If you missed our virtual discussion on The Role of PR in the Dialogue on Race, check out our video of the program here.

As professional communicators, we are uniquely positioned to inform and educate others in an effort to cultivate diversity and inclusion. Ethically, it is our responsibility to promote healthy dialogues that will inform attitudes, opinions, and beliefs. 

Join PRSA Austin on July 9 at 8 a.m. for a breakfast conversation about the role that professional communicators should play in the ongoing dialogue about race. Panelists Leslie Wingo, Pamela Benson Owens, and Marjorie Clifton will share their insight about how PR professionals can help their executives and clients shape the conversation about race, ensure brands are sharing the right message and tone, and ensure the appropriate accountability and action is taking place. 

WHEN: Thursday, July 9, 2020; 8:00 - 9:00 a.m.

COST: Free to PRSA members, non-members and students

The event is free, but registration is required. Click here to register. 

 

Meet the Panelists

Leslie Wingo

 Leadership, advocacy, and storytelling are the central themes of my career—and of my life in general.

 I head up Sanders\Wingo, a Texas-based independent creative agency focused on cultivating human connections through   brand storytelling, media strategy, and content development. I solve business problems with the best creative and UX/UI   research teams in the industry, partnering with brands like USPS, Burger King, AT&T, KFC, and State Farm.   Sanders\\Wingo operates with a “humans first” mindset, and we believe that by better understanding people and the   decisions they make, brands can make a big impact on the world.

 My work has me managing people and processes simultaneously, so I need to adapt quickly to solve problems for our   clients while positioning the firm for the future as advertising continues to evolve. I’m driven by a natural curiosity and a   drive to keep improving, and I strive to be a transparent, approachable leader who empowers others, connecting people   with ideas and great brands.

As a speaker, I fight stereotypes, challenge labels, expose bias, and start the tough conversations around race and gender. I use my platform for advocacy, raising up marginalized voices and championing women and minorities. In my talks, I combine data with compelling stories, educating audiences on how to balance technology with humanity—and how to integrate diversity, equity, and inclusion into their businesses.

I believe in philanthropy, and I give my time to organizations whose values align with my own, like the Texas Book Festival, the El Paso Chamber of Commerce, Creative Action, and AIDS Services of Austin. My role as a wife and mom is most important to me, and raising little humans is the biggest gift (and sometimes the biggest challenge!) of my life. Success isn’t linear, and ambiguity and discomfort are key to growth—at work and at home.

Pamela Benson Owens

 Pamela Benson Owens is the President and CEO of Edge of Your Seat Consulting, Inc and is currently serving as the   Acting Executive Director of Six Square. For 23+ years Pam has owned Edge of Your Seat Consulting, a unique   consulting firm that is dedicated to assisting for-profit and nonprofit entities. The firm’s major focus is to provide   methodologies that help manage perceptions and narratives about complex and challenging issues with courage and   strategic passion. Pam feels she is most effective when she partners with organizations from the inside out in order to   streamline the hierarchical needs, create infrastructure, coach teams, shift organizational cultures and, of most   importance, help leaders become more effective. Clients’ transformations are the essence of her work, and they’re also   what bring her great joy and empirical pride. Pam leverages humor and honest storytelling to create memorable and   applicable strategies for sustainable and substantive change.

 

 

Marjorie Clifton

 Marjorie Clifton is principal of Clifton Consulting LLC and has two decades of experience in communications,   advocacy and public policy. Marjorie began her career as a product manager and spokesperson working for Sony   and Kodak technology startups in Austin, TX. She founded her consulting business in Washington, DC in 2004 while   working as a media trainer and messaging expert for senior administration officials in the federal government.

 As a consultant for corporations, non-profits and federal agencies, she establishes platforms for positioning, and   optimizing, the impact of organizations and individuals by building and executing internal and external   communication plans. She is an expert in building and leading training programs and leadership initiatives, and her   programs and campaigns have spanned five continents and nearly all fifty states. She is also a published author and   media commentator, appearing multiple times a week on CNN, Fox, NBC, MSNBC, PBS and global radio. Her clients   have included the U.S. Department of State, U.S.A.I.D, ODNI, the Federal Reserve, the U.S. Department of Energy,   U.S. Congress, Deloitte Consulting, Booz Allen Consulting, Verizon, General Motors, the American Red Cross,   Boeing, Pfizer, Ebay, the American Medical Association, Conservation International, the Women’s Media Center and   the American Association of University Women.

Marjorie’s projects also include developing strategic coalitions and strategy for policy initiatives. In 2011, she was called upon by the White House to build and lead a coalition of Internet companies to address online counterfeiting of prescription drugs. Over the past five years, she has led a global initiative with 12 major corporations including Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, Facebook, Paypal, Visa, MasterCard, Amex, Discover, GoDaddy, RIghtside and UPS to create consumer education initiatives, facilitate policy dialogue and develop strategic partnerships with the U.S. Department of State, U.S. House of Representatives, the U.S. Department of Trade, U.S. Department of Commerce, the Global Trade Organization, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, APEC and ICANN. Her structure has now been adopted in the EU and the Asian Pacific Economic Forum.

Marjorie received her bachelor’s degree in Communications and Spanish from the University of Texas. She received her master’s from Drama Studio London. Marjorie is currently a fellow and advisory board member for the Annette Strauss Institute for Civic Participation at the University of Texas and serves on the board for the School of Undergraduate Studies. She is also an executive board member of the non-profit Running Start, and a founder of their Next Step program, which trains young women in career development and politics. She was awarded a female “Profile in Power” by the Austin Business Journal in 2015.

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