New IABC Barbados President Challenges Membership To Guard Against Irrelevance

Fay Cooke-Nurse is the newly elected President of the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) Barbados Chapter.

Fay Cooke-Nurse, new President of the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) Barbados Chapter, is encouraging communications professionals to guard against irrelevance in a world where “change is the new norm”.

Cooke-Nurse takes over from Deborah Stoute for the 2018-2019 term. Stoute will now serve as senior delegate on the new Board of Directors. Before being elected President, Cooke-Nurse served as VP Administration for two terms, VP Membership, and was President- Elect for 2017-2018.

In her President’s address to the Annual General Meeting of IABC Barbados, Cooke-Nurse, a Public Relations and Media Relations Consultant and Principal of Millennium Communications, also said a lack of awareness of the challenges facing communications professionals could lead to them being underappreciated.

“We all know that communications is a profession which is detail oriented and calls for us to be determined, strategic and energetic – but ours is also a profession that can be underappreciated because many are still unaware of what it takes to do the job and to do it well. As we soldier on, we must guard against becoming isolated in our world of deadlines and deliverables. Membership in IABC Barbados may be viewed as an annual expense – but is it one that we can afford to forego? Change is the new norm in our world and to remain relevant, we must invest in our profession,” the new President stated.

Also addressing the membership, outgoing President Deborah Stoute, Manager, Marketing & Corporate Communications, Republic Bank (Barbados), encouraged the Board to continue to work to move the Association forward. Stoute said that it was still her dream to see IABC evolve to having a secretariat to facilitate the educational and professional objectives of its members.

“More important than my dream is the fact that this IABC Barbados Chapter can and does provide what we need more than anything as communications professionals – opportunities for continuous learning and honing our skills, the ability to remain au courant in a changing world, and interaction with a network that can provide something we as communications professionals always need… information,” Stoute said.

The remainder of the new IABC Board comprises President-Elect, Carol Walcott, Senior Associate, Marketing & Communications, PwC; VP Finance, Tracy Moses, Senior Marketing Communications Officer Nation Group; VP Communications, Debra King, Director Corporate Communications at CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank; VP Marketing, Jackie Marshall-Clarke, Manager Communications and Government Relations, Barbados Light & Power Co. Ltd; VP Administration, Samantha Hazlewood, Information Officer, Barbados Accreditation Council; VP Professional Development, Carmel Haynes, Principal, Haynes Consulting; and VP, Membership, Novaline Brewster, Chief, Corporate Communications, Central Bank of Barbados.

The IABC also recognised and congratulated Lynda Holder, a former IABC President, who was appointed to the executive board of the IABC Southern Region on July 1st, 2018 as VP, Chapter Relations.

The IABC is represented in more than 70 counties globally. IABC Barbados presently comprises 35 members drawn from across the public and private sector. The Association’s professional development seminars continue to attract scores of professionals – both members and non-members – who benefit from shared expertise and networking opportunities.

Barbadian Professional Communicator Earns International Accreditation Designation

Bridgetown, BARBADOS (December 5, 2013)

Heather Barker

Heather Barker
Managing Director of Clearly Content Communications Inc.

Heather Barker, Managing Director of Clearly Content Communications Inc., has earned the Accredited Business Communicator (ABC) designation of the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC), the third communications practitioner in Barbados to do so.

IABC’s accreditation programme measures the abilities and skills of a communicator, and is intended as a critical stage in a communicator’s career growth. Earning accreditation demonstrates to clients and fellow communicators that an important milestone in professional development has been attained.

Barker, who earned the accreditation in October 2013, is an established communicator of 15 years’ experience and holds a BA in Mass Communications from the University of the West Indies, Mona, Jamaica, and an MSc in Electronic Publishing from City University in London, England. She founded Clearly Content in 2004.

To meet the requirements for accreditation, Barker had to understand the goals and philosophy of organizational communication; appreciate the role of the communicator and communication in modern organizations; understand what communication can and cannot do; have the knowledge to plan, direct and implement a broad range of communication programmes; and have the skills and abilities to apply that knowledge to practical, real-life situations.

The programme consists of a rigorous testing process that identifies and recognizes the well-rounded communicator through written and oral examinations and a portfolio evaluation. Candidates meeting all requirements of the programme earn the designation “Accredited Business Communicator.” ABC after a name is a mark of professional achievement and commitment.

“Many candidates find that the accreditation process itself is highly valuable,” said Gloria Walker, ABC, FRSA, chair of the accreditation committee. “The application, preparing of their portfolio, evaluation of their strengths and weaknesses and reviewing the principles and practices is a strenuous exercise that demonstrates the candidate’s commitment to excellence.”

“We see accreditation as an integral part of IABC’s commitment to the education of its members and the development of the profession in general,” said IABC chair Robin McCasland.

Barker described the process of accreditation as rigorous yet worthwhile. “Over the course of this programme I was able to consolidate and refine the skills needed for successful communications strategies both regionally and extra-regionally. My career and Clearly Content are the better for it and I’m looking forward to the benefits that clients and their customers will derive through my attainment of this accreditation.”

Lynda Holder, President of the Barbados Chapter of the IABC, in congratulating Barker said, “We’re so excited Heather has achieved this designation because it speaks to her practical expertise in strategically planning, directing and measuring communications programmes. Furthermore it successfully demonstrates the strides which the Barbados Chapter is making in its strategy to encourage professional development thereby improving the credibility and practice of Public Relations and Communications in Barbados and across the region.”

Currently, IABC has over 1,000 accredited communicators in more than 28 countries. IABC is a network of professionals committed to improving organizational effectiveness through strategic communication. With more than 130 chapters, IABC serves 15,000 members in 80 countries.

Media Contact:

Aaron Heinrich
+1 (415) 544-4700

IABC Barbados Welcomes a New Board!

During the  IABC Barbados Chapter AGM 2013 held in July, the new 2013-2014 Board was confirmed.  The complete list can be found by visiting the About Us page.  We welcome our new Board!

Click on the image below to enlarge.

IABC Board 2013-2014

IABC Board 2013-2014
Missing are Sharon Marshall, Senior Delegate and Wanda Mayers, VP Membership

Ann Lazarus Named Interim Executive Director of the IABC

Dear fellow member,

Since Chris Sorek resigned as IABC’s executive director to return to the corporate sector earlier this month, I have been serving as acting executive director of the organization. While I have enjoyed the opportunity to work more closely with the dedicated staff, especially given the success of this week’s World Conference in New York, this is not a role I can keep long-term.

Therefore, today I am thrilled to announce that, after a rigorous effort by the international executive board (IEB), Ann Lazarus has agreed to serve as IABC’s interim executive director until we find a permanent executive director. Ann is a professional interim executive director who specializes in assisting organizations going through transition.

[Please see the release below for more information about this announcement].

Ann’s responsibilities will include working with IABC staff to ensure continued delivery of the stellar content and career development resources that the membership expects from IABC. She will also work with IABC’s international executive board (IEB) to determine the organization’s strategic priorities moving forward.

The IEB believes that Ann’s extensive change management experience during this time of transition will prove to be a tremendous asset. As a professional interim executive director, Ann will play a key role in helping stabilize the organization while keeping it focused on building value for members and enhancing its value in the challenging marketplace environment in which IABC operates.

Ultimately, the IEB knows that consistency and continuity are important aspects of IABC’s ongoing relationship with you, and we value the trust you’ve placed in the organization and the IEB. The organization remains committed to providing the content and career development needs that you and all of our professional peers demand—and comprise the core of the organization’s strategic direction—and we believe this transition will prove seamless to you. Meanwhile, we believe that we will all continue to benefit from the same high level of service that you are accustomed to from the hard-working staff at IABC headquarters.

If you are one of IABC’s great volunteer leaders, I know I have approached this announcement differently than our standard procedure of giving you advance notice. That is a reflection of the time of year—when chapter and regional boards are turning over and we’re updating leadership contact information—and the tight timing of this announcement. Going forward, the IEB and staff will continue to work to support you in your leadership roles.

Thank you for the opportunity to serve you and the organization,

Kerby Meyers
Past Chair
IABC international executive board


Ann Lazarus Named Interim Executive Director of the
International Association of Business Communicators

ann-lazarusSAN FRANCISCO, CA – June 28, 2013 – The International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) announced today that it has appointed Ann Lazarus as interim executive director of IABC, effective July 1, 2013. In this role, Lazarus will manage the day-to-day operations of IABC’s staff in its San Francisco headquarters. She will report to IABC’s international executive board, an international volunteer board of directors that sets the strategic direction of the organization.

“The international executive board of IABC is thrilled that Ann Lazarus is available to step in as IABC’s interim executive director. Ann has extensive experience in helping organizations in transition and we’re confident she’ll be a valuable link to the organization’s next permanent executive director,” said Kerby Meyers, the immediate past chair of IABC’s international executive board. “As such, we believe Ann will be invaluable in helping the organization keep focused on its long-term strategies while making the investments necessary to reinforce our commitment to improving IABC’s position as the lead resource for communication professionals worldwide. We look forward to Ann’s contributions during this time.”

Lazarus specializes in working as an interim executive for nonprofits in transition, most recently as interim president of the Saint Francis Foundation, which works to raise funds and cultivate resources to support the programs of Saint Francis Memorial Hospital. She’s also served as interim executive director for the San Francisco School of Volunteers, the Coro Center for Civic Leadership, the Enterprise for High School Students and the Fort Mason Center. Currently, she serves as vice president of the San Francisco Board of Appeals—a term which ends July 1, 2014. Lazarus holds a Bachelor of Arts and MBA degrees from Stanford University and a Masters in Urban Studies from Occidental College.

On June 4, 2013, IABC announced that then-executive director Chris Sorek had resigned to return to the corporate sector. The organization expects the search for a new permanent executive director to commence within the next 60 days.

Barbados Chapter President Collects First Gold Quill Award from IABC

Kerby-Myers-Sharon-MarshallFor the first time in the 40-year history of the Gold Quill Awards programme of the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC), Barbados was among those countries represented in winners row at the Awards Gala held in New York City last night.

Outgoing President of the Barbados Chapter, Dr. Sharon Marshall, earned the first Gold Quill won by a member of the local Chapter since it was established in June 2008. She was presented with a Gold Quill Award of Excellence by Chair of the 2013 Gold Quill Awards Committee, Mr. Tim Buckley, and Chairman of the IABC International Executive Board, Mr. Kerby Myers. The Gold Quill was awarded in the Communications Skills Division in the category of Special Events – External.

Mr. Buckley says “The Gold Quill Awards Gala celebrates the best and brightest in global business communication.” The prestigious award is given in two classes – Award of Merit and Award of Excellence.

The entries were judged byinternational Blue Ribbon panels. Canada and the United States dominated the awards. However, also among the winners were communicators from Argentina, Australia, Brazil, China, Germany, India, Mexico, New Zealand, the Phillippines, Russia, Slovenia, South Africa, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and Venezuela.

IABC describes the Gold Quill as “an international symbol of excellence in strategic communication that recognizes smart thinking, flawless execution and proven results.”

Dr. Marshall says “This is a great honour for the Chapter. I hope that more members will be inspired to enter their work in the Gold Quill competition.”

Based in San Francisco, IABC is a global network of communication professionals committed to improving organisational effectiveness through strategic communication. Established in 1970, IABC serves more than 14,000 communication professionals in 70 countries.

Outgoing IABC Head Lands Gold

dr-sharon-marshallOutgoing President of the Barbados chapter of the International Association of Business Communicators, Dr. Sharon Marshall, has won a Gold Quill Award of Excellence from IABC.

The Gold Quill was awarded in the Communications Skills Division in the category of Special Events – External, for communications management of the 42nd Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors of the Caribbean Development Bank, which took place in the Cayman Islands in May 2012. Marshall served as information officer at CDB from 1999 to February 2013.

IABC 2013 Gold Quill Awards chair, Tim Buckley, stated in his notification to Marshall that “winning a Gold Quill Award puts you in the top ranks of the world’s business communicators”.

She is currently lending her expertise to the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority in the role of public relations executive. Reporting directly to the managing director, she has responsibility for management of the authority’s corporate communications. IABC describes the Gold Quill as “an international symbol of excellence in strategic communication that recognizes smart thinking, flawless execution and proven results”.

This is the first Gold Quill won by a member of the local chapter since it was established in 2008. Marshall sees the award as the “perfect fifth anniversary present for IABC Barbados, and recognition of the strides which the chapter has made since its formation”. She thanked her former employers, CDB, for the opportunity to perform award-winning work which is on par with the best from her colleagues around the globe.

The award is to be presented at this year’s Gold Quill Awards Gala at the IABC World Conference in New York City on Monday, June 24. Buckley said: “The Gold Quill Awards Gala celebrates the best and brightest in global business communication.”

Marshall is one of seven members of IABC Barbados currently pursuing the Accredited Business Communicator designation with IABC. She expressed the hope that this first win will motivate other members of the Barbados Chapter to submit their work to the annual competition, and encourage other local marketing and communication professionals who are not yet members to join IABC.

IABC is a global network of communication professionals committed to improving organisational effectiveness through strategic communication. Established in 1970, IABC serves more than 14,000 communication professionals in 70 countries.

Register Now for the 2013 IABC World Conference

This Event Has Started


This June, the 2013 IABC World Conference will be held in the spectacular city of New York, New York.


Come experience the street art and digital branding in Times Square, the billboards on Broadway and a wide variety of restaurants flowing with international conversations. The big apple is filled with diversity that will sharpen your mind.  That diversity has been captured in this year’s World Conference in ways that will both surprise and delight you.

A passion for what’s new, the best ideas, the latest trends, it’s all waiting for you this June.

Some topics to be covered include:

  • Digital Assassination
  • Taking the Pulse of the New Generation
  • Conversations with transformative CEOs

About The Conference

The IABC 2013 World Conference (June 23-26 in New York) is the leading international forum of its kind. More than 2,000 communication professionals – decision makers and influencers in industries from around the world – gather to learn the latest developments and best practices in communication while making the connections that will advance their communication programs and careers.

There will be a plethora of noted experts and speakers and plenty of opportunities to mingle, meet old friends and make new connections. It’s your time to learn, your town to explore, and your World Conference. We’ll see you there!

Visit the Official Website for full information and Register Today.

Critical Illness of Public Figures – a Communications Approach

An article written by Heather Barker as published in the Barbados Advocate newspaper.

No-one likes to talk openly about illness, especially in the Caribbean. However, with the serious illnesses and deaths of political and business leaders in recent times, I’ve been thinking about the lessons that effective Public Relations can bring to bear in the public and private sectors, especially with three of our Prime Ministers passing away while in office.


Click Here To Read the Full Article (jpg/795kb)

Two local communications professionals to attend the IABC’s Annual Leadership Meeting

Two local communications professonals, both Executive Board Members of the The Barbados Chapter of the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) will represent Barbados at the 2013 IABC Leadership Institute which takes place from February 07 to 09, 2013 in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Lynda Holder

Lynda Holder

Sophia Cambridge

Sophia Cambridge

President-Elect of the IABC Barbados Chapter, Lynda Holder, and co-Vice-President of Professional Development, Sophia Cambridge will attend the professional development event.

The Leadership Institute, or LI as it is familiarly known, is an annual opportunity for IABC chapter, regional and international leaders to come together to share best practices and learn how to create programmes and services that keep members active and involved.

This year, sessions include such topics as Maximizing Member Value – A Membership Discussion; Tips & Tools to Turn Your Professional Development Programming From Routine to Rousing; 1, 2,3 Fun with Finance!; Optimizing Social Media: Tips for Integrating Social Media into Your Chapter Communications Strategy; Engaging Members through Special Interest Groups; Strategic Planning: A Wide-Angle Lens; and Community Engagement: A new way to recruit members, promote your chapter and grow your audience.

President of IABC Barbados, Dr. Sharon Marshall, said  “with exposure to such stimulating sessions, Lynda and Sophia should return home brimming with great ideas to create interest and energise the functioning of the local Chapter.”

To join this growing body of communication professionals,  please contact VP of Membership Keith Goddard at