FPRA Really Is For Leaders

The New Year kicked off with many opportunities for professional development through FPRA. My LeadershipFPRA class had two separate sessions this past month. The first session was part of the Counselor’s Network Winter Symposium. I found this session valuable because our class was able to bring up topics and ask questions of highly experienced PR professionals. This type of forum gave new perspectives and insights to workplace challenges and opportunities. I look forward to earning my CPRC so I can attend more CN events in the future!

Our second session covered the topic of government and was held in Tallahassee. While legislative processes are not items I work with on a daily basis, I went into today’s session having enough familiarity to keep up with what was being covered. The LeadershipFPRA class had the pleasure of starting the day off by attending the Capital Chapter’s monthly meeting. The speaker was Meredith Beatrice, Director of External Affairs for the 2017-2018 Constitution Revision Commission (CRC). Many thanks to the Capital Chapter for having us! I came away from that meeting with more knowledge of the CRC as well ideas for us to use in the Ocala Chapter.

After the meeting, our class headed to the Florida Supreme Court to meet with Craig Waters, the PIO for the Florida Supreme Court. Hearing his perspectives on the changing landscape of technology and social media in relation to his role was fascinating. We also had the opportunity to meet and ask questions of Former Supreme Court Justice Major Harding, Rep. Elizabeth Porter, Pete Dunbar, and Senator Denise Grimsley. Having the chance to speak with such high-profile individuals was a great experience for my class. During this session, we also toured the WFSU’s Florida Channel and were recognized as a class during a Senate session.

The biggest take-away I have from the Tallahassee session is the importance transparency and ethics have in our professional roles. Because of rapid changes in technology, presenting factual information within a context is extremely important. This is a reminder I believe everyone can take to heart.

Thank you to Joe Curley, APR, CPRC for the scholarship I received as part of the 2017 Joe Curley Rising Leaders Class of 2017. Your investment in me will not be squandered or forgotten! Thank you again to the Capital Chapter as well as April Salter, APR, CPRC and Colleen Thayer, APR, CPRC, who helped organize the Tallahassee session.

Applications for the next LeadershipFPRA class aren’t due until June, but why wait? Go ahead and apply to be one of the 21 chosen to participate in this outstanding program. This is truly a fantastic opportunity and I would highly recommend it to anyone who is looking to advance their PR career.

With gratitude,




OCALA, FL – The Ocala Chapter of the Florida Public Relations Association congratulates three members — Laura Byrnes, Allison Campbell and Lisa Varner — on becoming Certified Public Relations Counselors (CPRC).

Obtaining the CPRC credential is an extensive process, which requires candidates to pass written and oral exams that test their ability to present strategic solutions for accomplishing public relations goals, implementing crisis communication plans and solving public relations issues. Moreover, this advanced credential is not available to just anyone. Candidates must have their Accreditation in Public Relations (APR), which demonstrates a high level ofcompetence and dedication to the field, and at least 10 years of industry experience.

Laura Byrnes, APR, CPRC; Allison Campbell, APR, CPRC; and Lisa Varner, APR, CPRC  now stand among fewer than 100 public relations professionals in the state of Florida who have achieved this high-level certification.

FPRA created the CPRC certification program to recognize the professional growth and achievement of its senior members. When it comes to providing excellent, strategic public relations, employers can be confident in the capabilities of employees who carry the CPRC designation.

Local Public Relations Practitioner Earns Professional Certification

OCALA, FL – Kevin Christian, APR, CPRC of the Ocala Chapter of the Florida Public Relations Association (FPRA), recently earned professional certification in public relations and received the designation of CPRC, Certified Public Relations Counselor (CPRC). from the Florida Public Relations Association.

Christian joins an elite group of less than 90 practitioners statewide demonstrating the highest level of professionalism and advanced public relations consulting skills. Christian serves as the public relations officer and coordinator of Television Media Productions for Marion County Public Schools. Since 2001, Christian’s public relations efforts have earned the district more than 75 local, regional, state, and national awards. Previously, Christian was a television news anchor and reporter. He received his Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Lee University and his master’s in Broadcast Journalism from the University of Miami. Christian is the Ocala chapter president of FPRA. To sit for the CPRC day-long subjective exam administered by FPRA, candidates must possess the APR credential, Accredited in Public Relations, awarded by the Universal Accreditation Board. Candidates must also have at least 10 years of experience in public relations, and they must lead and pass a 30-minute oral presentation before CPRC-credentialed members. The Florida Public Relations Association is dedicated to developing public relations practitioners who, through ethical and standardized practices, enhance the public relations profession in Florida. The organization’s 15 professional and 12 student chapters provide professional development, networking and recognition opportunities for over 1,400 members across the state. FPRA is the nation’s oldest public relations organization, established by Lt. Col. John Dillon, APR, CPRC in 1938. For more information, visit www.fpra.org.