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It was a pleasure to work with John Beardsley, APR. Professional and personable, John always seemed happy to see me. The feeling was mutual. It was even more fun to see Beardsley in action, such as when he led the PRSA Assembly as PRSA’s national president in 1995. He had a booming voice worthy of Shakespearean theater and was a great orator. The first time I heard him address an audience in 1994, I thought, “This is how you should speak in public.”
John, who was Minneapolis-based Padilla Speer Beardsley’s former CEO, passed away on Sept. 2 after complications from heart surgery. He was 73.
Earlier in the summer, he had been working on an article for The Strategist about social network analysis. It was classic John: cerebral, thoughtful. Only he could quote a physicist named Albert-László Barabási without sounding pretentious.
John was the first person I know who bought an iPhone when they went on sale in June 2007. This past spring, I asked him if he was going to buy an iPad. He guffawed a bit. Of course he had one already! The next big thing was always on John’s radar.
Matt Kurcharski, APR, senior vice president at Padilla Speer Beardsley, said that John declared the beginning of the mobile computing revolution the day that he came home with one of the first — and only — Apple Newtons, an early PDA, in 1993. Toward the end of the summer, John sent me a complimentary note about Tactics with his customary sign off:
Sent from my iPhone
An article in the June issue titled “How to build relationships with architectural critics,” on page 10, failed to mention that while working on the Toledo Museum of Art campaign, Lynnette J. Werning, APR, served as vice president of Sheroian Associates Inc. in Lambertville, Mich. This is the firm that handled the global public relations for the Glass Pavilion.
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