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Deborah A. Silverman, Ph.D., APR, Fellow PRSA

Title: Treasurer
Deborah A. Silverman, Ph.D., APR, Fellow PRSA, is 2016 treasurer for PRSA. She completed two two-year terms (2014-2015 and 2009-2010) as a director at large on the PRSA Board of Directors and is a past chair of PRSA’s Board of Ethics and Professional Standards (BEPS).

She has been active in PRSA at the chapter, district and national levels. As chair of BEPS since July 2011, she has worked with BEPS members to expand its educational outreach efforts through conference presentations and workshops, updates to its Professional Standards Advisories, ethics webpages, ethics case studies, and ethics quiz and coordinated activities for Ethics Month.

Named to the College of Fellows in 2012, Silverman was a GoodFellow mentor in 2013 and has served as a Silver Anvil Awards judge.

Silverman was a member of the Commission on Public Relations Education (2011 and 2012), helping to write the Commission’s report on standards for graduate education in public relations. In 2011-2012, she was one of seven members of PRSA’s PR Defined Task Force, which produced a new industry-wide definition of “public relations” in collaboration with 12 PR industry partners.

Previously, she served as PRSA Northeast District chair, chair-elect, and chair of the district conference; as a member of the Leadership Volunteer Continuum Task Force; and on the Buffalo Niagara chapter’s Board of Directors as its Assembly delegate.
She is an associate professor and former associate chair (2011-2013) of the SUNY Buffalo State Communication Department, which has 850 undergraduates, including 200 in the PR-advertising major, and 25 graduate students in the multidisciplinary master’s degree in PR program, which she directs. Her academic research focuses on the role of ethics in the PR curriculum and workplace, service learning, and crisis communication. She has been the faculty advisor to Buffalo State’s PRSSA chapter since 2007 and previously founded the PRSSA chapter at another SUNY institution, the University at Buffalo.

Dr. Silverman was a public relations practitioner for over 20 years, mainly in higher education and nonprofit organizations, before becoming a full-time educator in 2002.

She completed her bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the State University of New York College at Fredonia and a Ph.D. degree at SUNY University at Buffalo. She is the recipient of several awards, including the Distinguished Service Award (Buffalo Niagara PRSA), Outstanding Practitioner of the Year (Buffalo Niagara PRSA), Faculty Appreciation Award (SUNY Buffalo State), Outstanding Faculty Commitment to Service Learning Award (SUNY Buffalo State), and Influential Professor Award (SUNY University at Buffalo).
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