Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Winning in the Court of Public Opinion

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Winning in the Court of Public Opinion

Article excerpt

Jack Bowen has spent the last 34 years in front of a television camera.

He has experience as a reporter, assignment editor and anchor. For the last 26 years, he has worked for stations in Oklahoma City, most recently as an anchor with KOKH-Channel 25.

Now Bowen is putting his experience to work. He has joined with Scott Mitchell to teach others how to present themselves on television and to the media in general.

Mitchell is president of Scott Mitchell & Associates Strategic Communications Consulting in Oklahoma City.

A native of Lindsay and a graduate of the University of Oklahoma, Mitchell founded Scott Mitchell & Associates Advertising and Public Relations in 1983. The firm concentrated on traditional retail campaigns for its business clients until 1988, when the focus was shifted to a political and public issue campaign focus. During this period, the firm handled a number of marquee clients.

In 1993, the mission of the firm shifted again when it was one of six firms hired nationally by the Health Insurance Association of America to defeat the Clinton Administration's health care proposal.

Since adding a division of litigation communication consulting in 1998, Scott Mitchell & Associates has been a consultant on legal, regulatory and public affairs issues all across America.

Bowen and Mitchell are now combining their talents and experience to help companies, groups, charities and well-known people deal with public perception in legal and crisis situations.

"What I bring is purely from the practical side," Bowen said.

He explains to clients how news gathering organizations function and tells "what you can do to put yourself on equal footing."

The firm is already teaching litigation communications through approved continuing legal education courses in Oklahoma. It has clients from across the country.

The main emphasis of litigation communications is helping the defendant win in the court of public opinion. Mitchell says they only do corporate and defense work.

They also only work for law firms. "CEOs tend to listen to their lawyers," Mitchell said.

They said that companies have two basic needs in dealing with crisis situations -- an objective analysis and being ready to deal with the media. …

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