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 Paul Alvarez Makes Announcement at Town Hall
 LOS ANGELES, July 15 /PRNewswire/ -- The leader of one of the United

States' largest communications agencies announced during a Town Hall luncheon today that Ketchum Communications Inc. is offering its creative resources -- public relations, advertising and directory advertising -- to Los Angeles pro bono to improve the city's tarnished image.
 Paul Alvarez, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Ketchum, a worldwide company consisting of three full-service, integrated agencies -- Ketchum Public Relations, Ketchum Advertising and Ketchum Directory Advertising -- told 110 Los Angelenos gathered at the Hotel Inter-Continental that he will assemble a team of top people from each of Ketchum Communications' agencies to create a convergent communications plan for promoting the city as a center for business, investment and tourism.
 The plan would incorporate print and broadcast advertising, media relations, promotional events and community image-building, among other activities, all directed toward specific strategic goals and revolving around a central theme. Ketchum's Los Angeles offices would provide the direct link with the leadership of this community.
 Once the plan is devised, it will be submitted to Mayor Richard Riordan, the City Council and the county supervisors. Alvarez expects and hopes they will welcome the recommendations and apply the necessary resources and influence toward implementing them. He was scheduled to speak with city officials about his offer Thursday afternoon.
 "Our mission would not be community development," Alvarez said. "We would not try to overlap RLA. Our mission would be to take a fresh look at L.A. and offer a strategic approach for strengthening its image."
 The veteran image-maker was introduced to the crowd by Willard Carr, partner in Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, one of the nation's oldest and largest law firms. Alvarez dramatized his speech, "After the Fall: A New Image for the City of Angels," with a local touch through an homage to Raymond Chandler, comparing the city to "Angel," a composite of the glamorous, tough women in Chandler's famous Los Angeles tales.
 In "Angel's" words, "Last year, everything seemed to fall apart. People -- my people -- burned and looted and attacked one another. The whole world watched as 53 people died and half a billion dollars worth of property was destroyed.
 "Since then, I don't know who to trust. I don't want to see the news anymore. All I see are stories about how I've lost hope, lost control. How everything I've built is collapsing. People who've never seen me feel free to criticize. They don't want to understand me. They just attack me. I deserve better than that. I want my reputation back."
 As Alvarez told the Town Hall crowd, "The City of Angels has, in many eyes, fallen from grace. As a result, many Angelenos feel like our allegorical heroine: defensive, betrayed, distrustful, angry. At the same time, there is the lingering fear that what others are saying just may be true.
 "Sounds like the perfect time for some major image and confidence building. I'm not referring to a cosmetic change, either," Alvarez said. "It would seem we are leading up to a big dose of advice here. You've gotten plenty of advice from visitors, along with criticism and you may be weary of both. But I'm not here as a visitor or an outside pundit; my company has a direct stake in the future of this community."
 He pointed out that Ketchum Directory Advertising is headquartered here, and that Ketchum's public relations and advertising divisions in Los Angeles employ more than 100 leaders in their fields.
 Alvarez noted that Ketchum is a leading agency "in great part because of our association with Los Angeles. We've been here for many years, and we love the region. We are part of the community, and we know it deserves only the best."
 He pointed out that other cities have suffered recessions, crime and drugs. In his words, what matters is the response to adversity and the ability to turn what appear to be weaknesses into strengths.
 "We cannot deny that more than 100,000 jobs have been lost in defense and aerospace," in Los Angeles, Alvarez said. "But we can put these facts into a more meaningful context and grasp the lessons that recent history has taught us. The first lesson is that L.A. can no longer automatically conjure up the image of lotus land. People will think bad thoughts about L.A. unless they are encouraged to think good ones.
 "The second lesson is that Los Angeles has to see the virtue in its vices. In many respects, this can be the model community for that New World Order we've heard about. L.A.'s enormous diversity -- it is the largest Hispanic market and also the largest Asian/Pacific Islander market in the nation -- afford unprecedented opportunity for everyone to have personal contact with a host of other cultures.
 "The third lesson is that Los Angeles needs to play to its strengths," Alvarez said. "It is an international trading center with enormous power. If the five counties were a separate country, they would rank tenth among the developed nations of the world in gross output, just behind the PRC and ahead of Australia, Sweden and Switzerland. If the region were a separate state, it would rank third in manufacturing, after California and New York.
 "The lessons are clear: Los Angeles has to speak loudly to be heard. And it has a great deal to say," Alvarez said. "But what exactly should the message be? How can it be said most effectively to the people who need to hear it? Such communication won't happen by chance. It must be planned carefully and executed with thoroughness, discipline and, most importantly, commitment.
 "This is quite a challenge," Alvarez admitted. "But because Los Angeles means so much to the future of our entire nation, because it represents the summit of the American dream, I would like to take up my own challenge.
 "Generations of people from around the globe have fought to make it here so they could build new lives," he said. "Mexicans, Pakistanis, Salvadorans, Koreans -- not to mention Pennsylvanians, New Yorkers and Texans -- all have been drawn to the promise that Los Angeles holds. That promise remains alive, and that attraction remains irresistible. The result has been a grand and noble civic experiment -- perhaps the most exciting experiment in history. We at Ketchum are willing to do our part to make it work.
 "L.A.'s success will be an achievement for all the world to envy and to emulate. Of course, that's nothing new for the City of Angels," Alvarez concluded.
 -0- 7/15/93
 /CONTACT: Beth Hill of Braun Ketchum PR, 310-444-1309/

CO: Ketchum Communications ST: California IN: ADV SU:

MF-BP -- LA037 -- 2260 07/15/93 18:15 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jul 15, 1993

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