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opinion

How to Commemorate Juneteenth

Juneteenth, or “Black Independence Day,” commemorates the freedom of enslaved Americans in the United States and is identified as the first Black American holiday. Short for “June Nineteenth,” the holiday marks the day when federal troops arrived in Galveston, Texas, in 1865 to inform enslaved people they were freed. 

Since the late 1800s, many Black Americans have honored Juneteenth as the commemoration of the struggle of enslaved persons and communal celebration of Black liberation. However, its history is multifaceted and brings about a multitude of feelings and perspectives from across the Black diaspora. As communicators, we must be familiar with this history and the feelings this commemoration evokes, if we are to counsel clients effectively.

4 minute read
opinion

Scaling Reputation For Global Operations

When an organization begins to expand globally, it often faces a new set of challenges that could mean adjusting current strategies that have yielded success on the domestic front. Economic, regulatory and operational factors are just some of the many considerations nascent global businesses must address to succeed on the international stage.

4 minute read
opinion

Words Of Support For New Moms This Mother’s Day

We realize Mother’s Day can be a difficult and complicated day for some, so please feel free to skip reading if this is a sensitive topic for you. Thank you. 

While Mother’s Day has evolved to be a day of celebration and appreciation by way of brunch, flowers, cards and (if you’re lucky) some downtime for moms, the origination of Mother’s Day in the U.S. stems back to social and political concerns that impacted women in the early 1900s. Now, there is a growing movement for Mother’s Day to go beyond the Hallmark Holiday, recognize the sacrifices mothers make for their children and celebrate the collective power of mothers supporting other mothers. I am very happy to see this shift, with deeper and more meaningful conversations being had year-round, and certainly around Mother’s Day, about how society can better support moms of all types.

5 minute read
opinion

What do Olympic figure skating and a career in PR have in common?

Watching the figure skating events at the Winter Olympics always brings me back to my childhood days of crack-of-dawn training sessions, the joy at finally landing that Axel I worked so hard to perfect, and the nerves and excitement of competition. Growing up, I was the only kid in my school who figure skated. Yet throughout my career in PR, I’ve had the pleasure of working with at least a dozen former skaters, coaches and judges. So, what attracts a high number of figure skaters to the communications industry, and how do we apply the lessons we learned on the ice to our jobs?

4 minute read
opinion

What Does This Inauguration Mean? Let Us Pause!

Twelve years ago, my wife and I attended the inauguration of Barack Obama. It was incredibly cold, and our seats were bad. But watching the elderly Black attendees sob tears of joy and happiness was a sight to behold and savor, even if we couldn’t see the president.

Twelve years later seems like a lifetime. We are now living through a global pandemic, a severe economic downturn for those least able to survive it and a far-right terrorist insurgency.

3 minute read
opinion

Incorporating Brand Reputation Into COVID-19 Considerations

By: Barbara Laidlaw and Josiah Adams 

The holiday season is upon us and with it, a surge in COVID-19 cases. Since the beginning of November, there have been more than 3.1 million new cases – the highest number for any single month. According to a Washington University in St. Louis model, 20 million Americans could be infected with COVID-19 by January 2021.  

More widespread testing has driven some of the uptick. But the reality is transmission has accelerated in virtually every region of the country with no end in sight. Contributing factors to this spike in cases include a premature reopening of restaurants, offices and other high-risk locations; a lack of alignment on preventative measures at the state level; and now, holiday travel.  

Small businesses that narrowly avoided economic ruin in spring are now on the brink of collapse due to the fallout from the resurgence of the virus. Without consistent guidance from state or federal governments, nor adequate support, businesses throughout America now face difficult decisions they will have to largely make on their own. These decisions carry significant weight, and incorrect decisions could expose brands to undue reputational risk.  

5 minute read

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