September is PRSA Ethics Month

As PRSA members, we are obligated to operate ethically in accordance with the Code of Ethics. That means serving the public good by being professional, truthful, accurate and fair. The reputation of our membership depends upon the ethical conduct of everyone affiliated with PRSA.

As we observe Ethics Month throughout September, it’s important to remember that following ethical principles is necessary year-round. To help you navigate some of the challenges you might face, below are some of the ethics-related activities and programs available this month:

Sept. 5 (3 p.m.)
Webinar: PR Ethics: Take It Personally
Robby Johnson, APR, Ethics Chair, PRSA Alabama and Stacy Smith, APR, Fellow PRSA, past Ethics Chair, PRSA Alabama present the Chapter’s 2018 campaign to promote ethics in PR and discuss how it drove member engagement and increased awareness in their community.

Sept. 10 (1 p.m.)
Conference Call: Moral Reasoning and Development Across Industries of Mass Communications
This study examined how professional journalists, public relations executives and advertising executives scored in a moral development test. There have been significant changes since a similar study was conducted 10 years ago. Marlene S. Neill Ph.D., APR (our Sept. 25 luncheon speaker) and AEJMC Media Ethics Division Head and Programming Chair will lead a discussion of potential factors impacting the results.

Sept. 18 (1 p.m.)
Twitter chat: Legal and Ethical Dimensions: Using Online Data for Public Relations Strategies
Join the discussion at #PREthics (and tag @PRSARVA in your posts to let everyone know you are a member of the PRSA Richmond Chapter).

Sept. 19 (9 p.m.)
Twitter chat: PR Licensing—-“Enhancing the Profession”
Join the discussion at #PREthics (and tag @PRSARVA in your posts to let everyone know you are a member of the PRSA Richmond Chapter).

Sept. 24 (7 p.m.)
Twitter chat: Fighting for Ethical Integrity in a Time of Fake News, Misinformation and Disinformation

Join the discussion at #PREthics (and tag @PRSARVA in your posts to let everyone know you are a member of the PRSA Richmond Chapter).

Sept. 25 (12 p.m.)

PRSA Richmond Chapter luncheon

Topic: How to Speak Up and Keep Your Job

Speaker: Marlene S. Neill Ph.D., APR associate professor and graduate program director at Baylor University

Many senior public relations executives consider ethics counsel to be one of their core responsibilities because ethical conduct is associated with trust and credibility. Raising ethical concerns to more senior leaders, however, can be quite intimidating. Dr. Neill will discuss how “speaking truth to power” can have serious consequences for someone’s career. Her presentation will cover insights based on nearly 150 in-depth interviews with public relations executives—professionals working in a variety of industries, as well as original survey research. Learn about the process of gaining influence and the mistakes to avoid when navigating internal politics. Many of the lessons are applicable to public relations counsel generally.

Sept. 26 (12 p.m.)
Webinar: Social Media, The Law and Public Relations Practice
Cayce Myers, Ph.D., LL.M., J.D., APR examines the major legal trends affecting the practice of public relations and digital communication, including social media policymaking, regulations of social media promotions and ownership of social media content. Myers is an Associate Professor in Virginia Tech’s Department of Communication where he teaches public relations. He also serves as the legal research editor for the Institute for Public Relations.

Dawn Eischen, APR, is PRSA Richmond’s Ethics Officer. She has been a public relations professional for 20 years, serving as a strategic communications advisor and spokesperson for state government and nonprofit organizations. She is currently a public relations manager at the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority.