Professional Development Session: Diversity in Communications and Social Media

11/15/2017 07:30 AM - 10:00 AM ET


101 W. Commerce Rd.
Richmond, VA
United States of America


In today’s hyper-connected media landscape, we are reaching far more diverse audiences. This provides us with a unique opportunity for thoughtful and deliberate engagement that can lead to an even deeper trust and relationship with our audiences than ever.

To navigate this landscape, communications professionals must balance their organizational culture, the culture of their audience and culture of the world them – there is no one-size-fits-all approach. Success in this arena is not only measured by the positive reception of our messages, but by the depth and meaning of the conversations that they incite.

With these opportunities comes important responsibility.  It’s critical to take steps to ensure that all of our communications are created through a lens that considers all cultures, races and religions. One misplaced image or copy tweak can lead to a firestorm.

Join us for a Q&A and panel discussion on diversity in communications and social media. Our panelists will take us through examples of successes and failures in diversity initiatives, discuss their experiences and answer your questions.

The workshop will be held Wednesday, Nov. 15 at Padilla, located at 101 W. Commerce Road, Richmond, Va. 23221. A networking session with bagels will kick off the session from 7:30 to 8 a.m., and the workshop will be held from 8 to 10 a.m.

Door Prizes

We'll hold two drawings for copies of the book “Ofield: The Autobiography of Public Relations Man Ofield Dukes.” Dukes is considered one of the nation’s most successful African-American PR practitioners and one of the most influential people of the Civil Rights era. Participants should bring business cards to enter.


Seating is limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis. Registration costs are $25 for PRSA members and $35 for non-members. Advance payment with a credit card is highly preferred, but checks and cash will be accepted at the door. If you register, please plan to attend – refunds are not available unless three business days notice is given, and no-shows will be invoiced.

Raina Fields, APR, serves as diversity and inclusion communications director for VCU. In that role, she coordinates, executes and advises on internal and external communications strategies related to the University’s diversity and inclusion initiatives. Her professional experience also includes serving as social media strategist at VCU, director of marketing for the Department of Music at VCU and marketing fellow for The Philadelphia Orchestra.
Cameron McPherson, APR, manages media relations and storytelling efforts for clients at The Hodges Partnership. McPherson will be the 2018 PRSA Richmond president and serves on the board of Side by Side, an organization committed to supporting LGBTQ+ youth in Central Virginia. For five years, he was a member of Richmond Region Tourism’s LGBTQ+ advisory committee.
Alexsis Rodgers is a Richmond-native and VCU graduate who serves as the director of communications for Planned Parenthood Advocates of Virginia and Virginia League for Planned Parenthood. Previously, she led state legislative affairs and message strategy for the Office of Lieutenant Governor Ralph Northam. Alexsis has managed award-winning communications and advocacy campaigns focused on college affordability, public transportation, pediatric care, labor rights and environmental initiatives.
Jeff Wilson, APR, is vice president of agency marketing and promotion at Padilla. During his career, he’s develop and execute communications campaigns to educate African-American and other underserved populations about risk factors for certain health issues, including heart disease. During graduate school at the University of Georgia, he studied issues related to race, gender and the media and wrote his master’s thesis on “The Role of Historically Black Colleges and Universities in Journalism Education.” Wilson is a past president of PRSA Richmond and past president of the Richmond PR Foundation.

Event Contact

Rosalie Morton, special events/workshops chair, at

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