It is impossible to appropriately acknowledge everyone who helped me with this book. I began this project more years ago than I care to remember with a colleague, Sheila Nolan. Her advice and early enthusiasm were both infectious and invaluable and I am sorry she could not finish this with me. I am indebted to the students in my public relations and organizational communication classes who have allowed me to try out my ideas, many of which are incorporated in this book. I am equally indebted to the many professionals I have met over the years; they were always more than kind in helping me learn about organizations, public relations, and communication. The same goes for my colleagues and friends at Pacific Lutheran University and in the discipline.
The practitioner responses at the end of each chapter turned out even better than I hoped. Credit for that goes to the twelve professionals who agreed to read a chapter and craft a response.
The staff at Lawrence Erlbaum Associates has been great, beginning with my first editor, Hollis Heimbouch, who is now at Harvard Business School Press. Robin Weisberg took over as editor in the middle of this project and shepherded it to completion. I especially want to acknowledge Anne Monaghan, LEA production editor, who took a very rough manuscript and made it presentable. The friendly encouragement of her e-mails made the last bit of editing and revising easier.
My sons, Christopher and Nicholas, always asked how it was going and genuinely listened when I told them; I thank them for just being themselves. Finally, I thank Mary DeFreest for her support, insights, questions, and laughter -- our time sitting on logs at the beach and working things out was well spent.