BOSTON Robert Levy aims to tap into his educational background to enhance career opportunities for public relations practitioners as chief professional development officer at the Public Relations Society of America.
In the newly created position, Levy oversees senior managers responsible for professional development, conferences and accreditation programs. Levy reports to PRSA executive director and chief operating officer Catherine Bolton.
"Professional development is becoming more and more important. It's what PRSA is all about—developing programs that advance the profession and the professional," Bolton said.
One goal, Levy said, is to train public relations professionals in useful topics outside of the standard PR course offering, such as accountability. "More and more PR professionals are stepping up to the plate, becoming managers and handling budgets," Levy said. "After Enron, we need practitioners to learn to read a balance sheet and be knowledgeable about the financial world."
Also on tap, Levy said, is to expand the PRSA's e-learning initiatives in all areas.
Levy most recently was senior product acquisitions manager for e-learning at McGraw-Hill Lifetime Learning in New York, and has held educational positions at Westlake Internet Training, Columbia University's Graduate School of Business and Kaplan Educational Centers, all in New York.