September 8, 2020


JULY 8, 2020 


June 4, 2020

Dear PRSA-WF members:

We are in the midst of a national bereavement, a demand for redress, and a need to demonstrate, no matter the potential risk to our safety and health. Some of us are walking streets in solidarity and some of us are volunteering, donating, and sharing our thoughts in ways ranging from social media to discussions with family, friends, and colleagues.

We also know that our work as professional communicators makes a difference.  We seek to listen, analyze, evaluate, draw on our best critical thinking, and bring understanding and interchange. We know effective communications matters, whether it is on a large societal scale or one to one. And we see the harm that can result when the need for communications is not recognized.

PRSA’s 2020 Chair, T. Garland Stansell, APR, has voiced his feelings about what is happening this way:

“As communicators, those pledged to ethically and responsibly promote healthy dialogue and the free flow of information that can help inform attitudes, opinions and beliefs, I believe we should be the voices of compassion, the voices of civility, the voices of reason, and the earnest voices of challenge to help our employers, clients, communities, friends and families engage in productive, honest and empathetic conversation.

We can use our individual and collective voices to stand for truth, to speak out in our communities and workplaces to help cultivate a culture of diversity and inclusion that recognizes and celebrates the inherent value in each person regardless of age, race, religion and sexual identity.


We also stand in support of our First Amendment, and the safety and protection of our journalist colleagues who are on the front lines doing their job. We can also use our position to engage others in dialogue that supports the free flow of information in a transparent, honest manner that advocates for accountability in our society.

Communicators cannot single-handedly change the tide in our country, but we can be a conduit to lead others to acknowledge the importance of using their voices in constructive ways — ways that help to move us through these troubling times and beyond to become better individually and as a society.”

This is heartfelt, and we believe that one way to move forward can be found in the new PRSA Diversity & Inclusion Strategic Plan for 2020 – 2023.  This three-year plan is the result of a research initiative based on qualitative and quantitative data collection, including interviews, focus groups and a survey, under the leadership of PRSA’s Diversity & Inclusion Committee.

We encourage you to download and review it,  and we look forward to working with you, our chapter members, as well as your colleagues in the District and the Society, to realize its promise for our profession and, through us, for the world in which we live. If there is to be an awakening, professional communicators must be a part of it.

Stay well,

Stephanie M. Harwood, APR
2020 PRSA-WF Chapter President

















February 2012 Newsletter Print

President's Report

New Year, New (and More) Opportunities

“Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose,” Paul Oestreicher writes in the introduction to his book, Camelot, Inc., Leadership and Management Insights from King Arthur and the Round Table.  “The more things change, the more they stay the same.” 

We’re delighted to have Paul as our first presenter of the New Year, and there’s still time to register and join us at noon, February 9, at the Greenwich Hyatt.  He goes on to quote Winston Churchill, who provides a compelling adage to begin 2012: “The further backward you look, the further forward you see.  And, so it is with the stories of King Arthur. “

Looking further forward, beyond the sea swell of short term change we’re bobbing on is a perfect theme for the communication profession in 2012  -- whether it’s spotting the next opportunity, making the community better, or coming up with an innovative way to look at our own back yard to make more of it.  On this latter point, we’ve been supporting an effort – creating a creative corridor in Connecticut -- kicked off by our colleagues at the FCPRA, the Fairfield Business Council (led by Chris Bruhl, one of our December speakers) and Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development last month.

What is this initiative all about? As 83 of us discussed at the launch meeting, it’s about changing perceptions and the future of our profession in this region.  As our colleagues wrote: When people think "marketing services providers," Fairfield County doesn't normally spring to mind. Corporations end up exporting their marketing services dollars to New York City and elsewhere, while commuters from our towns troop into these regions, following the dollars.
It's time to change that.
Higher employment in creative disciplines brings benefits to local economies and communities. What can we do to create and retain more public relations, marketing, advertising and communication jobs in Connecticut? How do we entice Connecticut marketers to harness local creative firepower and spend more money in our corner of the state?

Great question!  But first, before Westchester colleagues inundate me with emails, I think there’s room for Westchester to develop a parallel effort, since Westchester-based corporations could and should be leveraging their own creative corridor.  We’ll be happy to support this, as well.

In some respects the case for a creative corridor is similar to the adage “the shoemaker’s children don’t have shoes.”  Communicators are competitive by nature.  But as one of the panelists in January pointed out, there is plenty of money being spent on marketing and communications by neighboring corporations, plenty to go around for all of us IF, these corporations know they have exceptionally creative talent conveniently located in their own back yards.

My point: together we can help the business community see – and hire -- the incredible talent available to them to grow their businesses, help create and innovate products and services, and bring more jobs to grow the local economies.  After all, isn’t that what we do for a living?  Communicate, market, create?  So, we’ll continue to do what we can to foster this effort as it evolves.  Next is to develop a creative campaign to get the word out, and as Marian Salzman, FCPRA President wrote to follow up on the program launch, “Each person copied here is a communicator … share your perspective with colleagues, neighbors, friends, the media, and more.”  So let’s get the word out, together.  For more information, see “The Case for a Creative Corridor.  And to share your thoughts, email me at [email protected]

PRSA Westchester/Fairfield is dedicated to professional development.  Our (talented, creative and innovative) Programs Co-chairs have an interesting and informative line-up of speakers and topics for 2012. 

  • In March at the Greenwich Hyatt, Digital media expert Ephraim Cohen will share insights into “Building Communities for your brand using on- and off-line PR.”
  • CommCore Consulting CEO Andy Gilman speaks in April on “The pluses and minuses of reputation management in today’s hyper-connected world.” 
  • Our May program answers the question, “Is there life after Facebook – Trends in alternative media.”
  • Our June program is the ever-popular and highly informative “Meet the Media” panel discussion. 
  • In July, we plan to co-sponsor a summer networking event to continue the creative corridor dialog with our professional colleagues from neighboring associations. 
  • And, there’s a lot more to engage you planned for the balance of 2012, so stay tuned.  

Your Chapter has a talented Board of Directors enabling our professional development efforts.  It includes: Bill Brucker, Family Centers, Programs Co-chair and host of our not-for-profit peer group; Colleen Braithwaite, consultant and web manager; Mark Bruce, Hi-Tech PR; Maddy Byer, events consultant and Treasurer; Claude, Consulting Plus and Membership committee chair; Mary Jane Guffey, Vice President, Communications, Topstone Advisers, LLC, Programs Co-Chair and Secretary; Stephanie Harwood, consultant and PRSA National ethics liaison; Don Levin, Programs Co-Chair, host, Sole Practitioner peer Group and Chair, Revenue Development; Dr. Robert Petrausch, Department Chair, Mass Communications, Iona College, Iona PRSSA Chapter liaison and Corporate Peer Group host; and Wendy Van Parys, President of Wendy Van Parys Marketing Communications, past Chapter president, and nominating committee chair.  Also helping at the committee level is Viveca Woods, VMW Communications principal and Publicity Chair.

 As you can see, we’ve got a very strong team to help further the profession in our two counties.

 Thank you for your interest and support.  Let’s have a great year together!


Ken Koprowski

 PRSA Westchester/Fairfield Chapter President

Principal, Koprowski Communications LLC

Adjunct Professor of Communications

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