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June 2018
OHSPRA Board of Directors

OHSPRA recognized as exemplary chapter for third year

The Ohio School Public Relations Association has been selected for the Exemplary Chapter award by the National School Public Relations Association (NSPRA) for the third year in a row.

The chapter received the designation in NSPRA's Mark of Distinction Awards program in the Special Focus Area of Professional Development/Skill Building. OHSPRA is one of only six chapters in the nation selected for the award this year.

Current chapter president Crystal Davis and incoming president Patrick Gallaway will accept the award on behalf of OHSPRA during the Annual Meeting at NSPRA's National Conference in Garden Grove, California, in July.

OHSPRA seeks feedback on 2018 Spring Conference


With another OHSPRA Spring Conference in the books, the OHSPRA Board is asking attendees for input on the conference including the content of sessions and presentations, the venue and the social events.

In continuing efforts to provide the best in professional development and networking opportunities to school communicators across Ohio, the board asks that attendees take a few minutes to complete the
2018 OHSPRA Spring Conference Survey. The input the board receives is very important as plans get underway for next year's workshops and for the 2019 OHSPRA Spring Conference.

As requested by many conference attendees, a link to the folder containing all of the presentations that were included on this year's conference agenda is also available
. Click on this link to find the presentations.

Follow this link for photos taken of OHSPRA Achievement Award winners and conference presenters.

The board wants to thank attendees in advance for taking the time to provide feedback on the 2018 OHSPRA Spring Conference.

Kettering communications administrator earns
state “lifetime achievement” award

During their annual Spring Conference, the Ohio School Public Relations Association honored Kari Basson, Kettering City Schools coordinator of community relations and auxiliary services, with the Crystal Award.

Established in 1987 to recognize individuals who have dramatically and positively impacted school public relations, the Crystal Award is OHSPRA’s highest honor as it strongly considers a nominee's leadership, honors, awards, impact and service. Likened to a lifetime achievement award, over the past decade, only two other school public relations professionals have received the Crystal Award.

Nominated by Erika Daggett, director of communications in Forest Hills School District (Cincinnati), Basson was recognized for being an extraordinary role model, providing highly-rated workshops, influencing educational public relations efforts across Ohio, providing crisis management expertise, and for her integrity and selfless attitude.

“Most are not completely aware of the extensive time and magnitude of what Kari has given to education because of her humble poise and proven success in crisis and organizational management,” said Daggett. “She is a visible proponent for the professional development of her colleagues and an advocate for the children of Ohio. She personifies the value of relationships and the impact an individual can make. Her calm, thoughtful, and sophisticated leadership is among the finest examples of a true professional in educational public relations and will leave a legacy. She is long-deserving of this honor.” 

In Kettering, Basson has completed award-winning work including strategic planning, media and employee relations, website development, social media integration, video production, community surveying, publications and event management. In addition, she oversees the auxiliary services program for the district by working with four parochial schools and one private school on the management of auxiliary funds allocated by the state to non-public schools through their local public school district.

A past president of the Ohio School Public Relations Association, Basson currently serves as the OHSPRA Director of Professional Development, coordinating professional development opportunities for colleagues across the state and with the Ohio School Boards Association and the National School Public Relations Association.

OHSPRA announces Friend of Education Award recipients

School public relations is often more than a one-person or one-department job. OHSPRA annually sponsors the Friends of Education Award to recognize those unofficial members of the school public relations team who provide that much needed assistance. Recipients of this year’s award included Newark City Schools Broadcast Manager Mat Dunham and Shaker Heights City School District’s Communications Advisory Council.

“Mat has been a great asset for me during my six years with the district, and especially since he became the broadcast manager in 2016,” said Newark City Schools community outreach coordinator Seth Roy, who nominated Dunham. “Mat loves working for Newark City Schools and always works to help students have a great experience while promoting our district.”

Scott Stephens, executive director of communications and public relations for Shaker Heights City School District, said the district formed a broad, community-based group to advise him and the superintendent on the district’s communication needs and challenges. Members have communications experience in their jobs or community activities and live within the school district boundaries.

“Because they are frontline practitioners as well as residents and parents, they bring cutting-edge strategies and ideas to the district’s communications department – and at no cost to the district,” said Stephens. “The Communications Advisory Council began as a pilot project. Because of its tremendous success and contribution, it is now a standing, year-round committe

OHSPRA announces results of 2018-19 board election

OHSPRA is pleased to announce the results of the election for five open board seats held this spring. All active OHSPRA members were encouraged to vote during the election.

As a result of the election:
  • Kari Basson, Kettering City Schools will serve as Director of Professional Development
  • Olivia Bronczek, Massillon City Schools will serve as Director of Contests & Awards
  • Lou DeVincentis, Orange City Schools will serve as the President-Elect
  • Patti Koslo, eSchoolView will serve as Treasurer
  • Kurt Moore, Marion City Schools will serve as Director of Communications
As a vacancy became available for the director of membership, Erika Daggett expressed interest in remaining on the board. After gaining approval from the board, President Crystal Davis appointed Daggett to fulfill the remainder of the term. 

NSPRA's Executive Board To vote on changes
to OHSPRA's bylaws

At OHSPRA's annual Spring Conference, members overwhelmingly voted in favor of proposed changes to the association's bylaws at OHSPRA's 2018 Spring Conference.

During a short board meeting at the beginning of the conference on April 12, there were 72 paid OHSPRA members in attendance. The members voted on the proposed language changes by paper ballot, then board members collected and counted the ballots.

Fifty-seven members voted in favor of the proposed bylaws changes and there was one no vote. Forty-eight votes — 2/3 of the current paid OHSPRA members — were required for passage. Now, the amendments will go before NSPRA's Executive Board to review at their annual conference in July. Ultimately, NSPRA will decide whether or not to approve the changes to OHSPRA's bylaws.

Click here to download proposed changes to the bylaws.

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