September 2015 Luncheon


Ethical Decision-Making for PR…and for Life

Presented by: Samra Bufkins, APR, Public Relations Lecturer for the Mayborn School of Journalism at the University of North Texas
Sponsored by: Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce

FWC 2008 LogoAnybody can memorize a code of ethics, but do you really know how to make ethical decisions? Join the Greater Fort Worth PRSA on Wednesday, September 16, as Samra Bufkins, APR, presents an interactive program that will walk you through a solid framework for making sure the business decisions you make will be ethical, regardless of what code of ethics you follow.

Click here to register!
Thank you to the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce for graciously sponsoring this month’s GFW PRSA luncheon!

Samra Bufkins - photo (1)About Samra Bufkins, APR
Samra “Sam” Bufkins, APR, has more than 25 years of strategic communications experience in the healthcare, environmental, energy, petrochemical, shipping and electricity industries, encompassing public relations, crisis communications, issues management, fundraising, internal communications and governmental relations. She has worked for agencies, nonprofits, a state agency and Fortune 500 companies, and she is accredited by the Public Relations Society of America.

Bufkins is now a lecturer in strategic communications for the Mayborn School of Journalism at the University of North Texas, where she teaches the capstone course in ethics required of all PR and advertising majors and the capstone public relations strategic planning course. She also supervises PR internships. Bufkins enthusiastically incorporates social media strategies and applications into her classes, and also developed (and still teaches) the first strategic social media class at UNT, bringing in nationally known speakers and technical experts. Her teaching philosophy involves combining theory with practice while mentoring and coaching students as if they were junior employees of her PR firm or corporate communications department. She is a member of Kappa Tau Alpha, and is the faculty advisor to the UNT chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America and the Alpha Tau Omega Fraternity. She is social media advisor to the NT Daily and Swoop, the student-run advertising and public relations agency. She was the recipient of the 2014 Honor Professor award, a student-nominated award presented by the Student Government Association to faculty recognized for exceptional service to students.

Bufkins also served as Accreditation Chair for the Dallas PRSA chapter from 2007-2010 and as Ethics Chair for the Dallas chapter from 2010-2014. She holds a bachelor’s degree in television production, journalism and English from the University of Kentucky, and a master’s degree in public relations/marketing from the University of North Texas. She has been accredited in public relations since 1996.



The Fourth annual Worthy Awards – Entry Tips and Information

The Fourth annual Worthy Awards
Entry Tips and Information
By: Carolyn Bobo, APR, Fellow PRSA

The Worthy Awards are designed to provide area communications, marketing and public relations professionals with an opportunity to celebrate creativity, strategic thinking and professional ability.

Don’t be hesitant about entering. Think about your activities between January 1, 2014 and June 30, 2015, and go for it.

Here are some tips for preparing your entry.

A solid entry will address these points:

  • What was done?
  • Why did it matter?
  • How was it measured?

Carefully Read the Entry Parameters
The judges (Cleveland’s PRSA chapter) will look at each required area and base their scoring on how well the four entry areas are explained. Entrants should address each required point, and thoughtfully explain their good work so that it is excruciatingly clear to judges not familiar with our area.

Rationale (Tactics) and Research (Campaigns, Projects)
Explain any type of research, and why it was used. A textbook campaign would include formal, original research, but that isn’t always feasible or necessary. Judges know this, so entrants should clearly describe what was done. For example, a brainstorming session, a review of media clips or discussions with clients may be described as secondary, qualitative research … literature review … content analysis … anecdotal reports.

Objective/Purpose (Tactics) and Planning (Campaigns, Projects)
Why did you do what you did? Possible reasons are to increase sales, raise funds, create name recognition or influence public behavior. Describe any factors about the project/tactic that will help judges understand the purpose and the market. Note that the purpose must – absolutely must – match the outcome. Read on to the Evaluation section.

Execution (Campaigns, Projects)
Explain which tactics were chosen and why. When there are several tactical options, the entrant should state, for example, that “these tactics were selected to expand the reach of our message,” identify and justify each tactic.

Remember that the judges won’t know that your decisions and efforts were special unless you tell them.

If your entry states “TV station XYZ sponsored the event,” you must explain that “TV station XYZ rarely supports activities in Fort Worth.” Or, “TV station XYZ sponsors only three events per year, and we convinced the station to choose ours.”

Another hypothetical example: If your target market/public prefers electronic media over print, your entry should state, “Secondary research found that our target demographic prefers to receive electronic communications.” Such data may be obvious to you, but your entry narrative also must make your decision obvious to the judges.

Execution (Tactics)
Here’s where to explain who wrote the copy, designed a magazine, edited content, provided photos, approved the budget and negotiated with a vendor. The tactics section of The Worthy Awards is an explanation of who did what. If an unusual price or component was negotiated, say so, so the judges will understand your extra effort.

Results (Tactics)
Tactics are created to meet a specific need, and are skillfully and professionally prepared. An evaluation of effectiveness and impact, based upon defined objectives, can be simply stated. However, the results must – absolutely must – match the purpose. If the purpose was “to generate five media stories,” the result must show five (or more) media reports. If the purpose is “to raise awareness,” the results must show a measurable increase in awareness.

Evaluation (Campaigns, Projects)
Explain how the targeted market, public or audience responded and how you learned about its response. This is the time to include quantitative data and analysis. Such measures may be a replication of preliminary research or measures of other activities. For example, measures can be election results, a sales increase, ROI, donor or donation increase, or the number of participants/responses that exceeded expectations. Include as much measurable and anecdotal response as possible, and describe future plans.

If comprehensive research was not needed, say so. For example, “More than 5,000 people in our target public responded to the activity. We expected only 3,000, so we did not repeat our preliminary research to measure interest in the topic. However, we will analyze the experience of these respondents to plan future campaigns related to this issue.”

Information below on Communicator of the Year will be available soon. Please check back.

Good luck to everyone. See you at the Nov. 5 awards presentation.

Please feel free to contact us if you have questions or would like more information:

February PRSA Luncheon


Program Title

Media Panel: State Of The Newsroom

Program Summary

Join the GFW PRSA Chapter on Wednesday, February 11, for an exciting media-centric panel of journalists and media members from print, online, and TV on the current state of the newsroom, including Bud Kennedy, columnist at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Robert “Bob” Francis, editor of the Fort Worth Business Press, Deborah Ferguson, anchor at KXAS-TV / NBC5, and Lori Conrad, director of communications at KTVT-TV / CBS11. 

Moderating the panel will be Charlie Hodges, GFW PRSA member and former news reporter at NewsRadio 1080 KRLD and the Texas State Network.

How can PR professionals better pitch in the evolving landscape? How are stories now being prioritized? How can seasoned professionals stay up-to-date with the ever-changing world of the newsroom? What are the challenges facing today’s news organizations, and how does this affect PR practitioners who work with editors, reporters, news directors and producers? Our esteemed media panel will be eager and ready to answer these questions and more.

Date: Wednesday, February 11

Time: 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Location: Colonial Country Club (3735 Country Club Circle, Fort Worth, TX 76109)

Complimentary valet parking provided!


  • GFW PRSA Members – $25
  • National PRSA Members – $30
  • Non-members – $35
  • Students – $20

1/29/15 UPDATE: This event is currently at registration capacity and cannot accommodate further registrants or walk-up attendees. Due to the overwhelming positive response to this program, GFWPRSA will make every effort to host a similar/follow-up program later this year.

Registration is now closed.

To account for additional costs associated with walk-ups and other meeting services, the Greater Fort Worth Chapter of PRSA uses the following reservation policy: Online reservations are due no later than 5 p.m. the Friday prior to the luncheon, and cancellations must be made by 5 p.m. the day before the luncheon. No-shows will be billed or a representative may attend in that person’s place at no additional charge. Walk-ups are accepted for an additional $5 if space is available.


Bud Kennedy

Bud Kennedy

Fort Worth-native Bud Kennedy has served as a columnist for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram for nearly 34 years, and is one of the publication’s most-read writers. Since 1981, he’s written more than 1,500 weekly dining columns and more than 3,000 news, political and human-interest articles.  Kennedy is also known as one of Fort Worth’s kings of social media, with nearly 20,000 followers on two Twitter accounts (@BudKennedy and @EatsBeat) and 13,000 “likes” on two Facebook accounts. He keeps his followers engaged by posting 8-10 general interest items each day, as well as restaurant news blurbs from his Eats Beat column.  He began his career in journalism at the Fort Worth Press in 1972. He then served as a sports reporter and designer at the Austin American-Statesman, the Dallas Times Herald, and The Dallas Morning News, before returning to Fort Worth in 1981. Kennedy is a graduate of TCU and holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism.

Deborah Ferguson

Deborah Ferguson

Deborah Ferguson co-anchors NBC 5 Today weekday mornings from 4:30 a.m. to 7 a.m. She joined the station in 1991 after starting her journalism career as a reporter/anchor for WBAP Radio in Fort Worth.

She’s earned professional recognition throughout her career including a regional Edward R. Murrow Award and a Gracie Award for Outstanding Anchor – News presented by American Women in Radio and Television. Other honors come from American Women in Communications, Association for Women Journalists, the American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, the Texas Medical Association, the Dallas Press Club, and the Lone Star EMMY Chapter.

Ferguson’s time out of the newsroom is frequently spent at community and charitable events especially those focused on empowering girls through education.   She recently joined the advisory council for the Young Women’s Leadership Academy, the first all-girls school in the Fort Worth ISD. She’s often in area schools stressing the importance of education and encouraging future journalists.  She graduated from TCU with a degree in broadcast journalism, which set her on the path to achieve her lifelong dream of becoming a reporter. While in college, she interned at NBC 5 and joined the staff just a few years later. Ferguson is married to WBAP sports anchor Steve Lamb.

Robert “Bob” Francis

Robert Bob Francis

Robert “Bob” Francis has been the editor of the Fort Worth Business Press since 2008, and has been honored with three Katie Awards from the Dallas Press Club. He also is editor of Research Texas and the Energy Report, and has served as a freelance writer for numerous publications, including American Way, Brand Week and Manufacturing Automation. Francis has also previously served as a reporter and editor for technology magazines including Computerworld, InfoWorld and InformationWeek. He began covering the energy business in 1985 for Fairchild Publications. A TCU graduate, Francis directed a documentary about body piercing called “Navel Academy,” which premiered at the Fort Worth Film Festival (now the Lone Star Film Festival) in 2000.

Lori Conrad

Lori Conrad

With more than 20 years of PR, marketing, and public affairs experience in the Dallas-Fort Worth market, Lori Conrad serves as the market communications director for CBS Local Media in Dallas / Fort Worth. She is responsible for all public relations and select community affairs duties for two (2) CBS-owned-and-operated television stations: KTVT-TV / CBS 11 and KTXA-TV / TXA 21, six (6) CBS RADIO stations: NewsRadio 1080 KRLD, 105.3 THE FAN, 98.7 KLUV, 100.3 Jack FM 103.7 KVIL, and La GRANDE 107.5 FM, one (1) state radio network, and the stations’ online assets, including In 2010, Conrad received an EMMY for co-writing and co-producing a half-hour television special about a local equine therapy program. Conrad is a graduate of the University of North Texas, where she received a bachelor’s degree in journalism – advertising. 

2014 Chapter Awards: Unsung Hero and Rising Star

Chapter awards and student scholarships were presented during Fort Worth PRSA’s December luncheon at Colonial Country Club.

Unsung Hero

Congratulations to Moncrief Cancer Institute’s Liz Heck for being recognized as the 2014 Unsung Hero. The Unsung Hero award is given to recognize a member who has an unwavering dedication to the chapter and in whom we relied heavily on for guidance and service.

“Liz willingly shifted her volunteer service and role expectations when she stepped in and took over the Treasurer’s position early on in the year after the position was left vacant from a member departure,” said chapter president Richie Escovedo. “She was my go-to source for chapter finances having served in that same role last year plus she’s on track for continued chapter leadership as the 2015 VP of Membership/President-Elect.”

Rising Star

Congratulations to the Balcom Agency’s Lesley Dupre for being recognized as the 2014 Rising Star. The Rising Star chapter award is a way for the chapter to recognize and thank a member who has shown a growing commitment to the chapter, someone who seeks opportunities to better their volunteer role, and who continually provides exceptional service.

“Lesley provided exceptional service to the chapter as this year’s Digital Media Chair and sought ways to improve and amplify PRSA’s events and messages,” said Escovedo. “We look forward to her continued leadership as she takes on a new role in 2015 as Secretary.”


2015 Slate of Officers

On Wednesday, October 8, Fort Worth PRSA will hold its annual membership meeting during the monthly luncheon. The single agenda item is the membership vote on the 2015 slate of officers.

Thank you to Chris Smith, Past President, and the nominations committee for enlisting nominees for next year’s chapter leaders:

  • President – Michelle Clark, APR
  • VP Membership/Pres-elect – Liz Heck
  • VP Programs – Claire Bloxom Armstrong
  • Treasurer – Lisa Albert
  • Treasurer-elect – Beth Lamb
  • Secretary – Lesley Dupre
  • Past President – Richie Escovedo
  • Directors – Julie O’Neil, Kay Barkin, APR, and Jahnae Stout
  • Assembly Delegates – Carol Murray, APR and Gigi Westerman, APR, Fellow PRSA