Publicity in Local Media for Virginia Chapters & VCOC
Virginia MOAA Chapters are asked to appoint a Public Affairs Officer (PAO) to handle news releases for your chapter AND work within the Public Affairs Committee of the Virginia Council of Chapters (VCOC).
The mission of the committee is to expand MOAA chapter publicity at local level.
THE PURPOSE OF CHAPTER PUBLICITY IS TO:
1. Generate more chapter membership.
2. Promote legislative advocacy by chapter members.
3. Create/Expand community awareness of military & veterans programs, issues and concerns - and what MOAA chapters do to help.
Expand VCOC Public Affairs Committee, with representatives from every chapter - Every chapter has an appointed Public Affairs Officer (PAO).
Expand publicity - with at least onenews article in local media each year - news story published about chapter that is not about an upcoming meeting.
Reporters attend a) Storming of Hill in Richmond and b) Congressional Luncheon. VCOC PAOAssists reporters & chapters with writing articles. Chapters submit articles about Storming Richmond & Congressional Luncheon.
Virginia chapters of MOAA established Virginia Council of Chapters (VCOC) Goals and objectives at the 8 Jan 2010 VCOC meeting, including these for Public Affairs. Chapters/VCOC also approved a new chapter quarterly report format that includes listing news releases attempted and published in the Public Affairs section of the report. Public Affairs is in section III.
VCOC Public Affairs Committee Chair reports on Virignia-wide status of objectives at each VCOC quarterly meeting.
VCOC Public Affairs Committee Chair is the VCOC 2nd Vice President, Major Melva Mallison, USAF, Ret of Newport News Virginia. Her contact info is on the contact page of this website, as well as in each edition of the VCOC Newsletter, The Council Crier. Mallison maintains a list of committee members with mini bios and contact info, for use by the committee.
TO KICK START (or re-start) CHAPTER PUBLIC AFFAIRS
Investigate what local newspapers (military & civilian) there are in your area (Obtain each newspaper's name, phone number, email & website).
Make contact with newspaper editor and find out if there is a military news editor and/or community news editor. Document that contact info & submission deadlines & guidelines.
Submit photos and short stories for publication, targeted to the particular paper locality/readership. Follow-up if not published and ask what can be done to make them more newsworthy for future.
Notify reporters in advance of chapter events that are newsworthy. Provide reporter with bullets before and during the event. If reporter does not show up, follow-up with a news release (and a photo) anyway.
Contact local tv stations about human interest stories and other newsworthy events.
Encourage chapter members to wear MOAA badges, representing MOAA, at community events - and get a photo - and submit photo/info to the chapter PAO. Thank them when they do so.
Use News Release templates and photos provided by VCOC, adding in your local specifics.
Publicize legislative priorities and successes.
Make sure your chapter leadership knows when news releases are submitted and when they are published.
Thank media when items are published.
NEWS RELEASE TEMPLATES Templates are provided by VCOC PAO before and at the event, so that each chapter can fill in the blanks with chapter-unique info and send to Civilian and Military papers in their local area. The templates are coordinted through the subject-matter expert at VCOC level. The local news release should be in collaboration with the chapter subject-matter expert as well (such as Legislative Chair on storming capitol hill, Membership Chair on Give Me Ten). You may fill out the template or completely write your own story. Whenever possible, include a local photo with your news release.
TEMPLATE on STORMING RICHMOND is available in State Legislative section of this website (storming Richmond 2011) and provided at the event.
TEMPLATE on CONGRESSIONAL LUNCHEON is available in National Legislative section of this website (2011 Congressional Luncheon), posted prior to the luncheon, distributed in paper at the luncheon and re-posted afterwards, if any necessary changes, with photos. Chapter PAOs will need their local chapter specifics and chapter photo.