Upstate Medical University

CNYBAC presents: Fundamentals of Working with the Media

Presenter:  Virgie Townsend, JD, Director of Public Relations, Strategic Communications

This interactive presentation will cover the fundamentals of working with the news media, including how to prepare for phone, virtual, and in-person interviews with TV, print/online, and radio/podcast reporters. Virgie Townsend, JD, Director of Public Relations at Strategic Communications, will discuss and review:

  1. An overview of today’s 24/7 media, including the role that web and social media play
  2. Understanding of news reporters and editors, and how they approach their jobs
  3. Key attributes of an effective organization spokesperson
  4. Best practices and specific “dos and don’ts” for media interviews, including how to handle in-person versus virtual interviews
  5. Key phrases that help spokespersons stay on track with a company’s key messages

Register in advance for this meeting:
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Speaker Bio

Virgie Townsend, JD, is the Director of Public Relations at Strategic Communications, a Central New York public relations agency founded on strategy, integrity, and communication. She provides public relations services and oversight to clients, as well as direction and oversight to other members of the team. With deep expertise in healthcare and biotech communications, Virgie previously held roles at a life sciences public relations agency, national public health nonprofit, bio/med trade association, and global medical device manufacturer. Beyond her professional focus, she is passionate about biotech innovation as the family member of a cancer patient who benefitted from a clinical trial.

As a journalist and essayist, Virgie’s writing has been featured in The New York Times, Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, Harper’s Bazaar, The Sun Magazine, and other publications. Virgie received a bachelor’s degree in newspaper journalism, magna cum laude, from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University and a J.D. from the Syracuse University College of Law. She is a bar-admitted attorney in Colorado. In 2021, the Central New York Business Journal recognized Virgie as one of its 40 Under Forty Awards honorees.