Awarded by the PRSA Educator’s Academy, the David Ferguson Award annually recognizes outstanding contributions to the advancement of public relations education by public relations professionals. The award honors the late David Ferguson, APR, Fellow PRSA, in recognition of his outstanding support of public relations education as PRSA president in 1985 and, later, as co-chair of the PRSA Educational Affairs Committee.
Valin founded Valin Strategic Communications after a thirty year career as a senior communication executive. Throughout his career, he has advised senior officials and ministers of the Government of Canada on communication matters. Valin worked on several high profile national issues such as the gun control program, anti-terrorism and organized crime legislation, same sex marriage legislation, the launch of Service Canada, as well as the transportation policy for air, road and marine safety and security issues.
“Being recognized by your peers as deserving of a prestigious award is humbling and daunting at the same time,” said Valin. “I believe one should serve his or her chosen profession as best you can and this—at least in my experience—brings rewards in the form of valued relationships and a sense of accomplishment that serves the public interest. I thank the nominating committee for bestowing this great honor on me and am inspired to continue on this path.”
In 2000, Valin became a founding member and a driving force of the Global Alliance for Public Relations and Communication Management, a confederation of the world's major public relations and communication management associations and institutions, representing 160,000 practitioners and academics around the world. Valin was Chairman of the Global Alliance in 2004 and 2005 and continues to serve in several capacities, most recently as co-leader of the Melbourne Mandate, a global advocacy platform for the profession.
Valin is an active member of the Canadian Public Relations Society (CPRS), an organization in which he served as national president in 1996 – 1997. He was the youngest appointee named to CPRS’s College of Fellows and has received several national public relations awards throughout his career. Valin has been an active member of the Commission for Public Relations Education for the past ten years and has led the writing of the chapter on global implications in the Commission’s latest report, “Standards for a Master’s Degree in Public Relations: Educating for Complexity.”
The PRSA Educator’s Academy aims to advance the field of public relations education by collaborating with college and university public relations educators and practitioners. Through virtual networks, in-person events, case studies and scholarly research, members gain access to tools, insights and current industry practices that will shape research projects and curricula.
About the Public Relations Society of America
PRSA is the largest professional organization serving the U.S. public relations community. With a mission to “advance the profession and the professional,” PRSA provides news and information, thought leadership, continuing education and networking opportunities; sets standards of professional excellence and ethical conduct; and advocates for the business value of public relations and greater diversity among public relations professionals. Based in New York, PRSA comprises 112 local Chapters; 14 Professional Interest Sections that focus on specific industries and practice areas; and the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA), which is active at more than 320 colleges and universities.
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