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On the Case With…

Each month, as part of “The Business Case for Public Relations,” PRSA asks an industry leader to reflect on his or her career and make a “business case” for public relations.

More from “On the Case With…”

On the Case with Wynona Redmond

March 4, 2011

Wynona Redmond is the vice president of corporate social responsibility and communications at Northstar Lottery Group, the Chicago-based private operator of the Illinois Lottery. She is also president of the National Black Public Relations Society, and has served as senior counsel to the PRSA Board of Directors. Prior to this, Redmond was public affairs director for Oakbrook, Ill.-based supermarket chain Dominick’s Finer Foods.

Name: Wynona Redmond

Childhood ambition:
To write African-American romance novels because I never read any with characters that looked like me. I also wanted to do public relations to challenge the negative media coverage of inner cities like the West Side of Chicago where I grew up.

Current livelihood:
Vice president of CSR and communications for Northstar Lottery Group

What changed (i.e., how you became interested in public relations):
I found a book in the careers section of a library when I was a sophomore in high school — it was intriguing to learn about a profession that had few college majors in the field at that time.

First public relations job:
Assistant account executive at S&S Public Relations in Northbrook, Ill.

What you know now that you wish you’d known then:
To document and archive accomplishments and news clips better

Best piece of advice you’ve ever received:
My mother told my sister not to become too comfortable, and I took it to heart. I’m also a fan of “The Little Engine That Could” story.

Greatest professional accomplishment:
Volunteering for organizations like the National Black Public Relations Society and PRSA to mentor students and other professionals — seeing the success of many former interns and employees is rewarding

If you weren’t in public relations, you would be:
A professional public speaker, a life coach and a nonprofit consultant. I’m passionate about communication. I love championing people and causes that need a voice.

Desired legacy:
Sustained success in people and work that I’ve developed

Make a “business case” for public relations:
Successful public relations and communications allow a company to keep supportive employees, shareholders and customers whether sales results are positive or negative.


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