Celebrating Religion In PR


Free Virtual Event: Thursday, December 3, 6:00-7:00 p.m. ET

The PR Museum Presents: Celebrating Religion In PR

The Museum of Public Relations is thrilled to host its first ever webinar event celebrating the history of religion in public relations as well as what it means to practice religious allyship and celebrate diverse perspectives in the communications industry. With panelists Shawn Ghuman, National Sikh Campaign; Jennifer Vardeman, University of Houston; Nance McCown, Messiah University; Arik Puder, Puder PR; and Natalie Tindall, Lamar University (moderator).

This event is brought to you by The Museum of Public Relations and Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication Department of Advertising and Public Relations at University of Georgia.

Event Participants 

Natalie Tindall (Moderator) 

Natalie T. J. Tindall, Ph.D. APR is an associate professor and the chair of the Department of Communication at Lamar University. Her research focuses on diversity in organizations, specifically the public relations function, and the situational theory of publics and intersectionality.

She serves as the co-director of the Institute for Public Relations’ Center for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, and she is an active member of the Public Relations Society of America, ColorComm, the Association of Internet Researchers, the National Association of Black Journalists, and the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication.

She has authored book chapters and online publications along with peer-reviewed journal articles published in Journal of Public Relations Research, Public Relations Review, Public Relations Journal, Howard Journal of Communications, PRism, and the International Journal of Strategic Communication.


Shawn Ghuman 

Shawn Ghuman is a co-founder of the National Sikh Campaign (NSC) – a non-profit dedicated to raising awareness of the Sikh religion.  NSC’s We Are Sikhs initiative is the preeminent education effort aimed at U.S. non-Sikhs and won PRWeek’s 2018 “Best for a Cause” award. Since 2017, NSC has aired television ads on CNN and Fox News, produced a comedic short on turbans with Funny or Die, and helped create the first English documentary on Guru Nanak that is currently shown on PBS.

Shawn is currently the head of marketing for Akoya, a fintech startup. He is also a Lecturer in Johns Hopkins University’s graduate marketing program and is a former PR and digital marketing strategist at Ketchum. At Ketchum, he played a key role in multiple industry award-winning campaigns and was selected to be on the CEO’s inaugural 10-member Breakthrough Advisory Board.


Dr. Jennifer Vardeman 

As an associate professor at the University of Houston, Dr. Jen Vardeman-Winter conducts research in public relations in the public health and healthcare field. Specifically, she investigates how women make decisions about healthcare options, and how both interpersonal contact and mass media affect their decisions.

Dr. Vardeman takes an intersectional approach in exploring aspects of the public relations field, mainly around the gender and racial inequalities in the composition of the workforce. She has published more than 25 articles and chapters on topics of public relations, public health communication, and intersectionality.

As a former public relations professional, Dr. Vardeman has worked, taught, and consulted in the public relations field for 22+ years.


Dr. Nance McCown 

Nance McCown, Ph.D., serves as department co-chair and professor of communication at Messiah University in Grantham, PA. Dr. McCown’s research focuses on nonprofit crisis communication, internal public relations, leader-employee relationship building, and public relations education.

Dr. McCown published an article titled “Building Leader-Employee Dialogue and Relationships through Internal Public Relations, Leadership Style, and Workplace Spirituality” in PRism journal. Based on her dissertation research, this article considers how organizational leaders can foster effective communication and build relationships to empower employees and increase productivity and job satisfaction. 


Arik Puder 

Arik Puder is a leading media strategist in North America and Israel. He founded Puder PR in 2005, bringing his strategic media expertise gained in Israel’s dynamic political and journalism sectors to clients worldwide. 

Puder PR is a full-service, boutique firm that offers a wide range of media, marketing and communications services. Puder PR is the only communications firm specializing in Jewish affairs that operates in the United States and Israel, and the only PR firm in North America providing Hebrew and English services. 

Prior to launching Puder PR, Puder spent the early 2000s as the press secretary for Israel’s Ministry of Immigrant Absorption. He previously worked as a senior media consultant in the Prime Minister’s office and as the press secretary for the Knesset House Committee. Puder began his communications career as a journalist for Israel’s Channel 1 TV national news service.