Quotes Corner

October 10, 2014

Lindsay Hudock







By: Lindsay Hudock
UCF Professor / FPRA Orlando VP of Student Outreach


The start of the fall semester at UCF is always hectic. Students struggle to get back into the academic groove, faculty mourn the end of the quiet summer months and traffic is a nightmare. This fall was different for me, because that’s when I stepped into the role of Quotes advisor. Don’t get me wrong, it’s no less hectic and traffic hasn’t improved one bit, but I’m invigorated by the opportunity and an amazing, dedicated student board.

We began the academic year with a brainstorming session to ask ourselves what Quotes is really about. The answer: Helping students bridge the gap between the academic and professional worlds. In our industry, students have to be more than well versed in what they learn in the classroom. They have to be poised, professional and able to network. These aren’t skills you develop in a class, they’re attributes you cultivate in the professional community. So our focus this year is simple; to create opportunities for Quotes members to engage and connect with the professional community.

Some tactics are all about making it more comfortable. Quotes is now organizing carpools to FPRA meetings. Students who are intimidated by arriving alone can meet on campus and ride with Quotes board members. This approach was tremendously successful in September when it resulted in 12 quotes members attending the monthly FPRA meeting, three times as many as the previous month.

Other tactics are about creating insight into the professional community. Two full days of agency tours are planned for students this semester. When asked in a survey what members would like to see on the agenda, the most consistently requested topic was “agency life.” Voce Communications and Edelman are already confirmed tour stops. The board is looking for others, so if you’d like to open your door to Quotes, please let me know. In addition to tours, the club plans to bring in speakers on other topics of interest such as media relations, personal branding and social media.

We’re also working to help students prepare the supporting materials needed for networking and the job hunt. Quotes is hosting a LinkedIn competition to encourage students to set up or clean up their LinkedIn profiles. A big thanks goes out to Macbeth photography who has agreed to come out to campus and offer free professional headshots to Quotes members so that their profile pictures are in line with their professional goals.

As one of the few Nicholson faculty to have been involved in Quotes as a student, I was excited for this role. What Quotes offered me back then was tremendously important to my professional development. The chance to support that same experience for current students is something I’m energized to be a part of.  And it’s something many of you have a chance to be a part of too. Quotes may be calling to see if you’ll share your insights or open your doors to the next generation of professionals. When they do, I hope you’ll say yes. It’s incredibly rewarding.


Renew Your Membership Today

October 9, 2014

By renewing your FPRA membership, you are setting yourself up for another powerful year of networking, professional development and personal growth. FPRA is one of the best investments you can make in your career. Renew today for a more prosperous tomorrow.

Renewing is easy! Simply follow one of the steps below:

Oops! Have you misplaced your renewal form or just don’t have it handy? No worries, click the link below:

Your FPRA membership will expire on October 31, 2014.  Yes, that’s Halloween!  To maintain your active membership status, renewal forms must be received no later than November 1.

Please note: the State office has a new policy this year re renewals: A change in policy occurred last year with each member who completes a membership application being charged a processing fee of $35. This is no longer a one-time fee. In addition, a member who does not renew by December 31, 2014, will be charged the full $180 renewal fee plus a late fee of $25 regardless of when they renew/rejoin through December 31, 2015. This policy change was put in place to prevent members from renewing in the middle of the year and receiving prorated dues. The prorated dues are only available to new members or those who have not been members for at least one year.

Member PRofile: Roger Pynn, APR, CPRC

October 9, 2014

By: Judy Froehlich











Roger Pynn, APR, CPRC, says that one of the best things to ever happen to him professionally was being told to get involved in FPRA leadership. Forty years ago, Pynn sat in the office of his first boss, the late Don McAllister, APR, explaining how he wasn’t getting much out of his FPRA membership. He had gone to some of the meetings and noticed many of the members were printers, sales people and people that just wanted to talk to the PR practitioners. Pynn remembers his boss looking over his glasses at him and saying, “Pynn, membership in FPRA isn’t an option. You are required to represent this firm (McAllister-Barker Associates) in the organization.  And if you don’t like the way the chapter looks, fix it.”

Forty years later, Roger Pynn is absolutely honored to be the most recent president-elect of the state association. Back then, Pynn joined with several of the friends he’d made in the chapter to take on the challenge of revamping the FPRA Orlando Area Chapter after being motivated by his boss to make a difference. After a few months, he was nominated to be president of the chapter. Joe Curley, APR, CPRC, was elected chapter secretary, promising he’d create a chapter newsletter and agreeing that the next year they would switch roles.

Pynn explained that he and Curley made a great team. They knew how to work well together and get things done. Ten years later, Curley was head of public relations at Martin Marietta, now Lockheed Martin, while Pynn was head of public relations at Westinghouse Power Generation. After five years of working in their positions, they were both faced with the decision of accepting a promotion and moving out of state. Instead of picking up and starting over in a new place, the two started their own company in Orlando.

Curley & Pynn (branded as The Strategic Firm®) is a leading public relations and marketing communications firm that provides public relations counsel and marketing communications management to corporate clients. Pynn says the firm has been a blessing. They have been able to work with companies in many sectors, including economic development, higher education, theme parks and many more amazing clients.  While Curley retired 8 years ago, Pynn says he isn’t going anywhere and is actively working with the firm’s next generation.

After 40 years of service with FPRA and growing his own successful firm, Pynn was approached to take on the role of president-elect of FPRA for next year. At first Pynn laughed, and then realized they were serious. While initially thinking they should go with someone younger, he decided how honored and excited he would be to represent the organization that has provided so much for his career and delivered so many friendships and opportunities.

“This organization provides opportunities for people to grow and mature.  I used to think FPRA was all about networking, and that is one of the great benefits of belonging to FPRA.  I also thought it was all about professional development.  It does give you great programming opportunities, classes and networking. But I am convinced that FPRA is really about leadership.  It gives you an opportunity to learn about becoming a leader.  How to lead people, how to lead projects, etc.  It positions members to be leaders in their community, not just in their profession,” said Pynn.

Asked his vision as president, Pynn explained for now his job is to be a really good first lieutenant for Rachel Smith, APR, CPRC, the existing state president of FPRA.  After that, we’ll have to wait and see.

Chapter Rewind: September 2014 Breakfast

October 6, 2014


By: Gabriel Soltren 












Kendra Ferguson, Local Marketing Specialist with IKEA Orlando was the guest speaker at our September chapter breakfast. Previously with A Gift for Teaching, Kendra is a graduate of Wake Forest University and the University of Florida.

To begin the presentation, Kendra shared that IKEA was founded in Sweden by Ingvar Kamprad when he was 19. “IKEA is an acronym for our founder’s name and the farm and village he was from,” she said. The company’s philosophy is to make a small profit margin and to sell a lot of volume.

Just last month for the first time, Kendra witnessed IKEA shoppers line up and some customers camp out for two days before the grand opening of their store in Merriam, Kansas City. At the Orlando store, customers travel from as far as Jacksonville. They target key demographic groups including the 27 percent Hispanic market in Orlando. Instructions for assembling furniture  are “all pictures because we work with so many languages,” Ferguson said. To promote IKEA, she pitches stories to bloggers and media outlets including CNN Latino.


Sept Breakfast













Not only does IKEA sell furniture, but they also support communities around the world. According to IKEA’s IWitness Global Citizens Blog, they donated more than $100 million in 2013 to assist some of the world’s poorest communities. For example, “the Brighter Lives for Refugees program provided $1 for every LED light bulb sold by IKEA,” Kendra said. The IKEA Foundation then donated the funds to provide lights for refugee camps.

Mom bloggers volunteered to live in darkness at home for one day and write about their experience. One mom wrote about hearing a sound coming from her closet while in the dark and wanting to turn on the light. Another mom wrote, “imagine changing a diaper in the dark,” she said. The bloggers then wrote that having just one light made them feel safer.

Kendra also quoted a 2012 Feeding America study, that found evidence to support that one in five households in Central Florida could not always afford groceries when they needed them. In light of that, IKEA partnered with Feeding America, the nation’s largest domestic hunger-relief agency, and sponsored a food program in their stores. While “IKEA donations are usually furniture, on Tuesdays, children eat for free at our store.”