Stories by Chris Seymour


Digital Leader of the Year Carmen Collins Led Cisco’s Talent Brand to New Heights

January 12th, 2018 by

In 2017, Carmen Collins became the manager of Cisco’s talent brand social media team globally, a year after creating one of the industry’s top employee advocacy programs. Launched as a pilot in the spring of 2016 and a full-fledged program in the summer of 2016, the WeAreCisco Snapchat channel was Collins’ brainchild. In the last 12 months, the program has doubled unique daily views while flashing completion rates of 60% to 70% completion rates are way above industry average research.

HP, intern of the year, delaney lanker

PR Intern of the Year Lanker Led HP to Media Pitching Victory

January 9th, 2018 by

Intern of the Year Delaney Lanker was tasked with drafting HP’s pitches, researching media targets and conducting outreach to lifestyle, travel and parenting magazines. In less than a month, she placed HP product Sprocket with Travel & Leisure, which has a print audience of 6.3 million. A natural leader, Lanker also shows HP’s other interns—many of whom have never had a “real” job before—best practices for taking notes in meetings, writing blog posts and asking for feedback.

Crisis Manager of the Year Molly Levinson Deftly Battled Fake News

January 4th, 2018 by

Molly Levinson is a known problem-solver and in 2017, the problem she tackled was fake news.

Levinson led the crisis management and communications efforts for the matter widely known as “Pizzagate”—months of sustained online attacks and perpetuation of conspiracy theories aimed primarily toward a Washington, D.C. restaurant, Comet Ping Pong—which spread virally online.

Student of the Year Gildersleeve Defines Excellence at Drake University

December 29th, 2017 by

A dual-degree Marketing and Public Relations senior, Maddy Gildersleeve has excelled inside the classroom and out. Just within the past year, she has garnered experience as a digital marketing intern for Meredith Corp., a social media and marketing strategist for Power Life Yoga and an account management intern for FCB Chicago, where she played critical roles coordinating project timelines and conducting digital media research.

Paypal, Franz Paasche, PR Professional of the Year

Corporate/Nonprofit PR Professional of the Year Paasche Drove PayPal’s Hurricane Relief Efforts

December 28th, 2017 by

With Franz Paasche leading the way, PayPal’s communications function has helped shift perception of the company from its legacy reputation as a “button on a website” for online payments to an innovative financial platform that collaborates across the industry to provide secure commerce experiences wherever users are actively engaged. And after recent tragedies, including Hurricane Harvey, Paasche has acted as a key advisor in the development and launch of a disaster relief campaign.

Marketers of the Year Callahan and DeRouen Defined Their Brands as Industry Leaders

December 27th, 2017 by

Marketer of the Year Dawn Callahan is an award-winning marketing visionary who is part of the leadership team that took Boingo Wireless from a small startup to a global Wi-Fi leader. Meanwhile, Callahan’s co-winner Luke DeRouen has been responsible for solidifying Arby’s brand communications strategy over the past three years—a strategy that has resulted in the brand delivering exceptional programming and increased sales results.

Samsung Electronics America, Ashley Wimberly, Media Relations Professional of the Year

Media Relations Professional of the Year Wimberly Steadied Samsung During Note7 Crisis

December 26th, 2017 by

Shortly after Media Relations Professional of the Year Wimberly led a launch of the Galaxy Note7, the world turned its attention to incidents of the Note7 battery catching fire. Far from losing her cool, Wimberly immediately orchestrated a full and transparent response to a crisis without precedent. Not only did her campaign help recover 98 percent of the recalled devices, it also set the stage for future successful product launches.

Passion and Compassion Drive H+K’s Herchert to Agency Account Manager of the Year

December 22nd, 2017 by

Lauren Herchert has counseled H+K’s largest clients throughout her nine-year tenure with the agency, establishing a reputation as a compassionate and inspiring team leader, leading internal coaching and training programs and building H+K’s client roster with significant new business wins.

christopher penn, vp shift communications

Measurement Expert of the Year Penn Unifies PR Metrics at SCALE

December 20th, 2017 by

Historically, content marketers and communicators have been frustrated by separate, disconnected content marketing analytics. There are different systems to measure SEO, social sharing, engagement and quality of content. Enter Christopher Penn, who created SCALE on behalf of SHIFT Communications to solve this problem. SCALE, short for Shared Content And Link Evaluation, is a cloud-based software package designed to ingest URL-based marketing data from multiple, disparate data sources, unify the data and, leveraging best-in-class analytics engines, provide actionable insights from data.

Account Director of Year Kelley’s Specialty—Raising Clients From Media Obscurity

December 18th, 2017 by

Brian Kelley’s passion for PR and outside-the-box approach have contributed to a noteworthy year for him and Sage Communications. Just one of his special talents: taking clients from media obscurity to being featured on national broadcast and print coverage.