Jerry Swerling has more than 40 years of experience as a public relations/communication consultant, educator, practitioner and thought leader. He has been uniquely honored to receive both PRSA-LA’s Public Relations Person of the Year Award and USC’s Distinguished Faculty Service Award.
In 2015, he retired from USC Annenberg. While there, he established and led the highly successful Master of Arts in Strategic Public Relations program (now Master of Public Relations and Advertising), managed the Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations program and the minor in advertising, and taught at both graduate and undergraduate levels.
At USC he also served as founder and director of the Strategic Communication and Public Relations Center (now the Center for Public Relations), the best-known project of which has been the widely followed Communication and Public Relations Generally Accepted Practices (GAP) Study (now the PR Leadership Study), which serves as an important source of guidance for practitioners at all levels.
Swerling continues to maintain his management consultancy, which he established in 1998 to help corporate clients address a wide variety of strategic organizational and communications challenges. His consulting clients have included Southern California Edison, Cisco Systems, General Motors, Computer Sciences Corp., Home Depot, Toshiba America Information Systems, Honda, Michelin, State Farm Insurance, the American Cancer Society National Office, Hyundai, Dairy Management, Inc., Toyota, and Remy Martin.
He previously headed the Southern California operations of Porter/Novelli, a leading, global public relations agency. Under his leadership, P/N’s organization grew from a little-known presence in Los Angeles to one of the strongest and most respected firms in California, with a staff of 60 in offices in L.A., San Francisco and Irvine.
Before moving to L.A. from Boston to join Porter/Novelli, Swerling served as senior vice president/director of the public relations division of Ingalls, Quinn & Johnson, which at that time was one of the largest integrated marketing firms in the Northeast.