We Lost an Icon

Dr. Kaye Sweetser, APR+M, Fellow PRSA

October 12, 2019

This week up on the mesa we gathered to remember Dr. Glen Broom, a pioneer in public relations. It was a packed room, and not a dry eye. Some traveled back to San Diego from far points around the globe (including London), and some watched on a Facebook livestream.

You have heard us say it before many times over: he wrote the book, he defined PR, he fused theory and practice in a way that had not yet been done, he inspired a legion of students and had an even bigger impact as the professor of the profession.

Listening to the remarks during the celebration of life, his impact is evident. He inspired his students, he pushed them toward real world opportunities that turned the world into a laboratory, he collaborated with the practice and he always did it with a smile on his face.

Reflecting on the magnitude of that impact, we discovered through our research:

  • he taught 3,000 students at SDSU during his time in our PR program
  • his research developing role theory and systems theory seem like a natural progression into the major contributions he made in relationship theory
  • research cited 5,000 times in other scholars’ work
  • contributed to Cutlip & Center’s Effective Public Relations textbook for 35 years and author on six editions
  • his textbook Cutlip & Center’s Effective Public Relations is published in at least 10 different languages

Feeling that nostalgia for understanding his impact on the profession, it is a great time to look back what others said after he died earlier this summer.

The San Diego Union-Tribune obituary encapsulates his impact and philosophy best.

A San Diego State University release talked to other PR luminaries in writing their memorial article.

Our friends at Nuffer, Smith, Tucker Public Relations published this blog post where Kerry Tucker said that Glen Broom “could push the public relations profession to new heights and levels of relevancy.”

Oh and from the wayback machine, we have this video SDSU made announcing the Broom Center playing on repeat.

Sometimes it hard to believe that one man did so much, made such an impact and left such an amazing legacy. But he did. That’s our Glen Broom. He would be embarrassed greatly by this post, but I think it would make him smile (mostly because he was always smiling).

In the coming weeks we are opening up an oral history project where you can share the impact that Glen Broom had on you or your career. For now we’re just going to crawl up on the sofa for the weekend with our copy of EPR.

Thank you to all who sent such kind notes, watched the celebration of life Facebook Live stream or attended the event.

We Lost an Icon
We Lost an Icon

This week up on the mesa we gathered to remember Dr. Glen Broom, a pioneer in public relations. It was a packed room, and not a dry eye. Some traveled back to San Diego from far points around the globe (including London), and some watched on a Facebook livestream.

You have heard us say it before many times over: he wrote the book, he defined PR, he fused theory and practice in a way that had not yet been done, he inspired a legion of students and had an even bigger impact as the professor of the profession.

Listening to the remarks during the celebration of life, his impact is evident. He inspired his students, he pushed them toward real world opportunities that turned the world into a laboratory, he collaborated with the practice and he always did it with a smile on his face.

Reflecting on the magnitude of that impact, we discovered through our research:

  • he taught 3,000 students at SDSU during his time in our PR program
  • his research developing role theory and systems theory seem like a natural progression into the major contributions he made in relationship theory
  • research cited 5,000 times in other scholars’ work
  • contributed to Cutlip & Center’s Effective Public Relations textbook for 35 years and author on six editions
  • his textbook Cutlip & Center’s Effective Public Relations is published in at least 10 different languages

Feeling that nostalgia for understanding his impact on the profession, it is a great time to look back what others said after he died earlier this summer.

The San Diego Union-Tribune obituary encapsulates his impact and philosophy best.

A San Diego State University release talked to other PR luminaries in writing their memorial article.

Our friends at Nuffer, Smith, Tucker Public Relations published this blog post where Kerry Tucker said that Glen Broom “could push the public relations profession to new heights and levels of relevancy.”

Oh and from the wayback machine, we have this video SDSU made announcing the Broom Center playing on repeat.

Sometimes it hard to believe that one man did so much, made such an impact and left such an amazing legacy. But he did. That’s our Glen Broom. He would be embarrassed greatly by this post, but I think it would make him smile (mostly because he was always smiling).

In the coming weeks we are opening up an oral history project where you can share the impact that Glen Broom had on you or your career. For now we’re just going to crawl up on the sofa for the weekend with our copy of EPR.

Thank you to all who sent such kind notes, watched the celebration of life Facebook Live stream or attended the event.