Public Relations amidst COVID-19: Top 10 female practitioners for year 2020
Every year Women in PR Ghana, a networking platform aimed at mentoring the next generation of young Public Relations and communications professionals releases a list of female practitioners valuable contributions towards the growth of their organisations or private enterprises.
In spite of the disruptions caused by COVID-19, some practitioners still defied the odds to make a mark in their respective organisations. The top 10 outstanding women in 2020 were named recently and, as expected, some popular names popped up again.
According to Women in PR, the list was compiled based on how the women tackled COVID-19, through “internal and external communications”, and how they used the period to “impact the vulnerable” in society.”
Here is a summary of their achievements and impact, as published by Women in PR Ghana.
Ms Esther Cobbah (CEO, Stratcomm Africa)
The award- winning practitioner and advocate of green environment was listed for using her social media platforms to host live conversations on ‘Green Living’ and offer useful tips to her followers on how to start, grow and maintain simple green plots/gardens at home.
Her organisation, Stratcomm Africa, supported the national communications efforts by rolling out series of communication campaigns such as “Koo the COVID Prefect” in the ‘Fante’ dialect to educate the public on COVID-19.
The 8th edition of her annual Ghana Garden and Flower Show which usually took place as a physical event was hosted virtually due to restrictions on physical activities.
Ms Shirley Tony Kum (Corporate Communications Manager, Vivo Energy)
Throughout year 2020, Shirley is said to have led and driven several sustainable and impactful projects within her industry.
Her organisation, Vivo Energy (Shell) launched an initiative dubbed ‘Retailer Sustainability Programme’ to complement government’s efforts in combating COVID-19.
The programme led the organisation to roll out a number of interventions for their staff and local communities.
She led her team to win some awards including Excellence Award in Corporate Social Responsibility (Downstream) at the Ghana Oil and Gas Awards.
She was adjudged the ‘Unsung Hero’ for her outstanding contribution to the Oil and Gas Industry under the Vivo Energy brand and also won the ‘Corporate Lady of the Year ‘ at the 2020 Women’s Choice Awards Africa.
Ms Cynthia Eyram Ofori-Dwumfuo (Group Head, Marketing and Corporate Affairs, Hollard Ghana)
During the COVID-19, she led her team at Hollard Ghana to develop a communication strategy through the use of affection emojis (a small digital image or icon used to express an idea or emotion) on branded bus stop shelters.
The emojis were the team’s way of communicating love and care to the many individuals affected by the pandemic.
In October 2020, Cynthia led her team to pay the road tolls of over 20,000 motorists as a gesture of appreciation and care, as part of the company’s customer service week celebration and she led her organisation to make donations to relevant institutions.
Ms Cassandra Twum Ampofo (Head of Public Relations Unit, Ghana Education Service)
The COVID-19 pandemic led to the closure of schools and presented some hard times to her institution, however, Cassandra was prepared to provide adequate information on every issue raised with resilience and tenacity.
She is credited for improving brand visibility of the Ghana Education Service (GES both online and in mainstream media.
GES partnered the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation to introduce the Ghana Learning TV — a free-to-air channel to bridge the learning gap during the lockdown and closure of schools.
In September 2020, she won the Communications Personality of the Year at the National Communications Awards.
Ms Sophia Lissah (Group Head, Communications, Jospong Group of Companies)
Ms. Sophia’s organisation had made a number of logistic and financial contribution towards the fight against COVID-19, such as cash donations to the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research (NMIMR) to promote research on COVID-19, and had also led nationwide disinfection of schools, markets, and other public places.
Ms Praise Nutakor (Head of UNDP Ghana’s Communications Unit)
In 2020, she led her organisation on a number of campaigns and interventions such as the ‘For Better Business Together’ programme, ‘Youth Impact Series’, ‘COVID-19 Intervention Challenge’, ‘Digital Transformation and Financial Inclusion’, ‘Ballots without Bullets’, among others.
Nana Efua Rockson (Head, Communications & Public Relations of the Institute for Educational Planning and Administration, UNESCO Category II Centre)
Until her current role with UNESCO, she was the Group Head, Corporate Affairs & Marketing of GLICO GROUP Limited. During the pandemic, her organisation donated some essential items to the Ghana Prisons Service, Ghana Air Force among others.
In the course of the year, she was awarded at the Ghana Insurance Awards 2020 for her contribution to the Insurance industry in sustaining a vibrant brand at GLICO while serving on various committees to create insurance awareness.
Ms Josephine Appiah Nyamekye (Afrobarometer Communications Coordinator for Anglophone West Africa CDD-Ghana
COVID-19 presented an opportunity for her team to explore innovative strategies to help strengthen CDD-Ghana and Afrobarometer’s partnerships with its stakeholders.
She had been instrumental in helping CDD-Ghana and Afrobarometer feed into national and international discourse and policy discussions on COVID-19.
In 2020, Ms Josephine (co)authored about a dozen research papers and blogposts some of which were featured on platforms such as the Washington Post and Brookings Institution.
She was instrumental in leading the Communication’s Team of Coalition of Domestic Elections Observers (CODEO) to provide information about the electoral environment.
Ms Georgina Asare Fiagbenu (Senior Manager for Corporate Communications – MTN Ghana)
During the pandemic, her organisation’s foundation (MTN Foundation) distributed Personal Protective Equipment to support the fight against COVID-19 across various health facilities in the 16 regions.
Ms Silvia Owusu- Ankomah (Corporate Relations Director, Guinness Ghana Breweries PLC)
Sylvia and the Guinness Ghana team, having recognised the dire impact of COVID-19, took steps to roll out a loyalty initiative dubbed ‘Rise Up’ where they invested significant funds to support their trade partners and customers to get back to business.
Sylvia and her team introduced ‘Link Up’ – a promotion which offered consumers sufficient mobile phone airtime whenever they purchased the companies range of products.
She again led her team to unveil Guinness Ghana’s new corporate identity with a refreshed and redesigned logo as part of activities to celebrate the brand’s 60 years of impact in Ghana.
By Spectator Reporter