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PRSA Tampa Bay Member Spotlight: Patt Reed, APR

October 29, 2013

Every few weeks, we put a spotlight on a PRSA Tampa Bay member to learn more about their public relations background, advice on best practices and why they love working in the field.

This week’s #PRSATB Member Spotlight is on Patt Reed, APR., who has been involved with PRSA for nearly three decades. When asked why she continues her involvement after all these years, Patt said, “PRSA Tampa Bay has been the foundation of my ability to grow and succeed. I encourage everyone to step up and get involved, no matter how much or how little. The PRSA contacts you make now will last your whole career.” Read more about her outlook on earning your Accreditation in PR and what she loves most about working as a PR professional, below.

Patt Reed, APR

Patt Reed, APR

Name: Patt Reed, APR

Title: Independent Practitioner/insurance sales-marketing

Company/Organization: Colonial Life

PRSA Involvement (past and present): 1985 to present.  I’ve held leadership of most committee groups, served on the board since 1986, served as Assembly delegate 3 times, board secretary

Have you earned your Accreditation in PR? If so, at what stage in your professional career do you recommend pursuing an APR and why? 

Accreditation is a must. Allow yourself enough time to get some real varied experience under your belt.  Experience is your friend.

If you’re serious about continuing in the profession, you need to earn your APR.  It’s a personal development accomplishment that you do for yourself.  Your APR probably won’t get you a better job or a big raise but it will give you the personal confidence you need to get a better job or a big raise.  Do it for yourself!  Be serious about your craft – become an APR.

What do you love most about working as a PR professional? 

My career has been filled with the usual PR challenges.  What I’ve liked most about what I do is designing my position.  My career has included “traditional” public relations tasks, marketing, advertising, media buying, community speaking, training, program development, learning and sharing.  My career has been wonderful, even the very hard times.  I’ve been very lucky to be the master of my craft.

What personality traits and intangible qualities do you look for when recruiting new PR talent?

I always look for someone with imagination and strong personal communication skills.  I always want to recruit people who are fun/happy and focused.  The other stuff we can learn together.

What’re some of your personal hobbies outside of work/PR?  

I love to quilt which fills my artistic need.  I love gourmet cooking which fills my belly, entertains friends and adds too many calories.  Oh well…

Why do I stay involved with PRSA after all these years?

Public relations has changed dramatically during my career.  I’ve been employed by corporations, primarily health care companies, I’ve been involved with agencies – large and small, and I’ve contributed many volunteer hours in the community.  I love the dance.

Today I tackle freelance opportunities and sell a little insurance.  PRSA Tampa Bay has been the foundation of my ability to grow and succeed.  The chapter has offered access to a large and diverse network of professionals.  I call on them often.  The chapter has afforded professional development events, provided leadership opportunities and great friendships.  I learned early on, if you don’t get involved there’s no support when you need it.  I continue my chapter membership today because our chapter is full of great people.  I encourage everyone to step up and get involved, no matter how much or how little.  The PRSA contacts you make now will last your whole career.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Tim Shannon, APR permalink
    October 29, 2013 10:52 pm

    My wife, Nancy Schubert, APR, and I were Patt’s guests at the October 24 lunch meeting.

    Nancy and I were heavily involved in PRSA Tampa Bay during the 1980s. The late Deanne Roberts, APR and I founded the chapter’s first PR For PR Committee, focused on promoting accreditation to those who hire us (whether they be clients, agencies, or companies), and not just to each other.

    One point Patt made above is that even if national accreditation doesn’t get you that better job or big raise, it might very well give you the personal confidence to get them.

    That is very well put.

    So, thanks, Tampa Bay PRSA, for welcoming Nancy and me to your last meeting (especially given that our attendance record has not been that good, having missed the last 19 years of monthly meetings after moving away).

    But we promise you that we have remained active in PRSA, for a few years in south Florida, where Nancy served as president of the Gulfstream Chapter, and we both have remained active in the Georgia Chapter for the past 13 years, primarily in their very successful Accreditation readiness reviews.

    Thus, it wonderful to see that people such as Patt back in our Home Chapter still recognize the personal and professional value of national accreditation, and are still encouraging others to earn it.

    And, hey, who knows; accreditation might not ‘get’ you that better job, but it certainly might give you the edge over the other candidates when you’re competing for it….


    Tim Shannon, APR

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