Spotlight: Cherise Newsome

    Spotlight on Melissa Ramsey

    Years in the industry: 4

    Current employer: Hampton Roads Community Foundation

    What is the biggest communications challenge you've ever faced on the job, and how did your solve it?
    One big challenge involved a crisis response to a school shooting in 2018. It was chaotic. From that experience, I developed a crisis plan and trained staff on crisis communications. Another shooting happened later that year, unfortunately. However, we were better prepared. We quickly released info to families and the media. We followed with a series of messages about school safety to help reassure people. It worked out much better.

    What is the most important communications lesson you've ever learned?
    One important lesson I have learned is to build relationships with your audiences before trying to pitch or sell them anything. This builds rapport, credibility, and trust.

    What one piece of advice would you give new communicators?
    Find a seasoned mentor who will coach you through good times and bad.

    When you're not working, where might we find you?
    Volunteering with the PTA

    What's your favorite place you've ever traveled?
    Atlanta to see The King Center. I've been so many times, and it never gets old.

    What's the greatest benefit you've gotten from being a PRSA member?
    PRSA helps me stay sharp and relevant. Plus, I get to network with great minds. The online discussion groups also are super helpful.

    What are you reading? Listening to? Watching?
    Reading: The Coaching Habit by Michael Bungay Stanier
    Listening to: PJ Morton's Alright
    Watching: "Judge Judy." I know, I know. What can I say I just love her show!

    How can we find you on social media?
    Twitter: @CMNewsome; LinkedIn:


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