Melissa Cullen to head Public Relations Council replacing founding chair Stuart Gregor

Melissa Cullen

New PRC chair Melissa Cullen

Co-founder of Res Publica Melissa Cullen has been elected to head up the Public Relations Council (PRC), taking over from founding chair Stuart Gregor.

Gregor has been in the role since the Communications Council launched the body in 2012 to represent consumer PR agencies.

“It has been a fantastic two years heading up the PRC,” said the Liquid Ideas founder. “This was really the initiative of myself and Simone Drewry way back – close to three years ago.”

“I think we have made a genuine impact. We are doing good for the industry and I think there is still a great opportunity to grow.”



The veteran PR man said he was proud of what the group, which includes more than 40 agencies, had achieved but said he still wanted to bring more large agencies into the fold.

“The PRC has been a great development,” he said. “We are still growing and I think we are really starting to contribute to the industry and we are getting quite involved in measurement, in online anonymous commentary etc.

“We still would like a few more members and there are still a couple of consumer agencies that are still not in. I still have my heart set on the Ogilvys of this world coming on board, but I am very proud of the first two years.”

Cullen told Mumbrella she was proud to take over as chair of the PRC.

“I’m really looking forward to taking on the role of chair of the PRC and want to thank Stu for the work he has done in establishing the PRC and driving things forward over the past couple of years,” said Cullen.

“In 2015, we’ll continue our focus of championing earned media and representing the interests of consumer PR agencies to the broader marketing communications industry. Our members are doing some really great work and it’s important we find ways to showcase the commercial creativity and effectiveness of PR.

We have some new initiatives in the coming year that are aimed at connecting the industry and sharing key learnings, particularly at a senior level – and we’ll continue to offer a range of other opportunities such as our highly successful forum series to all members.”

“Mel Cullen will be an awesome chair,” said Gregor, who also paid tribute to other members of the PRC for their contribution, singling out Edelman boss Michelle Hutton who has recently taken a role in London leading the PR group’s global consumer practice.

“It is great for consumer agencies that someone like Michelle Hutton, who has been at the heart of the PRC, has gone off to such an important global role. She is now a proper global leader of this industry and made an enormous contribution. We want to be sure we continue to keep Edelman involved.”

Since its inception the PRC has at times rubbed up against the Public Relations Institute of Australia (PRIA), despite declaring that it did not wish to compete with the industry body, which covers a broader sweep of communications and government relations professionals.

Speaking to Mumbrella this morning Gregor said: “It has been a terrific journey but I’m very happy to pass the baton.”

Nic Christensen 


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