Ronn Torossian is the Founder, President and CEO of New York-based 5W Public Relations (5W). He has overseen the rapid growth and expansion of the PR agency to the Inc. 500 list, as well as provided counsel to hundreds of companies, including members of the Fortune 500, Inc. 500 and Forbes 400. His work spans global interests, corporate entities, high-profile individuals, regional business entities, government agencies and academic institutions - both on routine public relations matters and extremely sensitive issues.
One of the foremost public relations experts in the U.S., Torossian is known for his resourceful, results-focused orientation, as well as his close working relationships with members of the media, influencers, decision makers, politicians and celebrities. At 5W, Torossian's client experience has included PR programs for Coca-Cola, Microsoft, Anheuser-Busch, Barnes & Noble, Cantor Fitzgerald, IHOP, McDonald's, Evian, EDS, VeriSign, XM Radio, Seagram's, The Loews Regency, Bad Boy Worldwide Entertainment, Marriott Hotels, Vail Resorts, Pamela Anderson, the Government of Israel, and others.
A New York Times feature story on Ronn Torossian referred to him as "The consummate hard-driving, scrappy NY publicist." CBS National News said "Ronn Torossian knows spin," and he was referred to by The New York Post as a "publicity guru"; by Fox News as a "high-powered PR CEO"; by Tyra Banks as a "crisis management guru"; and by CNN as "a leading PR expert." Ronn Torossian's expert commentary on public relations and reputation management is regularly featured in the top-tier media. Earlier in his career, Torossian was Vice President/Group Director for one of The InterPublic Group's (IPG) largest PR agencies, where he was responsible for significant client growth including for Clinique, Fox News Channel, DHL and Hard Rock Café.
Torossian was named Silver Stevie® award winner in the Communications, Investor Relations, and PR Executive of the Year category and a semi-finalist for Ernst & Young's Entrepreneur of the Year. NYC born and raised, he resides on Manhattan's Upper West Side and was named to both PR Week's "40 Under 40" and Advertising Age's "40 Under 40" lists. His book, "For Immediate Release" was released in 2011 and is available at bookstores nationwide. He is a regular lecturer at universities and conferences, a member of Young Presidents Organization (YPO), and a board member of numerous non-profit organizations.
Don joined 5W Public Relations in 2012 after serving over four years as Chief Operating Officer at New Jersey based Beckerman. Don previously served for over seven years as Chief Operating Officer at MWW Group, one of the nation’s top ten public relations firms.
Don has over twenty-five years of combined experience in operations and human resources, with over twelve years in the public relations industry. At 5WPR, Don is responsible for managing day-to-day operations of the firm, including agency management, human resources and information technology.
Don holds an MBA from Iona College, and a BA from Montclair State University. He resides in Wayne, NJ, with his wife and three children. Don is an avid golfer as well as a musician.
Erika Kauffman is a Executive Vice President & Group Director for consumer PR brands, and represents a collection of clients that range from health companies, beauty & wellness products and physicians to parenting goods, plastic surgeons and beverage brands. Erika develops and manages several integrated PR/Marketing programs for clients and is responsible for driving strategic results for clients, including AHAVA skincare, Hint Water, Cinergy Health, Shiseido brands Decleor & Carita and Evian Natural Spring Water. She is an expert at creating and executing strategic national media campaigns, generating impactful trade and business press coverage, and building media profiles.
Erika's experience and style offer a 360 degree view to her management and client services, bringing to play her expertise across many industries, including business PR, healthcare, beauty PR and consumer public relations.
Previously, Erika served as an Account Supervisor at a mid-sized NY PR firm and had yielded brand building results for a diverse range of well-recognized companies including Martha Stewart Living, The Peninsula Hotels and the Muscular Dystrophy Association.
Juda S. Engelmayer is a Senior Vice President overseeing the corporate, crisis and advocacy groups. Having served as an executive vice president for media, marketing and public relations at a national food relief organization operating in 44 states and over 6000 communities, he ran every aspect of marketing, from social media and email campaigns to public relations and crisis communications.
Juda's experience in media, communications, crisis communications, and public affairs are put to work at the firm. He oversees a host of corporate, political, advocacy and policy groups and individuals in national and international arenas. He handles public campaigning for clients, direct advocacy and positioning, and a team handling issues of current public debate, as well as issue oriented corporate, financial, and philanthropy related matters.
Prior to 5WPR, he served as the American Jewish Congress' Chief Communications Officer where he established himself as a key player in building the stature of the 87 year old agency. Previously, he was a VP at Rubenstein Associates, a New York based PR firm, where he handled accounts spanning foreign governments, entertainment, non profits, healthcare and medical research clients.
He began his career as an executive assistant and assistant press secretary to H. Carl McCall, the New York State Comptroller, where he handled media and communications matters, and was part of the campaign process that saw the first ever NY Statewide elected African American elected two times. In his spare time he helps his wife run their 80 year old bialy bakery on Manhattan's Lower East Side.
Susan Weingram is a Senior Vice President with 15 years of broadcast media, public relations and marketing experience, Susan has extensive consumer, luxury, lifestyle, healthcare, hospitality, sports and not-for-profit experience to her clients.
As an SVP at Rubenstein Communications, Susan was the firm's first Director of its Consumer Practice, for which she drove the strategic development of its accounts and oversaw implementation of its campaigns. She has worked with a myriad of clients including the Duchess of York, Sheila C. Johnson, BMW, MINI, Gilt.com, the National Hockey League, American Express, Ian Schrager Hotels, the Fitzpatrick Hotel Group, Us Weekly and Men's Journal magazines, the London International Awards, Tribeca Film Festival, A Time for Children, and CureSearch National Childhood Cancer Foundation.
As Edelman's Senior Vice President of Media Services, Susan oversaw a team that enhanced the agency's reach into top tier media, with clients including Unilever's Dove's "Campaign for Real Beauty," Microsoft's Xbox, Zune, Windows Vista, Burger King, Danon, Dickies, St. Baldrick's Foundation, Schering-Plough, Astra Zenica, Merck, Shell, and Wal-Mart. Susan is a former television producer for the long-running news magazine Inside Edition, where she ultimately served as Acting Managing Editor and began her professional career in the White House Office of Media Affairs, under President George H.W. Bush.
In her spare time, Susan serves on the Board of Directors of Children's PressLine, a not-for-profit organization that teaches journalism skills to underprivileged youth. An avid equestrienne, she has a background in veterinary medicine.
M. Elizabeth Semple, Vice President Human Resources, is responsible for employee relations, recruiting, benefits and compensation, as well as training and development. Prior to 5WPR, Ms. Semple managed HR nationwide for a major PR firm as well as a high-net worth advertising company in NYC.
Past HR experience also includes working at Sony Pictures, CNN, Razorfish and Accenture where she gained experience in IPOs, M&A activities and divestitures, along with the functional responsibilities of HR. Ms. Semple is a graduate of New York University. She lives in New York City with her children.
Melanie Gordon-Felsman serves as Vice-President at 5W Public Relations where she manages a diverse roster of clients for the agency.
Prior to joining 5WPR Melanie served as Vice-President of Marketing & Communications for Cantor Fitzgerald, the global financial conglomerate. Her vast responsibilities included internal and external communications, developing global media campaigns, brand awareness, event management and new business development. Melanie created oversaw media for Cantor businesses, and their most senior officers.
Previously Melanie worked at Reuters, managing marketing and communications for their collaboration group. Prior to this Melanie was a Senior Product Manager at Net2Phone, responsible for overseeing market strategy & tactical implementation. Melanie's years of experience also include impactful roles at Deloitte & Touche and 3Com Canada.
Melanie holds an honors BA from York University in Toronto, and a Public Relations Diploma from the University of Toronto. She is very active on several not-for-profit boards and lives on Manhattan's Upper West Side with her husband Michael and their twins Aaron and Daniella.