Springtime has sprung, and so have the dedicated members of our chapter whose actions have helped establish creative programming and networking events. In addition to what has already recently been publicized on the chapter’s website, the board, committee members and others have been working hard to further expand this year’s list of innovative events. Details on future “Coffee with” and special workshops will be posted once all details have been finalized. The 2016 PRSA Maryland Conference is set for June 14, and part of the agenda will include a keynote presentation from T.J. Smith, director of Media Relations, Baltimore Police Department. T.J. will be providing a special crisis communications presentation based mostly on the Freddie Gray case. Chapter members are asked to help spread the work regarding conference sponsorship packages.
Our chapter goal discussed at this year’s first board meeting was to increase engagement opportunities with the local Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) chapters. I am pleased to report that considerable effort has recently been undertaken to further connect young public relations professionals with our organization. Most noteworthy, based on discussions with PRSSA faculty advisors at Loyola University Maryland and the University of Maryland, College Park, creative partnership opportunities are now being explored. For example, PRSA MD members have been invited to meet with PRSSA Loyola University Maryland student leaders to obtain their insights on future partnership/networking options. In addition, Loyola’s PRSSA faculty advisor has extended an invitation for any of our members to conduct a roundtable discussion in early May on strategies and tactics for successful public relations. Anyone interested in becoming a part of the Loyola PRSSA outreach and engagement should contact me at email@example.com for further details.
The University of Maryland PRSSA faculty advisor is also excited about helping provide opportunities for our members to connect with PRSSA students. Options being discussed include arranging for some of our members to speak as guest lecturers with selected communication classes, as well as becoming a part of the Grunig lecture program. Maryland PRSSA is also hoping our chapter will consider providing roundtable discussions and serve as mentors or event judges. Anyone interested in serving as our chapter’s representative with this PRSSA organization is also invited to contact me for further details.
In other exciting news, Clapp Communications has taken on the leadership role for serving as this year’s “Best in Maryland” (BIM) committee chair. The support of Barbara Clapp, president and CEO, and her staff (Dana Metzger, senior account executive, Timmy Ruppersberger, business and community relations director, and Lauren Moyer, social media strategist) has been remarkable and set the stage for what will be one of the chapter’s premier events in 2016. Anyone interested in serving on this year’s BIM committee or sharing event planning ideas is welcome to contact me.
Yes, spring has arrived, and with it the freshness of creative chapter connection opportunities for all members. Clearly, there is no better time than now for PSRA members to seize the moment and enjoy the many benefits and involvement opportunities that come from chapter membership.
Daniel R. Dunne, APR
PRSA Maryland Chapter