PRestige February 2014


PResident's Perspective: On Vacation...sort of

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to take off two whole weeks from work? Away from the office? Evading the ever-invasive email inbox? I did most of this recently after major surgery.

Among other things during these two weeks, I slept in, avoided emails many days, didn’t answer the phone, watched TV, enjoyed the Sochi Olympics, took naps and ate some great meals, compliments of church friends.

What I found myself thinking about on a regular basis was the PR world…how much of it actually invades everything we do whether it’s personal, professional or both. I believe PR professionals should greatly benefit in their personal lives because of what they do for a living.

PR professionals:

  • respond politely and with courtesy when reaching out to others.
  • know how to get results.
  • know how to take a negative situation and not make it worse.
  • know how to dole out advice when it’s needed and
  • showcase the stamina to convince others to heed that advice for the best interest of all audiences involved.

In your PR world, how much of your professional actions and habits spill over into your private lives? Do you agree to a customer survey when you call your local cable company? Do you accommodate those 7:00 p.m. phone calls from poll takers asking for feedback on the latest political issue? How do you respond to bad customer service from an inexperienced associate at your favorite department store?

I encourage you to become a professional personal PR pro. Use those people skills at home. Put those listening ears to the test with your kids. Think before you write. Think before you speak. Think before you act. It’s a professional habit worth taking home!

Until next month, continue to “think FPRA!”

Kevin Christian, APR

What's Really Happening in Tourism in Marion County

Don’t miss our February 21 professional development program for a splash of marketing insight into making Marion County a preferred tourism destination. Join Loretta Shaffer, executive director for Marion County’s Tourist Development department and its Visitor and Convention Bureau, and Larry Meador, CEO of evok, the bureau’s advertising agency, as these top experts outline how they combined strategic efforts to put a new face on tourism for Florida’s fifth largest county.

Loretta Shaffer, CDME

Executive Director

Ocala/Marion County

Visitors and Convention Bureau

A seasoned tourism professional with in-depth knowledge of developing and delivering successful strategic plans and marketing strategies, Shaffer, who took the reigns of the Ocala/Marion Visitors and Convention Bureau at executive director in late 2012 is a Certified Destination Management Executive.

She has focused her career on business development, tourism, destination and community based-marketing management and has extensive leisure and meeting market experience, that includes an expertise in strategic alliance partnership development. Shaffer currently serves on the Visit Florida Cultural, Heritage, Rural and Nature (CHRN) Committee.

A graduate of Central Florida, Shaffer is a member of Destination Management Association International and is a recent recipient of DMAI’s Brand and Marketing Destination Champion Flagler Awards, presented by VISIT FLORIDA.

Larry Meador


evok advertising

Larry Meador, evōk advertising founder and CEO, is a passionate leader with a determined dedication to his team and clients. A graduate of the University of Florida, he has served as the American Advertising Federation Orlando President and was named a 40 Under 40 recipient by the Orlando Business Journal. He has created the number one “I” agency twitter following, and his ad agency is recognized by Forbes as a global leader in social media.

With more than 20 years in advertising, on both the client and agency sides, Meador has performed almost every role in advertising and marketing. Starting in public relations, he has subsequently held roles as a brand manager, creative director, media strategist, account planner and agency principal. With this experience he specializes in crafting an exacting approach for attaining client success. Larry possesses rich knowledge and experience in the travel and tourism industry. Among the many clients Meador has worked with include Walt Disney World Resorts and Sports Complex, Coca-Cola Southeast, SeaWorld, Hilton Hotels, Orange County Convention Center, Dodge, Southwest Airlines and now the Ocala/Marion County Visitors and Convention Bureau.


Fast Facts about the Mid-Florida Image Prep

–        Theme: ReciPe for Results

–        2014 Mid-Florida Local Image Awards Call for Entries and competition guidelines

–        Sponsorship Menu

–        All things Image website

–        Save the dates (see details of each workshop below)

o       Feb. 7, 2014: Image Workshop No. 1: Selecting the Best Ingredients for Your Entry

o       Feb 14, 2014: Image Workshop No. 2: Blending the Elements of Your Notebook

o       Feb. 28, 2014: Image Workshop No. 3: The Final Taste Test

o       March 17, 2014: Image entry deadline (see2014 Mid-Florida Local Image Awards Call for Entries and competition guidelines for drop-off locations)

o       April 25, 2014: Image awards gala at Community Technical & Adult Education from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.


Image Workshops

Don’t dine alone in February; attend three Image workshops with your FRPA Ocala Chapter team. Your committee will whet your appetite for all things Image and help you serve up a perfectly plated entry. Even if you are not planning to participate in the 2014 Mid-Florida Local Image Awards competition, the workshops will provide useful information that just might ignite an idea from last year’s work or help you start the planning process for an upcoming project.


Image Workshop No. 1: Selecting the Best Ingredients for Your Entry

Bring your lunch and find out more about the Image process. Our panel of experts will provide tips on what projects make good entries and on writing the two-page summary. We’ll also provide the actual judging sheet and examples of award-winning entries.

Feb. 7, 2014

United Way of Marion County |1401 NE Second St. |Ocala

11:45 a.m. – 1 p.m.


Image Workshop No. 2: Blending the Elements of Your Notebook

Join us for a continental breakfast as we identify what to include in your notebook.


Feb. 14, 2014

Duke Energy Ocala Administration (front building) | 4359 SE Maricamp Road | Ocala

8:15 – 9:15 a.m.


Image Workshop No. 3: The Final Taste Test

Bring your lunch and receive real-time feedback on your entry from our previous Image winners. Don’t worry; we’ll make sure competitors do not review each other’s entries.


Feb. 28, 2014

College of Central Florida | Ewers Century Center, Room 204 |3001 SW College Road | Ocala

11:45 a.m. – 1 p.m.


Image Sponsorships

Have connections within the community? We’re looking for sponsors to help us recognize our top chefs at our April 25 Image Awards gala. Our 2014 Sponsorship Menu is available on our website. For more information about sponsorships, contact Stephanie Hagins at


For more information about the Image workshops or opportunities for sponsorships, contact Image Chair Heather Danenhower, APR, at 352-563-4489 or

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