crystal borde

“PR and communication professionals can amplify lesser-heard voices and create space for more seats at the table where decisions about opportunity and equity are made. We have the skills and tools to expand the reach of voices shaped by race and ethnicity, gender, socio-economic levels, sexual orientation, ability, and/or experiences and create more inclusive, equitable communities.”

Memorable professional moments: 

  • Watching my persuasive storytelling mentee Kevin Hines — suicide prevention advocate — share his story of resilience and recovery to save lives in a BuzzFeed video viewed more than 6 million times
  • Producing a town hall-style discussion about the best approaches for addressing the opioid crisis and other prevention issues for more than 1,700 SAMHSA Prevention Day conference attendees
  • Led a cultural competence and inclusion subcommittee of people with lived experience and behavioral health professionals to create more effective marketing materials and resources to promote the Eight Dimensions of Wellness

People often find it interesting that …
I’m an award-winning landscape photographer. While I’m still an amateur, my photographs were featured in a magazine and auctioned off for charity. What I love most about photography is that it is another way for me to be a storyteller. Through the composition of the image, a photograph can powerfully share a story without relying on language. Photography is a universal method of human communication, and a natural extension of my career as a PR professional.

What does people-first mean to me?
To me, people-first means keeping people — their needs, their challenges, their contributions — as the center of the work we do. Being people-first means spending more time listening rather than talking — with colleagues, our clients, our audiences — and considering how we can be more inclusive in our communication approaches, strategies and tactics with specific communities. People-first is about ensuring that people —who they are and what they need — are accurately and fairly represented in our strategic communications planning.

My credentials

  • B.A., California State University, Fullerton – College of Communications; concentration: public relations; minor: speech communications.
  • Member, Public Relations Society of America, National Capital Chapter
  • Certificate of Completion, CommonHealth ACTION Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Training Institute
  • Mentor, Comunicadores for the Future Internship Program, George Washington University’s Cisneros Hispanic Leadership Institute

Connect with Crystal