Elise (Smith '83) Mitchell to co-chair PRSA International Conference

Posted February 04, 2014

Elise Mitchell, dual chief executive officer of Mitchell Communications Group and Dentsu Public Relations Network, will serve as co-chair of the upcoming Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) 2014 International Conference in Washington, D.C.

Mitchell ('83) has built her career on the values she established at ACU. On campus her legacy lives on through Morris & Mitchell, the student-run advertising agency bearing her name, which Mitchell helped to fund. In 2011, Mitchell received a Distinguished Alumni Citation from the university, and in May 2013, she spoke at ACU's commencement ceremony.

As a highly accomplished strategic communications professional and business leader, Mitchell made industry-wide headlines when she sold the firm she founded, Mitchell Communications Group, and became CEO of both the agency and the new Dentsu Public Relations Network. Her entrepreneurial spirit and passion helped her build the firm, which has been named Small Agency of the Year by PRWeek and the Holmes Report and is a 2014 PRWeek Midsize Agency of the Year finalist.

Over the past 15 years, Mitchell has expanded the company's capabilities and established a team of communications experts across the country serving clients in the retail, food, travel and tourism, and energy and transportation sectors. Under her leadership, the company has grown exponentially to become one of the top 10 fastest growing firms globally, according to the Holmes Report global rankings. 

In addition to her professional success, Mitchell has given back to several public relations organizations, including the Arthur W. Page Society and the Council of PR Firms. She is a member of the prestigious PRSA College of Fellows and served as chair of the PRSA Counselors Academy in 2012. Additionally, Mitchell has been involved in two PRSA chapters -- PRSA Memphis chapter, where she served as president and was named Professional of the Year, and PRSA Northwest Arkansas chapter, where she was a founding member, served as president and was named Professional of the Year.  

The PRSA 2014 International Conference theme is "Lead the Way: A Fearless Future for PR." The focus of the conference will be on the need of practitioners and the profession to adapt to today's transformative media environment.

"Elise embodies this year's theme of 'Leading the Way.' She is a shining example of the impact that strategic communications can bring as a lead strategic discipline," said Joseph E. Cohen, APR, PRSA 2014 Chair. "Her strategic guidance will be invaluable as we build a conference experience that will help attendees learn how to thrive, and to lead, in an environment where change is the norm and the role of the communications professional is ever-evolving."

The PRSA International Conference brings together more than 3,000 public relations professionals and students each year from a variety of disciplines and backgrounds for three days of practical insight and networking opportunities. The conference is dedicated to helping public relations professionals respond to "real time" opportunities and challenges while addressing trends and new innovations.


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