Celebrating its 75th anniversary in 2000, Edward Howard & Company is the nation’s longest established independent public relations firm. In an industry in which new firms sprout up every few minutes, and fade away just as quickly, in which almost every serious independent agency fields acquisition offers on a daily basis, the kind of stability Edward Howard has enjoyed over the years ought to count for something. And for the agency’s employees and clients, it does: there’s a certain comfort level to a firm that has adhered to the highest standards of ethics, professionalism, and client service for three-quarters of a century.
Edward Howard completed its transition to a new generation of management this year, with Stan Ulchaker and Davis Young stepping aside and Kathleen Obert taking over as president, assisted by a leadership team of agency veterans Wayne Hill, Nora Jacobs, and Daniel Stanowick (50 years of service with the firm between them). The agency didn’t miss a beat. An industry benchmark employee ownership program and a first-rate professional development program ensure low turnover.
Headquartered in Cleveland, the firm has offices in Akron, Columbus, and Dayton, and offers a broad array of services ranging from marketing communications to investor relations to public affairs to community relations to media training, research, and crisis management. It’s one of a handful of midsize firms in the Midwest that can credibly claim to do all those things, but it truly excels in a handful of areas: its investor relations practice is growing rapidly, with professionals in all four offices; its environmental practice is among the best in the nation; it ranks among the top business-to-business marketing firms in the nation; and its issues management expertise is impressive. The firm also boasts a commitment to research
Edward Howard has added some impressive names to its client list in the past 12 months, including Rubbermaid Home Products, for marketing communications; The Hoover Company, for employee, media, and community relations; Borden Chemicals & Plastics, for investor relations and issues management; and Time Warner Cable for corporate communications and public affairs. But it’s the firm’s long-term clients that are the foundation for its continued excellence, clients such as Cedar Fair (25 years) and Mead Corporation, the Vinyl Institute, the NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers, and Progressive Insurance (all clients for more than a dozen years).