The PRSA College of Fellows is the pinnacle group of professionals in the Society. It is considered the gold standard for public relations professionals. Induction into the College is an emergence into new ways of serving the PR profession and the professional. Nearly 700 members have been inducted since its inception in 1989.
While it is an honor to be a member of the College, it is not an honorary organization. Rather, it is an active group of experienced professionals who enrich the PR profession by continuing to leave a significant footprint on the public relations body of knowledge. A rigorous application and peer review process culminates in inducting into membership these ‘best of the best.’
Following are PRSA Alaska Fellows and the year they were inducted:
Bruce Pozzi, 1993—The founder of PRSA Alaska, Bruce was the first and second chapter president, the first Alaskan to serve on the PRSA Board of Directors and the first to become a Fellow. He is the recipient of two PRSA Silver Anvils and the chapter Communicator of the Year. Bruce received the Chapter Lifetime Achievement Award and was granted Lifetime Membership. The Bruce Pozzi Chapter Service Award is named in his honor. Bruce is retired after 55 years as president of Bruce Pozzi Public Relations.
Vivian Hamilton, 2000—A past chapter president, Vivian served on the PRSA Board of Directors and was the first Alaskan to serve as chair of the College. She received the PRSA Alaska Communicator of the Year, Bruce Pozzi Chapter Service Award, Fellows Outstanding Leadership Award and Fellows Sage Award for mentoring. The Vivian Hamilton Professional Promise Award, named in her honor, recognizes an outstanding young professional who is active in the chapter.
Karen Cedzo, 2001—A long-time chapter leader in Fairbanks, Karen is retired from the University of Alaska Fairbanks and her own consulting business. She was active in and chaired the PRSAEducational and Cultural Organizations (ECOS) Section, a community of senior-level communications leaders who serve higher education institutions.
Mary Deming Barber, 2003—Mary is a past chapter president and recipient of the Communicator of the Year and Bruce Pozzi Chapter Service awards. Her work earned two Silver Anvil Awards. She has served on numerous national committees and task forces and on the PRSA Board of Directors, including a term as secretary, and as chair of the College of Fellows. She is a recipient of the Patrick Jackson Award for Distinguished Service to PRSA.
Joette Storm, 2004—A past chapter president, Joette received the PRSA Alaska Communicator of the Year Award. She is retired after 33 years of federal service, having worked for the Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Forest Service and Federal Aviation Administration. She continues to offer counseling through her family business, Wordwright.
Bruce Batten, 2005—Bruce is a past chapter president. He is retired with 27 years of federal service, primarily with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and another dozen years as a PR mentor and counselor. In his second career, Bruce is a musician who performs in Alaska and internationally. He and his band were featured in a Netflix movie performing the theme song Bruce wrote.
Nance Larsen, 2009—A past chapter president, Nance received the Communicator of the Year and Bruce Pozzi Chapter Service awards. Nationally, she served as chair of the Board of Ethics and Professional Standards and the Advocacy Committee. She received the 2018 PRSA Distinguished Service Award. She co-chairs Voices4Everyone, which supports a national conversation building mutual understanding, trust, and civic engagement through more inclusive civil discourse. Nance received the President’s Volunteer Service Award, presented by former President George W. Bush, for her global work with Special Olympics.
Michelle Egan, 2016—Michelle is a past chapter president and recipient of the Communicator of the Year. She has served on the PRSA Board of Directors, including two terms as Treasurer and as chair elect. She will be the first Alaskan to serve as chair of PRSA when she steps into that role in 2023.
To learn more about the College, the criteria for selection and how to apply, visit https://www.prsa.org/home/get-involved/college-of-fellows.