Category Archives: Networking

PRSA Silicon Valley Launches New Video Series: “Dose of Diversity”

Call for Interviewees

VanessaVillatoroPRSA Silicon Valley acknowledges the importance of having a strong, diverse community with members of mixed race, gender, ethnicity and sexual-orientation. Raising awareness about diversity concepts, attracting more diverse group members, and providing PR/business professional development and support to all is key to our mission as a chapter.

In an effort to highlight our diverse group, we have developed a new outlet for our members to share their personal and professional stories with the wider community. PRSA SV is delighted to introduce a new video series titled, “Dose of Diversity.” We need your help to build a great lineup of interviewees!

This new outlet will allow business professionals in and outside of our community to showcase their professional development, share what makes them unique and diverse within their communities and industries, and provide insights which will be invaluable for our members who aspire to progress their professional careers.

As a diverse chapter, we bring together different experiences and knowledge in order to collaborate, generate new ideas and spark new conversations – all key traits for a well-rounded PR professional. Help support the cause!

If you’d like to be featured, or know someone who’d be a great fit, please contact Vanessa Villatoro at!


PRSA Silicon Valley Hard at Work for You in 2012

Hello Silicon Valley Communications Pros:

Following is an update on how PRSA Silicon Valley is working for you. This year our goal is to define PRSA Silicon Valley’s brand voice and value through:

  • Fewer, quality signature events
  • Invigorating the board and committees
  • Inspiring action and discussion via the PRSA online and social experience
  • Preparing for and participating in the PRSA Silicon Valley 2012 conference

We are pleased about the results so far:Silicon Valley Future of PR, Leader Dinners, Networking and Inside the Newsroom hosted (90-175 attendees per event and more on the way)

New sponsors and sponsorships


13 active board and committee members:
Both in-house and agency strongly represented (33%increase y/y)


Chapter mentor program: Let chair Mar Junge know if you can participate.


Join us on Facebook, LinkedIn and @prsasv.

Tickets are on sale now for AllThingsD at Facebook HQ. If you would like to sponsor an event or this year’s MEDIA PREDICTS: 2013, please Tweet or email Ellie Javadi.

The PRSA International Conference is this October is coming too. We’ll be there. Will you?

Vanessa Yanez, @vanessa_yanez_
President, PRSA Silicon Valley

Keep your edge sharp with PRSA Silicon Valley Professional Development workshops

Three Friday morning professional tune-ups coming up

David Vossbrink, PRSA Silicon Valley Past President, Director of Communications for City of San Jose,, @dvossbrink

Seasoned PR veterans and up-and-comers can sharpen their professional edge with three great workshops from PRSA Silicon Valley starting Friday, August 3.

We live and work in a fast changing and hard charging world, but we still must take time to learn new skills, and relearn the basics, to do our best for our companies and our clients.  After all, as Gandhi once said, “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”

Our first workshop in the series is this Friday, August 3, when David Metz, partner at survey research firm Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin, Metz & Associates, will give us practical advice on a variety of formal and informal research tools that can help us plan our programs and evaluate our results.

Metz will talk about how to ask questions and design surveys; the differences between market research and political research; measurement for PR campaigns; and value of alternatives ranging from casual “dipstick polls” to formal survey research – as well as the use of surveys by PR to generate news.

If you ever have had to answer your boss’s question, “how do we know that?” – you must be there.  Anyone who is considering PRSA accreditation should sign up, since research and evaluation are among the fundamental elements of solid public relations. And just to be better equipped to interpret the vast array of surveys and statistics that fill media channels these days, this workshop will be invaluable.

On Friday, August 17, Carla Oakley, partner at the San Francisco law firm Morgan Lewis will cover PR and the law.  And there is no shortage of legal matters relevant to public relations, such as copyright and fair use; the rights of media, disclosure requirements, privacy and technology; the constantly changing challenges presented by new media; and the relationship and sometimes tension between the lawyers and the PR team within an organization – especially in the face of a crisis.

The best organizations recognize that advice from both the legal and the PR teams is essential for success. Oakley will help us understand the issues and the ways we can work with the lawyers to navigate the treacherous waters of communications.

Our final workshop for this year’s professional development series will be on Friday, September 21 when Jim Balassone from the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University will discuss Ethics and Public Relations.  He will give us an overview of ethics and ethical decision making; ethical organizational cultures; new challenges and issues emerging from technology; conflicts of interests; telling truth to power; and distinctions between ethical requirements, legal requirements, and perception requirements.

We’ve seen no shortage of organizational meltdowns in the past few years because of ethical breakdowns. PR has a critical role to play to steer a right course that can help prevent and correct them.  Balassone will give valuable insight on how PR professionals can provide this leadership.

All sessions will be held at Friday mornings from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. at Microsoft’s Mountain View campus at 1065 La Avenida (thank you, Microsoft, for providing the venue for PRSA!).  Your registration fee includes continental breakfast.  Go to to register:

members (and partners) – $25; non-members – $40; students – $20.

You Don’t Need HBO to Get a Look Inside the Newsroom

by Matt Ceniceros | Applied Materials, Director, Media Relations | @mattceni

I’m excited to announce the next edition of the Inside the Newsroom series will feature staff from top technology, Internet and media web site, AllThingsD on Aug 28 and hosted at Facebook in Menlo Park.

Our presenters will include Kara Swisher, Mike Isaac, Ina Fried and Liz Gannes will discuss the trends driving the latest technology, Internet and media investment cycle, their approach to building stories and how they prefer working with PR professionals. And, just maybe a story or two about Yahoo!

The PRSA Silicon Valley “Inside the Newsroom” series provides a unique look inside an outlet’s editorial curtain to reveal the behind-the-scenes environment of some of the biggest, most influential media companies.  Just last month PRSA Silicon Valley hosted the editorial staff at Bloomberg BusinessWeek  discuss how journalists from the online, print and broadcast disciplines come together to provide its audiences comprehensive coverage of the top stories in business. I’d like to again thank our sponsors BusinessWire and our host, Microsoft, and the many companies and agencies who joined us including: Oracle, Intel, Facebook, Global Foundries, Applied Materials, and Fleishman-Hillard, Edelman Access PR, Airfoil and JagWire Group.

With an amazing venue, captivating roster of journalists, there’s not much you can’t “Like” about the program. THE event will be Aug. 28 at will kickoff at 6pm with time for networking, eats and drinks. The panel discussion will begin at 7pm. Information on registration and group discounts can be found on the PRSA Silicon Valley website. You can also follow the conversation on our Facebook page and Twitter feed @prsasv.

The Inside the Newsroom series requires a dedicated group of professionals who take time out of their busy work schedules and personal time to bring this amazing programming to PRSA members. I’d like to especially thank:

  • Emelyne Interior, Katie Sarro, Tim Rathschmidt, Fleishman-Hillard
  • Clark Hsu, Edelman
  • Amanda Crnkovich, Citrix
  • Julie Strong, BusinessWire
  • Ellie Javadi, Stanford Research
  • Camelia Gendreau, Borders + Gratehouse

I’d like to extend a special thank you to our host at Facebook and lead for the AllThingsD panel, Ashley Zandy.

If you appreciate this effort, show it. Attend the event, contact us and volunteer. The industry and your resume will “Like” it.

Thanks for your time and support. I look forward to seeing you in August. Check back here on the blog or any of our social network accounts for updates.

PRSA Silicon Valley in 2012 – Programs Designed for Silicon Valley’s Trusted Advisors

By Vanessa Yanez, PRSA Silicon Valley President

My name is Vanessa Yanez and this is my inaugural blog as President of PRSA Silicon Valley. Let’s talk about good PR.

Whether we agree or not on what the definition of public relations should be, we all, as public relations pros, “know it when we see it” – to quote a famous Supreme Court ruling. Or, rather, we see it when it is well done.

Influencer relations and engagement are today’s game. PR has more constituencies, opportunities and tools than ever and we’re not afraid to partner with non-traditional allies in the ad world.

Public relations in Silicon Valley has always been defined by agility and opportunism. Those two qualities are more valuable than ever before, thanks to the information explosion – news, defined and redefined, comes at us faster and in larger quantities.

Trusted advisors make sense of it all, while positioning, aligning and storytelling through new mediums. So, what is PRSA Silicon Valley doing to lift its members to new levels?

Since the 50’s, PRSA Silicon Valley’s community efforts have included research, discussion and study of the problems and techniques of the profession. In that spirit, I’m pleased to share with you plans on tap for 2012 and 2013. If you’d like to get involved, click links to send direct messages.

•    The Blockbuster/Inside the Newsroom series starts June 12, running through 2013: WIRED, Bloomberg/BusinessWeek (just confirmed for June), and VentureBeat are lined-up. Matt Ceniceros, Media Relations Director, Applied Materials @mattceni
•    Senior Leaders events are engaging the cream of the Valley PR community. Dinners are invite-only and quarterly. David McCulloch, Public Relations Director, Cisco Systems @DavidMcCulloch
•    Professional development workshops on ethics and crisis communications. Upcoming sessions in July and August. David Vossbrink, Director of Communications, City of San Jose
•    The 2012 PRSA National Convention is coming to the Bay Area. Our PRSA Silicon Valley delegation is preparing and partnering with the PRSA San Francisco chapter for the coming 2012 convention. Clark Hsu, Edelman @clarkhsu23
•    Mentorship program – Young Professionals group. Mar Junge, Principal & Founder, c3PR @c3PR
•    Signature Event – MEDIA PREDICTS: 2013. Paula Dunne, President & CEO, Contos Dunne Communications @BRAND_BUILDPWR
As the new president of the Silicon Valley chapter of the PRSA, I’m here to tell you: get excited! Follow me and our board on Twitter and check back soon for our bi-weekly contributed series.

Vanessa Yanez
President — PRSA Silicon Valley

First PRSA Silicon Valley Networking Event of 2009 is Next Week!

PRSA Silicon Valley invites you to our first 2009 networking event at Blue Chalk in Palo Alto on Thursday, Feb. 26 from 6 – 8 p.m.

PRSA Silicon Valley’s networking events provide a good opportunity to connect with peers, clients and friends. And, as always, we include a forum for job seekers to learn about job opportunities and for employers to discuss job openings with active PR professionals.

All are invited and attire is work-casual. Come straight from the office and bring a co-worker or friend. We look forward to seeing you!

One free glass of wine or beer to the first 20 to arrive. Light refreshements included.
Date & Time: Thursday, February 26, 2009, 6 to 8 p.m.
Cost: $15 for PRSA Silicon Valley members, $20 for non-members
Location: Blue Chalk is located at 630 Ramona Street in Palo Alto across from City Hall.

Register Now!