UM-Dearborn's Institute for Local Government offers media relations seminar for local officials on Nov. 29

November 20, 2006

DEARBORN / Nov. 20---Local elected officials can learn how to communicate more effectively with their constituents in a seminar to be offered by the Institute for Local Government at the University of Michigan-Dearborn Wednesday, Nov. 29.

The series will be led by Bob Berg and Georgella Muirhead, principals in the Detroit public-relations firm Berg Muirhead & Associates. Both Berg and Muirhead worked in the administration of Detroit Mayor Coleman Young and have served in advisory positions for Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick. Berg also was communications director for Gov. William G. Milliken while Muirhead directed community relations efforts in Ann Arbor, East Lansing and Southfield before working for the City of Detroit.

The program, titled "Media and Communications for Local Officials," will be offered from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Nov. 29 in UM-Dearborn’s Fairlane Center North building, at 19000 Hubbard Drive in Dearborn. Students can meet state and local leaders at a reception that will begin at 5:15 p.m.

The cost for the program is $69 and potential students can register online at http://www.umd.umich.edu/iflg/registration.htm, or by calling 313-593-5140.

The course “is part of a broader program conducted by the Institute for Local Government to help local officials better serve their constituents,” according to Edward Bagale, vice chancellor for government relations at UM-Dearborn. "Few areas are more important to public officials than communicating with their constituents and I cannot think of two individuals who are more qualified by experience and ability to teach such a course than Georgella and Bob.”

Muirhead said the seminar will deal with the "nuts and bolts issues that are critical to success as a public leader."

This seminar will help city council members, school board members or any official holding a leadership role develop effective communication skills and programs for working with their constituents and the media," said Muirhead.

Topics include strategic communication tactics, developing relationships with the media, preparing for interviews, and communicating with the public on ballot issues.

The Institute for Local Government was founded by UM-Dearborn’s School of Education in 2004 to offer a variety of programs to help develop stronger civic leadership in the region.

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CONTACT: Terry Gallagher
PHONE: 313-593-5518
The Office of University Relations
Room 1040, Administration Building
University of Michigan-Dearborn