Cynthia Weaver finds her PRSA membership extremely beneficial because of the networking and training opportunities that enables her to stay on top of the communication industry trends. As a 19-year-member of PRSA, those opportunities certainly have come in handy in fulfilling her various responsibilities as the Public Information Officer for the Phoenix Convention Center.
For this month’s Member Spotlight, get to know this seasoned public relations professional as she talks about her career highlights so far, and lessons she’s learned along the way:
What attracted you to public relations and communications?
The writing was on the wall for my future career at an early age when I was selected to write for my school newspaper at 8 years old. From that point on, I was hooked and always had an affinity for writing, including stints on my high school newspaper and yearbook staff. After I earned my degree in Journalism/PR from Arizona State University and got my first PR job promoting health and wellness programs at the County Health Department, I knew that I had found my niche to be able to tell stories and share information that would make a difference in people’s lives. Being able to write for a living is truly a blessing.
What do you wish you’d known when you started in PR/Communications?
PR is not all fun and games; strategic communications is a real discipline. The better prepared you are, the better results you will receive for media placement and coverage.
What’s the best part of your job?
I enjoy the flexibility within the public relations field and the numerous opportunities to interact with people of various backgrounds to find creative solutions to tell client stories.
There are several highlights of my job and promoting major event activities at the Phoenix Convention Center rises to the top of the list. Having the opportunity to work on city planning committees for Super Bowl XLIX, the College Football Playoffs and NCAA Final Four are memorable experiences that I will talk about for several years. Not only were these activities fun, they gave me the opportunity to be a part of a dedicated team of professionals, representing multiple agencies, working on one accord to coordinate logistics and keep the public informed, while crafting Arizona’s history. Our entire staff looks forward to the return of the Super Bowl in 2023 and Final Four in 2024 to make more positive memories for local and out-of-town pro football and college basketball fans!
What’s the toughest lesson you’ve learned on the job?
Early in my career I was so afraid of making mistakes that I attempted to make every project perfect and found myself writing and rewriting copy several times before I felt it was right. This stressed me out! Over time, I learned to write copy, proofread and edit it no more than twice, then share it with a colleague for a second review before I provided it to my clients. Learning to “let go” improved my proficiency and ability to meet deadlines quickly. Now, the quote, “Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall” by Confucius has new meaning.
How do you balance personal life and work?
When not working, I enjoy spending time with my family/friends and creating memories during holidays and vacations. My favorite pastime is traveling to any tropical destination to relax on the beach. When working, I take a “Time Out” walk every day and listen to music or a podcast.
What’s your favorite thing to do in Arizona?
Saturday morning hikes at the Phoenix Mountain Preserves and breakfast with friends at local eateries.
If you could have dinner with any living person, who would it be and what would be the first question you’d ask?
Meghan Markle, what was your biggest adjustment in becoming a member of the British Royal Family?