Mar 23, 2006
In this edition of our podcast, we present a telephone interview with Cheryl Procter-Rogers, president of the Public Relations Society of America, the world's largest professional organization for public relations practitioners. In a February speech to PR students at Ball State University, Procter-Rogers addressed three critical issues for shaping the future of the public relations profession. Diversity, ethics and risk are becoming increasingly critical to the financial success of businesses, she said. Cheryl also spoke to the students about the dangers of succumbing to "confirmation bias," a kind of complacency in which mass media audiences only pay attention to news and opinion content that matches their own belief system closely. With more than 25 years experience in the public relations arena, Cheryl Procter-Rogers is currently corporate affairs director for Home Box Office (HBO), where she is responsible for the development and implementation of public relations and integrated marketing communications strategies across 11 states in the Midwest. Before joining HBO, she worked as a communications consultant in the Chicago area, assisting such clients as Sears Roebuck & Co., Nissan North America, Inc., Allstate Insurance Company, McDonald's Corporation, and HBO in developing and implementing internal and external communications strategies supporting critical business objectives. Cheryl holds an M.B.A. from Keller Graduate School of Management, Chicago, IL; a B.S. in English and Journalism from Bradley University, Peoria, IL; an E-Business Certificate from the School of Business Administration, Loyola University Chicago; and a professional designation in public relations from UCLA Extension. She was the youngest member of the Los Angeles Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) in Los Angeles to earn the Accreditation in Public Relations (APR), and the first African American woman to earn that honor there. In 2000, Cheryl became the youngest member ever to be inducted into the Public Relations Society of America's College of Fellows, a distinction held by a little more than 400 individuals in the field of public relations. She, along with Dr. Debra Miller, was the first African-Americans inducted into the College. She was the first African-American elected as president of the 500-member Chicago Chapter of PRSA. She is a charter member and past president of the Black Public Relations Society of Southern California.