PRSA-NY Recognizes PR Industry’s Rising Young Talent with Presentation of 15 Under 35 Awards

by | Nov 16, 2017

Fifteen of the most promising young leaders working in communications in the New York metropolitan area were honored on Friday, November 3 with PRSA-NY 15 Under 35 Awards, presented by the New York Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA-NY) at a luncheon held at Blue Water Grill in New York’s Union Square neighborhood.

The awards, now in their second year, acknowledge and celebrate 15 of the foremost emerging leaders in communications in the New York metro area, the global center of media. The awards stand apart in being the only of their kind honoring rising New York PR professionals, awarded exclusively by those best equipped to judge: New York PR professionals.

Following a six-week open nominations process, the recipients were chosen by a panel of distinguished industry judges as representing the “Best of the Best” among public relations practitioners ages 35 and younger, with more than five years of work experience in the New York City metropolitan area.

“This program recognizes emerging talent who are charting the future of our profession, and making serious contributions today,” said Olga González, President, PRSA-NY. “Throughout 2018, this body of inspiring and ambitious young talent will have a seat on our Board’s Young Professionals Advisory Committee, and an open invitation to attend all PRSA-NY board meetings. Every honoree will also receive a one-year membership in PRSA and PRSA-NY, courtesy of Business Wire, the program’s lead sponsor.”

The luncheon’s keynote speaker, Sara Skirboll, embodies the letter and spirit of the awards. After building her career at highly-regarded PR agencies in New York City, Skirboll, not yet 35 herself, was tapped by Austin, Texas-based savings destination RetailMeNot, which she regularly represents in top national and local media as its Shopping and Trends Expert.

This year’s 15 Under 35 honorees are an outstanding group of young professionals. They are (in alphabetical order):

  • Melissa Baratta, Senior Vice President, Affect
  • Al Chen, Co-Founder, Coopertize; Co-founder, Keycuts Excel Consulting
  • Melissa Duren Conner, Partner and Managing Director, Jennifer Bett Communications
  • Natan Edelsburg, Chief Operating Officer, Muck Rack
  • Cynthia Inacio, Vice President, King + Company
  • Meredith Lejeune, Owner, Thought Bubble Communications
  • Michele Mendelson, Account Supervisor, Kwittken
  • Stephanie Meyering, Account Supervisor, Kellen
  • Kerry L O’Grady, Clinical Assistant Professor, Public Relations and Corporate Communications, New York University
  • James O’Malley, Senior Vice President, North America Analytics Lead, Porter Novelli
  • Alexandra Peterson, Senior Vice President, GCI Health
  • Maria Ramirez, Public Relations Manager, Fidelis Care
  • Elliot Schimel, CEO, Mission Control Marketing
  • Brian Shiver, Senior Director, Special Situations Team, Strategic Communications Segment, FTI Consulting
  • Emily Simmons, Managing Account Supervisor, Ketchum

Joining Business Wire as event sponsors were 360PR+, SHIFT Communications, Affect, The Doescher Group and Ketchum. Wine was provided courtesy of Carlo Huber Selections.

To join the conversation, please use the following hashtags #PRSANY #15toFollow

Bulldog Reporter
Bulldog Reporter is a leader in media intelligence supplying news, analysis and high-level training content to public relations and corporate communications professionals with the mission of helping these practitioners achieve superior competitive performance.


AI and the Future of Media: Q&A with Tech Unmasker Pete Pachal

AI and the Future of Media: Q&A with Tech Unmasker Pete Pachal

Way back in 2017, I predicted in a VentureBeat guest post that PR people will be getting superpowers in a single year.  Unfortunately, I was off by about seven years. Regardless, it’s here now, and it’s far bigger than I imagined. The influence of AI on journalism...