PRestige March 2014


PResident's Perspective: PRioritizing - that's the business of PR

What is your typical work day like? How many emails do you receive each day? What about phone calls and messages? Do you have an open-door policy for discussion? Does your office open to the outside world so anyone can walk in? What about your calendar – how busy is it? Do you have those days where nothing gets accomplished? And other days where you can’t stop checking off the tasks? What about that project with a 5PM deadline? Or, those employee matters you have to deal with besides doing your own job?

Feeling overwhelmed yet? It’s March, and that means Image time. It also means time to polish up those “priority” abilities so you can put your most important and worthwhile efforts first.

It’s easy to get snowed in, caving to the pressure of having to do everything PR professionals are called upon to do (the list above and SO much more!). Remember, though – you’re only one person and your best is what you have to offer each and every time. Offering less puts your reputation and credibility on the line, and these two assets should never be called into question.

When you’re handed massive amounts of responsibility, speak up and say you’re prioritizing and doing what’s most important first; the other things will be done based on priority. Then start checking off at the top of the list and work your way down. Eventually, you will reach the bottom of the list… only to discover the list continues growing.

Such is life in the PR world. It’s what drives us crazy. It’s what eats away at our time. It’s what draws us into such a chaotic world at times. It’s what zaps us dry when it comes to energy, drive, and motivation. But it’s also what draws us into the PR world to begin with – an exciting adventure each and every day!

Determine your priorities, set your goals, and move toward meeting these goals. PR is an intense world offering a love-hate relationship most of the time. But it’s our profession, and we excel when we’re put to the test.

Until next month, continue to “think FPRA!”

Kevin Christian, APR Marion County Public Schools


Program Speaker: Devon Chestnut, APR, Public Affairs Manager, Cox Cable

Devon Chestnut is a public affairs manager for the Cox Southeast region. Cox’s Southeast region spans across the states of Florida, Georgia and Louisiana. Chestnut’s role includes managing the region’s internal communications for an employee base of over 2,000. In addition, she supports the region’s social media objectives as well as managing community outreach efforts within the Ocala/Marion County market.

Chestnut serves on several boards throughout the region to include: Boys & Girls Club of Alachua County – Vice President of Advocacy & Communication, Immediate Past-President of the Gainesville Chapter of the Florida Public Relations Association, and Vice President of Communications and Public Relations for the Florida Public Relations Associations State Executive Board. Chestnut is a graduate of Leadership Ocala/Marion Class 22 and Leadership Gainesville class 37.

A native of Ocala, Florida, Devon holds a B.S. in Communications and earned her Accreditation in Public Relations (APR) in 2012.

Devon and her husband Mark reside in Gainesville and have two children, Tyler (17) and Baylie (13).


Member Profile: Allison Campbell, APR

Where are you from? Cleveland, Tennessee

Affiliation with public relations: My bachelor’s degree is in sports broadcasting and my Master’s is in Political Communication, but while in graduate school, I realized that PR was my favorite aspect of communication. I had a terrific PR professor in grad school, Ken Wheeler, APR, who once served as his PRSA chapter’s president, so I guess he steered me in the right direction. After moving to Ocala I worked in marketing/PR and physician recruiting for Ocala Regional Medical Center/West Marion Community Hospital (before it became Ocala Health) and have been doing philanthropy and PR work for ARC Marion Foundation for the past six and a half years.

Little-known fact: Ummm, little known? I’m an open book. I’ve visited 28 states and at least 14 countries- mostly traveling to sing or do ministry in all of those places.


I can sing the 50 states in alphabetical order. (Thanks to Fifty Nifty United States by Ray Charles)

I know the Greek alphabet, because when I was seven, my friend’s older sister had to learn it when she pledged a sorority in college, and she taught it to us. I’ve had it memorized ever since.



What attracted you to FPRA? Tina Banner, APR, CPRC convinced me to join though I was reluctant. I’m so glad I did… so much fun, fellowship, camaraderie, and wealth of knowledge and information is shared at nearly every gathering. It’s fantastic to call these members my colleagues and friends.


Favorite aspect of PR: Integrated Communication approaches. I love the tactical side of a campaign… after all the research and plan, I love seeing it all unfold and utilizing different tactics to communicate the message.


Anything else to add? Is there anything else? J


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