Devon Chestnut has been a member of the Gainesville Chapter of FPRA since 2007. All it took was one monthly luncheon with a co-worker and she was hooked. She works at Cox Communications as a regional public relations manager. Devon is currently serving as the Immediate Past President, and she has also served as the Director of Image Awards, Director of Community Relations, Vice President, President-Elect, and President. She has even served on the State Executive Board as Vice President of PR and Communications and will be installed as VP of Technology for 2014-2015 at the upcoming Annual Conference.
Devon’s job is multi-faceted and she uses public relations in almost every aspect of it. She interacts with community leaders, non-profit organizations and elected officials while managing community relations. “I wear my PR hat during every interaction to ensure I am creating and maintaining a positive image for my organization and addressing any issues that may arise,” said Chestnut. “In addition to my external customers, I also manage the internal communications for our regional employee base of around 2,000. With an employee base that spans three states, two time zones and features employees doing very diverse jobs, it is critical that messages are developed to suit the target audience and deployed in an effective manner.” Devon also supports social media for the Florida and Georgia markets that Cox serves.
Devon loves the variety of work that is included in public relations. Being in FPRA allows her to build relationships with other public relations professionals, share her experiences and learn from others. Although Devon took the non-traditional route in her education she has earned her Associate and Bachelor degrees. She earned her APR in 2012.
One of her favorite things about Gainesville is taking photos of the wildlife on the La Chua Trail and the Butterfly Rainforest. She was born and raised in Ocala and one of her first jobs was with a CPA firm that had quite an impressive client list. While working there, Devon had the opportunity to speak with Steve Spurrier, former Governor Buddy MacKay and former New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner. If she wasn’t in PR, her other dream job would be a NASCAR driver.