2012 PR People Awards: Account Director of the Year

Winner: Deborah Brown

Partner/Managing Director, Peppercomm

Stellar day-to-day account management abilities for major household names across multiple industries are table stakes for a well-tenured public relations executive. At New York-based Peppercomm, Deborah Brown is at the top of her game in the way she plays her professional hand in the service of clients, but it’s helping change some of the fundamentals of what’s really the essence of the industry—telling a story—that uniquely distinguishes her achievements this year.

On the client side, Brown applies her management capabilities to companies ranging from Whirlpool Corporate to Wolters Kluwer Corporate Legal Services to Nikon Instruments. She brings more than 20 years of experience and insights to these projects, working with the likes of Sony Electronics, a state-of-the-art technology in Reebok athletic shoes, one of the first nutraceuticals to undergo FDA testing, numerous technology start-ups, and more.

On the storytelling side, in 2011 Brown helped formalize Peppercomm's new Comedy Experience offering. Unique in the public relations world, the practice blends comedic storytelling strategies and techniques with the serious communication needs of major organizations to help clients break down barriers, improve workplace performance and engagement, refine executives' storytelling abilities, and build stronger relationships with employees and prospects. Brown’s recently launched blog, The Stand-Up Executive, explores how some forward-thinking executives are using comedy and humor to differentiate themselves. —Scott Van Camp

Honorable Mentions:

Parris Bowe, Senior Vice President, Marina Maher Communications

Jessica Carlson, Account Direct, Twist Marketing

Christine Marra, Account Director, MWW

Diana Sfera, Vice President, Marina Maher Communications

Jody Sunna, Vice President, Havas PR

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