Blog Culture/Agency Life

San Francisco Networking: PRSA Year in Review

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John VernonSenior Business Development Manager
PRSA San Francisco

In 2018, I was proud to serve as PRSA-SF’s Chapter President – it was a fun, memorable and impactful! As I reflect upon the year, I’m reminded of so many highlights, including:

Jumping on timely topics and hot industries.

From examining the latest trends in banking, AI and enterprise tech, to exploring the role of ethics in politics and emerging trends in communications, our programs covered the spectrum. I’m grateful to all of our partners – PRSA Silicon Valley, AMA San Francisco, and more – for teaming up with us on many of these events, and for helping us provide such rich, valuable programming to the Bay Area’s PR community.

Trying new things.

In the spring, we enjoyed partnering with the Oakland A’s for a sports PR and journalism panel and evening at the ballgame – the first event of its kind in years. We also held a Personality Types program on leveraging your uniqueness for workplace success and effective PR, encouraging folks to get mic’d up and share their stories at PianoFight, and more.

PRSA San Francisco

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Continuing our Chapter’s commitment to Diversity & Inclusion.

In celebration of Women’s History Month, we launched PRSA-SF’s inaugural PR Woman of the Year, recognizing Kim Bardakian for the positive impact her diversity and inclusion efforts have made in the community. During LGBT Pride Month, we held a “Meet the Media” event at the SF LGBT Center for a panel discussion on LGBT issues and how they’re being covered by journalists. Also, this fall, we teamed up with ColorComm for an event that explored the unique challenges that women, people of color, those with disabilities, and more, encounter when making the next big jump in their career.

Giving back to the community.

Earlier this year, we held a fundraiser for Larkin Street Youth Services – raising more than $1,000 from ticket sales, a fun raffle, and tips on drinks served by our board as guest bartenders. More recently, at our holiday party, we held a silent auction to benefit the Tenderloin After-School Program; we also collected toys for the San Francisco Firefighters Toy Program and were blown away by everyone’s incredible generosity.

Check out my end-of-year President’s Message on the PRSA-SF blog for additional highlights from 2018. In addition to the many highlights, the year was also filled with a number of lessons learned, including the value of balancing new ideas with tried-and-tested initiatives that resonate with members, non-members, students, etc. Also, the value of focusing on “quality over quantity” for our Chapter’s events, as well as the value of teaming up with partners on events, initiatives, etc.

PRSA-SF’s 2019 board has fantastic ideas for the Chapter and the whole PR community here in the Bay Area – sign up for PRSA-SF’s bi-weekly newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest events, initiatives, promotions, resources, etc. Also, check out my previous PRSA-SF Q&A with PAN to learn more about the benefits of joining PRSA-SF, what makes our Chapter unique, and more!

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