Bull's Eye Awards: Agency Public Relations Specialist of the Year
Ellie Ford, Waggener Edstrom
Microsoft isn’t always an easy company to cover as a journalist, and it stands to reason that managing the software giant’s PR machine—at any level—is no walk in the park. In comes Ellie Ford, our Bull’s Eye Champion among agency PR specialists. Ford, senior account manager at Microsoft’s chosen PR firm Waggener Edstrom, has distinguished herself in the past four years as a consummate channel PR pro and a go-to person to navigate the many halls in Redmond, Wash.
And it’s not an easy job. Microsoft’s products and divisions range from the Xbox to enterprise servers to client operating systems to applications software to Bing. Keeping track of all the right people within Microsoft and delivering them up to the ever-demanding channel press is not an easy task. But Ford performs it with seeming ease and grace.
Ford is a perfect complement to Pam Salzer, our Bull’s Eye winner for an in-house PR specialist. Salzer worked her magic coordinating the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference this year—the annual multithousand attendee partner confab that, as is typical, went off without a hitch—but it was Ford who coordinated schedules and interviews and, most importantly, helped facilitate the story insights of channel journalists everywhere. Ford makes sure that access happens—understanding fully why too.
Ford understands a good story and is responsive to reporters’ needs in terms of interviews and access. When Microsoft completely revamped its partner program to the newly named Microsoft Partner Network this past July, Ford went out of her way to frame what was new, acknowledge obvious changes to program requirements that would elicit questions and made sure Microsoft executives addressed these issues with journalists immediately.
Late this year, Ford moved to another non-channel PR role with Waggener Edstrom, still of course representing the Microsoft team. We’d like to congratulate her on the past four years and wish her great success.