FPRA Ocala Chapter honors communicators of the year


The Ocala Chapter of the Florida Public Relations Association (FPRA) has named its 2014 Wilton F. Martin Communicator of the Year award winners, recognizing local professionals for their outstanding communication with respective audiences and for their furthering of the public relations profession.
Laura Byrnes, APR, communications manager with Career Source, Citrus Levy Marion was honored in the individual category for her ability to develop and direct communication strategies that promote economic stability and career development throughout an extremely diverse three-county region. Most recently, Byrnes guided a regional rebranding initiative for Career Source, and assisted with the broader, statewide effort, earning her organization recognition from the Governor’s Office. Nominees in the individual category also included Kelli Fuqua Hart with Ocala Magazine and Elaine McClain, Marion County Office of Public Information.
Hospice of Marion County was awarded communicator of the year in the Institutional/Media category for its role in promoting two community-wide initiatives: National Healthcare Decisions Day and End Alzheimer’s Campaign. Through a series of highly effective public relations efforts, Hospice of Marion County succeeded in securing a strong voice as a fully engaged partner in end-of-life transitions for the community. Nominees for the Institution/Media category also included Marion County Office of Public Information.
Established in 2005, the Florida Public Relations Association/Ocala Chapter’s Wilton F. Martin Communicator of the Year Awards recognize individuals and institutions that have demonstrated excellence in strategic communications to improve the quality of life in Marion County. The Ocala Chapter’s awards are named after local Wilton F. Martin for the role he played 75 years ago with the group of men supporting Lt. Col. John Dillin in establishing the statewide public relations group now known as FPRA. Nominees do not have to be members of FPRA, but must exemplify the highest professional standards in the communications field. FPRA is dedicated to developing public relations practitioners, who, through ethical and standardized practices, enhance the public relations profession in Florida. FPRA is comprised of 15 professional and 10 student chapters throughout the state, providing professional development, networking and recognition opportunities.

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