An interesting ‘Escape’ for Edelman PR Exec…

It comes with the PR territory: You land a new account that, try as you might, just doesn't get you fired up. But sometimes communication pros get the opportunity to meld their
passions with PR. It happened to Brian Franklin, a senior account executive in the Washington, D.C., office of Edelman. Earlier this year Franklin -- who worked in communications
for the National Association of People with AIDS prior to joining Edelman - spent nine days in South Africa to learn what the U.S. could do to more effectively help with AIDS
prevention there. Edelman provided Franklin with $1,000 toward the trip and gave him an extra week of vacation for his travels. During his visit he huddled with a variety of
government officials, leaders of NGOs and community organizations, industry leaders, U.S. representatives and ordinary families coping with the effects of AIDS. Franklin says
there's ample opportunity for strategic thinking as it relates to the AIDS epidemic in South Africa. "From a PR point of view, companies can receive good media attention to guide
and help with government officials and industry to combat the problem," he says. "It's not just the pharmaceuticals, but all companies doing business in South Africa. It's not
just about the money." Franklin, who will be returning to Africa in January, has connected with several organizations in the fight against AIDS since returning to the States,
including Africa Bridge, which holds community forums/focus groups in Africa on battling AIDS. Contact: Brian Franklin, 202.201.3875.