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A Message from Larry Ceisler
Turn on TV this month and you’ll be bombarded by political ads. Drive down any street and you’ll spot lawns dotted with campaign signs.
It’s the season, and politics is more omnipresent than anything this side of pumpkin spice.
While Ceisler Media is not a political firm – we don’t work for candidates – we are a collection of political enthusiasts. Our office water cooler talk (back before the pandemic hit) often centered on candidates and issues. And I’ve always encouraged our team members to get involved outside the office in their communities or on campaigns.
This fall, we’re taking it a step further. Given the anticipated shortage of poll workers, I am offering all our staffers a paid day off if they spend Nov. 3 helping voters at the polls. In this newsletter, you’ll see an op-ed I wrote on why – and also why I’m urging other businesses to follow suit. There’s also a blog from Associate Director Anthony Campisi, who came to me with the idea.
There’s other solid political content in this newsletter. Senior Associate Caitlin O’Connor writes about VoteSafe, a bi-partisan effort to ensure Pennsylvanians have accessible, secure mail-in ballots, as well as safe in-person voting sites. Franco Harris, a Pro Football Hall of Famer (and one of the favorites of my youth), is featured in a WIP-FM Philadelphia radio interview where he talks about making sure residents have confidence in voting by mail.
Senior Projects Manager Larry Miller’s monthly musings focus on low voter turnout in Philadelphia. Larry notes that “power to the people” only works if people choose to exercise that power. Similarly, Sam Gorodetzer, one of our younger associates, muses why his generation is less likely to go to the polls – and offers an idea how older generations might help.
You’ll find my own monthly assessment of political trends, along with thought leader pieces, updates on some of our staffers and positive news about clients. Pay particular attention to one client item – we’re delighted that the Durst Organization has been selected to redevelop Penn’s Landing with a terrific plan for the future.
Principal, Ceisler Media & Issue Advocacy
As the election nears, what is the impact of recent revelations about the president? What is each candidate's smart strategy for winning rural PA? And what must each accomplish in the first debate? Larry Ceisler offers keen insight on what's happening right now.
Why don’t millennials vote? Our youngest associate, Sam Gorodetzer, examines the issue and offers an idea on what might increase young adults’ participation.
Congratulations to our client, the Durst Organization, which was selected to redevelop Penn’s Landing with a $2.2 billion plan that includes 12 towers of homes, shops and offices along a four-acre park on the Philadelphia waterfront.
In endorsing the Durst Organization’s project, which was selected over three others, Mayor Jim Kenney called it “a thoughtful proposal (that) prioritized minority participation and economic impact. This is a very large-scale project that will have a great impact on the waterfront for years to come.”
Pro Football Hall of Famer Franco Harris, an ambassador for VoteSafe PA, joined 94-WIP radio hosts Ray Didinger and Glen Macnow on Sept. 12 for an extended interview. In addition to discussing his life story and the legendary "Immaculate Reception" play, Harris explained why all Pennsylvanias should feel secure voting by mail. (The Harris interview begins 94 minutes into the show. The VoteSafe campaign is discussed at 118 minutes in and again at 140 minutes).
PHLConnectED, the city’s initiative to provide free internet service, laptops and digital skills, launched a hotline for families to learn if they are eligible. The program has the support of Comcast and the Philadelphia Housing Authority, among others. Students and families can call 211 with questions 24/7 and have the option to speak to someone in 150 languages.
Comcast NBCUniversal recently selected 11 new startups (from hundreds of applicants) to participate in its third annual LIFT Labs Accelerator. The program is an opportunity for aspiring business founders to receive mentorship from 100-plus industry leaders from Comcast NBCUniversal and the global Techstars network.
Broadcasting its “I’m Listening” program on Sept. 23 on all of its RADIO.com stations. During National Suicide Prevention Month and beyond, the I’m Listening initiative aims to ensure that mental health conversations are seen as commonplace and met with acceptance.
After an unconstitutional Trump Administration order excluded undocumented immigrants from the Census, we worked with Keystone Counts to draft and place this op-ed in the Inquirer, explaining why it’s vital that everyone gets counted.
No Dog Left Behind expanded its rescue efforts to include a dozen guinea pigs, who got new homes and second chances at life from the Pittsburgh Aviation Animal Rescue Team. Watch this fun video to see when pigs, indeed, do fly.
Congratulations to our Multimedia Designer, William Jara, who recently got engaged to marry Gabriel Quinonez. Gabe popped the question while kayaking down the Delaware River in New York. Will and Gabe share a love for hiking, adventure sports, being active and working out.
Ceisler Media alum Curtis Blessing was promoted in September to Senior Manager of Communications at American Airlines. Curtis is a leader in his field – a skilled communicator able to navigate crises that don’t have a playbook with his calming disposition and great attitude. It’s always a pleasure to watch our colleagues continue to grow in their careers.
Ceisler Media Director Meredith Montalto writes how great promotional ideas fall flat if they fail to reach those for whom they are intended.
In these divisive times, don’t lose sight of the value of empathy. Ceisler Media COO Kate Wilhelm made the case in May 2019 for the basic importance of striving to understand each other’s perspectives and feelings.
Senior Associate Caitlin O'Connor helped write and place an op-ed in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette aiming to gain support for the Abandoned Mine Reclamation Trust Fund. Pennsylvania has more abandoned mines than any state in the nation, and the legislation calls for authorizing non-taxpayer funds to continue cleanup of the mine sites.
The future of American democracy will be decided by citizens who are critical, informed and powered to take action (even while social distancing). That's why Ceisler Media is proud to join the Committee of Seventy as a partner in the WeVote initiative to inform and engage voters. Help create a culture of voting by visiting wevote.seventy.org for the tools and resources you need to make your vote count this November. Change happens when #WeVote. @Committeeof70
Keegan Gibson, Special Projects Manager for Western PA, will offer analysis on the 17th district race for a PCN special that aired Friday, Sept. 18th at 6pm and 10pm. The former Managing Editor of PoliticsPA joins a panel at La Roche University discussing incumbent Rep. Conor Lamb and challenger Sean Parnell.