Faye I. Andersen, APR (since 1995)
Accreditation is a confirmation of your education and your professional experience, plus tangible evidence of your proficiency in the practice of Public Relations. The actual work towards accreditation should give you the confidence and affirmation that you are providing the most knowledgeable and best possible PR counsel to your client.
Julie Ardito, APR (since 2010)
As the owner of my own integrated marketing/PR firm, the APR distinguishes me and my depth of industry knowledge within the marketplace. The three letters after my name allow potential clients to ask, ‘What is APR?’ and open that discussion as to how I might best serve their business needs.
Alexia Bratiotis, APR (since 2008)
I valued and appreciated the process of thinking critically, examining my public relations career and expanding a knowledge base for earning accreditation. The journey to APR afforded me the opportunity to move my public relations practice from tactical to strategic. Achieving this credential is a daily reminder to perform my public relations responsibilities in the most professional and ethical ways.
Natalie Brown, APR (since 2010)
Often, PR professionals report to managers who understand the importance of public relations, yet not the nuts and bolts that hold a strong plan, strategy or campaign together. Accreditation is one of the best ways to show an employer that you’re serious about your trade and have the fundamental knowledge and understanding needed to use public relations to help your business meet its goals.
Don Butterfield, APR, MBA (APR since 1999)
Accreditation was a meaningful step in my career. Accreditation is more of a process than an accomplishment. It demonstrates a commitment to continuing education in the dynamic Public Relations Profession. More and more, employers value APR as a certification of knowledge, competency and ethical conduct.
Bob Conrad, Ph.D., APR (APR since 2005)
Accreditation helped me because I was never a public relations student. Combined with practical experience, the accreditation process helped my polish what I already knew with more formal PR concepts.
April Conway, APR (since 2012)
In an industry where frequent assignment changes are the norm, the APR allowed me to specialize and get deep into the craft of public relations. It allowed my superiors a chance to see the value in military public affairs specialization. Having that solid foothold served me well in strategic planning roles far removed from public relations.
With a background in business-to-business marketing communications before getting into PR, I too had not had any formal scholastic training in PR. It was extremely important for me then to study for and obtain my APR certification, particularly because I wanted to run my own small PR business. I thought having my APR certification would help position me to compete with other freelancers and small agencies, which it did. What I was surprised to find out was that the study process itself, as well as the ongoing certification maintenance, gave me:
1. a complete understanding of the process of PR,
2. a better grasp of the differences between goals-vs-strategies-vs-objectives,
3. and an appreciation for the role of the PR professional in the strategic management of communications with ALL audiences, and how that contributes to the wealth of an organization.
I delved into the world of PRSA APR study more than 25 years ago, thinking I was up for a challenge at a time when very few APRs lived in northern Nevada. The experience and outcomes have greatly exceeded my expectations. I studied with a group of like-minded professionals, and we learned from one another while being immersed in the history, theories, strategies, tactics and best practices of the public relations profession. The process was much like an intense graduate course (or several at once!) in the foundations and applications of the profession. The APR increased my confidence in my professional skills. I gained a deeper connection to public relations, its body of knowledge and ethics. The APR experience opened new opportunities for me, not only in strengthening my assurance to go for my highest career aspirations, but also in confirming the value of lifelong professional learning.
Martha Jane Holman, MBA, APR
After a long career in traditional sales and marketing, then more than 10 years as Managing Principal of my own firm, I felt it was important for my clients to provide the strategic and creative communications acumen which the APR provides. The value to my clients is huge; they are assured of ethical solutions and of relevant representation.
Anne McMillin, APR (since 1994)
My best APR testimonial comes from a 2004 job interview. The hiring manager knew the value of APR and called me for an initial interview based on not only the strength of my resume, but because I had my APR. While I wasn’t ultimately hired, she said if it was up to her, I would’ve been.
Jane Tors, APR (since 1995)
I set off on the road to accreditation not knowing that the course of study would be more significant than earning accreditation itself. Studying for the APR exam, especially with a study group that involves experienced professionals as discussion leaders, changed the way I approached my job and accelerated my own progression to becoming a strategist. While I place great value on the source of study, earning accreditation is valuable and signifies a commitment to professionalism and ethical practice. It is an advantage in an increasingly competitive job market.