President’s Message

August 13, 2019

Jeff Grainger, APR

We’re getting ready to put a bow on another fiscal year for your FPRA – Orlando Area Chapter. When I started the journey as president of the chapter, I privately resolved to not just block and tackle, but move the ball forward during my time as president. I’m happy to say, that with the help of a great Board and the great membership of our chapter, we’ve been successful.

We’ve made changes to our bylaws and procedures that will set us up for future success, set lofty goals and met them, and been recognized by our peers with two chapter management awards at the annual conference. I have so much appreciation and admiration for Jonathan Gabriel and Lindsay Hudock [not pictured below] for the great work they do with student outreach that earned our chapter an award; and for Kacie Escobar, APR, Jacqueline Kooser [not pictured below] and Kali Hammond for their work to help us earn the chapter financial management award.

As I listened to all the chapter awards being handed out, I was struck that, with very few exceptions, the things chapters were being recognized for were things that started in Orlando. I don’t say this to brag (OK, maybe a little bit), and I certainly don’t say it to degrade our fellow chapters. It was simply striking to recognize that by setting an example, we in Orlando continue to raise the value of the entire statewide organization. So, thank you to everyone who has given ideas, given feedback, planned, participated, entered, attended or supported the FPRA – Orlando Area Chapter in the past 12 months or before. The time you put in is truly recognized and appreciated.

I was also incredibly proud to see the size of the group that attended the conference and gathered for our chapter picture. If there truly is strength in numbers, we left no doubt about our strength.

When I see you at the Board Installation breakfast on Aug. 21, I’ll be excited to recognize two standout members this year. While we recognize two members with annual awards, I want to make sure you know that every member of the Board did outstanding work, but more importantly, we all came together to tackle challenges as a team.

The chapter is no doubt in good hands with our incoming board, which will be led by Megan Paquin, APR, CPRC. Our chapter, our Board, our members: we are leaders. Thank you for allowing me to lead your chapter this year.


Member PRofile: Kathryn Deen

July 30, 2019
Kathryn Deen

Kathryn Deen
Communications Director at City of Clermont

Give a brief explanation of your job.
As the public information officer for Lake County’s largest city, I oversee internal and external communications, including media relations, social media and brand management. I run our Citizens Academy, produce a monthly e-newsletter, give tours and community presentations, and inform our city manager, city council and directors. Also, I am the city’s business concierge, so I foster relationships with the Clermont Downtown Partnership, South Lake Chamber of Commerce, local business owners and many others.

How long have you been a member of FPRA and why did you join?
I’ve been a member of FPRA since November 2018. I joined because a mentor strongly recommended it. Also, I find networking and continuing education to be extremely important to excelling in the industry.

What has been your favorite FPRA event so far?
My favorite FPRA event so far was this year’s Media Mashup. I enjoyed meeting FPRA members and connecting with key media members, which has led to some wonderful news coverage already.

Tell us about an exciting achievement (personal or professional).
I have been recognized nationally and statewide for my writing, including by the Inland Press Association, Florida Society of News Editors, Florida Press Club and Florida Magazine Association. I’ve interviewed Olympians Ryan Lochte, Veronica Campbell Brown and Churandy Martina; American Idol winner Scotty McCreery and Academy Award-nominated actress Minnie Driver. My work has been published in magazines across the U.S. and Canada, including Women’s Health Magazine, Orlando Business Journal and the Sun Sentinel.

What was your first job?
My first job was as a copy editor for Seminole Media Group’s monthly newspaper, The Seminole Tribune, in Hollywood, Fla. I enjoyed getting to know members of the Seminole Tribe as I visited reservations across the state to write stories, take photos and host TV segments. Watching Tribal members wrestle alligators (underwater!), skin deer and make pumpkin frybread were among my highlights learning about their culture.

Fun fact:
My husband, Andy, and I love sailing together. We recently completed a weeklong sailing trip from St. Petersburg to Sarasota and back.

Contact Information:
Tel 352-241-7345 | Cell 352-348-1578 | kdeen@clermontfl.org