What PR Pros Are Thankful For

Happy Thanksgiving in letter type

In honor of the Thanksgiving holiday, PRNEWS reached out to industry professionals this year, asking what about PR they were thankful for. We received several dozen responses, each showing pride in the profession, from dedicated communicators. Read on, and maybe you'll even see a colleague or two. Some quotes edited for brevity.

PR Basics

Taylor Pearson, Director, Trident DMG: “I’m thankful for reporters who put contact information in their Twitter bios.”

Alex Rosenwald, Senior Director of Communications, The Hill: "I’m incredibly grateful to LinkedIn, which has been a really helpful platform for my day to day. And not just for promoting the great journalism at The Hill, but for cultivating and building relationships with key players in the media and PR spaces. "

The Seven Letter team:

  • "Good weather on the day of PR event."

  • "No edits to my press release."

  • "Replies to a well-crafted, well-placed pitch."

  • "No breaking news on the day of an announcement."

  • A client saying “we don’t see the value of an op-ed.”

Making a Difference

Leah Ponichtera, Vice President at M&C Saatchi Sport & Entertainment North America: “As PR professionals, we have the unique opportunity to create partnerships and initiatives that put more good into the world. I’m thankful this year to have worked alongside our client partners and with a variety of small businesses and nonprofit organizations on projects designed to support and raise funds for our military veterans, our nation’s agricultural community, and those impacted by Maui’s wildfires, in particular.”

Brett Bruen, President, Global Situation Room: "I'm grateful for clients who are committed to doing the right thing, no matter how difficult it may seem. It continues to inspire confidence that this work can help us find a path forward in these really challenging times."

Libbey Baumgarten, Head of Growth, JBC: “This and every holiday season, we're grateful for the opportunity to work with and learn from those mission-focused creative teams that are pushing the envelope to drive tangible, lasting change. theSkimm's #ShowUsYourLeave movement is the perfect example: By amplifying the issues and challenges parents and caregivers face, theSkimm is also holding employers accountable for providing the resources, accommodations and a supportive environment for working mothers.“

An Evolving Industry

Kait Sheppard, Account Director, Taylor: "I’m thankful PR no longer means just pitching—it’s an integrated practice involving creative, strategy, social media, paid tactics, influencer relations and crisis comms. It’s more than tracking impressions but understanding sentiment and what really evokes consumer action and drives meaningful cultural conversations. Those of us that started as traditional PR practitioners have grown into marketing multi-hyphenates to adapt and keep up with the evolution of our more fragmented communication world."

Mary Gendron, Senior Vice President-Managing Director, Mower: "Having spent most of my career in public relations, I am grateful that PR has achieved true gravitas as a critical component to smart, strategic integrated marketing campaigns. Its ability to elevate and amplify a brand’s key messages are its superpowers. Wearing the mantle of third party endorsement nurtures a brand’s ability to make meaningful connections with its constituents. It’s what we at Mower call 'making fierce friends.'”

Meredith Eaton, Managing Director, North America, Red Lorry Yellow Lorry: "I am so thankful for all the amazing tech innovations coming to market. From advancements in 3D printing and space exploration, to AI and cybersecurity—it’s giving us some incredibly exciting campaigns to work on. What a time to be alive!"

Alex Slater, Founder and CEO, CLYDE: "I'm grateful for the acceleration of generative artificial intelligence, which I believe is already enhancing—not replacing—the value our industry brings."

Industry-Specific Results

Fern Lazar, Managing Partner, Global Health Practice Leader, Finn Partners: "I’m thankful to be part of an industry community centered around sustaining and saving people’s lives, and continually harnessing the potential of health innovation to offer hope to counter despair and disease. Communication is always part of the cure."

Melissa Zuckerman, Senior Vice President, JPA Health: “Coming out of the lessons learned for health communications during the COVID-19 pandemic, I’m thankful that our industry continues to be committed to meeting people where they are, and with the messages from the trusted messengers people deserve to hear from.”

Professional Life

Abigail Allen, PR Assistant Account Coordinator, Sage Communications: "As a novice in the field, a supportive agency is essential to growth. This year, I am grateful for a position with a company that provides guidance, opportunity, and space for growth."

Eitan Goldstein, Communications Manager, Propel PR: "I’m thankful for being able to work at a company where I’m making a real change in the PR industry, as well as being able to work with people who are so supportive and positive towards one another.

Aiden Ryan, Senior Vice President, Head of U.S. Litigation and Legal Affairs and Interim Head of NYC Crisis, Edelman: "I’m grateful for my incredible colleagues on the New York City Crisis team who warmly welcomed me into this new role and the city. They inspire me every day."

John Marino, President, Marino: “Having kicked off this year celebrating our agency’s 30th anniversary, I’m feeling extra thankful for not only our talented and diverse team, but also the strong client relationships and partnerships we’ve forged over the last three decades that have led to long-term success and continued collaboration. Our clients depend on us as an extension of their teams to get the job done, and we are grateful for the opportunity to tell their stories and elevate their brands in new and exciting ways.”

Yann Hatchuel, Head of Marketing, BerlinRosen: "2023 has been undeniably challenging for the communications industry. I'm so thankful to be part of a team that has embraced these adversities as catalysts for creativity and innovation. This year, we have seen significant growth and expansion, including the acquisitions of prominent agencies like M18, Inkhouse, and Message Lab, the launch of Brightmode, a recruitment agency committed to finding the best talent in communications and marketing for companies of all sizes, and even being recognized as the Digital Firm of the Year by PRNEWS. I couldn't be prouder to work with such extraordinary experts to tell the stories of the biggest brands of today."

Linda Zebian, Senior Director of Communications and Community, Muck Rack: "My team. Together, we're able to accomplish so much. I am so grateful for their commitment to our work, creative minds and partnership."

Curtis Sparrer, Principal and Co-Founder, Bospar PR: "We’re thankful for being able to work for an all-virtual agency, so we don’t have to commute and can spend all our work time delivering value to Bospar clients."


Nikki Lopez, SVP, BODEN Agency: “I'm thankful for our big, yet close-knit community of PR and communication practitioners that support, inspire and celebrate each other year-round. From current and former colleagues and clients, to new friends I've met at industry events and speaking engagements, I'm thankful for our unique ability to foster long-term relationships that uplift our industry and most importantly each other.”

John Guilfoil, Principal, John Guilfoil Public Relations: "I'm thankful for our trade associations! Between AI and employee benefits, crisis management, to pitching, it's groups like PRNEWS who help us come together, to get better at our craft, and to network and compare notes with each other. The hours of time I spent talking to my colleagues at PRNEWS events this year has been invaluable during one of the most uncertain years in memory." (Aw, shucks, John!)

Helen McCarthy, Director at Trident DMG: “This year, I am grateful for my professional network who encourage me to be a better communicator, and help me deliver the strongest work for my clients. The people you surround yourself with matter!”

Amanda Proscia, COO, Founder, Lightspeed PR: "This year I’m thankful for my many colleagues and others in public relations who are helping to demystify our industry. Your support of my book, "PR Confidential," demonstrates a great commitment to working together in order to achieve it."

Nicole Schuman is senior editor for PRNEWS. She is thankful for all of her PRNEWS readers. Follow her @buffalogal