BA 1989, Communication
Executive Vice President, Director of Media Relations, Weber Shandwick Worldwide, Chicago, IL
Michael Schiferl is executive vice president at Weber Shandwick, the world’s premiere global public relations agency. He provides senior counsel and leads media relations strategies for a large and diverse group of marquee companies, brands, and groups including Yum! Brands, Kraft Foods, Campbell Soup Company, the milk industry (Got Milk?), the Federal Reserve, and State Farm Insurance.
Schiferl has led many of the industry’s most widely recognized campaigns, including Yum! Brands, annual global effort to raise awareness, spur volunteerism, and raise funds in more than 115 countries to fight hunger. Benefitting the United Nations’ World Food Programme (WFP) and thousands of local food banks globally, Yum’s campaign is now the world’s largest public-private effort to combat hunger.
In this past year, Schiferl served as a chief strategist and agency liaison for Taco Bell’s widely-recognized crisis response to a lawsuit challenging the quality of the chain’s beef products. The brand’s “Thank You for Suing Us” response and eventual withdraw of the plaintiff’s lawsuit led experts from industry trades to the Wall Street Journal to praise the response as re-writing the rules of crisis PR in a socially-connected world.
Prior to joining Weber Shandwick, Schiferl was deputy general manager at Daniel J. Edelman, Inc. At Edelman, he led complex media outreach campaigns including the launch of Microsoft X-box, UPS’ global rebranding and Together RX, a first-of-its-kind discount drug program from a consortium of pharmaceutical companies.
Earlier in his career, Schiferl worked directly for health trade organizations including the American Dietetic Association (ADA) and American College of Sports Medicine. While at ADA, he wrote and produced “Eating Right” a daily food and nutrition segment for CBS Radio, and twice published health communication research in peer-reviewed scientific journals.
Schiferl is cited frequently in industry trades and popular outlets including The Wall Street Journal, New York Times, and People Magazine regarding media relations strategies. He’s presented throughout the U.S., as well as in England, France, Brazil, Argentina, and China and is a regular guest lecturer at Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. Schiferl returns to campus to speak with student groups and spoke in the GS 300 class during the fall 2010 semester, Schiferl serves on Purdue’s Discovery Park External Advisory Council.