2016 PRism Awards to Highlight Best PR Work in Rochester

2016 PRism Awards to Highlight Best PR Work in Rochester
Two local professionals to receive the region’s top public relations awards

Contact: Kristin Tutino, 585-259-5884
PRSA Rochester
Chapter PRism Committee 

Rochester, N.Y., June 1, 2016 — The 2016 PRism Awards, the Rochester chapter of the Public Relations Society of America’s (PRSA) annual awards ceremony that celebrates the best work in public relations, will take place on Thursday, June 16 at the Rochester Museum and Science Center. Tickets are $55 for members and students, and $70 for non-members. Tickets may be purchased online at:

The father-son duo of Don Alhart, Associate News Director at 13WHAM-TV, and Jon Alhart, Vice President of Social and Digital Media at Dixon Schwabl, will host this year’s awards show. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. with the formal event beginning at 7 p.m. on June 16.

Two hundred PRism entries were submitted by professionals from advertising agencies, public relations firms, colleges, corporations, and nonprofits. Awards will be given in more than 30 categories, including the most coveted honor – Best in Show.

The ceremony also includes the presentation of two professional awards, which will go to the following individuals:

Gerard J. Rooney, Ph.D., President, St. John Fisher College, will receive the Executive of the Year award. This award recognizes a corporate or not-for-profit executive in the Greater Rochester Area who has demonstrated his/her understanding and regard for the practice of public relations

Dr. Rooney holds a doctoral degree from the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy, Higher Education Program, at the University at Buffalo, State University of New York. On July 1, 2015, he took office as the seventh president of St. John Fisher College. He has over 30 years of experience in higher education and executive administration. His most recent role at the College was executive vice president for enrollment, advancement, and planning, and included oversight of admissions; financial aid; marketing and communications; corporate, foundation, and government relations; institutional research; intercollegiate athletics; and institutional advancement. He had additional responsibilities in the areas of strategic planning and community partnerships and outreach.

As president, Dr. Rooney brought the Office of Marketing and Communications with him as a direct report under his new office, a move that is a testament to the value he places on public relations.

Ryann Bouchard, Public Relations Manager, Dixon Schwabl, will receive the Rising Star award. This award recognizes a public relations professional with no more than seven years of experience in the field, who demonstrates exceptional competence, skill and leadership potential.

As Public Relations Manager, Bouchard manages media relations, communications, and strategic PR plans for her clients. She also develops and implements business plans for new and existing clients. Bouchard joined Dixon Schwabl in 2012 as director of first impressions, joined the public relations team in 2013, and quickly moved up the ranks on to her current position as Public Relations Manager.

She received her Bachelor of Arts in communications from SUNY Fredonia.