WASHINGTON, D.C.—Dittus Communications is launching a practice group that will help meet the needs of the growing number of nonprofit organizations with issues at stake in the public policy environment.
Led by Debra Cabral, who has served as the firm’s executive vice president for the past six years, the new practice will help not-for-profit organizations enhance their role and influence in the public policy arena through messaging, media outreach, grassroots, Internet and public education and awareness campaigns.
A recent poll conducted by Ipsos Public Affairs found that “increasing visibility for a cause through the use of the media, Internet or partnerships is key to growing member support for a nonprofit,” said Debra Cabral. “Dittus is poised to help develop those strategies and serve as a catalyst in forging effective business partnerships between corporations and nonprofits where it makes good business sense.”
The survey, commissioned by Dittus Communications, shows that members of nonprofit organizations are more likely to renew their membership and increase their donation if the organization:
§ Is suddenly more visible in the news making the case for the cause they support (66 percent)
§ Announces an important sponsorship or partnership that will make its efforts for the cause immediately more effective (64 percent)
§ Demonstrates it is using its funds to successfully expand support for the cause through the Internet (58 percent)
Dittus recently added two additional nonprofit organizations to its client roster, the Cultural Alliance of Greater Washington and the Armed Services YMCA. In addition, the team is counseling existing clients, such as the National Emergency Number Association and the E9-1-1 Institute, a nonprofit organization that educates Congress and the public about emergency communications issues.
Two former Dittus staffers have returned to the firm to join the nonprofit practice as vice presidents. Shane Kinkennon most recently served as a vice president at Grassroots Enterprise, where he ran online public affairs campaigns. Cynthia Giorgio brings to the new practice area 15 years experience in consumer education, sponsorship programs, community outreach and media relations.
Also joining the nonprofit team is Dana Bykowski, who served most recently as managing director of CitiesFirst, a national public/private partnership between the Unites States Conference of Mayors and the Nehemiah Corporation of California that facilitates community development initiatives in major cities.