November Newsletter Print

Letter from the President

November is a time when we reflect on our many blessings. Unfortunately, it’s been all too easy in 2020 to complain about what we can’t do or what we’ve missed because of COVID-19. I’m as much to blame for this trend. I’d like to use my column this month to express my gratitude for our Chapter and our members.

I’m thankful for our organization. We are fortunate to have a strong PRSA Chapter. Past leaders paved the way for our success. They built a firm foundation that has weathered the storms. Our Chapter will survive this virus pandemic. We have professional leaders in place to navigate the Chapter into 2021 and beyond.

Katelin Brown and her committee succeed last month at offering our first virtual OctoPRfest. We had good participation and the survey results are overwhelmingly positive. Our sponsors stepped up and continued to support us financially this year. We couldn’t have done it without them.

As we finish 2020, let’s be sure to count our blessings. Take an opportunity this month to thank the special people in your life — at work and at home. Don’t overlook your spouse. 

Stay healthy and take care.

Ryan R. Johnson, APR

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Upcoming Events

Setting the Record Straight on Five Misconceptions About Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
Nov. 19, 2020
12 – 1 p.m.

Misconceptions about diversity, equity and inclusion relate to talent pipeline issues, employee referrals, assumptions about future generations, definitions of common terms, language and much more. Claudia Schabel of Shabel Solutions will join PRSA Central Iowa for a workshop to set the record straight.

Join us for this important learning opportunity. This event is free to anyone who would like to attend. Find more information and register here.

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Chapter News

Annually, PRSA Central Iowa offers three scholarships to help students and professionals in their pursuit of public relations education and professional development. This year, we were pleased to present the following awards:

Hillary Carlson won the $500 Advanced Degree Scholarship. Hillary is a graduate student at Drake University pursuing a Master of Arts degree in Communication

Mandy McWherter was awarded the 2020 Professional Development Scholarship. The Professional Development Scholarship is available for a PRSA member to further his or her career in many different ways. Mandy plans to use this $500 scholarship to pursue the Accreditation in Public Relations (APR) designation.

Greta Haas, a PRSSA student at Drake University, won the $1,500 Ferne Bonomi and Dr. Henry Milam Undergraduate Scholarship. Greta joined PRSSA in her first year of college, and served as fundraising chair in her sophomore year, Vice President during her junior year and is currently the President. On her application, Greta said, “Since joining PRSSA, my involvement has provided me with such valuable skills that have made me a better public relations student and professional including client work and networking. The leadership experience I have gained has been valuable not only to my involvement in the organization but to my personal growth as well.” Greta has also had several marketing and public relations internships for organizations including Igor, Drake Athletics, Certintell Telehealth and Thrivent Financial. She also served as a legislative clerk for the Iowa House of Representatives. Her ability to make a difference is what she values most for her future career. 

Congratulations to our 2020 award winners!

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Ethics Column

What does a year full of unprecedented events have to do with public relations? According to Kathy Krafka Harkema, APR, it calls us to focus on ethics in our profession in an unprecedented way. Read more of her ethics update here.

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Member Updates

Welcome, New Members! 

Clint Cole, Two Rivers Marketing

Member Anniversaries

Congratulations to all our members celebrating anniversaries this month, especially those celebrating the following milestones!

Thirty Years 
Elizabeth A. Stowater, Iowa State Bank 

One Year 
Michael Thomas DuPre, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network 
Derek Zarn, City of Urbandale 

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Job Bank

There are great public relations jobs available right now. See the opportunities from our job board below.  

Marketing Specialist - Eastern Iowa
HomeServices of Iowa — (Iowa Realty)

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Upcoming FREE Webinars

As a member of PRSA, you have access to FREE webinars each month. Here are the available webinars for November 2020. 

PRSA Storytellers: Taking a Position for Ethical Practice of Public Relations
Nov. 9, 2020 
3 – 4 p.m.

Hear from representatives of the PRSA Board of Ethics and Professional Standards about their newest program to help PR pros apply the PRSA Code of Ethics to familiar situations.  

Getting It Right: Diversity and Inclusion in LGBTQ and Latinx Communications
Nov. 12, 2020
2 – 3 p.m. 

Learn more about these communities, representation, language and the importance of diversity and inclusion in this webinar from skilled professionals from the PRSA Diversity and Inclusion Committee and GLAAD.

Creating an Adaptable Communications Strategy for 2021
Nov. 17, 2020 
2 – 3 p.m.

Over this year, communications professionals have had to pivot more than ever in their careers. And that probably isn’t going away any time soon. Let this webinar help you plan for the future with adaptability in mind. 

Liven Up Your PR Writing
Nov. 19, 2020 
2 – 3 p.m.

Help your writing come alive with the help of Michael Smart. Learn more about the grammar rules you can leave behind and how to measure the effectiveness of your writing.

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Connect With Us

Right now, digital platforms are the best place to connect with PRSA Central Iowa and other members. Find us on Facebook and Twitter.

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

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Membership Information

Your professional development is more important than ever. Central Iowa PRSA has the resources you need — and now is a great time to join.

When you join National as a Regular member ($260 annual dues), new and returning members receive a triple bonus. Get a free one-year Chapter membership, a free one-year Section membership, and a free initiation fee or free reinstatement fee.

You could save up to $165. Use promo code TRIPLEPLAY20. Refer to for details.

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