Posts Tagged 'public service'

Applications now open for the PRSA National Board of Directors slot for PRSA-ECD

The call for applications to serve on the 2021 Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) Board of Directors is now open, and our PRSA East Central District Board Member slot will be open in 2021. Applications will be accepted through Tuesday, May 5. If you are an active member considering if Board service is for you, be it this year or in the future, we enthusiastically recommend it as potentially the most valuable and rewarding way to engage with PRSA.

Professional development and networking, two of PRSA’s core benefits, are at the heart of Board service. You will be called on to lead at the highest levels of policy, strategy and governance, and these activities will be accomplished through teamwork with Board colleagues and members from all sectors of the organization. Board experience also gives you an opportunity to analyze our profession in a way that differs from our day-to-day job requirements as working practitioners, as you consider the profession for its own sake and for that of your professional colleagues. Where is it going? Where should it go and why? What ongoing skills development do we all need to succeed in it and how can PRSA equip its members to thrive in a constantly evolving environment?

Answering these questions often requires a shift in perspective for Board members, as Board work is not the same as PR work. Nor is it the same as leading a Chapter, District or Section. It is about helping to guide the nation’s leading professional communications organization, in concert with PRSA’s professional staff and volunteer leaders across the country. Of course, our Board members bring their professional skills and experience as strategic communicators to that task but also apply them to the arena of association leadership.

If you do that, you will grow. You will learn and guide PRSA’s structure, mission, values, strategies, challenges and members to a depth, breadth and degree of detail that will stretch you. You’ll consider not just your profession, but the profession, from a leadership perspective and with substantial responsibilities. Your network will grow exponentially, because PRSA is a team sport. And you will bring those experiences to whatever you do in the future.

Ask Board members, current and past: is the experience worth it? Listen for their insights and individual perspectives as you contemplate applying. PRSA needs the extraordinary commitment of qualified leaders to guide its future, and that’s not an easy task. If it were, working on the Board wouldn’t be nearly so valuable and rewarding.

For more information, outreach to our Past Chair Jennifer Flowers-Kolf, APR, at


Why PRSA Still Matters to Me

By Dr. Steve Iseman APR, Fellow PRSA

The “What’s in it for me” question drives the world – and that’s human nature.

But in terms of our professional organizations and affiliations I think as people age, both in their lives and in their careers, the question gradually shifts from “What’s in it for me?” to “What’s in it for others?” And that’s certainly been the case during my years of involvement with the Public Relations Society of America.

In the early days folks value most what they can learn from participating in PRSA that would benefit their careers. At first they are looking for programming that will help improve their skills. Later PRSA often becomes the source for the connections and the network they need to advance their careers. And later on the focus frequently shifts to seeking information about becoming better strategic thinkers, planners and managers. And all of these are great benefits of a professional organization like PRSA.

This was certainly the case with me, but as I became better at all of those things I realized, as many folks do, that public relations is more than just telling our stories, persuading our publics or building our brands. Public relations with its emphasis on open, honest, ethical communication really does provide the best hope for, 1) Cosmic Balance, 2) Universal Harmony and, 3) Preservation of Life in the Free World as we Know it Today.

I recognize that I’ve been lucky to work in a field that does so much good for so many. But with that recognition comes responsibility. And to me that responsibility has always been to find ways to stay involved with PRSA – advising students, counseling others, mentoring colleagues and working to strengthen public relations education. I’m happiest when I’m doing things to help others improve their skills, develop their networks, become better strategic thinkers and understand the critical role that public relations has in our world – in short to be able to live the same rewarding life focusing on the “What’s in it for others?” question that I’ve enjoyed so much for so many years.

Dr. Steve Iseman APR, Fellow PRSA, is Professor Emeritus at Ohio Northern University.