Brunswick, Georgia, United States
Home page: htps://www.linkedin.com/in/alangray
Accomplished writer, editor and Web content development tactician whose skills over 28-plus years have been forged by pursuits as a corporate communications director, PR executive, media relations manager, UK parliamentary and Capitol Hill lobbyist, business and professional writing instructor, and editorial services consultant.
Extensive experience in marcom and corporate communications--combined with a hands-on general management, sales and marketing background--has honed to perfection a blend of expert skills and competencies that connect writing excellence to brand promotion, product positioning, business development, and reputation management objectives aligned with corporate messaging and go-to-market strategies.
CORPORATE & AGENCY EXPERIENCE
Senior Consulting Partner, Total Image Work, Panama City, Panama (1983-present):
· Provide strategic marcom/PR consulting, editorial, and content development/message alignment: Develop, plan, execute, and manage integrated marketing communications, PR and business development support programs for corporate, NGO and other client organizations to drive winning brand/product positioning, reputation management, and sales/marketing outcomes in diverse local, international and global markets.
· Produced for Panama-based data storage/internet services and telecom provider an integrated family of aligned marcom, business presentation, Web content-based, and media/investor relations documents to drive a multi-million dollar international sales and marketing program.
· Developed for an international law firm a 240-page Web site, bilingual and multi-cultural 60-page corporate brochure, C-level business presentations, and marcom collateral that supported sales/marketing program designed to generate $500K in new business and stimulate $175K+ growth in same-client billings over 1-year period.
· Designed Web-based international marketing program, to include Web content and lead generation
development, for destination travel/tourism client that realized a 60% increase in year-to-year
reservations and a 3,000% increase in first-year unique web page visitors.
· Conceived, wrote and produced for a Panama-based humanitarian aid NGO a fundraising and publicity awareness campaign brochure that attracted significant international media attention, press coverage and heightened issue awareness among North American, Japanese and European audiences.
President/Owner & General Manager, Carmella's Cappuccino & Espresso Company, Alexandria, VA (1995-2000):
· Planned, developed, executed and managed strategic plans and budgets (annual sales: $750K) for this specialty distributor of imported Italian espresso coffees, China Mist gourmet iced teas, Torani flavoring syrups, Celestial Seasonings teas, Astoria commercial-use espresso machines, Caffe D'Amore specialty beverage mixes, and related lines of commercial- and home-use electronic beverage preparation equipment, non-perishable specialty goods, among other products for retail, hospitality and foodservice channels. Managed activities of 12 employees, from B2B and B2C sales/marketing, promotion, and business development to warehouse/ inventory management, order fulfillment, customer service, trade shows and contract catering operations.
Director of Marketing Communications, National Food Brokers Association/International Foodservice Brokers Association, Reston, VA (1988-1995):
· Developed, planned, and managed budgets of $1.5 million; supervised 4 direct and 1 indirect report; designed, executed and measured outcomes of high-impact integrated marcom and PR/ reputation management campaigns for this $6 million association.
· Managed media relations, co-branding, crisis communications, and coalition-building programs anchored by daily interaction with senior-level management, internal customers, coordination and liaison with external stakeholders and supervision of advertising, PR agency, and other service providers. Planned and executed corporate reputation management program, driven by PR campaigns, to champion members’ interests in widely publicized and divisive "power buyer" trade practice issue investigated by the FTC.
· Managed cross-functional teams of external design and creative professionals, writers (freelancers, industry subject matter experts, “top 5” management consultants, among others), and other talent to publish or produce PR, image enhancement, business development, convention, tradeshow, marcom, branding, educational, fundraising, informational, technical, and promotional materials.
· Scripted and directed production of videos, including a spot nationally televised during the annual Labor Day Telethon hosted by comedian Jerry Lewis and sponsored by the Muscular Dystrophy Association; planned, coordinated and managed press conferences, speakers bureau, executive speaking opportunities, and fee-based information & research service. Furnished integrated marketing communications support to all internal customers, to include copywriting, speech writing, and the development of scripts for telemarketing, fundraising, and membership campaigns.
· In role as editor, published the award-winning Food Broker Quarterly magazine (international readership: 60,000), directory of members, and newsletters, plus catalogs, White papers, technical guides, manuals, and industry research.
· Selected, supervised, and assessed the quality/cost-effectiveness of services provided by PR agencies, clipping services, and vendors such as printers, designers, and freelance writers.
VP, Government Relations & Public Affairs, American Logistics Association, Washington, DC (1984-1988):
· Developed strategic plans, yearly budgets of $800K, and directed government relations and public affairs campaign activities that preserved for member companies and military patrons annual Congressional appropriations required to sustain the global network of military commissary, exchange, and related retail/distribution operations.
· Lobbied Congress--with special emphasis on House and Senate defense-related Committees--to promote the interests of consumer packaged goods manufacturers, brokers, distributors, and others selling goods and services to military commissaries and allied resale operations.
· Fostered close working relationships in liaison with industry trade groups, coalitions and other allies to gather intelligence, assess risks to members’ interests, and identify emerging issues, industry trends, regulatory concerns, and related competitive threats.
· Wrote executive speeches, Congressional testimony, White papers, Q&As, position papers, tip sheets, template legislative language, news releases, executive correspondence, opinion-editorials, guest columns, feature articles, business presentations, video and telemarketing scripts, and marcom collateral.
· Managed Political Education Fund campaign that annually raised significant contributions from individual industry executives to infuse an understanding of and appreciation on Capitol Hill for the work done by CPG suppliers to support the military commissary and exchange resale mission.
· Published Interservice magazine, directory of members, industry fact book, and newsletter circulated to readership of 80,000 executives worldwide, to include CPG manufacturers, brokers, distributors, and the military and civilian managers, buyers, and others involved in commissary and exchange management.
Former Senior Account Executive, Lloyd-Hughes Associates, London, England (1979-1981):
· Researched, developed and wrote news releases, opinion-editorials, letters to the editor, feature articles, informational and promotional brochures, backgrounders and executive briefing documents, Parliamentary questions, issues management reports, executive speeches, and collateral for clients' public- and business-facing media relations, public affairs, reputation management, and other PR/marketing communications programs.
· Researched, monitored, and prepared reports on UK regulatory and Parliamentary legislative issues. Researched and prepared confidential proprietary reports on rulings, legislation, and other actions taken by the European Community.
Former Editor, Interservice, the official magazine of the American Logistics Association, Washington, DC (1981-1986).
Former Editor, Food Broker Quarterly, the official magazine of the National Food Brokers Association/International Foodservice Brokers Association, Reston, VA.
· The following are selected articles published in Interservice, the official magazine of the American Logistics Association:
“Building a Brighter Future with New Commissary Construction.” Interservice, Fall 1982, 14-46.
“Military Distribution: It’s All About Service.” Interservice, Summer 1983, 49-69.
“Communication Leads the Way in Military Distribution.” Interservice, Fall 1983, 77-93.
“4th Annual Commissary Sales Report.” Interservice, Spring 1985, 74-75.
“5th Annual Commissary Sales Report.” Interservice, Spring 1986,49-50.
“How Video Can Improve Operations.” Interservice, Spring 1986, 43-45.
“5th Annual Exchange Sales Report.” Interservice, Summer 1986, 63.
“The New Deal on VPRs.” Interservice, Summer 1991.
“Why HBA Spells Opportunity in Commissaries.” Interservice, Fall 1991.
“Hi-Tech’s New Spin on Category Management.” Interservice, Winter 1993.
· The following are selected articles published in Food Broker Quarterly, the official magazine of the National Food Brokers Association/International Foodservice Brokers Association:
“Interview with E. Dean Werries, From Confrontation to Cooperation: Brokers Moving the Industry.” Food Broker Quarterly, Winter 1989, 22-24.
“Interview with Robert E. Novak, NFBA: Putting Wheels on the Wagon.” Food Broker Quarterly, Winter 1989, 31-33.
“Principals Give ‘Thumbs Up’ to NFBA’s Associate Membership Program.” Food Broker Quarterly, Spring 1992, 28.
“Tommy Lasorda and the Flip Side of Showmanship.” Food Broker Quarterly, Spring 1992, 20-21.
“In Defense of Free Enterprise.” Food Broker Quarterly, Summer 1992, 10-12.
“Top to Tops and Quick Response: Change Agents for the 90s.” Food Broker Quarterly, Fall 1992, 9-13.
“NFBA Launches ‘Complete the Loop’ EDI Awareness Campaign.” Food Broker Quarterly, Summer 1993, 21.
“Leading Change at NFBA’s Executive Conference.” Food Broker Quarterly, Fall1993, 30-34.
“NFBA’s 1993 Convention Retrospective.” Food Broker Quarterly, Spring 1994, 14-21.
“Strength in the Supply Chain: Understanding the Value of Broker Services.” Food Broker Quarterly, Winter 1994, 27-28.
“On the Cutting Edge of Change & Innovation, 1904-1994: NFBA Celebrates its 90th Anniversary.” Food Broker Quarterly, Winter 1994, 30-40.
“NFBA’s New Technology Resource Center Markets First Product in Cooperation with IRI.” Food Broker Quarterly, Winter 1994, 64.
“NFBA’s 1994 Convention: Grooved on the Cutting Edge.” Food Broker Quarterly, Spring 1995, 24-30.
AWARDS & ACHIEVEMENTS:
· First place “One-of-a-Kind” magazine editorial excellence award from Communications Insight for Food Broker Quarterly (1990).
· Named “Best Magazine in Category” by FOLIO: for Food Broker Quarterly (1991).
· Participated as one among a panel of three judges in national editorial and magazine excellence awards competition, sponsored by the American Public Power Association (1986).
Interests: Professional interests include: Business and commerce, sales and sales management, communications/PR and public affairs, marketing and promotion, packaged consumer goods, grocery and retail distribution, government relations/ lobbying law, information tec
Published writer: Yes