50 Game-Changers of PR for 2017

Perhaps the most potent symbol of PR's evolution in recent years is the seeming scarcity of "public relations" and "PR" in job titles. The growth of PR itself is to blame. The term "PR" hardly encompasses what brand communicators are now asked to do by their organizations or clients. If you're charged with building brand awareness and you're not placing ads in print publications—I saw one of those just last week—or working with an ad agency on a TV campaign, you're doing some form of PR, whether you're aware of it or not.

The PR pro of 2000 had to master media relations, crisis communications, internal communications, media training and change management. The brand communicator of 2017 very likely must master those same areas, as well as social media, data and analytics, visual storytelling, influencer marketing, SEO, content marketing and even advertising. This expansion of PR has been driven by technology, of course, but also by the communicators themselves, each of whom must be a jack of all trades and master of all.

PR News recently asked its community to tell us who should be listed among the top game-changers of PR in the last few years—individuals who have been accelerating the expansion and growth of brand communication. Here is our list of 50 Game-Changers of PR, culled from our community's submissions.

—Steve Goldstein, editorial director, PR News @SGoldsteinAI

50 Game-Changers of PR for 2017

Jim Abernathy

Abernathy MacGregor

Kara Alaimo

Hofstra University

Lubomir Alamanov

SiteMedia Consultancy

Maria Benvenuti

Benvenuti Public Relations

Nikki Carlson

ChicExecs PR & Branding, Chic Blvd. Inc.

Bobbie Carlton

Innovation Nights and Innovation Women, Carlton PR & Marketing

Serge Dumont

Omnicom Group Inc.

Judy Evola

Walled Lake Schools

Erin Flior

Cystic Fibrosis Foundation

Patricia Green

The Patricia Green Group

John Guilfoil

John Guilfoil Public Relations LLC

Tahoma Guiry

K9s For Warriors

Bruce Hennes

Hennes Communications

Kathleen Henson

Henson Consulting

Ahmad Itani

Cicero & Bernay

Anastasia Khoo

Conservation International

Cooper Munroe

The Motherhood Inc.

Karen Raskopf

Dunkin’ Brands

Alyson Roy

AMP3 Public Relations

Steven Shapiro

Communications Strategy Group

Morris Silver

Finn Partners/M. Silver

Elizabeth Sosnow

Bliss Integrated Communication

Xurxo Torres

Torres y Carrera

Cindy Villafranca

Southwest Airlines

Lars Voedisch

PRecious Communications

Vanessa Wakeman

The Wakeman Agency

Heather Whaling

Geben Communication