Welcome to 2011! I know it’s March already, but if you’re like me, you’re still trying to figure out how 2011 got here so quickly. I feel like I should still be in the middle of 2010. But ready or not, the New Year well underway, and it promises to be an exciting one for our profession and the PRSA Suburban Chicago Chapter.
We have a packed year in store for you, so if you haven’t been to a meeting in a while, come check us out. We still meet for dinner the second Tuesday of each month, except for July and August, at the Sheraton Suites-Elk Grove Village. This year we’re featuring speakers ranging from traditional and social media to advocacy, crisis management, and case studies on the impact of the Wall Street meltdown on local banks’ public relations efforts.
In addition to the monthly programs, we will continue our summer socials in June, July and August. Come relax and network with your colleagues in an informal atmosphere while experiencing some of Chicagoland’s most interesting restaurants. We have already hosted a one-day APR JumpStart February 26th for anyone interested in earning their accreditation, and are plannng a collaboration with our colleagues from the Illinois chapter of the National School Public Relations Association for a series of Saturday morning study groups this summer and fall. If you’re wondering if you are ready to start the process, are transitioning to public relations from another career discipline, or would just like a refresher course in public relations, this is a great way to recharge your career.
We’ve made several improvements over the past year, the most visible of which is our new website. Kudos to 2010 Outstanding Chapter Member of the Year Scott Winterroth for all his hard work in putting it all together. The most significant new improvement is that we can now accept payment for programs online by credit cards, an option for which many of you have asked. If you haven’t visited our website lately, stop by and check it out. Let us know what you think. Share white papers, blog posts or other original materials with your peers by submitting them to the site.
Our new website isn’t the only way to keep in touch. Connect with the Suburban Chicago Chapter and fellow Chicagoland PR pros through:
Finally, chapter participation is another great way to network and build your career. Are you an experienced PR professional with an area of particular interest? Or are you a new professional who wants to gain leadership experience, and build your network? We have just the right opportunity for you, either through existing committees or special projects. Contact any PRSA Suburban Chicago board member and we’ll help you get started.
A mentor once told me that you only get out of an organization what you put into it. He was partly right: When you put something into your career through PRSA, you gain many times more what you’ve invested. Do something for yourself this year and get involved with your chapter. Who knows where it might lead?
Debra Bethard-Caplick, MBA, APR
PRSA Suburban Chicago Chapter