the organization’s national director of public affairs from 1981 until 1988. She also served as community relations director for the Baltimore chapter of the Red Cross from 1964 to 1973. The Washington Post noted she also worked for the Red Cross in El Paso, Alexandria and Richmond.
She was Maryland chapter president in 1972 during her time at the local Red Cross, marking the first year the chapter was recognized as “Maryland.” From 1961 to 1971 the chapter was known as the Baltimore chapter of PRSA.
The former Virginia Hughes was a native of Charlottesville, Va., and a graduate of the University of North Carolina where she earned a degree in journalism. She won a Silver Anvil award among other honors.