March 2012

Audrey PonzioAudrey Ponzio is a senior vice president at Edelman, where she leads the multicultural group. She was the moderator of New Rules of Engagement: How Multicultural Initiatives Are Leading the Conversation, on March 6.

Audrey has been at Edelman since 2003. She started her career as an intern at Fleishman Hillard, then worked for LatinWorks, an agency founded in 1998 in Austin, Texas, that caters to clients seeking a multicultural approach. 

Steward for all "I thought PR was a great opportunity to help organizations be more mindful in how they conducted business and engaged communities. Being of mixed descent allowed me to become a steward, not just for my own community but for all."

The whole story "Context comes from experience and exposure. Understanding other frames of reference enables better coding and delivery of messages. That's the job we're in as communicators: effective coding and delivery of messages to inspire action." 

I ♥ cabbies "New York City cab drivers have been my angels in this city. From sharing morning jokes, singing songs and telling family histories to their refusing to charge me because I somehow helped them with a relationship issue, I have a cab story a day." 

Audrey's wish "As our country's demographics change and as we truly become a global community, I would urge our industry to rethink the client brief or assignment, and to ask more questions about the supposed target audience. Also, be sure that we challenge long-held stereotypes and seek context especially from communities that are not our own."  

¡Abuelos! "If I could do it again, I would have lingered a bit more with my grandparents [abuelos, in Spanish]."
-- As told to Michelle Lodge