Rob Merritt Named to PRSA Counselors Academy Exec Committee

Rhea + Kaiser Vice President, Director of Public Relations Rob Merritt, APR, has been named to the 2016 Executive Committee for the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) Counselors Academy.

Counselors Academy is a national professional interest section of PRSA that focuses on the business of agency PR. Its entrepreneurial members are owners or senior managers of leading independent firms in the U.S. and Canada. Counselors Academy’s programs foster networking, mentoring and learning.

“PRSA and Counselors Academy provide invaluable education for communications professionals in Chicago and across the U.S., and I am very excited to serve on the Executive Committee,” said Merritt.

At its recent meeting, the Counselors Academy executive committee elected Martin Waxman, APR, of Martin Waxman Communications in Toronto, as its 2016 chair. Waxman conducts digital training and is a social media and communications strategist. He has founded three PR agencies, teaches digital strategy and co-hosts of the “Inside PR” podcast.

“When I started my firm, one of my first decisions was to join PRSA Counselors Academy,” said Waxman. “It’s been the one of the best things I’ve done from a business learning perspective. And it helped me build close relationships with smart, open professionals I know I can trust.”

“I’m really passionate about taking on the chairmanship. We’re focused on a three-year approach to grow and engage our membership, continue to make our conference and professional development strong and relevant, and expand our expertise in digital and traditional communications,” explained Waxman.

This year’s PRSA Counselors Academy Spring Conference will be held May 1-3 in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Known for its robust networking and learning opportunities, the Spring Conference enables collaborative peer relationships to share and learn meaningful business counsel, operational best practices and the latest industry trends.

In addition to Merritt and Waxman, other members of the 2016 PRSA Counselors Academy Executive Committee are:

  • Tom Garrity, president, The Garrity Group, chair-elect
  • Dana Hughens, CEO, Clairmont Communications, secretary
  • Chuck Norman, APR, principal, S&A Communications, treasurer
  • Abbie S. Fink, vice president/general manager, HMA Public Relations, immediate past chair
  • Ann Barks, APR, principal, Ann Barks Public Relations
  • Aaron Blank, CEO and president, The Fearey Group
  • Alice Chapman, partner, MP&F Public Relations
  • Julie Curtin, executive vice president and Partner, DCI
  • Lisa Gerber, CEO, Big Leap Creative
  • Jon Goldberg, chief reputation architect, Reputation Architects Inc.
  • Pam Golden, president, GLA Communications
  • Alison King, president, Media Profile
  • Rebecca Mosley, founding partner, Duo PR
  • Jennifer Thompson, president and CEO, Thompson & Co. Public Relations

For more information on Counselors Academy, visit or follow it on Twitter at @caprsa.


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