We are proud to announce that Richard McKeown has been named senior vice president and chief public relations officer. McKeown was previously associated with CJRW from 1985-1999, before establishing his own communications consulting firm.
Richard McKeown, senior VP and Chief Public Relations Officer.
"We are extremely pleased to announce that Richard is rejoining CJRW,” said Wayne Woods, agency chairman and chief executive officer. "He has a wealth of communications experience not only here in Arkansas, but with clients throughout the United States and internationally. Having him as part of our leadership team will even further strengthen the agency and expand our range of client services."
Since 1999, McKeown has been providing communications strategy and analysis, executive development coaching, and communications training to a broad range of clients. He has been particularly active in the energy, education, construction, and worked with many Fortune 500 corporations and their executive leadership teams.
"There’s no question that the Cranford Johnson Robinson Woods brand and reputation is among the most respected in Arkansas and throughout the industry, and for good reason," said McKeown. "It has always been a source of pride for me to have been associated with the agency. To be able to rejoin CJRW is extremely humbling and gratifying for me, professionally and personally."
McKeown will lead CJRW’s public relations division and serve as a member of the agency’s leadership group. He will be actively involved in client service, new business development, and staff development. He will also continue to provide executive communications coaching and training to clients including media training, crisis communications counsel, and leadership coaching.
"Public relations has always been a particular strength for our firm and when you combine Richard’s broad experience and unique insights, we will become even stronger," said agency founder Wayne Cranford. "Richard has either lived or worked in just about every part of Arkansas so he knows the state very well, and he certainly knows our agency. We are very pleased to have him back," said Cranford.
As part of the announcement, Woods said Stacy Sells will continue in her leadership role as senior vice president of strategic planning; as senior vice presidents, Jordan Johnson and Denver Peacock will lead the agency’s public affairs division; Pam Jones has been promoted to vice president and will remain assistant director of public relations; and Carrie McKnight has been promoted to vice president of public relations.
"Public policy is an area of strength for us and by having Jordan and Denver focusing their full attention on public affairs, we expect it to be even stronger," said Woods. "It’s good for our clients and the agency."
Before joining CJRW in 1985, McKeown served as director of community relations and human resources for what was then Methodist Hospital of Jonesboro, an affiliate of Methodist Health Systems of Memphis. Prior to that, he was a news reporter and political columnist for several Arkansas newspapers. He has also served as an adjunct instructor at Ouachita Baptist University and the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.
He has also been a keynote speaker and facilitator for professional conferences nationwide.
McKeown’s work has been recognized by the Public Relations Society of America, the International Association of Business Communicators, the Arkansas Press Association, the Associated Press Managing Editors Association, the American Advertising Federation, and the Sales & Marketing Executives Association.
A one-time resident of Rogers, McKeown is a graduate of Arkansas State University in Jonesboro where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Journalism and was named recipient of the L.W. “Tex” Plunkett ”Outstanding Journalism Graduate” Award. Richard and his wife Tracye (Dicus) have four children and live in Bryant.