Check out the award-winning work here.
Stephens comes to SPR from Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida where she most recently was a Public Relations Specialist. She joined the university’s communications department in 2009. During her tenure, Stephens was instrumental in building the university’s award-winning social media presence, helping the Lynn community navigate the loss of four students and two professors after the 2010 Haiti Earthquake, and executing a 2012 Presidential debate during the general election.
“We are delighted to welcome Laura to our team, and to Nashville,” said Beth S. Courtney, CEO of SPR. “Her experience handling major crises and events, and her depth and breadth of expertise in higher education, complement our strengths, which continue to grow and expand.”
Stephens graduated summa cum laude from Lynn University in 2008 with a BA in journalism and mass communication, and received an MS in communication and media from Lynn in 2009. Stephens began her career at Lynn as a student reporter in 2005, and was then promoted to Media Relations Assistant in 2006 and Media Relations Specialist in 2008.
Stephens is an active member of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) and has made numerous presentations at regional and national public relations conferences, discussing her handling of the Haiti crisis, preparation for the Presidential debate, and ways to improve social media campaigns.
Read more and purchase tickets to the award luncheon here:
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Read more about the fund here:“Everyone will have a way to invest in our companies that is unlike that of any other city in the country.”
Elizabeth Seigenthaler Courtney
Read more about the fund and its initial basket of companies:
Formerly director of client services for SPR, McGowan develops and directs marketing and branding campaigns in his role as vice president. McGowan has expertise in developing and executing public policy programs with experience in representing clients within the energy and environmental sectors.
McGowan (top right) joined SPR in 2004 after working as project assistant for the John Seigenthaler Chair of Excellence in First Amendment Studies at Middle Tennessee State University. He earned a master’s degree in mass communication from MTSU and a bachelor’s degree in mass communication from Auburn University.
Fomerly an account supervisor, Wilson (right) specializes in creating strategic media and marketing programs for companies in the professional services, financial and real estate sectors.
Before joining SPR in 2010, Wilson was a senior coordinator for the Political Affairs and Federation Relations Department of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in Washington, D.C. He also was the head of internal communication for the Office of the Undersecretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs at the U.S. Department of State. Wilson received his undergraduate degree in marketing and English from Auburn University.
“Philip and Justin are proven leaders at Seigenthaler PR,” Beth S. Courtney, SPR CEO, said in a release. “They both produce stellar work for our clients and inspire others on our team to excel. We are very proud to promote Philip and Justin to new positions during this time of growth for our company.”
See the story on NashvillePost.com.
SPR won 2nd place at the national Legal Market Association’s Your Honor Awards program in the media relations category. SPR’s multi-dimensional media relations program propelled Nashville’s largest law firm, Waller, into the national spotlight. SPR and Waller beat out more than 200 law firms from across the US to capture this prestigious honor. Read more about the award here.
When asked what is the biggest myth are about being a femaie executive,
She's an inspiration to all of us at Seigenthaler and the Nashville community. Way to go, Amy."The biggest myth about being a female executive is that we're sacrificing other parts of our lives — children, husbands, hobbies — in order to do our jobs well. Jobs can add so much to your life. If you choose a profession that interests you, it will enrich all that you do, not diminish it. Certainly there are days when we feel pulled in a million directions. But in the end, work gets us out of bed in the morning, keeps our minds young and sets a great example for children. That is why it is so important for young men and women to find a profession about which they are passionate. It will sustain and energize them the rest of their lives."
- Amy Hall Jones has been named vice president of client services
- Ben Palos has been named director of client services
- Nate West has been named account supervisor
- Logan Simmons has been named account executive
- Lanier Brandau has been named account coordinator
New Team Members:
- Cathy Conners has joined SPR as an executive assistant
- Samantha Fiala has joined SPR as an account coordinator
“We are proud to promote these outstanding members of our team, who continuously exceed expectations by generating exceptional results for our clients,” said Beth S. Courtney, CEO of SPR. “We also are delighted to welcome Cathy and Sam to Seigenthaler PR and know that they will enhance our services as we continue to grow.”
Vice president of client services, Amy Hall Jones, conceives and directs strategic communications plans and media relations programs on behalf of SPR’s clients in all sectors. Specializing in developing major marketing and branding campaigns, Jones brings expertise in account management to each of her teams. Prior to joining SPR in 2006, Jones was director of communications for the Nashville Area Chapter of the American Red Cross. She is a graduate of the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College at The University of Mississippi where she received a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in English. Jones was also named “Top 40 Under 40” by The Tennessean in 2005.
In his new role as director of client services, Ben Palos oversees and leads strategic communications programs on behalf of SPR clients. Previously an account supervisor, Palos specializes in marketing, media relations and crisis communications services to a spectrum of clients. Palos also is a member of SPR’s new media team, providing insight and direction on social media strategies. Ben joined the SPR team as an intern after receiving his bachelor’s degree in public relations with a minor in business administration from Belmont University.
As an account supervisor, Nate West implements and leads communication and media relations programs for SPR clients, specifically in the areas of financial services, consumer products and technology. Promoted from his position as an account executive, West provides innovative management ideas for new media campaigns. An expert in social media, West serves on SPR’s new media team and also directs SPR’s internship program. A graduate of Murray State University, West earned a bachelor’s degree in public relations and gained experience through various internships before joining SPR.
Logan Simmons, account executive, provides strategic media and public relations services. Previously serving as an account coordinator, Simmons plays a leadership role in developing communication plans for clients on a local and national level. Simmons graduated from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, with a bachelor’s degree in communications in 2009. She also currently serves on the board of the ALS Association Tennessee Chapter.
Previously an executive assistant with SPR, Lanier Brandau now serves as an account coordinator providing research, media relations and copy editing support to account teams on behalf of the firm’s clients. Prior to joining SPR, Brandau was an editorial assistant with the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology in Nashville; book production editor with the International Society for Technology in Education in Eugene, OR; and executive assistant with The Land Trust for Tennessee. A Nashville native, Brandau holds a BA degree English from the University of the South.
Cathy Conners joins SPR with 18 years of office administration experience in the healthcare field. As executive assistant, Conners provides support related to financial, human resource and facility and equipment systems. Prior to joining SPR, Conners was an executive assistant with Accredo, Hemophilia Health Services. A graduate of JN University, Conners is IT certified in healthcare information, project management, Six Sigma, Sharepoint and Microsoft Office.
A recent graduate of Wake Forest University, Samantha Fiala completed an internship with SPR in the fall of 2012 and now serves as an account coordinator with the firm. With a bachelor’s degree in English and minors in journalism and Spanish, Fiala provides research, media relations and writing support to numerous client services teams. While a Wake Forest undergraduate, Fiala also completed two editorial internships with Simon & Schuster in New York City and SAGE publications in Los Angeles.
Read Rewire here.
Amy has been named in the Company Executive category. She and the other finalists will be featured in an upcoming NBJ special publication, and honored at a luncheon March 1. Congratulations to all 34 of these exceptional women – especially Amy!
"Nicole, Ginger and Ryan have made immeasurable contributions toward the success of SPR during many years as proven leaders with our agency,” said Elizabeth S. Courtney the company’s CEO. “They are capable and talented professionals who are devoted to our clients and our employees. As our firm continues to grow and expand, we are proud to welcome them as partners.”
Nicole Cottrill, most recently Vice President of Client Services and Business Development, develops and directs strategic communications plans and media relations programs on behalf of SPR’s clients with focus on healthcare and science. Trained as an analyst and researcher, she also has expertise in crisis communications, media relations, corporate partnership and sponsorship development, coalition building, and policy analysis.??In 2012, Cottrill was recognized as one of Nashville’s top “Forty Under Forty” by the Nashville Business Journal. Prior to joining SPR in 2006, Nicole was a Vice President at Rasky Baerlein Strategic Communications in Boston where she managed the firm’s science, technology and healthcare practice. Previously, she also held positions at the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine and University Hospitals of Cleveland. A native of Athens, Ohio, Nicole is a graduate of Case Western Reserve University with degrees in sociology and history. She is active in the Nashville Healthcare Council and a founding board member of The Solly and Sammy Foundation for Peace.
Previously Senior Vice President of Business Services, Virginia K. “Ginger” Johnson, joined SPR in 1998. In her role, she has directed all financial, human resource, administration, facility and equipment systems for SPR in a manner that has supported the firm’s growth.
Prior to joining SPR, Johnson was the office manager for an alarm contractor in McMinnville, Tennessee, after many years working in business administration. A native of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, she received her bachelor's degree in Psychology from Middle Tennessee State University and is a member of SHRM - Society for Human Resource Management.
Ryan Witherell, formerly Vice President of Client Services and New Media, provides strategic communications, marketing and branding counsel to corporate clients across a variety of industries including technology, environment, real estate development, healthcare, financial services, law and consumer products. Witherell, who joined SPR in 2002, specializes in planning and executing integrated communications campaigns that include branding, media relations and social media. He also leads SPR’s new media team, which counsels clients and provides services in online communications and social media, and has shaped multi-tiered online strategies for a diverse group of businesses. Witherell was a 2012 “Nashville Emerging Leaders Award” finalist in the Public Relations, Advertising and Marketing category. He also was selected to the Nashville Emerging Leaders (NEL) class of 2008, and chaired NEL’s marketing and recruiting committee in 2009. Ryan has been a member of Public Relations Society of America and the Nashville chapter of the American Marketing Association (NAMA). A native of Woodbridge, Virginia and a graduate of Virginia Tech, Ryan is a board member of Matthew 25, a Nashville-based transitional housing program for homeless men and US Veterans.
The award, named in honor of the late Thomas P. Seigenthaler who founded the firm in 1972, recognizes an individual at SPR whose performance throughout the year best exemplifies the standards of excellence, attitude and ethics he established.
“We are celebrating 40 years of serving the best interests of our clients and our community, and Ben epitomizes our company ethos,” said Elizabeth Seigenthaler Courtney, Chairman and CEO of SPR. “Whether he is advising clients, collaborating with his colleagues or volunteering his time, you can count on Ben to help out, take the lead, or accept a challenge. We are delighted to name him the recipient of the 2012 Award of Excellence.”
Palos develops and implements strategic communications programs on behalf of local and national clients across various industries, including healthcare, law, education, restaurant and hospitality, residential real estate, and banking and finance. Ben is an active member of the Nashville chapter of the Public Relations Society of America, is on the marketing committee for Youth Encouragement Services, and is a member of the Alumni Board of Trustees for Alpha Tau Omega’s Belmont University chapter. With SPR since 2007, Palos previously served as account executive and account coordinator and gained public relations experience during an internship with the company prior to joining the team full time. He earned his bachelor’s degree in public relations, with a minor in business administration, from Belmont University.
Photo by James Yates | Nashville Business Journal
The Thomas P. Seigenthaler Fund for Creativity and The Danner Foundation underwrote two performances Nov. 8 & 9 of Defamation, a play that engages audiences as the jury. Defamation, by Chicago playwright Todd Logan, was shown to packed houses at the First Amendment Center at Vanderbilt.
Read more about the performance here.
With the help of SPR, Waller earned runner-up recognition for its systematic public/media relations campaign at the Legal Marketing Association Southeastern Chapter’s 2012 Your Honor Awards.
Learn more about the awards here.
Nicole Cottrill, VP of client services at SPR, was quoted in The Tennessean's feature story on how communications have been handled around the meningitis outbreak.
Read the full story here.In crisis situations, experts say there are three rules to follow: Be prepared, be responsive and be honest.
“The biggest misconception that exists in the crisis world is there are so many crises you can’t prepare for,” said Nicole Cottrill, vice president of client services and business development at Seigenthaler Public Relations.
Nashville Business Journal - Executive Profile
On the big year ahead, worrying about the morning news, taking her company’s own advice and singing in the streets of Venice in 1986.
Check out the Q&A.
SPR's Nicole Cottrill offers sage advice in today's Nashville Medical News about the importance of internal communications.
Check out the rest here.When companies and organizations think about ‘marketing,’ the conversation almost always concentrates on the best methods to get the word out about products and services. Smart marketers, however, know that an inward focus is equally crucial.
“A former boss shared, the number one mistake employers make is not realizing their most important asset walks in and out their door every day,” said Nicole Cottrill, vice president of client services and business development for Nashville-based Seigenthaler Public Relations.
“It’s easy with the external audiences,” Cottrill added, “They’re very clear revenue drivers.” However, she continued, it’s the internal audience … your employees … who can really make or break your message.
Read the full story.
Check out the portfolio of our winning entries.
Read Rewire here.
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Read Rewire on Forbes.
Read Rewire on Forbes.
You now can follow John Seigenthaler, our New York CEO, who is writing weekly for Forbes.com about the ever-changing world of media and PR. His inaugural post reflects on the anniversary of 9/11. Read it here!