It’s fitting that today, March 24, 2021, is both Equal Pay Day and the birthday of PRNEWS’s founder, the inestimable Denora “Denny” Griswold (1908-2001). Griswold’s birthday is special this year, though. Just one week ago, a large package arrived at the Museum of Public Relations. It’s sort of a birthday gift for PR historians worldwide.
Stories by Shelley Spector
As we celebrate International Women’s Day, many PR pros who rely on the PRNEWS brand don’t know its founder was a woman. In 1944, Denora “Denny” Griswold had an idea at 3am to start a news vehicle for and about the PR industry. Her husband, publisher of BusinessWeek, agreed and joined her. As important as founding PRNEWS, Griswold was a visionary. At a time when there weren’t enough women in PR to fill her kitchen table, Griswold thought women could do anything.
In honor of Pride Month, the Museum of PR held a forum where PR pros who are members of the LGBTQ+ community discussed how the industry has helped raise awareness around Pride. In addition, they spoke about their experiences being PR pros and members of the LGBTQ+ community.
As Pride Month concludes tomorrow, the Museum of PR will convene a group of PR’s LGBTQ+ leaders for a discussion about the role of communication in the movement’s past, present and future. We offer perspectives on work and life of some of the scheduled panelists.
In honor of Pride Month, we offer the perspectives of several LGBTQ leaders in the PR and marketing community. Each of these executives will speak during a free Museum of PR event next week highlighting the social and professional experiences of members of PR’s LGBTQ community.
Marilyn Laurie (1939-2013) worked her way up to become CCO of AT&T, the company’s first female in that position. She did so, in part, by holding un-traditional views, including seeing PR’s role as representing the consumer inside the board room. Our monthly history feature is a Q&A with Dick Martin, author of a forthcoming book about Marilyn. In addition, Martin succeeded Laurie at AT&T.
As part of PRNEWS’ 75th anniversary this year, we depart from our normal fare of tips, tactics and strategies and offer a look at the life and times of the founder of this publication, Denny Griswold.