PRSA Board Renews Murray’s Contract

NEW YORK (Aug. 18, 2009) — At its quarterly meeting in July, the 17-member Board of Directors of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) voted unanimously to renew the employment contract of President and Chief Operating Officer William M. Murray through January 2012.

As the top staff member at the world’s largest organization of public relations professionals, with more than 32,000 professional and student members, Murray has worked closely with PRSA’s Board of Directors and volunteer leaders to transform the organization in significant ways.

“The board of directors could not be more pleased with the business savvy, financial control and association management expertise that Bill has brought to PRSA,” says Michael G. Cherenson, APR, 2009 PRSA chair and chief executive officer. “At a time of fantastic change within the public relations industry, he has taken a number of concrete steps to more efficiently and effectively serve the wants and needs of our members, while at the same time achieving record financial results for the organization over the past two years.”

Under Murray’s leadership, PRSA has rationalized its marketing strategy, designed new business models, and set forth key organizational priorities and performance indicators in the Society’s current three-year strategic plan. The organization also has introduced the concept of member segmentation, which required undertaking extensive member research, reorganizing member demographic information, designing a new database, and reporting systems and tailoring service offerings to the different member segments.

In addition, Murray has played a central role in identifying and initiating an extensive slate of major projects. They include a redesign of PRSA’s Web site, scheduled for launch in the fall, as well as the organization’s highly regarded “Jobcenter” job board; implementing a new business model for PRSA’s Professional Interest Sections, micro communities that serve the needs of public relations professionals in specific practice areas; and driving a multi-year, multi-level advocacy campaign for the public relations profession, called “The Business Case for Public RelationsTM.”

Financial terms of the contract, finalized today, were not disclosed. Like many other federally tax-exempt organizations, PRSA files an IRS Form 990 annually. The form provides information on PRSA’s mission, programs and finances, including the compensation of key executives.

Prior to joining PRSA, Murray was executive vice president and co-chief operating officer of the Motion Picture Association (MPA), a trade association representing the international interests of the major Hollywood studios in more than 70 countries. At different times while with the MPA, Murray was responsible for the association’s international operations, strategic planning, market research and digital strategy.

Earlier in his career, Murray was president of William Murray & Associates, a consulting firm focused on developing international media strategies for clients that included venture capital firms, governments and media companies.

About the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA)
The Public Relations Society of America, headquartered in New York City, is the world’s largest organization for public relations professionals with nearly 32,000 professional and student members. PRSA is organized into 110 Chapters and 10 Districts nationwide, and 20 Professional Interest Sections and Affinity Groups, which represent business and industry, counseling firms, independent practitioners, military, government, associations, hospitals, schools, professional services firms and non-profit organizations. The Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) has 303 Chapters at colleges and universities throughout the United States, and one Chapter in Argentina.