National Writing Project

NWP Board of Directors

Scott Widmeyer

Board Member since 2013; Member of Conflicts of Interest Committee; Member of Governance Committee

Managing Partner, Widmeyer Communications

Scott Widmeyer was the founder of Widmeyer Communications, a full-service firm he started in 1988. Over the course of 25 years, he grew the firm to become one of the largest midsize firms in the US. In July 2013, Widmeyer Communications was acquired by Finn Partners, one of the fastest growing PR firms in the US.

Scott Widmeyer has a 30-year record in providing strategic counsel to scores of decision-makers, from presidents to governors to chief executive officers to union leaders. From working as a newspaper reporter in the 1970s to running major media operations for national campaigns, Widmeyer knows how to get results for his clients. His track record of successes in education, health care, politics, campaign finance, technology, trade, and other public policy matters illustrate his impact as a "change agent" in things that matter most to America. Clients regularly turn to Widmeyer for advice on economic development issues, marketing strategies, coalition building, and crisis management. He founded Widmeyer Communications in 1988, building on a career in newspaper reporting and serving in major communications positions for five highly respected leaders—former President Jimmy Carter, former Vice President Walter Mondale, U.S. Senator Jay Rockefeller, the late Congresswoman Geraldine Ferraro, and the late American Federation of Teachers president Albert Shanker.

Widmeyer is active in a number of civic and philanthropic causes from his base in New York and Washington. He currently serves on the Boards of the New York City Leadership Academy, The Education Writers Association, The Contemporary American Theater Festival, The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center on New York City, and the George Washington University National Council for Media and Public Affairs. He also serves on the Leadership Council for the 2014 Gay Games. In 2007, he was named a David Rockefeller Fellow, a highly coveted one-year program of the New York City Partnership. He also was the longest-serving board chair of the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund, as well as serving on the board of GLAAD. In addition, he is active in the Council of Public Relations Firms, Public Relations Organisation International, Friends of the High Line, the National Press Club, the Appalachian Community Fund, St. Gregory's Church, and PENCIL.

Widmeyer is a graduate of West Virginia University (WVU) where he has established two scholarship funds to benefit African-American and first-generation West Virginians seeking a degree in journalism. To date, more than 20 students have benefited from these scholarships, and in 2005, Widmeyer and his firm established the Widmeyer Communications Professorship in Public Relations, the first of its kind in the nation. Widmeyer has served as a Visiting Professor at the P.I. Reed School of Journalism and has been a guest lecturer at Brown University, the University of Maryland, and Johns Hopkins University. Continuing his commitment to his alma mater, Widmeyer is a member of the National Campaign Committee for WVU's Capital Campaign and chairs the Campaign Committee for the Journalism School. He also served as chair of the Journalism School's Visiting Committee until 2011. In 2003, he received West Virginia University's most prestigious award in journalism–The P.I. Reed Achievement Award. In 2010, Widmeyer reflected on his commitment to the institution and his career path in journalism, politics, and public relations in a video interview with the WVU School of Journalism. Widmeyer was inducted into the WVU Academy of Distinguished Alumni in 2009. His firm received the 2012 Diversity Distinction in PR Awards from the Council of PR Firms.

In 2005, then West Virginia Governor Bob Wise bestowed upon Widmeyer the "Distinguished West Virginian Award," the highest honor provided by the chief executive of the state, and in 2010 he was named to the PR News Hall of Fame.

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