PR Rising Stars 2022
Public relations and marketing is a constantly evolving field, even during a pandemic. For that reason, it's long been a field in which young professionals can have a huge impact. Here are the industry's rising stars (view the 50 best PR firms here).
- 28, anat.
“The real young star in our organization is Lynsey Billet,” says Jeff Simmons, executive vice president of NYC’s anat., which reps high-profile cause-related clients. “She’s led Community Access' account during the pandemic, and done so well they expanded their work with us. And she brought in clients such as The Rippel Foundation and Yaffed, who has renewed each year because of her.” Before joining anat., Lynsey worked on AARP’s national campaign communications team.
- 26, Nike Communications
Brigman started as an intern at luxury brand focused Nike, and in four years and as many promotions, has risen to the role of senior account executive. Emilie manages several of the agency’s highest-profile clients, including Leica and Montblanc – a Nike mainstay for more than three decades. She’s also overseen health, wellness and beauty clients including Yves Saint Laurent Beauté, Clarins, The Art of Shaving and Technogym. “Sheer determination is her greatest strength. She’s rapidly proven herself a powerhouse,” Nike Communications founder and president Nina Kaminer says.
- 25, BCW
As co-lead of BCW’s African American Employee Resource Group, Jordan has cultivated a prominent and respected voice, and regularly mentors colleagues. He moderated BCW’s Juneteenth panel featuring advocates and pop culture icons, inspiring thoughtful conversation while vocalizing his own perspectives. Jordan is also a lead member of the agency’s Polycultural Consulting Unit, through which he advises clients and new business pitch teams on cultural insights to help inform strategies, and writes thought-provoking and insightful thought leadership pieces, including on the topic of vaccine hesitancy within the Black community.
- 29, Rogers & Cowan PMK
At 29, just five years after joining this PR mega-agency, Mallory Glickman is a senior director at R&CPMK. “Mallory has taken a leading role helping manage some of R&CPMK’s largest clients, including McDonald’s and Mastercard. She has been a smart, steadying, and diligent guide for her team and clients,” says Cindi Berger, R&CPMK’s chairman. Glickman serves as the day-to-day lead on Lee Street, the national local collaboration agency for McDonald’s (in partnership with Weber Shandwick). Glickman’s worked with clients including Mastercard, Beyond Meat, Verizon, Johnson & Johnson, Huggies, Jaguar Land Rover, Dunkin Donuts and Panda Express.
- 28, J/PR
A senior account supervisor for social media at J/PR, Grayson’s “thorough understanding of how to leverage strategy, data and insights for both paid and organic social has brought innovative solutions to our clients,” J/PR partner and co-owner Sarah Evans says. Case in point: in an effort to bring Nashville into the homes of travelers everywhere during the COVID-19 travel freeze, Mary executed a virtual concert series for client Bobby Hotel titled #KeepItSpinnin'. More than 65 minutes of custom music debuted on @bobbyhotel from nearly a dozen local musicians, active social-media participation, and coverage in outlets like The Wall Street Journal, Departures and Business Insider.
- 27, SKDK
Following stints at The New Yorker and a PR firm in her hometown of Pittsburgh, Heuston joined SKDK’s Public Affairs practice and has consistently delivered for clients. She’s now a director of the practice at this political and issues-PR powerhouse. With an expertise on social issues, she works on clients like Child USA and the Partnership for a Healthier America.
- 27, SHADOW
Over the four years that Holtzman has been with spirits/lifestyle aces SHADOW, “she has delivered the kind of results that one might expect from marketers with double her experience,” says Brad Zeifman, SHADOW’s principal and co-founder. Holtzman helps manage the Moët Hennessy Emerging Brands portfolio of spirits – “a hard-fought win for the agency,” Zeifman says. Recent achievements of note -- Holtzman secured a partnership between Belvedere Vodka and Madonna for the icon's documentary release and is now also leading the agency’s new client, Betty Buzz, the non-alcoholic mixer brand by actress' Blake Lively.
- 24, The Sway Effect
Upon graduating from Barnard College at Columbia University, Natalie joined The Sway Effect. As Director, Brand Strategy, she works on clients including Covid-testing leader Becton Dickinson (BD) and American Association of Advertising Agencies (4A’s). Kawam has penned keynote speeches and written content on behalf of the agency’s clients. “Natalie is an amazing writer and has helped bring the messages of the brands that we work with to life,” says The Sway Effect founder Jennifer Risi.
- 28, SKDK
A vice president at this political/issues powerhouse, Lapeyrolerie joined SKDK’s New York office in August 2020. Lapeyrolerie is a seasoned media strategist with experience in government relations, campaigns, and crisis communications. Putting her experience as a De Blasio, NYC Housing Authority and HRC alum to work, Lapeyrolerie continues to deliver for clients, which include Supermajority, Memorial Sloan Kettering, and Women in Need (WIN).
- 24, Gia Kuan Consulting
“Fiona was my first-ever employee,” says Gia Kuan, owner of the eponymous fashion and art PR firm. “She’s only 24 now and incredibly talented - she has helped me build a portfolio of independent fashion brands and helped to nurture it, which has been the foundation of my consultancy.” Luo has managed accounts including TELFAR, PRISCAVera, Susan Alexandra, BOND Hardware, Puppets and Puppets, Saint Sintra, and more. She also worked alongside Kuan and the team on Banana Republic's recent reboot and vintage revival, a huge fall project for the firm.
- 26, GO PR
Since joining hot travel-PR agency GO PR as associate director in 2021, Mason has helped with comms strategies for clients like Gansevoort Meatpacking and hip NYC-born boutique hotel group Walker Hotels. “Hannah entered the world of PR through her love for travel and design, and since beginning her career has serviced clients touching every facet of the industry,” says GO PR founder Gizem Ozcelik. Through her career, Mason has worked with brands including Visit West Hollywood, certified B-Corp Intrepid Travel, and internationally recognized luxury furniture brands Fritz Hansen and Armadillo.
- 27, BerlinRosen
BerlinRosen’s the #1 agency on this year’s PR Power List; McKnight works inside the firm’s “Future of Work” practice. “At a time when the pandemic has utterly changed the way the world works, Tori’s led her clients to establish themselves as visionary thought leaders for the current moment,” says BerlinRosen principal and co-founder Jonathan Rosen. “Tori’s exceptional grasp of the nuanced factors shaping the changing education and labor landscapes has made her an indispensable member of her team, and a core actor in BerlinRosen’s recent growth within the Future of Work vertical,” Rosen says.
- 30, SKDK
Novak’s a vice president in this political-PR powerhouse’s NYC office. Joining the firm over 3 years ago after serving as deputy press secretary to Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy, Novak has been at the forefront of SKDK’s work to hold sexual abusers accountable. From organizing media events around NY’s historic Child Victims Act to navigating the nuances and sensitivities of telling survivor’s stories to the media,” Jason has run the gamut to deliver for clients,” says SKDK svp Michelle Wellington.
- 28, J/PR
Orians, an account supervisor at this travel-PR shop, has been “a media relations natural” since joining five years ago, says Sarah Evans, J/PR’s partner and co-owner. Orians works on marquee accounts like Visit North Carolina, the Pendry Hotels & Resorts brand, Grand Hotel Tremezzo, Conrad New York Midtown, and Geneo, “who adore her team leadership and passion for the craft,” Evans says. In the last year alone, she has conceptualized and curated innovative brand alignment for her clients that resulted in not only meaningful press, but increased foot traffic, web traffic and revenue.
- 28, The Door
Kelly started with The Door as an intern, then got hired in 2015, rising through the ranks to become senior account supervisor. At first part of the Lifestyle/Food team, “she raised her hand to play a key role on our Integrated Marketing team so that she could learn all the new skills and services we were adding and stay at the top of her game,” says Lois Najarian O’Neill, the firm’s co-founder and president. “It’s not enough to say that Kelly works hard, Kelly treats every day like she’s fulfilling her lifelong dream to work in PR and lets you know how lucky she is to have landed at The Door. She is my hero for so many reasons. She’s a top strategist but can also go out and get the story that needs to be told.”
- 28, BCW
Now a vice president in this giant comms firm, Slaughter joined BCW in November of 2016 as an assistant account executive. He moved up the ladder to become a VP “and go-to media expert,” according to Jillian Janaczek, President, New York, BCW. “His unique combination of impressive natural talent, immense determination to succeed and can-do attitude has earned him the respect of colleagues, media and clients alike.” Example: Slaughter’s work leading media efforts across Fortune 500 clients in the restaurant, real estate and consulting industries has increased these organizations’ respective shares of voice and furthered their overall reputations, Janaczek says.
- 26, Alison Brod Marketing Communications
From her debut as ABMC’s first influencer intern, Richardson has risen to Director, managing influencer strategy and analytics. When you consider the huge campaigns this agency has engineered, that’s a big deal. “Sarah has been integral to the growth of the Influencer division at ABMC,” says ABMC founder and owner Alison Brod. Richardson has led social strategies for the Popeyes Megan Thee Stallion Hottie Sauce and Chicken Nuggets launches; the Burger King Hand-breaded Ch’King™ ; Tim Hortons limited-edition lineup of Justin Bieber’s Timbiebs; and the Kraft Macaroni & Cheese ice cream in partnership with Van Leeuwen, among others.
- 25, Red Havas
Jenna is a rockstar,” says Melanie Klausner, executive vice president of merged media specialists Red Havas. “She hit the ground running from the moment she joined the company in an entry level role two years ago.” Today, Stoklosa works on key accounts including ManpowerGroup, UNICEF, Transparent Business, and Emerson. Word is she delivers at least five media opportunities a month in outlets like New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, Associated Press, and CNBC - not an easy feat.
- 24, Hall PR
As an associate account exec at this well-known food and hospitality-focused firm, Marini runs campaigns across platforms for savory and sweet clients like Morgenstern’s Finest Ice Cream, Albert Trummer’s cocktail lounge DOM, Sag Harbor’s K Pasa, and the iconic Lobster Roll restaurant, aka LUNCH, in Amagansett and Southampton. “Ian is a rising star in the hospitality PR world due to his natural curiosity, eagerness, people skills, and desire to make the perfect hollandaise sauce,” says Hall PR founder/owner Steven Hall.