Spin the Agencies of Record

“There are no second acts in American lives.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald

North Carolina’s French/West/Vaughan is the PR AOR for former trial lawyer, senator and presidential/vice presidential candidate John Edwards, who announced his return to the law business this week by launching the firm Edwards Kirby five years after his political career came to an end.

F/W/V CEO Rick French says his organization “probably would not have made this [client] public had it not been reported [by a local CBS affiliate]” after interviews appeared in The New York Times, the National Law Journal and other publications.

That coverage made executives “less concerned about talking with the trades about the issue”, hence the subsequent PR Week report on the signing and F/W/V’s plans to avoid “‘delving into the gossipy nature’ of Edwards’ background” by focusing targeted outreach efforts on business reporters who would, in French’s words, “create context for the story” by raising awareness of the new firm and its work with plaintiffs who have “experienced individual, social or economic injustice.”

In the past F/W/V has publicized its work with clients like Michael Vick in order to better establish its reputation as “a go-to firm for public figures looking to recast their public images”; French noted that the team will carefully review the hundreds of media requests that poured in this week after the news went public in order to see “which ones make sense”. At this time, there are no plans to offer interviews to general interest publications or engage directly with the public via social media.


The Grand Ole Opry named Golin Harris its agency of record for travel and tourism publicity. The firm will work with the Opry’s independent Schmidt Relations to increase awareness of the country and western institution and its host city Nashville. NBC’s upcoming ‘Sound of Music’ remake starring Opry member Carrie Underwood could be one of the group’s favorite things this holiday season.


Nancy J. Friedman Public Relations returned to the real estate business by signing Dermot Company, which runs 46 buildings throughout New York. The parties will share responsibility for promoting the nearly completed renovation of the Battery Maritime Building and Pier A at the southern tip of Manhattan (the latter of which will soon serve as a “dining and recreation hub”). Oysters on the waterfront? Yes please.


Innovative giving platformGivelocity chose Leverage PR as its AOR. Created by a PayPal co-founder, the “portal” allows individual and corporate users alike to raise funds for their charities of choice, so it could theoretically aid  fashion’s efforts to end mother-child HIV transmission and satisfy Leonardo DiCaprio’s tiger obsession.