In this issue:

Emerging Leaders
Upcoming Events
Photo: April Breakfast Panel Speakers
Volunteer with WWPR
Member Spotlight
Articles of Interest
Membership News
Job Board

Emerging Leaders

Calling all young PR and Communications rock stars!  WWPR is accepting nominations for the Emerging Leaders Awards!

This award honors three outstanding young women (ages 21- 35) in the Washington, D.C. area who have excelled in public relations and related fields. Nominate a young leader (or yourself) by downloading the 2011 ELA application and email the completed form to Honorees will be recognized at a reception and awards ceremony on Tuesday, July 26 at the Darlington House (1610 20th St., NW).

We look forward to seeing everyone on July 26 as we celebrate the best and brightest young communication professionals!


Upcoming Events

For full information about our exciting events and programs, please visit our Events page.

WWPR members receive member rates for PRSA-NCC and AWC events.

– May 26 WWPR Brown Bag- “Social Media & Crisis Communication

– June 8 Burson – AWC Breakfast- “Will You Be My Friend” (and other Facebook Insights) *WWPR members recevie a special rate.

– June 8 PRSAA-NCC Professional Development- “Media Relations in a Digital Age

– June 15 PRSA-NCC Association/Nonprofit Networking Mixer
*WWPR members receive the member rate for PRSA-NCC events.

– June 16 WWPR Executive Communicators – “Leveraging Your Communications Style for Greater Leadership Success

If you’re coming to a WWPR event, why not bring travel-size toiletries for donation to our pro bono client Thrive DC!



Have you checked-out the WWPR Blog recently? You will find recaps of the monthly professional development seminars, news of upcoming events, and communications insights.

Make sure to read social media swarmi, Shashi Bellamkonda’s recent guest post!


Photo: April Breakfast Panel Speakers

Optimizing Your Message

Check out the tips from our April WWPR Professional Development event.

First row: Doug Broujos, CEO, Blue Sky Factory; Jason Nelson, Group Publisher, FierceMarkets, Inc.; Kenan Pollack, Lead Consultant, Strategic Services, Convio; Tommi Marsans, Senior Director, Email Marketing and Customer Communications, Sallie Mae. Second row: Moderator: Andrew Barrett, Senior Director, ISP Relations & Deliverability, Real Magnet                                                   Photo Credit: Lisa Newman

















Get Involved with WWPR Today!

Here are a number of great ways to get involved with the premier organization for women in communications in Washington D.C.

  • Join a WWPR committee today and make the most out of your membership. For more information visit our committees page.
  • Love media relations and want to do some pitching for an upcoming Thrive DC event? For more information, please email
  • We love our partners and sponsors!  If you’re interested in learning more about the great benefits from partnering with WWPR, please visit our Partners page.
  • Interested in writing for the WWPR Blog? Members can send submissions to
  • Attend the next Woman of the Year Committee meeting. For more information, please email


Member Spotlight

Member Spotlight: Elisse LaMay

Communications was always a field Elisse LaMay knew she wanted to pursue. “My family will tell you I’ve had a big mouth all of my life and always wanted to get an opinion or idea out into the world,” said Elisse.

Elisse LaMay, WWPR Professional Development Co-Chair

One of her first work experiences was at the Hay-Adams Hotel, which allowed her to try her hand at PR and event planning.  Elisse took part in turning the property back to its original 1920s ambiance and helped the hotel celebrate its 75th anniversary. “One of my favorite parts was getting to do research on the font style, colors and important events of the time. I found the power of both written and nonverbal communication elements fascinating,”said Elisse.

Currently, Elisse serves as the Manager of Colleges, Seminars and Teleseminars for the American Association for Justice (AAJ). Her department is responsible for the development and promotion of more than 30 legal education programs annually. These education programs focus on groundbreaking litigation techniques and are developed in collaboration with leading plaintiff attorneys from around the country, with the goal of educating thousands of trial lawyers and promoting the civil justice system. Her favorite part about her job is working with members and having the opportunity to see the real world impact of the organization.

In her free time, Elisse enjoys reading a good book and decorating her brand new condo which she shares with her husband and 1-year old tabby cat.



Event Recaps

The Art of Storytelling Recap
By Stacey Price, Professional Development Co-Chair

Donna Savarese moderated the March Professional Development Brown Bag, “The Art of Storytelling: Selling your Company, Your Product, and Yourself through Stories,” and set the tone for the luncheon with the question “What is a story, and how can it be used everyday?” Before letting the panel answer the question, she introduced the three building blocks of storytelling: challenge, struggle and resolution. “If the lion doesn’t tell his story, the hunter will,” explained Savarese. The panel used this to segue into the importance of using storytelling to support organizational messaging. Read the full post on the WWPR blog.

Having Women in the Boardroom Means More Revenue: Women in the Boardroom Recap
By Kim Ash, Executive Communicators Chair

On April 4, 2011, Women in the Boardroom held their second annual Washington, D.C. meeting at the Hyatt Regency in Bethesda. For a second year, WWPR was one of the proud co-sponsors of the event, and was represented by several of its members.

After a welcoming speech from Sheila Ronning, CEO and President of Sharp UpSwing, Kelly Nakamoto, Partner at PwC, introduced the panel and acted as facilitator. The panelists were Ginna Gemmell, President and Founder of GlidePath, Inc., Dr. Ellen H. Yankellow, PharMD, President and CEO of Correct RX Pharmacy Services, Inc., Edie Fraser, Senior Consultant of Diversified Search Odgers Berndtson, and Bonnie Phipps, President and CEO of St. Agnes Hospital.

The 160 attendees heard how it is now statistically proven that organizations that have female board members earn more revenue than those organizations that do not, and while some positive change has occurred, work still needs to be done to increase the percentage of women and minorities in the board room. Serving on a board may be the most rewarding part of their careers, attendees were told, and they were also advised of the rewards and risks of serving, as well as the importance of pursuing seats only with those organizations they strongly care about.

The panelists emphasized that having operational experience, strong financial skills, and a complete understanding of the time commitment, are essential to becoming a member of any board, be it publicly-traded, private, advisory, or non-profit. Mentoring and sponsoring women really make a difference, panelists said, in assuring that search committees are looking beyond male CFOs for their board slate. For more information about Women in the Boardroom and their events, visit

To read more event recaps, visit the WWPR blog and also make sure to check out past event photos on our Flickr page.


Articles of Interest

57 new digital media resources you might have missed (Mashable)

Which news sites are best at engaging their readers (Columbia Journalism Review)

Report: PR pro is the second-most stressful job (Ragan’s PR Daily)


Membership News

April New Members
– Katie Lipton
– Beth Casteel
– Tracey Young
– Julia Halloran
– Sue Zoldak
– Alicia Norton
– Nathan Mishler
– Judith Harley
– Kerry Lynn Bohen
– Elizabeth Oliver-Farrow
– Sharon Kozeka

May New Members
– Natalia Martinez
– Catherine Sexton
– Sara Fortner
– Ivy Pendleton
– Patti Yu
– Sarah Howell
– Preeti Wali

– Sherri Core
– Laura Cilmi
– Tina McCormack Beaty
– Racine Tucker-Hamilton
– Kendra Kojcsich
– Deborah Brody

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


Job Board: DC Employment & Volunteer Opportunities

A reminder that you can now upload your organization’s job announcements to our Jobs section which offers WWPR members and website visitors a central location to see who’s hiring in PR, communications and related disciplines in the D.C. metro area.

If you have an open position that you’d like to post on the WWPR Job Board, please visit today and click on the “Post a Job” button. It’s easy to use this free service, which will connect you with many outstanding communications professionals in our area!

Please contact with questions or feedback on this new feature.