2013 PR People to Watch: Rachel Johnson

Rachel Johnson, Communications Director, National Safe Boating Council

As communications director of the National Safe Boating Council (NSBC), Rachel Johnson has advanced the North American Safe Boating Campaign (Wear It!) to a level unseen in the organization’s 55-year history through grassroots, media relations and social media programs. Johnson worked to get all 50 states and U.S. territories onboard with the campaign, and she has garnered international interest and participation from countries including Australia, Brazil, Finland, Japan, New Zealand, Mexico and the UK, and strengthened the partnership with Canada.

The campaign’s “Ready, Set, Wear It!” Life Jacket World Record Day received ASAE’s 2013 Summit Award for making “America and the world a better place to live.” Working with Paul Werth Associates, Johnson grew the Wear It! campaign’s media relations program, resulting in the highest number of media placements in 2012. And the 2013 campaign exceeded last year’s achievement.

Johnson participated in 50 media interviews about the campaign and boating safety last summer. She has leveraged social media to reach recreational boaters, the general public and media about the importance of boating safety. Through her initiative, the NSBC and Wear It! campaign are visible on Facebook, Twitter,YouTube, and other key social media sites. In August 2013, Johnson was selected out of 65 applicants to be the next Executive Director of the National Safe Boating Council. In 2012, Johnson joined the Center for Association Leadership (ASAE), and in June 2012, became a Certified Association Executive (CAE), a credential that is held by less than 5% of all association professionals.