Celebrating the CIPR at 70 and pioneering practitioners

Celebrating the CIPR at 70 and pioneering practitioners

Platinum, the CIPR’s anniversary 70th book, was launched in London last night. The Institute also celebrated 70 dedicated practitioners committed to taking it and the industry forward.

Platinum is the story of the CIPR as told by its members. It’s a crowdsourced project conceived by President Sarah Hall.

The book includes contributions from a mix of academics, teachers and practitioners; young and old; agency, public, private and third sector; and both regional and national contributors.

Purpose of public relations and the Institute’s foundation

Platinum is unusual in that it has three forewords by Carolyn Fairbairn, Director General, CBI; Sarah Hall, President, CIPR; and Tim Travers-Healy, a CIPR founder and Past President.

It’s a feature of a crowdsourced project that you’re never quite sure how it will turn out. Each of the contributions was strong and I was keen to include them all.

Tim’s contribution describes how the then IPR was founded 70 years ago.

“Our founders were serving in various government departments or agencies. One night we would meet in the grand conference room of the Cabinet Office and the next in the backroom of a pub.”

Tim describes how these individuals had witnessed the miseries of war and believed that improved communication was a means of improving cooperation and reducing conflict between groups in society.

Carolyn Fairbairn’s contribution cites the critical role of public relations 70 years in helping organisations engage with the public, and critically, helping influence the best possible Brexit deal with the European Union.

“By pooling our influence, we are better able to shape our country as a great place for business to thrive. And right now, the voice of business is needed more than ever,” she said.

Young generation driving professionalism

Platinum is a legacy project, that builds on similar projects for it 25th, 40th and 50th anniversaries.

Through the book you’ll find reflections of the IPR and CIPR’s history, its role in driving a professionalism agenda, examples of modern practice, and an exploration of its future.

I’ve been impressed by the young generation of practitioners that have contributed to the book. It’s a point that Sarah Hall picks up in her foreword.

Liz Davies, Koray Camgoz, Ruth Fry, Laura Richards, Jen Robson, and Sarah Wright are among the people driving innovation in practice and see qualifications, training and standards as a means of differentiation. They leave me hugely optimistic for the future. I hope that one of you will invite me to the CIPR’s 100th anniversary celebrations.

Thank you: celebrating the CIPR’s volunteer community

Thanks to all the members who pitched ideas and the authors of the 45 essays that have been included in the book.


Thanks to the Past Presidents and members of the CIPR Council who reviewed the manuscript.

Thanks to the CIPR for supporting the project and enabling us to create and publish Platinum during the CIPR’s 70th anniversary year.

I want to thank Sarah Hall for asking me to lead the project.

I’m biased of course but she has had an incredible year forging relationships with the CBI and Federation for Small Business (FSB); pushing for our profession to be recognised alongside other management disciplines; driving diversity, gender and purpose agendas; and connecting with CIPR communities up and down the country.

The CIPR has also published a list of 70 members as part of its anniversary celebrations. These are people who have made an outstanding contribution to the Institute and the wider PR industry. The 70at70 are pioneering practitioners, alongside unsung CIPR members and volunteers from a range of backgrounds.

The CIPR exists because of the commitment of its volunteer community. You’re all helping driving standards in our profession and it’s fantastic that had the opportunity to recognise and celebrate everyone’s contribution last night.


Platinum has been published by the CIPR and is available in print via Blurb priced £29.39, and the Amazon Kindle priced £4.95.

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