Michael R. Virgintino
Results driven senior marketing communications executive with corporate, agency and nonprofit background possessing excellent skills in leadership, team building, strategic planning, program/budget management, written/verbal communications and media relations. Direct corporate, product and nonprofit strategies with an eye on detail and deadlines, utilizing public relations, public affairs, corporate social responsibility, community relations and related strategies.
- Leadership, supervise teams, staff, agencies, freelancers
- Communications counsel, strategic planning, program/budget management
- Corporate spokesperson, media relations, events
- Marketing/sales support programs; new product launch for consumer, high tech, medical, services
- Corporate branding, program image and identity, promote diversity
- Issues and crisis management
- Community, constituent, employee communications
- Broadcast/print editing and writing; publication/brochure/collateral publishing; web content/social media
Management and Leadership
- Transformed positions to serve as counsel to management, creating greater internal recognition, additional accountability and responsibility, improved results (ROI). Contributed to customer and employee communications, and directed a museum renovation.
- Resurrected and supervised department with $5 million budget that developed/managed strategies for corporate philanthropy. Supported corporate identity strategy, leveraged company brand throughout Americas and promoted diversity. Engaged branch locations, subsidiaries and sales to embrace initiatives. Improved results more than 300 percent within two years while managing additional responsibilities with limited staff.
- Lead team member for major events – wedding of NYS governor, Hong Kong fashion show/product exhibition, trade shows, customer programs, North American competitions – and sports sponsorships (major professional teams, golf, Olympics) to leverage brand identity and capture leadership positioning. Activities involved celebrities and professional athletes.
- Public Relations Society of America: accredited member; PRSA-NY Chapter: director (1991-1993), treasurer (1994), VP (1995), president-elect (1996), president (1997). Guided community relations, diversity round table, mentoring and “friends” programs; professional advisor, C.W. Post University student chapter.
- The Civil War Round Table of New York (CWRT/NY): president (1992-1994), served on board of directors, edited member newsletter, increased membership 50 percent as PR director. Served on corporate alliance committee of Children’s Medical Fund of New York, providing marketing communications support to increase visibility and donations. Counseled fund raising initiatives of NYS Environmental Education Foundation.
Corporate Communications and Image Promotions
- Directed conservation science education programs — increasing marketing opportunities and brand identity — involving U.S. National Park Service, leading international science organization, U.S. conservation districts, PBS NATURE Series. Maximized relationship with National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC), and expanded corporate social responsibility programs in arts, medical and community. Team leader to help raise funds for NCMEC, PRSA-NY, CWRT/NY, public radio, and supported other nonprofit fund raising initiatives. Served as public relations counsel for Ocean Research & Conservation Association (ORCA).
- Introduced Isuzu to U.S. as joint venture of international steelmaker/shipbuilder NKK and General Motors, creating interest among business leaders, politicians, prospective auto dealerships and consumers.
- Conceived “3M Saving Our Heritage” program that donated products to support preservation of historic sites while increasing awareness for products among consumers/building contractors. Showcased 3M as a model corporate citizen. Program received corporate marketing award and included in 3M’s hall of products/programs.
- Managed worldwide public relations activities for filter technology used by the biopharmaceutical and medical markets, including biotechnology, blood collection, cell therapy and veterinary medicine. Collaborate with marketing, sales, R&D, laboratory and HR to generate interest in life sciences products/technology/new employees through dissemination of news, expert opinions, tech articles, byline articles and white papers.
- For largest American Red Cross chapter, established pro-active media relations program that increased coverage in NYC market for emergency response services, health/safety programs, volunteerism, donations and retail purchases of safety products. Media results increased from less than 100 references to more than 1,200 mentions in print, online, broadcast ($3+ million value). Contributed to 20 percent increase in class enrollments. Refocused the volunteer public affairs team to upgrade media outreach during emergencies. Introduced intern program to support staff assignments.
- Redesigned power brand PR strategies for high tech (video, thin-clients, Internet appliances, software) and consumer/industrial products (medical, home improvement, home care, office/stationery, construction – Canon, 3M, Post-it, Scotch and Scotchgard brands). Increased media exposure and market demand for new product launches that placed emphasis on PR rather than advertising campaigns.
- Reorganized and expanded media relations programs at Boundless Corporation. Increased publicity results 100+ percent. Created joint publicity programs with partners/customers: Apple, Microsoft, Citrix, Deloitte & Touche, Ernst & Young. PR/IR strategies contributed to one-year $14 rise in stock price.
- Created sponsorship opportunities with International Hot Rod Association and Sportscar Vintage Racing Association that involved key customers, contributed to increased sell-in of automotive products, generated product awareness among consumers to support spike of retail sales. Established four-year program with 30+ PBS stations to feature home improvement products during “This Old House” and other DIY programming.
- Obtained Handyman Club of America seal of approval, Popular Mechanics Design & Engineering Award and American Marketing Association Edison Award for consumer products, generating additional business opportunities with customers and leading to an increase of retail sales.
- Supported Fuji Bank, Hotel New Otani and the sales teams of two international manufacturers (chemicals, plastics, pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, fibers) with research, competitive analysis and media relations to help identify new customers and increase market credibility. Organizations regularly reported annual increases in recognition, new business prospects and U.S. sales.
Issues and Crisis Management, Government Relations
- National media results introduced as evidence during litigation to successfully defend product claims and, in one case, to support descriptive language for a consumer product facing competition from a new market entry.
- Managed public affairs program for leading manufacturer of kerosene heaters to document new safety technology to legislative, fire marshal, distributor and industry association constituencies. Successfully pursued crucial safety award for product line that incorporated automatic shutoff technology when heater tipped on side.
- Lead communicator with media, emergency officials and general public concerning safety issues for products that contained hazardous materials. Coordinated activities with three Environmental Protection Agency programs — ENERGY STAR, WasteWise, SmartWay Transport Partnership — to save energy, reduce waste and eliminate harmful emissions.
- Authored Freedomland U.S.A.: The Definitive History (Theme Park Press) about New York City 1960s theme park.
- Communications consultant, (public relations, public affairs, CSR, writer), 2008-present
- Communications and events manager, Maryknoll Society, 2010-2018
- Director, public relations, American Red Cross in Greater New York, 2006-2008
- Senior manager, corporate social responsibility and public relations, Canon USA, 2000-2006
- Senior manager, corporate communications, Boundless Corporation (computing solutions), 1998-2000
- Senior public relations counsel, 3M, 1988-1997
- Vice president and corporate secretary, International Public Relations Company (PR firm), 1979-1988
- Radio/TV: Stations in New York City and suburbs. News assignments, studio production/engineer, camera, music consultant, promotion director, copywriter.
Fordham University (New York City) BA, journalism/communications. Also studied and taught music.