April 2, 2012
Rebecca B. Andersen, M.S., APR, is a partner with Pacific Bridge Marketing, a technology focused integrated marketing communications firm in Washington, D.C. She is also an adjunct professor at West Virginia University’s IMC master’s program and the treasurer of PRSA’s National Capital Chapter.
She received her master’s in integrated marketing communications from West Virginia University and holds a BSBA in international marketing from American University.
West Virginia University is a PRSA university partner.
Name: Rebecca B. Andersen, M.S., APR
Writer, teacher, dancer, even a nun at one point — I wanted to try it all!
Partner, Pacific Bridge Marketing; adjunct professor, West Virginia University, integrated marketing communications masters program
What changed (i.e., how you became interested in public relations):
When given the option between pursuing a minor in public relations and studying abroad, I chose Brussels. It wasn’t until my first job out of college that I realized I needed core PR skills. I changed my focus from pursuing an MBA, and received my M.S. in IMC.
First public relations job:
My first PR job was giving tours and speaking to large groups of prospective students at American University. The best way to learn pitching and rapport building techniques: on the spot with parents of prospective students!
What you know now that you wish you’d known then:
“Integrate what you believe into every single area of your life.” — Meryl Streep
Best piece of advice you’ve ever received:
Greed is not good, despite what Gordon Gekko says in the 1987 movie “Wall Street.” You never want to take on [so] much that the quality of your services deteriorates out of greed for more business. Greed will only do you a greater disservice.
Greatest professional accomplishment:
Managing corporate communications for the IPO of Opnext, Inc.
If you weren’t in public relations, you would be:
A professional pastry chef! I have always thought it would be fun to own a designer cupcake shop.
Teach my children how to communicate effectively. I can’t tell you how many times a day I say, “Use your words!”
Make a “business case” for public relations:
In today’s world of global economic complexities, it is critical that we understand and communicate the financial health of our own organizations. Those that can do it effectively will lead in public relations, business and our government.