(Banner graphic of PRSA 2019 International Conference logo)

PRSA 2019 International Conference

Innovate. Inspire. Engage. Influence.

Oct. 20–22 | San Diego

Pre-Conference Seminars

Make plans now to arrive in Austin early and participate in a Pre-Conference* seminar. These seminars will give you additional takeaways, and are a great way to get a head start on your Conference experience!

Saturday, Oct. 6, 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m.*

Need to Know: Crisis or Disaster “Best Practices” – National Incident Management System and YOU*

It’s no secret — EVERY senior communications professional needs to know about Incident Command System (ICS), the system mandated by the government for any crisis or disaster involving government. And tell us, what adverse event doesn’t involve the government? If you want to be a valued player in the next incident (both planned and unplanned), then you need NIMS training for spokespersons. PLUS, for those in the private sector, gaining expertise in ICS makes you much more effective, eligible for deployment in an incident and marketable as a crisis communications professional.


Capt. Brook DeWalt, APR+M, Fellow PRSA, chief of public affairs, U.S. Strategic Command
Lauri-Ellen Smith, APR, director of community relations, City of Pascagoula, Miss.
Joseph V. Trahan III, Ph.D., APR, Fellow PRSA, president/CEO, Trahan & Associates


Sunday, Oct. 7, 8 a.m.–Noon: Concurrent Seminars*

PR Strategy: Achieving Measurable Outcomes With Behavioral Planning*

Too often, our strategic plans are short-changed by time, budget and know-how. This workshop will teach you how to build a comprehensive, behavioral strategic plan, plus give you an opportunity to begin to develop the framework of a strategic plan you can use. Bring your current organization and department goals. We will identify priority audiences, opinion leaders, behavioral goals, latent readiness and research needs before doing an environmental scan. After learning about relevant strategies and theories for achieving behavioral goals critical for effective outcomes, we will identify and outline activities and a timeline. Finally, we will determine how to evaluate the plan to prove its worth.


Stacey Smith, APR, Fellow PRSA, senior counsel and partner, Jackson Jackson & Wagner  

PR Boot Camp: Key Concepts and Techniques of Effective Public Relations*

The symbiosis between public relations and journalism is long-standing, so for many it is a natural transition into the profession. This boot camp will equip you with the knowledge and information you need to build your new career in the public relations industry, whether you are a reporter, recent graduate or transitioning professional.


Robin Schell, APR, Fellow PRSA, senior counsel and partner, Jackson Jackson & Wagner


Executive Ghostwriting: Helping Senior Leaders Communicate Authentically

Customers, employees and other stakeholders want authentic communication from leaders, brands and organizations. Executives and thought leaders want to communicate better — and more often — but don’t have the time to create compelling, creative content across multiple platforms. A skilled executive ghostwriter can bridge the gap. Learn how to overcome the obstacles to good executive ghostwriting.


Blythe Campbell, APR, president, Blythe Campbell Communications


Hands-On Crisis Communication Training: Applying “Claim It, Name It and Frame It” to Make Crisis Communication Work for You

For those who don’t deal with crisis communication situations on a routine basis, being thrown into a crisis situation without past experience or without a working theory on how to deal with a crisis are often left wondering how to effectively and strategically move forward. In this half-day pre-Conference session, participants will learn both effective communications strategies to move them forward as well as work through a multi-step mock crisis scenario to give them experience in applying the strategies under real-world time pressures.


Paul Omodt, APR, owner and principal, Omodt & Associates Critical Communications


When to Use Videos — And Learn How to Make Them Yourself

This session will teach you how to shoot and edit videos that can be used in media pitches and on social media.


Jason Maderer, Georgia Institute of Technology, National Media Relations, Institute Communications


Calculating the ROI on Your Communications

Conducting research and measurement can be a lot simpler than most communicators think, and often doesn’t require a survey of any kind. Using timing correlations or pilot/control groups can isolate the exact amount of impact communication had on behavior change, which lets us calculate a credible ROI for the incremental financial value we have added to our organization’s bottom line.


Angela Sinickas, ABC, IABC Fellow, CEO, Sinickas Communications Inc.

*Pre-registration required. Open to all. Additional registration fees apply. Saturday’s all-day program is $500. Sunday morning programs are $350.