NEW YORK (Oct. 7, 2017) — The Public Relations Society of America (PRSA), the nation’s largest professional organization serving the communications community, today announced its 2018 Board of Directors during its Leadership Assembly in Boston.

Those elected to fill the open officer positions are:

Chair-Elect: Debra D. PetersonAPR, vice president, external communications and community relations, CenturyLink, New Century, Kan.


Treasurer: T. Garland StansellAPR, chief communications officer, Children’s of Alabama, Birmingham, Ala.


Secretary: Ronele M. DotsonAPR, president, RAD Strategies Inc., Reno, Nev.


They will join 2017 Chair-Elect Anthony W. D’AngeloAPRFellow PRSA, who becomes chair on Jan. 1, 2018, to form the 2018 Executive Committee along with 2018 Immediate Past Chair Jane DvorakAPRFellow PRSA, and returning board members Rick Batyko, APR, Fellow PRSARobert Hastings, Jr., APR+M, Fellow PRSAJo Ann LeSage Nelson, APRAndrew McCaskill, APRMichelle Olson, APR, and Samantha Villegas, APR.

“I am honored and excited to serve alongside this group of prestigious and talented leaders on the PRSA Board of Directors,” said D’Angelo. “They will bring a wealth of experience and insight to our national effort to advance the profession, and PRSA professionals, to new levels of success.”

Several other candidates selected by the PRSA National Nominating Committee were elected to the PRSA National Board of Directors today for two-year terms beginning in 2018.

District Representatives:

Director, Midwest District: Kevin M. WaetkeAPR, vice president, strategic communications, National Pork Board, Clive, Iowa


Director, North Pacific District: Michelle EganAPRFellow PRSA, corporate communications director, Alyeska Pipeline Service Co., Anchorage, Alaska


Director, Southeast District: Amy T. CowardAPRFellow PRSA, vice president, public relations, Palmetto Health Foundation, Columbia, S.C.


Director, Southwest District: Robert Scott PritchardAPRFellow PRSA, visiting professor and Faculty Adviser, Lindsey+Asp, University of Oklahoma, Blanchard, Okla.


Director, Sunshine District: Joseph AbreuAPR, communications manager, Clerk of the Circuit Court, St. Lucie County, Fort Pierce, Fla.



Scott Wesley Thornburg, public relations specialist, Oracle, Redwood City, Calif.


About the Public Relations Society of America
PRSA is the nation’s largest professional organization serving the communications community. The organization’s mission is to make communications professionals smarter, better prepared and more connected through all stages of their career. PRSA achieves this by offering its members thought leadership and innovative lifelong learning opportunities to help them develop new skills, enhance their credibility and connect with a strong network of professionals. The organization sets the standards of professional excellence and ethical conduct for the public relations industry. PRSA collectively represents more than 30,000 members consisting of communications professionals spanning every industry sector nationwide, and college and university students who encompass the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA). Learn more about PRSA at