Kara Alaimo, PhD, assistant professor of public relations in the department of Journalism, Media Studies, and Public Relations at the Lawrence Herbert School of Communication, recently won the Titan of the Future award at the 2017 World Communication Forum gala.
Top communicators from all over the world met in Geneva, Switzerland from March 13-17 to analyze and discuss the future development of communications and their role in business, society and politics; and to honor leaders in the industry. Alaimo was among those recognized for her creativity and commitment “to the high business and ethical standards of true global leaders.” According to the World Communication Forum (WCF), Alaimo is a “Titan of our new epoch” – an influencer in this ever-evolving era.
“In my research and speaking engagements over the past several years, I’ve been on a mission to teach public relations practitioners how to appropriately adapt their campaigns for different countries and cultures and how to use public relations to make a positive impact on the world,” said Alaimo. “It’s really inspiring to receive this recognition and feel like my work is making a difference.”
The World Communication Forum is supported by the World Communication Forum Association, which works to promote global industry leaders and evoke positive change through effective communication. Alaimo previously spoke at the WCF in 2015, 2016, and 2017; and has served on the board of the forum since 2016. This year, she organized the first all-female panel, which brought together practitioners and academics from around the world to discuss how to communicate in different cultures. She also spoke at the forum about how communication practitioners can prepare for and respond to new challenges such as fake news, Twitter attacks by President Trump, expectations for businesses to weigh in on political issues, and public critiques by employees and endorsers.
Alaimo, who teaches in the undergraduate and graduate public relations programs at Hofstra, specializes in international and political/advocacy communication. In her previous roles as spokesperson for global economic diplomacy initiatives in President Obama’s administration and as a head of communications at the United Nations, Alaimo realized there was no resource available to practitioners that explained how to alter public relations strategies for different countries. To address this, she conducted interviews with senior PR professionals in 31 nations and wrote the book Pitch, Tweet, or Engage on the Street: How to Practice Global Public Relations and Strategic Communication, which was published by Routledge in 2016. The book breaks the world into ten cultural clusters and explains best public relations practices in each of them. A #1 bestseller on Amazon’s list of hot new releases in international business at publication, the book is being used in communication classes at Hofstra University, Columbia University, N.Y.U., George Washington University, the Newhouse School at Syracuse University, and more. In addition, her articles about how to practice culturally appropriate and pro-social PR have been published by The New York Times, The Washington Post, Harvard Business Review, The Atlantic, CNN, Bloomberg, Al Jazeera, and top academic journals such as The International Journal of Communication, Journal of Communication Management, and Journal of Public Affairs. To read them, visit www.karaalaimo.com.