Save $100 on FORUM 2003
Today is the deadline to be eligible for early bird registration for FORUM 2003. CTPAA members may register for FORUM 2003 and save $100 per registration if they register by the end of today, March 14, 2003. On March 15 or later registration will be at the regular conference rate of $725. FORUM is CTPAAís annual conference and will be held March 30 to April 2, 2003, at the Renaissance Mayflower hotel in Washington, DC. FORUM is the cable industryís annual educational conference dedicated to issues facing Public Affairs professionals. The theme for FORUM 2003 is "Capitalizing on Cableís Competitive Edge" and reflects the eventís focus on how cable industry public affairs professionals can leverage cableís leadership in programming, localization, audience delivery, and new technologies to achieve communication goals. The conferenceís numerous sessions will address all aspects of Public Affairs in the cable industry, including community relations, education, marketing integration, media relations, government affairs, and strategic public relations.

 Industry Leaders and Key Decision Makers to Attend FORUM 2003
Key cable industry leaders and decision makers are participating in FORUM 2003. James O. Robbins, President and CEO of Cox Communications, Inc., will be the opening general session speaker on Monday, March 31 at FORUM 2003. He will be interviewed by Catherine Crier of Court TV. Robbins will be followed by Fraser P. Seitel, one of PR Weekís top 100 public relations professionals of the 20the century. Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez will give the Monday Newsmaker Luncheon address.

Robert Sachs, President and CEO, NCTA, will give the keynote policy address at Tuesday morningís opening general session. Following Sachs, Commissioner Kathleen Q. Abernathy of the Federal Communications Commission will address FORUM participants. As the featured public policy speaker, Commissioner Abernathy is expected to provide the audience with her views and insights on industry issues and how the FCC views public affairs activities. Reg Weaver, president of the National Education Association, will be the speaker at Tuesdayís luncheon. He will discuss using technology as a teaching tool and forging a strategic alliance with the cable television industry.

Tuesday evening, CTPAA will honor the two Presidentís Award winners, Henry Schleiff, Chairman and CEO, Court TV, and Michael S. Willner, Vice Chairman and CEO, Insight Communications during the Beacon Awards Gala. The Presidentís Award recognizes leaders, who by their guidance and support, advance the role of public affairs in the cable industry. Selected by the CTPAA president, the award honors individuals who have developed and implemented public affairs initiatives within their own companies as well as throughout the cable industry.

The Beacon Awards Gala will honor excellence in cable public affairs. Comedy Centralís Ed Helms, correspondent for "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart," is the master of ceremony. Phyllis George, TV personality and former Miss America, will introduce the three Golden Beacon finalists and announce the winner. The 2003 Golden Beacon Finalists are C-SPANís Presidential Timeline Giveaway, Lifetimeís Our Lifetime Commitment: Stop Violence Against Women, and MTVís Fight For Your Rights: Protect Yourself.

Several industry leaders will participate in FORUMís concurrent sessions. They include Dave Watson, Executive Vice President, Sales, Marketing and Customer Service, Comcast Cable Communications; Rick Chessen, chair, Digital Television Task Force and associate bureau chief, Media Bureau at the FCC; Susan Grant, President, CNN Newsource Sales, Inc. and Turner Learning; Joe Rooney, Senior Vice President, Marketing, Cox Communications; and Peggy OíBrien, executive director at Cable in the Classroom.

FORUM is the cable industryís annual educational conference dedicated to issues facing Public Affairs professionals. The conferenceís numerous sessions will address all aspects of Public Affairs in the cable industry, including community relations, education, marketing integration, media relations, government affairs, and strategic public affairs. FORUM 2003 is a must attend event for all cable public affairs professionals!

 How to Survive Gotcha Journalism Master Course at FORUM 2003
Just prior to the official start of FORUM 2003, CTPAA will offer the Master Course workshop, "How to Survive Gotcha Journalism," on Sunday, March 30 from 1:00 - 4:30 p.m. An additional fee of $145 is required to attend. The course will cover:

  • How to respond to a "60 Minutes" style interview of accusations
  • How to break down the components of a media dilemma
  • Message development & delivery skills
  • On-camera interview techniques and training
  • How to maintain a healthy day-to-day media policy

CTPAA has chosen Margie Elsberg, a 25-year veteran of the Washington press corps and a media trainer for 12 years, to be the instructor for "How to Survive Gotcha Journalism." In addition to her years as a print and broadcast reporter, Elsberg will bring her cable experience to the course. In the early 1990ís, she worked as a media trainer for an intensive, two-day media training project developed by CATA. During the session at FORUM, Elsberg will critique mock interviews taped with participants in the classroom. She has taught previous CTPAA Master Courses at the WICT Gala and Broadband Connects 2003, formerly the Texas Show. For additional information on "How to Survive Gotcha Journalism," please go to the CTPAA Web site page, listing the current FORUM 2003 program.

 Thereís Still Time to Support the Emma Bowen Foundation
CTPAA has extended the deadline to March 21, 2003, for members to donate items to the Silent Auction at FORUM 2003. This yearís Silent Auction will kick of FORUM on the evening of Sunday, March 30. For the fifth year, the Silent Auction will benefit the Emma L. Bowen Foundation for Minority Interests in Media. The Foundation is dedicated to offering minority youth the support, education and skills needed to obtain jobs in the media industry.

Support the foundation by donating an item to the Silent Auction. Past popular items include the Beatles CD box set, personal electronics, tickets to Saturday Night Live, and jewelry. All platinum items, donations valued at $500 and up, will be sold at a live and entertaining auction held during the reception.

Please send the donation form by March 21st and all donated items by March 27th to CTPAA, 1724 Massachusetts Ave, NW, Washington, DC 20036.

 Reserve a Table at the 2003 Beacon Ceremony
CTPAA is offering reserved tables for the 2003 Beacon Ceremony on April 1, 2003, at the Renaissance Mayflower hotel, Washington, DC. A reserved table for registered FORUM attendees is $1,500. For dinner guests only, a reserved table at the Beacons Ceremony is $3,000 (includes 10 tickets). For more information, contact Michelle Butler at 202/775-1082 or

 2003 Board Elections
Elections for members of the 2003-2004 CTPAA Board of Directors will take place over the next seven (7) days via ballots faxed directly to the membership.  CTPAA plans to fax the ballot early next week.  All members in good standing are eligible to vote for Board of Directors members.  Listed below are the individuals who have been nominated by the membership and placed on the ballot via the Nominations Committee.  (An *  indicates the candidate is currently on the CTPAA Board of Directors and is recommended by the Board for reelection.)  The thirteen individuals up for election are as follows:

  • *Robert B. Morrison, V.P., Public Affairs, VH1 (currently Vice President)

  • *Peter Kiley, Director of Affiliate Relations, C-SPAN (currently Secretary)

  • *Christine Levesque, Sr. V.P., Communications & Marketing, Rainbow Media Holdings, Inc.

  • *Libby OíConnell, Ph.D., V.P., Education Initiatives, A & E Television Networks

  • *Mike Schwartz, Sr. V.P., Communications, CableLabs

  • Joe Boyle, V.P., Corporate Communications, iN DEMAND

  • Scott Broyles, V.P., Public Affairs, Cox Communications, Inc. (Fairfax, VA)

  • Mary Dixon, V.P., Public Affairs, Lifetime Television

  • Pamela Dover, Regional Director, Corporate Affairs, Comcast (Detroit)

  • Eric Hollreiser, Sr. V.P., Media Relations, ABC Cable Networks Group

  • Bill Jasso, V.P., Public Affairs, Time Warner Cable (Akron, OH)

  • Kathy Lane, Director of Public Relations, The Weather Channel

  • Colleen Quinn, Sr. V.P., Corporate Relations, Insight Communications