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PRSA Bestows National Honor on UT Alumnus

Summar Receives Patrick Jackson Award for Distinguished Service

 

ATLANTA, February 17, 2006 — Dwayne Summar, APR, Fellow PRSA, University of Tennessee alumnus, and member of the Georgia Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America, was presented with the prestigious Patrick Jackson Award for Distinguished Service to PRSA in Atlanta today.

He was given the honor by the society's national president, Cheryl Procter-Rogers, APR, Fellow PRSA, 2006 president and CEO of the Public Relations Society of America and corporate affairs director for Home Box Office (HBO), at Real World PR 2006, the Georgia Chapter's annual collegiate conference. The ceremony took place in front of an audience of 300, including 175 students, at the Loudermilk Center in downtown Atlanta.

Summar was the national president of PRSA in 1988. He has been a Chapter president twice (Georgia and Nashville) and has served on three Chapter boards (Georgia, Miami and Nashville). He earned his APR accreditation in 1973 and has held numerous offices in the national society and in local Chapters and is the holder of 12 presidential citations from PRSA. In 1990, he was in the first class elected to membership in PRSA's College of Fellows, the society's highest honor.

His work experiences include 16 years at the Atlanta-based Southern Company and its divisions, including vice president of public relations, the first PR professional at Southern Company who was elected an officer; a senior vice president of Hill and Knowlton's Southeast Region, also in Atlanta; an executive vice president at Atkinson Public Relations in Nashville; senior communications officer of HeritageBank in Albany, GA., from 2000 to 2004. Since then, he has been in private practice as the principal of Dwayne Summar Public Relations in Albany.

Summar graduated from the College of Communication and Information at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. In 1994, he received the college's first Donald G. Hileman Distinguished Alumni Award. In 2004, the college established a scholarship program named the Dwayne Summar Essay Contest, a writing competition as part of UT's biennial "PR Day."

Don Perry, vice president of public relations at Chick-fil-A, said, "It's very appropriate for Dwayne to receive this award here at the Georgia Chapter. As one of our own, his success in our field has largely been the standard-bearer for the Georgia Chapter. He has all of our congratulations."

"Dwayne walks the talk of the public relations professional. Within PRSA, he has taken leadership in virtually every aspect of the organization – from espousing continuing professional education to encouraging and supporting the student society – serving as a role model every step of the way," said Judi B. Borgo, APR, director of communication and volunteer services of the Girl Scout Council of Northwest Georgia, Inc.

And Nancy Wood, APR, Fellow PRSA, said, "This award is given in part to recognize someone who inspires fellow practitioners both professionally and personally and Dwayne is just that person. I can't think of anyone more deserving of this honor. His long service to PRSA nationally, as well as to chapters here, in Florida and in Tennessee, put him in a class by himself. Dwayne truly is an inspiration."

The Patrick Jackson Award for Distinguished Service to PRSA is named in honor of the late Patrick Jackson, APR, Fellow PRSA, one of the most widely known and respected practitioners in the public relations profession. His vision and many contributions to the growth of PRSA are legendary.

The annual award is intended to recognize a member who has significantly contributed to advancing PRSA from the Chapter to national levels as well as furthered the Society by inspiring fellow practitioners professionally and personally. Summar is the fifth recipient of the award.