In this issue:
Membership Survey
WWPR Events
Pro Bono Update
Website Update
Membership News
Member Spotlight
WWPR Event Recaps
Articles of Interest
Employment Opportunities


Membership Survey
Later this month, WWPR will be sending out a survey to our members and supporters to evaluate our current offerings. We are committed to making our organization one of the very best in DC and your thoughts are extremely important to us as we move forward this year. I encourage you to please take the time to complete our short survey and share your valuable insights with us so we can continue to make WWPR an organization that we are all proud to be a part of!

Should you have any suggestions in the meantime, please don’t hesitate to contact me at

Kendra Kojcsich
2011 WWPR President


Don’t Miss Out! Attend WWPR’s March 17th Brown Bag: “The Art of Story-Telling: Selling Your Brand, Your Product and Yourself through Stories”

Where: John Hopkins University at 1717 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20036
When: Noon – 2:00 p.m.

Join us as the panelists below share their expertise:

Danny Harris, Editor, People’s District
Danny Harris is the editor of People’s District, a website that shares a daily story and photo of a D.C. resident. Since launching in September 2009, he has collected and shared over 400 stories and his work has been featured on NPR, NBC,,, the Baltimore Examiner, and the Weiner Zeitung. He also works as a consultant to schools and neighborhood business improvement districts, helping them use storytelling as a lens to understand place and communities.

Nancy Belmont, CEO, Belmont, Inc.

Nancy Belmont, CEO and owner of Belmont, Inc., consults with clients on how to link their culture and brand for sustained business success. Nancy’s company leads culture-building, branding and communication efforts for public and private organizations, including the U.S. Army, the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center, The European Union, The British Embassy and United Negro College Fund (UNCF), to name a few.

Cindy Atlee, Principal, The Storybranding Group
Cindy Atlee of The Storybranding Group has been fascinated with stories and how they shape identity since writing her first (and last!) novel at the age of 13. Instead of becoming a novelist, she channeled a passion for helping others understand and express who they are in the world into a 20+ year career as a strategist, facilitator and coach.

Get Involved with Woman of the Year
Join the Woman of the Year Committee for our next meeting as we plan our signature Washington PR Woman of the Year event!
When: Wednesday, March 30, 6:30 pm
Where: Chlopak, Leonard, Schechter and Associates*
1850 M Street NW, Suite 800
Washington, DC 20036
Metro: Farragut North or Dupont Circle
*Please call Laura Cilmi to let you in: (202) 491-3873
Conference Call in number: 1-866-410-8512 / Code: 2091365188

Meetings will typically be held the last Wednesday of every month. Please contact Emily and Laura at with any questions.

2011 Washington D.C. Area Women in the Boardroom
Monday, April 4 2011 – 3pm to 6pm (registration at 2:30pm)
Hyatt Regency Bethesda (One Bethesda Metro Center/7400 Wisconsin Ave, Bethesda, Maryland 20814)
Cost: $125 individual tickets. To register online:
For information on the panel, visit the Women in the Boardroom website.


Pro Bono Update
Thrive DC: Need for Travel Size Toiletries
Thrive DC, WWPR’s pro bono client, has an urgent and ongoing need for travel size toiletries. Most of Thrive DC’s clients must carry these items with them and have very little room for regular size toiletries. WWPR will have a collection point for these items at our professional development brown bag lunches. You are also welcome to make donations at Thrive DC, 1525 Newton Street, NW (Columbia Heights Metro).

Donate to Thrive DC from Now Until April 30, and Your Donation Will Be Matched!
For the 14th consecutive year, the Feinstein Foundation will divide $1 million among hunger-fighting agencies nationwide. This money is a match for any donations or pledges received by April 30th. This program has helped thousands of agencies, like Thrive DC, raise over $1 billion. Donate today!

For more information about Thrive DC, visit their website at, “like” them on Facebook, or follow them on Twitter (@thrivedc).

-Deborah Brody, Pro Bono Chair


Website Update
The website committee is actively recruiting new members! Whether you’d like to contribute content, help manage existing content, or provide strategic input on website features and functionality, we’d love your help! We hope you’ll consider contributing to the WWPR blog, and any suggestions for topics or guest bloggers would be great! For more information or to contribute, please contact Website Chair Kate Barrett.


Membership News
New and Returning Members

– Susan Ahearn-Pierce
– Micah Azzano
– Denise Benoit
– Laura Berry
– Stephanie Block
– Kate Connors
– Rebecca Geraghty
– Elinor Kinnier
– Stepheny Kucera
– Leslie Rutledge
– Casey Savio
– Jennifer Scott
– Joy Stevenson
– Monda Webb
– Kristen Youngblood

Membership has its benefits! Members do not pay for most WWPR monthly professional development brown bag lunches. To learn more, please contact Leslie Rutledge, membership chair, at


Member Spotlight: Kate Kennedy
by Elisa O’Halloran

WWPR member and new small business owner Kate Kennedy is the owner and chief creative officer of Rua Creative ( Kate recently branched out on her own to create a new media company with a mission to tell great stories through strong branding, engaging video and innovative social outreach.

Kate Kennedy

As a small business owner, Kate loves that she wears all of the hats. “It’s busy and challenging, but highly rewarding,” says Kate. “If you need something done, you have the choice to either do it yourself, or outsource. It’s a fun balance of deciding what you are best at and what you should hire someone else to do. I like to do as much as I can myself and that leads to many learning experiences.”

For example, Kate wanted to re-design her website, and because she is not a coder, she needed to either find a work-around or hire a design firm. Kate really wanted to take this project on personally, so she found a great resource to help her design the look online without the CSS/HTML coding. Now she has the site up and running and can very easily update to refresh the content frequently herself. “As a small business owner, you are constantly learning new skills and challenging yourself,” says Kate.

Kate pursued a career in communication because she had a passion for the entertainment industry since she was a child. “At eight years old, I performed celebrity impressions for my family and hosted variety shows at family functions. I then got into acting with a local young performers group. From there I booked professional acting gigs with MTV, Sears, TV Land, and even Saturday Night Live, where I had the chance to meet and talk with Molly Shannon. She told me about how much she loved her college experience. It really excited me since I was in the midst of applying for college at that point,” recounts Kate.

Instead of majoring in acting, Kate chose to pursue a degree in television production at the Roy H. Park School of Communications at Ithaca College. Upon graduation, Kate was inducted into the Ithaca College Television Hall of Fame and won a collegiate Emmy award. Kate adds: “Since then I’ve worked with great TV shows, including most recently with the show, ‘America’s Most Wanted.’ Now I am thrilled to own my own company and look forward to many more exciting opportunities to come!”


WWPR Event Recaps
Starting, Growing and Optimizing Your Business Recap
By Stacey Price, Professional Development Co-Chair

“85% of small businesses owned by women are sole proprietorships, probably because we like to do things ourselves,” explained Kate Perrin, CEO of PRofessional Solutions, LLC and moderator of the February WWPR Professional Development Brown Bag Panel, Starting, Growing and Optimizing your B

February Brown Bag Panelists (Photo credit: Lisa Newman)

usiness in 2011. More than fifty people gathered at the Haworth Showroom to listen as panelists described their experiences; and emphasized the importance of not trying to be “chief officer of everything,” looking at the big picture and just taking a chance.

Panelists included: Gale Curcio, Curcio Communications; Carrie Fox, C.Fox Communications; Holly Herman, Total Coaching & Consulting; and Gladys Kamau, Ph.D., DC Department of Small and Local Business Development

Topics ranged from legal requirements in starting a business, to saving money to the type of experience that is necessary. Each of the panelists offered up their backgrounds and experiences to answer a variety of questions to help the audience with their new business endeavors.

To read a full recap and recommended resources by WWPR’s Lisa Newman, visit the WWPR blog.

YoungMC and WWPR Luncheon Recap
By Lisa Newman, Sponsorships and Partnerships Chair

In early March, Young MC and Washington Women in Public Relations (WWPR) partnered to present a lively lunchtime discussion featuring Keith Blackman, principal of Blackman Media Solutions (BMS). This event took place at the National Press Club (NPC) in downtown, Washington, DC. Attendees learned about new strategies for effective media training, how to improve executive visibility, and had an opportunity to tour NPC’s Broadcast Operations. Thank you Keith Blackman, Young MC, and NPC for a fabulous event!

To read the full recap by WWPR Past-President Debbie Friez, visit the WWPR blog and also make sure to check out past event photos on our Flickr page.


Articles of Interest
The Never-Ending Press Release Debate, by WWPR member Mayra Ruiz McPherson

LinkedIn Launches LinkedIn Today

Six types of content that will make your brand soar in popularity

Delivering the Speech of Your Life


DC Employment and Volunteer Opportunities

Intern, Think Local First DC. Contact:

Pro Bono Consultant or Firm, Strategic Communication Services for YWCA. Contact Rhonda Bishop, Advocacy Associate, YWCA USA,

Porter Novelli, multiple openings. Contact Kendra Kojcsich,
– Account Executive, Consumer
– Senior Account Executive, Public Affairs

Ogilvy, multiple openings. For more information visit
– Senior Account Executive, Business Solutions Group
– Account Director, Social Marketing
– Account Director, Business Solutions Group
– VP, Specialized Communications Group