February 6: How to Get in South Carolina’s $20.2 Billion Tourism Industry

Learn how to transform hidden gems into beautiful stories with Dawn Dawson-House. Dawson-House is the brains behind The Green Book, the state’s first online travel guide to African American historic sites. While the stories of the more than 300 sites featured in the guide are compelling, the guide’s development is also fascinating. Learn about the research, design, web design, social media and other aspects of The Green Book development, and how this story inspired organizations all over the state to jump on board. Look forward to hearing about who was involved and how, and the story behind how this amazing communications and tourism marketing project contributed to South Carolina’s growing $20.2 billion tourism industry. Flock and Rally with the S.C. African American Heritage Commission took home an Award of Excellence at IABC/SC’s 2017 Palmetto Awards for the project. Join us to learn why! Dawn Dawson-House is Director of Corporate Communications for the South Carolina Department of Parks, Recreation & Tourism.  She directs a program that shapes and shares the agency’s good work toward growing tourism, operating 47 state parks and providing assistance to communities for tourism and recreation development. She is editor of the monthly e-newsletter “South Carolina Tourism Today,” and serves as spokesperson for the agency. Dawn formerly led the agency’s tourism public relations effort, which generated millions of dollars’ worth of free publicity for South Carolina in newspapers, magazines and online publications across the country and in international markets. Dawn is a 1985 graduate of the University of South Carolina’s journalism school, and an avid Gamecock fan. She lives in Columbia with her husband, William. When: Tuesday, February...

Dec 13: Jingle Mingle

Join advertising, design, marketing and public relation professionals across the Midlands to ring in the holidays with cocktails and heavy hors d’oeuvres! This year’s Jingle Mingle will be a FREE event with a cash bar. Participating organizations include AAF of the Midlands, AIGA South Carolina, IABC/SC, South Carolina Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America and AMA Columbia. Date and Time: Wednesday, December 13, 2017 5:30-8:30 p.m. Location: Liberty Tap Room 828 Gervais Street Columbia, SC 29201 Planning to attend the Free Times Tacos, Tequila and Tacky Sweaters party following Jingle Mingle? If so, the Free Times has generously offered a $5 off code for their party to anyone that attends Jingle Mingle. The party is the same night as our drop-in, but starts later in the evening at 7 p.m. Enter code JINGLEMINGLETACOS when you purchase your ticket to receive the $5...

Nov. 3: IABC/SC and SCPRSA joint professional development conference

Hurry – Registration window closes at midnight on October 31st! Join us this November for a day full of stimulating discussions on current and future trends and tactics for PR and communications. The South Carolina chapters of the Public Relations Society of America and the International Association of Business Communicators are bringing together communication professionals to CONNECT on topics of media relations, crisis communications, trends in technology and more. This one-day statewide conference will educate new and seasoned professionals on industry-leading topics. CONNECT 2017 is open to all members and non-members of each organization, along with any other communications professional interested in attending. See AGENDA for speaker and topic details. Click here for speaker bios. In addition to a day loaded with important and timely topics and discussions, we will have a continental breakfast and networking lunch available. Registration is required. Security at the SCANA Headquarters requires a photo ID. Please be prepared.Walk-ups are welcome but food may not be guaranteed. We can’t wait to see you at the CONNECT2017 conference! Be prepared to get inspired and motivated to be an even better communicator and marketing professional! When:  Friday, November 3, 2017 8:30 AM  – 4:00 PM Where: SCANA Corporate Headquarters, 100 SCANA Parkway, Cayce, South Carolina 29033, USA   REGISTER HERE! Explore hot topics in PR & communications at CONNECT’17 SCPRSA & IABC/SC are happy to announce the session topics for CONNECT’17, their annual joint professional development conference. The one-day conference in Columbia gives attendees the opportunity to delve into current topics and trends with experts. We can’t wait to see you at the CONNECT2017 conference! Be prepared to get inspired...

Oct. 3: Insights from Veteran Journalist Andy Shain

Andy Shain, Columbia Bureau Chief for The Post and Courier, will share stories and insights from his 30 years as a journalist. Shain will discuss his role in covering South Carolina’s landmark 1990 FBI sting, Operation Lost Trust, including a brief time he spent in jail for refusing to reveal his sources. He’ll also share his perspective on how journalism has evolved during his career and what it takes to effectively report on public issues today. Andy Shain is The Post and Courier’s Columbia Bureau Chief where he oversees a three-person Statehouse reporting team from the newspaper’s office on Main Street. He also heads up the expansion of South Carolina’s largest newspaper into Columbia and Myrtle Beach. After graduating from Northwestern, Andy worked as a reporter and editor at newspapers in Myrtle Beach, Charlotte and Columbia. He spent nine years at The State covering business, sports and politics, and a little more than a year as editor of Free Times after the weekly paper was bought by The Post and Courier’s parent company in 2016. He started a weekend backpack food program at his daughter’s elementary school, Meadowfield, that has grown threefold over the years, and he volunteers at the Washington Street United Methodist Church soup cellar. On the personal side, Andy is convinced he’s the only person who can live in Myrtle Beach for eight years and come out a worse golfer. And he’s a fan of Arsenal, the Phillies and the Eagles – all of which prepares him for life’s disappointments. When: Tuesday, October 3, 2017, 11:45 AM  – 1:15 PM Where: Farm Bureau Insurance, 724 Knox Abbott...

Sept. 12: Weathering the Storm

Cancelled due to weather! Meteorologist Richard Okulski is unable to join us next week due to Hurricane Irma. We wish everyone in Irma’s path the best in weathering the storm! From hurricanes to ice storms, floods and even a total solar eclipse, South Carolina’s climate has provided Rich Okulski plenty of opportunities for sharing critical weather information in recent years. Learn how Rich and his team at the National Weather Service’s Columbia, S.C. bureau develop and share weather messaging with government leaders and media outlets and what it takes to adapt the messaging to suit the public’s needs as a storm progresses. Rich will also discuss how the NWS engages the public on social media through the Weather Ready Nation brand ambassador program. Plus, his reflections on the recent total eclipse! Richard J. Okulski is the Meteorologist In Charge (MIC) at the National Weather Service (NWS)’s Forecast Office in Columbia, SC.  Previously, Rich was the MIC of the Caribou, ME Office from 2011 to 2016, the Warning Coordination Meteorologist in Memphis, TN from 2006 to 2010, Executive Officer for the NWS Director in 2005, the NWS Severe Weather Program Leader from 2002 to 2004, and served at various field offices in the Western U.S. from 1993 to 2001. Prior to being hired by NOAA/NWS, Rich served as a U.S. Army officer in Germany and the Persian Gulf. He led a platoon in close combat during Operation DESERT STORM. Rich also worked for a private weather company named Compu-Weather Incorporated in 1989. He earned a degree in atmospheric science (B.S. 1989) from Rutgers University. When: Tuesday, September, 2017 from 11:45 a.m. to...