Hear our distinguished panel of accredited in public relations (APR) professionals discuss strategic planning in public relations; the importance of research, planning, implementation and evaluation; their insights on the impact of COVID-19 and how accreditation can help you weather through any crisis.

This meeting was recorded on April 28, 2020 and includes the following panelists:

Michelle Olson, APR
National PRSA Board Member

Michelle Olson, APR

Michelle is General Manager of the Phoenix, Arizona office of Lambert & Co., the Michigan-based integrated communications agency. With more than 30 years in public relations and integrated marketing, Michelle has served clients across the U.S. and internationally, and has significant experience in corporate communications and issues management across industries, with particular expertise in healthcare, land use, hospitality and sustainability. She is a notable business leader and entrepreneur, having founded and led her own company prior to its acquisition in 2014. Michelle was recently elected to a second term on the board of directors for PRSA and previously chaired the Counselors Academy, PRSA’s national section for agency owners and leaders. She currently serves as an advisor to PRSSA, mentoring its national student committee and assisting at its governing assembly and leadership rally.

Carolyn Smith Casertano, APR
Professor of Practice,
University of Arizona Department of Communications

Carolyn Casertano, MA, APR

Carolyn received her MA in Communication and Leadership from Gonzaga University and her BA in Journalism from the University of Arizona. She is an award-winning communications professional with over two decades of professional expertise in strategic planning, message development and implementation, media relations, crisis communications, thought leadership, advocacy and brand positioning. She has worked for a variety of clients within the non-profit, corporate and agency sector, and as a consultant in marketing, communications and public relations. Prior to joining the University of Arizona, she managed high-profile campaigns with the National Football League (NFL), National Hockey League (NHL), Coaches vs. Cancer, numerous celebrities and influencers on behalf of the American Cancer Society. She is a member of the PRSA Educators Academy, and serves on the Board of Directors for the Western District of PRSA and the local Southern Arizona chapter. She also serves as the faculty adviser for the Public Relations Student Society of America University of Arizona chapter.

Melany Stroupe, APR
Senior Manager, Media Relations,
University of Phoenix

Melany Stroupe, APR

Melany Stroupe’s career in PR spans more than 16 years in education, telecommunications and non-profit. In her role at University of Phoenix, she oversees all the media relations for the University, including creating and implementing integrated communications plans for the college of nursing, healthcare, business, IT, social sciences, and education. She provides strategic communications counsel to leadership, local campus directors and teams for brand reputation and crisis management. Melany has been a member of PRSA throughout her career and credits the organization with much of her professional development including earning her APR in 2010. She served on the PRSA board for four years, three as the APR chair.

Panel Moderator:

Jan Howard, APR
Partner, NüPOINT Marketing

Jan Howard, APR

Jan has 30 years of experience in public relations, integrated marketing, media (from The Tulsa Daily World to Reuters), legislative advocacy, fund raising, risk management communications, employee communications and consumer relations. Nationally accredited in PR, Jan began her career in Washington, DC, as a lobbyist for an international oil firm, and then covered the industry as Oil & Gas editor for a major newspaper. She moved to Tucson in 1989 to lead the marketing launch of what is now known as the Sarver Heart Center for the University of Arizona Health Sciences Center. She joined Carondelet Health Network, Southern Arizona’s largest health care provider, leading marketing and public relations, including recruitment advertising and outreach. After 22 years of promoting health care services, Jan joined NüPOINT to apply her knowledge and expertise to other industry sectors. Jan was named Inside Tucson Business’s Woman of Influence – Mentorship in 2015. A past president of the Public Relations Society of American Tucson Chapter, and served on PRSA’s Western Region board.

Download our one-sheet overview to learn how achieving your accreditation in public relations (APR) is the path to becoming a PR game changer.

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