Working and living in Washington, DC makes most of us pretty numb to crisis situations. Our politicians hop from one scandal to the next. The government seems to be in a constant state of impending doom. Navigating some type of crisis is as much a part of our days as our morning coffee. And when it comes to crisis communications, there are certain people you always want in your corner. One of them is our keynote speaker for this year’s PR Woman of the Year luncheon: Judy Smith (@JudySmith_), President of Smith & Co., published author, and co-Executive Producer of Scandal.

As the inspiration behind the Emmy-award winning drama series Scandal, Judy Smith has rapidly become a household name. While the general public might categorize her as the “real-life Olivia Pope,” Smith was a force to be reckoned with in the crisis communications world far before Scandal had us glued to our screens every week.

Smith started her career as a writer and public affairs specialist before branching out into the legal arena after graduating from American University’s Washington College of Law. In her twenty-five years as a strategist, she has worked behind the scenes on some of the most historic and sensational events of our time, including the Iran Contra investigation, the prosecution of former Washington, D.C. Mayor Marion Barry, the 1991 Gulf War, the Los Angeles riots, the Supreme Court confirmation hearings of Justice Clarence Thomas, the President Clinton scandal involving Monica Lewinsky, the congressional inquiry of Enron, and the United Nations Foundation and World Health Organization response to the SARS epidemic.

Last year, Smith gave us a rare glimpse into the mind of a crisis management guru with her book Good Self, Bad Self. Hailed by reviewers as a “blueprint for how to act with authenticity in building, maintaining and, when necessary, repairing your personal brand,” Good Self, Bad Self is a must-have resource for anyone working in communications.

Scandal might have introduced Judy Smith to the masses, but to us, she’s also a fellow Washington Woman in PR and we are thrilled to have her join us to share her expertise and her new book. Don’t miss an opportunity to hear from one of the most brilliant strategic minds in the communications field and join us at WWPR’s 2013 Washington PR Woman of the Year Award Luncheon. Copies of Good Self, Bad Self are available on the event registration page and for purchase at the luncheon. There will be a book signing with Judy Smith immediately following the awards ceremony

We’ll be hosting our annual signature event on Wednesday, November 13 from 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at the W Hotel, 515 15th Street NW, Washington, D.C. The ceremony recognizes three finalists who have excelled in their profession and are raising the bar in public relations, and designates one to become Washington PR Woman of the Year. Register today! Discounted rates for WWPR and PRSA members.

Danielle Veira is a Communications Associate at Nahigian Strategies and a 2013 Washington PR Woman of the Year Committee Member. Follow Dani on Twitter @DaniV7101.