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Monday, July 31, 2006


Jill Lewis, a former senior communications associate with Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life in Washington, D.C., has joined Maccabee Group Public Relations in Minneapolis as its newest senior account executive.

At Hillel, Lewis wrote and edited news about Jewish student life at more than 500 colleges worldwide, and worked with print, radio, TV and Internet outlets across the United States. Lewis also brings to Maccabee Group her experience working as PR associate with the Bennett Media Group in Alexandria, Virginia, and as a public relations Intern with the Wisconsin Department of Tourism.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Women in Business 2006

Yesterday I attended the Minneapolis / St. Paul Business Journal's Women in Business 2006 event. At the event, Emcees Jeff Paslot and Robyne Robinson from FOX 9, introduced 51 of Minnesota's top women to watch and industry leaders.

The keynote speaker and one of this year's winners was Julie Gilbert Vice president, WoLF and entrepreneurial initiatives, Best Buy Co.

Winners of particular interest to the PR community include Rose McKinney, President, Risdall McKinney Public Relations and Dory Anderson Senior partner and chair, Band Marketing practice group at Carmichael Lynch Spong

Get a list of all of this year's winners by clicking here.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Job - Public Relations Specialist/Writer- Kroll Ontrack


Fleming & Company, Pharmaceuticals; Amplifon USA; Honor Roll Online; and Excello have all chosen Maccabee Group to provide public relations services. The Minneapolis PR agency’s newest clients are:
  • Amplifon USA, the world leader in hearing health care, including the Miracle Ear and Sonus brands, with global headquarters in Milan and U.S. operations located in Plymouth, Minnesota.

  • Fleming & Company, Pharmaceuticals, the St. Louis, Missouri-based manufacturer of prescription and over-the-counter drugs including OCEAN Premium Saline Nasal Spray and MAGONATE Magnesium Supplement.

  • Honor Roll Online, a Chicago-based interactive college recruitment tool for Fortune 1000 recruitment of candidates from small, superior colleges and universities.

  • , a Minneapolis-based workplace behavioral consulting firm working with law firms, corporations and small businesses on human resources, management and executive coaching issues.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Carmichael Lynch Spong Adds Six New Employees to its Minneapolis Office

Carmichael Lynch Spong (CLS) announced today that it has added six new employees. The firm has hired Alan Newbold as counselor, Lisa Steinmann as proofreader, Mickey Erickson as executive assistant and Ben Hande as media relations specialist. Brittini Nelemans and Jillian Beauman also have joined as summer interns.

Alan Newbold brings seven years of public relations counsel and media strategy work to his new position at CLS. Prior to joining the firm, Newbold worked for Ketchum Public Relations as a planning and business development specialist, online learning consultant and, most recently, as account supervisor in the firm’s New York Consumer Technology and Consumer Lifestyle groups. At CLS, Newbold will work on the firm’s Maytag, TRANE and Select Comfort accounts. A recent Twin Cities transplant by way of Manhattan, his roots are in the Wasatch Mountains of Utah.

Lisa Steinmann brings 15 years of experience as a teacher to her new position of proofreader. She also works as a freelance journalist, writing regularly for the Park Bugle newspaper in St. Paul. Steinmann is a native of the Twin Cities and has attended Macalester College, the University of Minnesota, and St. Thomas University. She holds a bachelor’s of arts in French literature and linguistics and a bachelor’s of science in education.

Mickey Erickson joins CLS as executive assistant, supporting the firm’s managing partner, Doug Spong. Previously, she was a commercial lender for Wells Fargo. Erickson holds a bachelor’s in business administration from the University of Notre Dame and a master’s in business administration from St. Thomas University in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Prior to joining CLS, Ben Hande spent a year with the Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx professional basketball teams as a public relations intern. In his new position, Hande is responsible for creating media lists for new product launches, mailings and media relations pitching. Hande earned a bachelor’s degree in English from St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota.

Brittini Nelemans joins CLS from her previous position as a freelance PR practitioner at General Mills. Nelemans will work closely with account teams for the firm’s Jack Link’s Beef Jerky and Martek accounts. Nelemans, a 2006 graduate of the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota, holds a bachelor’s of arts in journalism with a concentration in public relations and a minor in Spanish.

Prior to joining the firm, Jillian Beauman spent a year living in southern France, serving as a public relations consultant for international publishing house Decision News Media. In her new position, Beauman will work on the firm’s Jenn-Air and Rosetta Stone accounts. Beauman graduated in 2005 from Quinnipiac University in Hamden, Connecticut with a bachelor’s of arts in public relations and a minor in legal studies.

What's the purpose of the Minnesota News Council?

If you have been watching the news or reading the local papers the last few days you have no doubt seen this story about Mike Hatch and his complaint to the Minnesota News Council. According to my understanding of the situation, Hatch a candidate for Minnesota Governor, has complained to the about questions a Star Tribune reporter asked in an e-mail, not a published piece.

My understanding was that the Minnesota News Council doesn't get involved in something until it is reported on, but the Minnesota News Council's own Web site is unclear about the purpose of the organization stating only that:
The News Council's membership consists of and a hearing chairperson. Twelve of the members are from the public at large, and 12 are from the media. Members do not represent the news outlets or organizations they work for; they participate as independent professionals.

Members serve a three-year term, which can be renewed once. . Members are chosen through an application and interview process by sitting members on a membership committee.
My question is, should the Minnesota New Council get involved? Do we want the Minnesota News Council looking in to reporting techniques? Isn't journalism at its root about asking tough questions? What are your thoughts on this unusual situation? Comment below.


Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Aug. 4 Fresh Thinking Friday: Keeping the Passion in PR

Keeping the Passion in PR: Strategic, Fresh Ideas Presented by Tom Jollie, Senior Vice President, Padilla Speer Beardsley

How do you keep the passion in your craft and career? How do you come up with the next big idea that'll wow your boss or thrill your client?

The next Fresh Thinking Fridays will focus on answering these questions.

To guide our discussion, Tom Jollie, senior vice president, Padilla Speer Beardsley - a 25+ year veteran of the industry - will share his thoughts about how you can stay at the top of your game, think creatively and strategically, and avoid complacency. Tom leads PSB's consumer public relations group and has worked with companies such as General Electric, 3M, Cub Foods, General Mills, developing and implementing award-winning campaigns.

Metropolitan Ballroom
Golden Valley, MN 55416

7:30 - 8:00 a.m. registration and breakfast 8:00 - 9:30 a.m. program

Cost: $20 members, $25 nonmembers

Register: Call the Minnesota PRSA office at or .

Monday, July 24, 2006

Job - Padilla Speer Beardsley - Interactive Developer

Job - Padilla Speer Beardsley - Account Supervisor

Thursday, July 20, 2006


The Twin Cities office of Weber Shandwick today announced new hires in its Web relations and financial services groups.

Gerardo Obieta was hired as a Web relations designer. Obieta recently moved to the United States from Chihuahua, Mexico, where he ran his own design studio for four years. Obieta’s work experience includes brand identity, magazines, posters, brochures, illustration, Web design, Flash animations, point-of-purchase displays and compact disc covers. Obieta received a bachelor’s degree in graphic design from Interamerican University in Mexico.

Annika Wilson has also joined the Web relations group as a project manager. Wilson most recently worked at Colle+McVoy, where she assisted with the planning and development of various advertising campaigns and direct marketing materials. Wilson received her bachelor’s degree in communication studies from Gustavus Adolphus College and has completed additional coursework at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design.

Jenny Kephart has joined the financial services group as a senior account executive. Kephart previously worked at Risdall McKinney Public Relations, where she handled local and national media relations. Kephart received her Bachelor of Science degree in speech from Northwestern University.

Job - Swarmcast - Freelance Media Relations Consultant

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

CLS Promotes Negrin to Counselor

Carmichael Lynch Spong (CLS) has promoted Keith Negrin from senior associate to counselor. Negrin joined CLS in 2004 as an associate and provides public relations counsel for clients such as A.G. Edwards, Clorox, and MasterBrand.

Negrin brings to CLS his experience as an attorney in the nonprofit sector. He founded and operated Nonprofit Solutions Inc., where he provided legal and management counsel to nonprofit organizations. Previously, he was an associate at Nonprofit Service Group in Arlington, Va. Before beginning his career as a lawyer, Negrin worked on the public relations staff of the National Football Foundation and College Football Hall of Fame, as well as serving as a public relations intern in the senate office of Carol Moseley-Braun.

“Keith has consistently proven to be a valuable asset to our firm and its clients,” says Doug Spong, managing partner at CLS. “His background as a lawyer brings an unique perspective to our clients and our industry.”

Negrin earned a Juris Doctorate degree from The George Washington University Law School and a bachelor’s degree in English from Princeton University.

Job - Olson Seeking AE for PR Department

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Minnesota PRSA Presents Another 1st

"Go The Distance" is the theme of yet another first for Minnesota PRSA this year as they host the 2006 Midwest District Conference September 21, 2006. This all-day event will offer something for everone at all professional levels.

In addition to participating in informative sessions, meet living . Read more about and find out more about the 2006 Midwest District Conference here.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Quick Question from Nicole Garrison-Sprenger of Business Journal

Are any of you aware of any political candidates (in Minnesota) spending more of their resources on nontraditional campaign advertising this year than they are on TV and radio? By nontraditional I mean Internet, podcasts or blogs.

Please let me know today ASAP.



Job - Target - Sr. Manager, Corporate Multi-Media

Wednesday, July 12, 2006


Elizabeth Murray has joined Mackenzie, Minneapolis, as office manager, from an internship at The Style Lab, Minneapolis. She is a recent graduate of the University of Minnesota, with a major in retail marketing and a minor in advertising.

“Elizabeth appears to be completely unflappable, despite our best attempts,” says Andrew Mackenzie, president and chief executive officer, Mackenzie. “As we grow, Mackenzie needs even more top notch organization to keep us together, and Elizabeth really will provide that glue.”

Job - Russell Herder hiring Account Planner

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Couric To Visit Minnesota

For news junkies like myself I get annoyed by "journalists" like Katie Couric. I am sure that I will offend some of you but I can't stand watching her. That said, she is in the middle of a great publicity campaign traveling to six different cities across the nation to hype her new role as CBS News anchor.

, "during her six-city tour this week, Couric will talk with the people about a subject that is very close to her heart, the awareness of cancer screening. Couric lost her husband, Jay Monahan, to colon cancer in 1998. Couric will also participate in a charity fundraiser in each city she visits. In Denver, it will be a luncheon benefiting the Rocky Mountain Cancer Center Foundation."

From WCCO:
Couric will give the keynote address at a fundraising luncheon to benefit Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Upper Midwest.

"Ronald McDonald House of the Twin Cities provides a supportive home away from home for families facing critical pediatric illness," said Couric. "Cancer has touched me personally with the loss of my husband to colon cancer and my sister to pancreatic cancer. I have made a commitment to do whatever I can to increase awareness and help cancer patients and their families during one of life's most challenging times."
Now you're asking, why don't I like someone who is doing such great work fighting cancer? It's not that I don't like her tremendously good work, it just that to me it seems opportunistic. This raises an interesting question, is it okay to do something good even if it is for personal gain? What do you think?


Monday, July 10, 2006

1st Annual Alphabet Bash

Please join Minnesota's IABC, PRSA, AMA and as they host the 1st Annual Alphabet Bash on Thursday, August 17 from 6 pm -9 pm at Trocaderos Night Club, 107 Third Ave N. in the Minneapolis Warehouse District.

The Alphabet Bash is a “can’t miss” networking event celebrating Minnesota marketing and communications professionals! Make business connections, develop long-lasting relationships, explore other business development opportunities – or just come for a good time.

Pre-registered before August 10, 2006
$25.00 for members of IABC, PRSA, AMA and Ad Fed
$35.00 for non-members
$15.00 for students
(cost will go up $10.00 if registering after August 10)

**Price includes drinks, heavy appetizers and a chance to win fabulous door prizes, including two pairs of Sun Country Airline tickets to anywhere in the continental U.S. that Sun Country flies

To register or for additional information please visit .

LaBreche Murray Public Relations Hires Boyd

Minneapolis-based public relations firm LaBreche Murray announces the addition of Laura Boyd as principal.

Boyd will head up LaBreche Murray’s aggressive new business initiative and provide customer service and counsel to existing and future clients. She will also offer strategic direction and leadership, serving on the agency’s management committee.

Boyd comes to LaBreche Murray from Froehling Anderson CPA firm where she served as director of marketing and business development and implemented strategic marketing tactics as well as targeted business development plans. Boyd previously served as the chief marketing officer at LarsonAllen accounting firm, and project manager for Lutheran Brotherhood (now Thrivent) and Custom Research Inc.

“Laura is a savvy business woman who is connected to, and cares about, the Twin Cities community,” said Beth LaBreche, president of LaBreche Murray Public Relations. “These qualities will help her drive LaBreche Murray to stronger and more productive client relationships.”

Boyd received her master’s degree in organizational leadership from the College of St. Catherine, a mini-master’s degree in financial management from the University of St. Thomas, and her bachelor’s degree in psychology from Cornell College.

For Laura Boyd, community involvement is a part of her daily life. She serves on the advisory board for Klein Bank in Chanhassen, is a member of the board of directors for Minnesota Viking Matt Birk’s HIKE Foundation, and serves as the treasurer on the St. Michael’s Lutheran Church Parish council.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Tips for Interviewing

Teaching engineers or computer scientists how to interview can be a difficult, but the value of having technically savy people that can speak in human terms is vital in today's hi-tech world. Actually, learning to speak to the media in a human voice can be helpful no matter what line of business your in.

Stephanie Moncada of Weber Shandwick in Minneapolis, brought these useful interviewing tips to my attention.

Interview tips:

  1. Everything you say is on the record.
  2. Speak in human terms, don’t use too much jargon.
  3. Be clear and concise. Don’t use 10 words when you can say it in five.
  4. Always tie your answers back to your key messages.
  5. Use your key messages.
  6. If you cannot comment, explain why.
  7. If you don’t know the answer, say so. If possible, offer to track down the answer for the reporter.
  8. An interview does not have the natural flow of a conversation. Once you’ve answered the question stop talking. The reporter will ask you the next question when he or she is ready.
Thanks for the useful tips Steph!

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

RAA grabs 16 new accounts since beginning of 2006

Risdall Advertising Agency (RAA) is continuing its success as the 23rd largest independent agency in the country by wrapping up the second quarter of the year with 16 new business wins.

"We build business for clients, so naturally we should build business for ourselves," says John Risdall, chairman of RAA. "Luckily, we are good at both."

The sixteen accounts represent an additional $13,000,000 in capitalized billings, which should bring 2006 billings to over $150 million. RAA provides the following for each client:
  • Advanced Bio-Surfaces (collateral work)
  • Alert Nutrition (branding)
  • Alliance Management (branding, web development)
  • Direct-A Marketing Services Company (branding, web development)
  • Employers Association Peoria (agency of record)
  • Imation (web development)
  • Masters Forum (marketing communications)
  • Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation (event planning and
  • Naterra Land (search engine optimization)
  • Opportunity Partners Inc. (business consulting and web
  • P.B. Loco (web development)
  • NCS Pearson (web development)
  • Rauenhorst Recruiting Company (agency of record, web
  • Solbrekk IT (marketing planning, web development)
  • Troll Dental (advertising, creative development)
  • U.S. Toy Company (interactive layout design, web development)
On top of those additions, two new restaurants, Nicollet Island Inn and Dixie's, have joined Twin Cities Originals (TCO), a client that has been with RAA since 2003.
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