Now Hiring | Rock Star Intern for Spring Semester

We consider our interns to be a valuable part of the Dala team. They get to sit in on client meetings, go to TV news tapings, develop and pitch stories to the media, help plan and execute events and develop content for our social media handles and blog.

Our PR firm handles a variety of accounts in industries ranging from commercial real estate and construction services to education and corporate social responsibility. A successful Dala intern is detail-oriented and a resourceful self-starter with a positive attitude. An understanding of media relations, social media and AP style along with strong written and verbal communication skills are required.

Our current intern, John, attended a taping of FOX 4’s “Good Day” where he helped us set up for a segment featuring our client, Frontgate. Watch the segment here.

Our current intern, John, attended a taping of FOX 4’s “Good Day” where he helped us set up for a segment featuring our client, Frontgate. Watch the segment here.

Internship responsibilities include:

  • Drafting and editing media materials including pitches, media alerts, news releases, backgrounders, fact sheets and media briefing books for clients
  • Creating/updating media lists
  • Tracking media coverage and updating clip logs for clients
  • Assisting with the development and execution of plans, events and activities that support client communication goals and objectives
  • Gathering and organizing editorial calendars
  • Reviewing newspapers/industry publications for client mentions
  • Researching media, clients, client competitors and/or other subjects requested by team
  • Assisting with social media planning and account maintenance for clients
  • Drafting posts for The Dala Daily (our blog) and social handles
  • Attending occasional PR industry events and participating in seminars, webinars and other professional training
  • Working within a client-focused team setting, interacting with all disciplines to get real-world experience and understanding of the collaborative nature of the agency environment
Former rock star intern, Elizabeth, helped develop a pitch for our client, Trinity Christian Academy, which resulted in a “Hometown Heroes” segment on FOX 4.

Former rock star intern, Elizabeth, helped develop a pitch for our client, Trinity Christian Academy, which resulted in a “Hometown Heroes” segment on FOX 4.

Dala Shares the Scoop on Hyperloop

It’s not a bird, it’s not a plane, and it might possibly be faster than Superman! Imagine taking an autonomous vehicle to a train station in Dallas to immediately hop into a “pod” with more than 20 other travelers, accelerate up to 700 miles per hour and arrive in Austin just 19 minutes later. That’s the vision our client, AECOM, wants to bring to Texas and beyond.

Earlier this year, AECOM participated in a global challenge to show Hyperloop One that Texas should be home to this technology. Part of that demonstration entailed the support of local government agencies and partners, as well as publicity from the media. On a national level, AECOM’s corporate team highlighted the company’s numerous finalists, but this didn’t generate attention at the local level. So, Dala helped Hyperloop Texas, led by AECOM’s Senior Urban Planner Steven Duong, spread the word.

The results were almost immediate and quickly snowballed into interviews and press coverage across the state. Not only did the Houston Chronicle run a front page story about AECOM’s proposal and the technology that could be coming to Texas, but we were also able to secure stories with KVUE in Austin, The Dallas Morning News, Dallas Innovates, the Dallas Business Journal and CultureMap, to name a few.

Over the summer, AECOM’s Hyperloop Texas team was named a winner of the competition and Dala was able to help coordinate in-depth feature stories and broadcast news segments highlighting AECOM’s innovative strategies beyond Hyperloop. Duong represented AECOM on segments with Fox 4’s Good Day, NBC 5, a front page story of the Fort Worth Star Telegram, front page business story in The Dallas Morning News, and more.

AECOM took note of our success and pulled us in to assist its Denver office with media outreach for its winning Rocky Mountain Hyperloop proposal. Though the market and team dynamics varied, we were able to utilize our strategic approach to secure a broadcast story during a prime time TV spot (right after the highly-viewed Denver Broncos football game) as well as several stories in local newspapers.

To date, we’ve secured more than 130 media hits for AECOM’s Hyperloop teams in Texas and Colorado, which have led to business opportunities, speaking engagements and increased overall awareness of AECOM.

Like any major transportation innovation, it could be weeks or even months before we know tangible next steps in the process of bringing Hyperloop to Texas, but rest assured, Dala will keep you in the “loop.”

Meet the Dala Team
It’s official…C. Pharr & Company is now Dala Communications! Before we look to the future, we need to venture back nearly 13 years ago when Cynthia Pharr Lee and Leah Ekmark Williams began working together. Early on during their business relationship, they formed a partnership and succession plan which is what you see today. Under Dala’s former name, C. Pharr & Company has for decades, established a reputation for helping clients build their businesses by communicating their unique stories. We have served a clientele of some of the most respected names in business and have built a team of skilled public relations experts who have fostered a 20-plus-year legacy of trusting relationships with clients, communities, media and other influencers.  This team is still in place today. Our clients and business partners can count on the same client-focused team driven by results, with Leah serving as agency president and Cynthia as chairman. Dala Communications is taken from the nickname “Dala,” which refers to the Dalecarlian horse, a cultural symbol of Sweden and a part of Leah’s heritage. The Dala horse represents a legacy of Swedish entrepreneurship and this same entrepreneurial spirit runs deep in Leah’s family, beginning with her grandfather who built a successful photography business after leaving Sweden and arriving in NYC in 1903 via Ellis Island.  Leah’s father is also a successful business owner. Simply put, Dala Communications is a nod to Leah’s Swedish roots and the entrepreneurial spirit. Dala continues to be a mid-sized agency based in Dallas-Fort Worth that produces real results for its clients across the country. We are thankful for our clients and are proud to continue working with some of the top names and businesses in real estate, construction, engineering, finance, retail, healthcare and education, to name a few.  While the name may be different, you can still count on Dala to deliver our proven approach with today's newest communication techniques, giving modern motion to traditional ideas of integrity, service and the entrepreneurial spirit. Cheers to an amazing 2017 and we look forward to building on C. Pharr’s lasting reputation, and putting strategies in motion for our current and prospective clients. Thank you for your support! The Dala Team Leah, Cynthia, Krystal, Katie, Elizabeth and Lori

It’s official…C. Pharr & Company is now Dala Communications! Before we look to the future, we need to venture back nearly 13 years ago when Cynthia Pharr Lee and Leah Ekmark Williams began working together. Early on during their business relationship, they formed a partnership and succession plan which is what you see today.

Under Dala’s former name, C. Pharr & Company has for decades, established a reputation for helping clients build their businesses by communicating their unique stories. We have served a clientele of some of the most respected names in business and have built a team of skilled public relations experts who have fostered a 20-plus-year legacy of trusting relationships with clients, communities, media and other influencers. 

This team is still in place today. Our clients and business partners can count on the same client-focused team driven by results, with Leah serving as agency president and Cynthia as chairman.

Dala Communications is taken from the nickname “Dala,” which refers to the Dalecarlian horse, a cultural symbol of Sweden and a part of Leah’s heritage. The Dala horse represents a legacy of Swedish entrepreneurship and this same entrepreneurial spirit runs deep in Leah’s family, beginning with her grandfather who built a successful photography business after leaving Sweden and arriving in NYC in 1903 via Ellis Island.  Leah’s father is also a successful business owner. Simply put, Dala Communications is a nod to Leah’s Swedish roots and the entrepreneurial spirit.

Dala continues to be a mid-sized agency based in Dallas-Fort Worth that produces real results for its clients across the country. We are thankful for our clients and are proud to continue working with some of the top names and businesses in real estate, construction, engineering, finance, retail, healthcare and education, to name a few. 

While the name may be different, you can still count on Dala to deliver our proven approach with today's newest communication techniques, giving modern motion to traditional ideas of integrity, service and the entrepreneurial spirit.

Cheers to an amazing 2017 and we look forward to building on C. Pharr’s lasting reputation, and putting strategies in motion for our current and prospective clients. Thank you for your support!

The Dala Team

Leah, Cynthia, Krystal, Katie, Elizabeth and Lori

25 years of memories and history, serving as PR partner for A Conversation With a Living Legend®
Cynthia Pharr Lee MD Anderson Living Legend Lunch

For the past 25 years we have been the media relations partner of A Conversation With a Living Legend® in Dallas, benefiting The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. Working with this client is extremely rewarding because we know our efforts on this annual event are helping support research and patient care. We’ve worked on countless Living Legend lunches that have honored big names in town and internationally, including Kenneth H. Cooper, M.D., M.P.H., founder of The Cooper Clinic and The Cooper Institute; former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice; professional golfer Ben Crenshaw; and, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

We were thrilled to be a part of this year’s 28th annual event that honored international architect, artist and engineer Santiago Calatrava, Ph.D. The luncheon event at the Hilton Anatole featured an interview led by Judy Woodruff, anchor and managing editor of “PBS NewsHour.” This year’s event, led by chair Su-Su Meyer of Dallas and a steering committee of North Texas business and community leaders, raised more than $677,000 to support MD Anderson’s Moon Shots Program™, a comprehensive effort to significantly reduce cancer deaths and transform cancer care.

Since A Conversation With a Living Legend® originated in North Texas in 1990, the event has raised more than $16 million for MD Anderson. In total, more than $35 million has been raised to support life-saving work at MD Anderson from similar events in Washington, Las Vegas, Atlanta, Houston and San Antonio.

Leah EkmarkComment
Quarterly Volunteer Day - #DalaDoesGood with The Mission Continues

The Dala team had the chance to volunteer with the Dallas 1st Service Platoon from The Mission Continues, a non-profit that empowers veterans who are adjusting to life at home to find purpose through community impact.

As part of Freedom Day on Sept. 11, 2017 (a Day of Service in Dallas where first responders, veterans, and local companies gather and volunteer together to commemorate Sept. 11, 2001) we volunteered alongside veterans at Whitney M. Young elementary school in South Dallas. We spent the day painting tires for a gardening project, creating a fun caterpillar that shows the alphabet and organized books in the school's library.

We really enjoyed learning about The Mission Continues and helping make the school's playground more interactive and colorful for the students! #DalaDoesGood

Leah EkmarkComment
The Dala Team Executes Successful PR Campaign & VIP Grand Opening for National Retailer, Frontgate

Another successful large-scale client event has come to a close and was a great way for the Dala team to end the summer. We handled PR for the opening of the new 22,000-square-foot flagship store for national retail brand, Frontgate, a leading home luxury lifestyle retailer known for its best-in-class furnishings and enhancements. The multi-tiered PR campaign was a huge success! We aligned our messaging, public relations and community relations efforts, and event creation with Frontgate’s marketing, social, advertising and sales strategy. Our campaign helped establish awareness of Frontgate’s flagship store opening in Plano’s new Legacy West development, while building and increasing their current customer base in Texas.

We created a media day to provide area media and bloggers with an exclusive “sneak peek” at the new Frontgate store which was followed by a high-profile grand opening event on Sept. 7th. The Dala team created the events with a goal of showcasing the Frontgate brand and overall store experience. For both events, the Dala team set up partnerships with DFW area influencers, bloggers and other business, society and lifestyle VIPs to build awareness for Frontgate’s launch in the market. We also identified a local charity tie with Dwell with Dignity to help further this national retailer’s connection with the designer market in DFW.

The media relations campaign, exclusive media day and grand opening event were a smashing success! The grand opening event was the “talk of the town” and featured catering by renowned chef Kent Rathbun, signature cocktails from celebrity mixologist Leann Berry, live music from the Dallas String Quartet and included a charitable campaign kickoff with Dwell with Dignity.

More than 500 people attended the grand opening VIP party. We were proud to be a part of the team that introduced this well-known retailer to the Dallas market, and we did it with style complete with a champagne saber to toast the opening! Cheers y’all!

This photo about sums up the night from the grand opening....it was a "smashing success!" Pictured here is the Dala team with our client, Frontgate, as well as Kent Rathbun and Leann Berry, celebrating a wildly successful event!

This photo about sums up the night from the grand opening....it was a "smashing success!" Pictured here is the Dala team with our client, Frontgate, as well as Kent Rathbun and Leann Berry, celebrating a wildly successful event!

Leah EkmarkComment
Beating the Summer Heat with Frontgate at Fox 4

We arrived bright and early to the headquarters of FOX 4 in Dallas. Loaded only with groceries, equipment and a burning sense of responsibility, we set out to create a truly captivating segment for the average morning news. As the intern for C. Pharr & Company, I was thrilled to visit the newsroom for the first time and experience what it was like to organize and operate an entire segment behind the scenes. I was eager to meet Shannon Murray, FOX 4 reporter and Amy Kroll, Frontgate's visual merchandise manager.

Luxury home retailer, Frontgate, was about to open a giant flagship store in Plano and it was our job to showcase some of the amazing products they sell. Our focus for the segment was items useful for beating the summer heat while hosting parties on the patio or by the pool. The products ranged from the Riviera Aruba Designer Umbrella to a stainless steel Optima Chill Beverage Dispenser, but the biggest hit was the LED Floating Bluetooth Speaker, which plays music as it floats.

Setting up the segment, we hurried to unload all the equipment. We meticulously laid out shrimp and quiche, fanning out fancy lettuce and peppering them with parsley. Everything went smoothly apart from a few hiccups along the way. Who knew grapefruit juice would be too murky for live television? We rolled with the punches and used what would suit our visual needs much better (a.k.a water with sliced fruit). Also, the umbrella happened to be a little too big, but we worked out that kink too. All in all, after a few finishing touches, we were ready to roll. 

I was amazed by how the staff collaborated with us and fluidly operated the equipment and merchandise to orchestrate this segment. The segment was set to air in a couple days, but they taped the recording like it was live- just like that, all in one take. Despite this, Murray and Kroll expertly demonstrated the utility of Frontgate's goods. As my first time helping run an event like this, I was thrilled to meet everyone involved and see the operations of a real newsroom. I can't help but be thankful for being a part of it.

Check out the segment here and all the items you might need at your next summer bash! 

Leah EkmarkComment
Mentoring PR Peers & New PR Pros

Our agency was out and about in July, speaking at PR industry events with both PR students and PR colleagues. We participated in a career panel with other communications pros during The University of Texas at Arlington #utacommcamp 2017.

We also participated in the PRSA Dallas non-profit PR workshop and provided insight and counsel to a group of non-profit communications executives. Lots of questions about communication strategy and best practices. We love meeting with the next generation of PR pros and taking time to help our non-profit communications colleagues!

Mentoring Dallas PR Pros
Leah EkmarkComment