Monday, March 23, 2009

Flacks & Sacked Luncheon Lends Support to our Recently Laid-Off Journalists

More than 80 local advertising and PR folk hosted a lunch to lend moral support to at least 40 of our laid off journalist friends and to help them find new opportunities, hopefully in San Antonio. Many of the journalists were formerly at the San Antonio Express-News, which took a big hit a couple of weeks ago, despite being – as I was told – a profitable paper. A couple of folk at my table had been “copyboys” more than 35 years ago (though had left and returned since). There were many great minds in the room.

This creative and thoughtful event was organized by Michele Autenrieth Brown and Debi Aronson Pfitzenmaier. From what I can tell, they primarily used Facebook and e-mail to notify folk of the details. Alamo Café was gracious enough to agree to serve as the venue for this loud crowd.

It was great to see the faces of so many people who hadn’t seen each other in a long time. And many PR folk and journalists met each other for the first time after spending years working together via phone and e-mail.

The San Antonio PRSA Board just announced it is offering free job bank access to our journalist friends in the media affected by the economic downturn and subsequent layoffs. (There is never a charge for posting job openings.) Access to the job bank is also free to PRSA members. For more information go to our web site:

Kudos to Michele and Debi for giving us a forum to support our journalist colleagues!

And let me send a special thank you to our journalist friends for your years of dedication to truth and meaningful storytelling for the benefit of our community. Best of luck to you as you craft your next chapter.