Hawaii Chapter Members Aiding Local Officials During COVID-19 Outbreak
By: John Elsasser
May. 1, 2020
Members of PRSA’s Hawaii Chapter have been donating their communications skills to the State of Hawaii’s Joint Information Center (JIC).
JIC officials reached out to the Chapter for PR assistance in March as the COVID-19 virus quickly spread across the United States.
“Back in March, we were impressed by how many PRSA Hawaii members stepped forward without hesitation to lend their support in the early days of the pandemic,” Chapter President Mondy Jamshidi Kent, M.A., told Strategies & Tactics.
Social distancing has forced senior-level state officials to reinvent the logistics of staffing the JIC, located at the Hawaii Department of Health.
“As the situation has continued to evolve, Hawaii PR professionals and agencies are now being engaged directly by local and state leaders in areas ranging from augmenting public information officer teams to developing digital content and advance messages,” she said.
The ongoing experience has also provided a shareable learning moment for local communicators. On April 16, PRSA Hawaii hosted a free Zoom-enabled panel discussion titled “Communicate Effectively During a Crisis,” which featured Dan Dennison, lead public information officer for the COVID-19 Joint Information Center.