May 2019 Print

Letter from the President

Goals and the race to the finish line

We're five months into the year. What have you accomplished so far? You may have a couple a big wins under your belt or you may be asking yourself exactly what have I accomplished. Either way, it’s okay! Pull out your goals and take time to reflect. Do you need to reset your expectations?

Read more about how spring can spark inspiration for renewal and growth within PRSA Central Iowa by reading this month's Letter from President Teresa Roof, APR.

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OctoPRfest News

Mike Wagner to speak at OctoPRfest

The 2019 OctoPRfest planning committee is excited to announce another confirmed speaker: Mike Wagner. Mike is President of White Rabbit, a business consultancy he founded in 2004. He's a skilled communicator, facilitator and business consultant.

Mike serves leadership teams in the creation of competitive advantage and growth strategies. His approach is a unique combination of leadership development and organizational culture, informed by the tools and process of “design thinking." Mike's been speaking professionally for over 30 years and started his career as a pastor and church planter before entering the business world. He engages audiences with fresh ideas and tells compelling stories to inspire them to keep creating. Mike’s mission is to release the wisdom and capacity of each organization he serves.

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Member Profile

Kelly Visser, consumer engagement manager for Iowa Soybean Association

Kelly Visser is the consumer engagement manager for Iowa Soybean Association. In this role, she leads the Iowa Food & Family Project – an initiative that brings together farmers and consumers for a welcoming and relevant conversation about modern agriculture. She develops the initiative’s public relations strategy which includes campaigns, partnerships, content and events.

Read Kelly's story in this month's member profile.

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News from National PRSA

Five seconds may not seem like a lot of time to get your point across. However, if you follow this five-step guide and learn the real estate of your email pitch, then you’ll earn a much higher response rate than the journalists your targeting.

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Ethics Column

10 ways to help build safety into your communications

International Code Council designates May as Building Safety Month because it’s the time of year when construction kicks into high gear. In May, ICC encourages those involved in construction to pay extra attention to promoting safe working environments and building practices.

May is also a good time for PR pros to ask ourselves if we’re creating an environment that makes it safe to communicate as we construct and execute on our communications plans.

What are some ways to help create and maintain a safe, open, communications environment? Here are ten ideas to get the conversation started.

Read more in this month's ethics column submitted by Kathy Krafka-Harkema, APR, ethics chair.

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Upcoming Events

Quarterly Luncheon

Join us for our quarterly luncheon on May 16, from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., featuring Terry Rich, international speaker and author.

Your day’s going great … and then you get the unexpected call that a fraud may have occurred. Your decisions, messaging and direction could affect jobs, your business and personal friendships. As most companies focus on external hacking and fraud, Terry Rich, past Iowa Lottery CEO, will discuss an internal vendor fraud case to explore how established checks and balances, and a little luck, helped crack the largest lottery fraud in US history.

Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden
909 Robert D. Ray Drive
Des Moines, IA 50309

Added event for our members in eastern Iowa: Eastern Iowa PR professionals are invited to network over lunch while you hear virtually from Terry Rich. For more information on the eastern Iowa event click here.

Ticket prices for satelite location
  • $20.00 Member ticket
  • $20.00 Non-member ticket
  • $0.00 Student ticket


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Program Recap

Friday FYI

April 12 at Lessing Flynn

Kevin Waetke, vice president, strategic communications at the National Pork Board shared a deep dive on communications management in today's world.

Walking through an example for pork, he explained how the  consumer landscape is changing, and as a result National Pork Board is shifting its strategy in reaching their audience.

One tactic they've utilized is influencer relationships, which drove 433,000 engagements and 80.5 million minutes of watch time in 2018.

Beyond case-studies, Kevin shared how he has shaped his communications department and helped his team interface with leadership at the organization. 

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Sponsor Spotlight

Our second quarter sponsor is Red Noise 6, a premiere motion media studio in the Midwest. Red Noise 6 is your partner to execute your creative vision by assisting with project management, video production, post-production, animation, distribution, webcasting and more.

Read more about our second quarter sponsor: Red Noise 6. 

PRSA of Central Iowa offers a quarterly sponsorship program, providing the opportunity for one company or organization to sponsor all programming within a quarter. Learn more.

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Member News

Member Milestones

We recognize PRSA Central Iowa Chapter members who are celebrating their membership in PRSA this month. Congratulations to the following members!

May Anniversaries

Five Years
  • Courtney Shaw, APR, Greater Des Moines Partnership

Ten Years
  • Jennifer T. Phan, APR, Shive-Hattery, Inc.

Twenty Years
  • Ann Foster Thelen, Thelen Public Relations

Fifty Years
  • Ferne G. Bonomi, APR, Fellow PRSA, Bonomi & Company

Welcome, New Members

Let's give a warm welcome to our new chapter members

  • Christina Anderson: Senior Marketing Communication Specalist, Unity Point Health, St. Luke's

  • Victor Ayara: Director of Public Relations, Kulture Bridge Concepts

  • Spencer Shireman: Marketing Director, R&R Realty Group

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Job Bank

New career listings have been added to the PRSA Central Iowa Chapter job bank. Does this sound like something that interests you, or if someone you know would be a good fit?


If you're looking for a qualified communications professional to fill a position, make sure to utilize the PRSA Central Iowa Job Bank! Learn more on our website.

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Connect With Us

Help amplify our message on social media by sharing our posts to your personal accounts to spread our message.

Are you looking for advice, a sounding board or resource? Join our LinkedIn group. To request membership, log into your LinkedIn account and click on the “Ask to Join” button.

We're also on Facebook and Twitter.

Engage today!

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