Noted Public Relations Professional Visits Communication Class

Anita Ford Saunders, director of advancement communications at Trinity College, visited Communications Professor Christopher Ayeni’s Introduction to Public Relations class on Feb. 26 to share her extensive experience in the public relations industry. Ayeni said Saunders description of her career path and insights into public relations was a truly rewarding experience for his students.

Saunders said writing was the most important skill to have in the public relations industry. “We’re in the business of changing people’s behavior, and the writing process must take each audience into consideration. After writing, ethics is most important. Deception, or ‘spin,’ as some public relations people erroneously call it, is not being truthful. Honesty is key in public relations.”

During a career spanning more than 30 years, Saunders has held senior marketing and communications positions with United Way of Central and Northeastern Connecticut, Yankee Gas, the Hartford Foundation of Public Giving, the Urban League of Greater Hartford and CPTV. She also worked in the television industry for WDIV-TV in Detroit, MI, and WFSB-TV and WVIT-TV in Hartford, winning three Emmy Awards.

She also served as the professional advisor to the Eastern chapters of the Public Relations Student Society of America, serving as the link between the chapter and the industry, as well as the facilitator for public relations internships in the region.