Deborah Rodriguez-Samuelson, Director of Communications/Development/IT
Deborah Rodriguez-Samuelson brings with her over 30 years of public relations, marketing, corporate communications and development experience to Helen Keller Services for the Blind (HKSB). Her work experience includes agency, corporate and non profit organizations. The past 12 years Rodriguez-Samuelson has added various aspects of Information Technology to her resume, including websites (internal and external), blogs, and overseeing corporate IT systems (hardware and software).
Through her initiatives as Director of Communications/Development/IT, Rodriguez-Samuelson raises visibility (and brand awareness) for the organization as well as develop, cultivate and sustain relationships with supporters through strategems that greatly enhance and expand fundraising efforts. These fundraising efforts include all aspects of development (foundations and corporate relations), government relations, and special events. She also develops and manages marketing campaigns agencywide.
Prior to HKSB, Rodriguez-Samuelson was the Director of Communications for Common Ground Community and Director of Marketing and Public Relations for Neighborhood Housing Services of New York City (NHS of NYC). Rodriguez-Samuelson raised visibility and unified the image of both organizations, developing aggressive marketing campaigns and placing dozens of articles per year, including major pieces in The New York Times, The New York Daily News, Fast Company and NY1 News. She began her non profit experience with the launching of a non profit Spanish public television station devoted to education (including creating, executing and producing on-air promotions and all marketing materials).
Her agency and corporate experience includes creating and executing program promotions (network, cable and overseas) for Westinghouse Broadcasting; and working on public relations campaigns for such clients as The Netherlands Industrial Commission, MasterCard, United Media Enterprises, The United States Football League (USFL), Cotton Incorporated, and Kelly Services.
Rodriguez-Samuelson received her Bachelor of Arts, cum laude, in Political Science and Media Studies from Hunter College and her certification in Television Production from The Center for Media Arts. She is a long-time member of the Public Relations Society of America, Women in Communications, and the Association for Fundraising Professionals and a former Associate Broker (Residential Real Estate). Rodriguez-Samuelson received a Customer Service Award and the 2005 Volunteer of the Year Award from NHS of NYC and received the Paul F. Zucker Award, Grand Prize Winner, for outstanding public relations program (Ruder Finn & Rotman, United Media Enterprises-Client). Rodriguez-Samuelson is a Board Member of the Staten Island Inter-Agency Council for Senior Citizens and a member of NHS of Staten Island’s Fundraising and Marketing Committees.