IABC schedules town hall at world conference

Communications group seeks to give members a voice following months of controversy.


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Seeking to quell controversy surrounding the resignation of its executive director, the International Association of Business Communicators said Wednesday it will host a town hall meeting at its world conference in New York this month.

The June 25 event will be an open forum “to discuss the current state and direction of IABC,” said spokesman Aaron Heinrich.

IABC announced the plan in an emailed press release and on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. IABC is also looking at webcasting at least the audio portion of the town hall. There was no indication who would lead the event.

The event follows months of controversy and accusations of botched communications that followed the hiring of Executive Director Christopher Sorek last summer. His tenure was marked by dispute among members when IABC laid off half its 32 staffers and hired 11 newcomers last fall, leading to an uproar as members questioned the plan and its communication.

Heinrich added that IABC is “not making any other comments about Chris’ departure or any of the other topics that have arisen as a result until we have this town hall. At this point, we want the members to be able to ask the questions of the board and hear the answers themselves.”

The forum will be held late afternoon and will start with regular business as well, Heinrich added. “Since there are no other sessions or meetings scheduled immediately after this, we will go until 6:30 if necessary,” he stated.

In comments on LinkedIn, early reviews of the announcement were positive.

Yasmin Ranade, founder and publisher of WhatsYourTech.ca, stated, “Great idea to include and involve members. A step in the right direction.”

Added French consultant Marie-Laure Blanc: “Good news Aaron. Thanks for doing the best you can so that each member feels part of the community—whatever their location.”

Topics: PR

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