March 2018 Print

Letter from the President


Let the official countdown to Spring Break begin! Whether you’re headed to the beach or planning a long weekend at home, we’ve selected ten industry books to help you recharge.

Read more from our 2018 chapter President Dr. Kelly Bruhn, APR here.  


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Member Profile

With the attention span of most being only eight seconds, when you encapsulate your reader—that’s the effect of good storytelling.

Instead of only discussing the information, Jenny Phan, APR, Corporate Communications at Shive-Hattery, strives to communicate with the client’s audience by painting a picture rather than discussing the information. Read about more about Jenny and her career in communication here.

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PRIME Awards

Can you think of a bank that has kept the same name and has been locally owned for 100 years? One that might come to mind—Bankers Trust. Last year the bank launched a multimedia marketing and advertising campaign, Celebrating "100 Years of Trust," to showcase their service to employees, customers and communities.

Read more about how their campaign earned a 2017 PRIME award here.



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3 Takeaways

Learn How To Make Quality Videos with Chris Snider

Thanks for joining us for our February Luncheon! If you were not able to join us, here are three takeways for capturing and producing video for your brand. 

1. Plan out your videos ahead of time in order to get the best end result.

2. Make sure your video has these three elements: sympathetic character, obstacle/tension, solution to the obstacle.

3. Incorporate characteristics like action, emotion, a quotable person, or a process that can be illustrated.

Event Recap: Social Event on Jan. 30 at Performance Marketing

Submitted by member Belle Du Chene

During the past two years, Central Iowa’s PRSA membership grew by around 50 new PR and communications professionals from all over the state. As part of the professional development 2018 Strategic Plan to create programming for networking and with the desire to put out a friendly welcome wagon for the chapter’s newest members, the committee held a new-member social event hosted and sponsored by Performance Marketing on Jan. 30.

“We're all about having fun and making connections at Performance Marketing, so we were more than happy to host the PRSA networking event,” said Katelin Brown, Communications, Performance Marketing and PRSA Program Chair Elect. “It's always great to get to know more people in the industry. I hope these events continue to grow in the future.” 

The programming team wishes to thank Performance Marketing for their hospitality and employees’ attendance in welcoming various new members from around the state, PRSA Central Iowa board members and members of the programming committee. 


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PRSA Luncheon

Crisis communications in today's media landscape

When the unthinkable happens and a reporter is suddenly on the scene wanting an interview or shooting video, anxiety and panic can take over. Learn how to successfully interact with today’s reporters, how social media changes the landscape and how to manage risk through effective and transparent communication.

This program will include case studies, discussion and video examples to prepare participants to communicate more effectively – especially when faced with a crisis.

Date: Thursday, April 19th from 11 AM to 12:30 PM

Iowa Soybean Association headquarters
1255 SW Prairie Trail Pkwy
Ankeny, IA 50023



About Elieen: Eileen Wixted is a nationally recognized strategic communications and crisis management veteran with core competencies in the financial services, nuclear energy, agribusiness, and healthcare industries. As a strategist and communication trainer, she has helped clients navigate brand damaging issues as well as coaching them to face hostile media interviews and government investigations.



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Mentor Program

Central Iowa PRSA is partnering with the Drake University PRSSA chapter to establish a mentorship program.

Starting this semester, we’re looking for local public relations professionals interested in mentoring 2-3 Drake PRSSA students.

Mentors would be expected to do the following:

  • Schedule and lead a kick-off meeting with mentees
  • Be willing to keep up an email correspondence with the individual mentees
  • Hold at least one group meeting with mentees per semester (spring and fall)


The students are interested in partnering with mentors who have experience in agency, non-profit, sports, and entertainment public relations. Mentors will be paired with mentees who are interested in their area of experience.

If you have experience in these industries and you’re interested in becoming a mentor, please contact the Drake PRSSA liaisons:



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Upcoming Events

Professional Development Breakfast: Reputation Management in the Digital Age at Lessing-Flynn

Join us for our first Friday FYI Breakfast on Reputation Management in the Digital Age and an agency tour of Lessing-Flynn. Beverages and Light Breakfast will be included.

Cost: FREE

Who: All PRSA Members + Guests

Where: Lessing-Flynn, 220 SE 6th Street, Suite 210, Des Moines, Iowa 50309

When:  Friday, March 23, 7:30 AM to 9:00 AM, includes an optional tour of Lessing-Flynn

Why: Get to know your fellow PRSA members and discuss a topic that is top of mind with PR pros.  We will share best practices and give you items you can take away and implement in your day-to-day work. 

RSVP: Please register online for our event or RSVP to Katie Stanley at


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Member Updates

Milestone Anniversaries
In each issue of this newsletter, we recognize PRSA Central Iowa Chapter members who are celebrating milestone PRSA anniversaries. Congratulations to the following individuals who will celebrate milestone anniversaries this month:
One Year
  • Debbie McClung, Two Rivers Marketing
  • Allison McNeal, Two Rivers Marketing
Fifteen Years
  • Jeffrey Dean Brand, University of Northern Iowa
Thirty-Five Years
  • John F. McCarroll, APR, Iowa State University


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Save The Date

2018 OctoPRfest on October 18!

Save the date for OctoPRfest, Iowa’s Communications Conference on October 18! The event will be held in downtown Des Moines at Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield. You won’t want to miss Andy Gerlt, Senior Director of Global Innovation Communications for Visa. More to come on his presentation next month.

Also new in 2018, are a few new PRIME award categories. Based on last year’s feedback, the PRIME Awards committee has created two distinct types of award entries: campaigns and tactics. As a result, the following new entry categories will be available in 2018:


  • Marketing Business to Business
  • Marketing Consumer Products
  • Reputations/Brand Management



  • Advertorial
  • Blog
  • Brochure
  • Direct Mail
  • Public Service Announcements 


Additional information regarding all the award categories, the timeline for submission and the cost will be available on the Central Iowa PRSA website as soon as details are finalized.

If you have any questions or would like to be a sponsor for OctoPRfest, please contact Teresa Roof, APR at  

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Volunteer Opportunity

Was one of your new year’s resolutions to volunteer more? Central Iowa PRSA has an opportunity for you!

The professional development/social committee is looking for volunteers to work alongside the programming committee to create additional professional development/networking events for all members.

If you would like more information or are interested in volunteering, please contact Kelly Bruhn, APR, at

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Tips and Tricks

Internships are available to students to train and gain experience with various nonprofit organizations or corporations. Although you are there to learn, when is it appropriate to plug in your two-cents?

Being a college intern or young professional in the workplace can be intimidating. Read these tips on how you can share your ideas without burning bridges here

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From the PRSA Board

Read about Anthony D'Angelo, APR, Fellow PRSA, chair reflect on his dissatisfaction with diversity and inclusion within the public relations industry here. 


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The PRSA Central Iowa Job Bank has a list of many current positions available in the Des Moines metro. If your organization is interested in posting a position, rates are $25 for member postings and $50 for non-member postings. Members can also post unlimited jobs for an annual cost of $100. For posting your job or getting Job Bank questions answered, contact Erin Campbell.

Below are two new job postings:

Social Media Coordinator/Specialist - Two Rivers Marketing 

PR & Content Specialist - Two Rivers Marketing 

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Meeting Minutes

To access minutes, you must be logged in to the Central Iowa PRSA site. From there, go to the "Member Area" on the right side, then use the left-hand navigation to access "Board Meeting Minutes." Scroll down the page to find the most recent meeting minutes. The website will prompt you to download the minutes.

This is a great way to stay informed of chapter happenings.

View available minutes



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Connect With Us

For timely news and updates all month, connect with us via our social media channels:


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