Franklin Walton LLC

I have worked with organizations as they communicated about their brands, commitments, milestones, and crises for over thirty years. I have helped organizations with their "long-form public relations" -- the articulation of institutional mission, the communication of brand attributes, their corporate social responsibility campaigns, and their navigation through institutional transitions and crises.

Today, I work through Franklin Walton LLC. My current assignments include communications research and strategy for local and global non-profit organizations.

Laikipia, Kenya

New York City

My client, Shinnyo-en USA -- supported by Finn Partners public relations and Zeyba Rahman, artistic director -- was awarded the 2014 PRSA Big Apple Award for best integrated communications program of the year among government, association, and non-profit organizations.

Shinnyo-en Lantern Floating for Peace 2013
United Nations International Day of Peace
Trump Rink Central Park, New York City

2015: I was the Co-principal Investigator and Co-author, with Professor Lynn Appelbaum of City College of New York, of an important new study about diversity in the public relations industry: "Factors Affecting the Success of Under-represented Groups in the Public Relations Industry" (September 2015), a project funded by the Public Relations Society of America Foundation. The project was cited by the Institute for Public Relations as providing one of the "Top 10 PR Research Insights of 2015."

2012 - 2014:  I was privileged to be help launch the City College of New York new master's degree program in  Branding + Integrated Communications.  I also was a Fellow at the CCNY Colin Powell Center for Leadership and Service.

CCNY Branding + Integrated Communications Master's Degree Students
with Allyson Hugely, President, Weber Shandwick's Measurement  and Analytics Practice, (second from right)

I have been a Member of the Institute for Public Relations Measurement Commission since 2008.

My prior positions have included Chief Performance Officer of RF|Binder Partners, Inc., Executive Vice President and Chief Knowledge Officer of Ruder Finn, Inc., and President/COO of Research and Forecasts, Inc. In these positions, I managed communications programs and projects for corporations (ABB, AES, Bosch, International Paper, McGraw-Hill, Pfizer, Winterthur), government location branding and economic development agencies (Chile, Germany, City of Lyon, The Netherlands, New York State), and non-profit organizations (Columbia University, Japan Society, Lincoln Center, MIT, RISD, Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Rodale Institute, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops).

Some of the communications teams that I have had the honor of working with have:
  • Explained corporate outsourcing and off-shore manufacturing labor practices in the developing world. 
  • Launched one of the most successful global industrial mergers and brand evolutions. 
  • Responded to unprecedented media and public scrutiny of the Catholic church during the clergy sex abuse crisis. 
  • Advocated for the position of a leading multinational corporation regarding species preservation and forestry management. 
  • Developed communications strategy for a major multinational financial services corporation through litigation and discovery relating to the disposal of unlawfully seized financial and fine arts assets during the Nazi era. 
  • Crafted a public education and promotional approach for a significant family foundation on the occasion of the transfer of one of the world's most important private fine arts collections to a cultural organization for public access. 
  • Celebrated the first New York Sufi Music Festival, a milestone in repairing Pakistani-NYC relations and fostering new understanding and appreciation for South Asian cultural diversity.

New York Sufi Music Festival

I have also been creating botanical art in multimedia for several years, having studied art and botany at The New York Botanical Garden, Brooklyn Botanic Garden, Parsons School of Design, and The Arts Students League of New York. My botanical art can be viewed here. I am a member of the American Society of Botanical Artists.

I earned my Ph.D. in communications theory (post-structuralism and semiotics) and English literature (James Joyce’s Finnegans Wake) from the University of Illinois and two Master’s degrees, in landscape design from Columbia University and in English literature from Southern Illinois University. 

I run about 30 miles per week. I have studied Tai Chi for several years under Master C. K. Chu.

I re-read Ulysses just about once a year, and I have soft spot for Brooklyn-based indie bands and Boston terriers.

Milly, Brooklyn, New York, Summer 2015

Lion, Sabi Sands, South Africa, Summer 2014