Hillary Wright-Kaufman-35 Under 35

35 Under 35 Class of 2018-19
Hilary is one of 35 professionals, age 35 and under, who is part of the Class of 2018-19. These 35 individuals are emerging leaders who are making a difference in school public relations.

Hillary Wright-Kaufman
Washington County Schools
Springfield, Ky.


What does leadership mean to you? 
Leadership to me is being enthusiastic about your work, empowering employees and peers, and always being willing to get your hands dirty for the sake of getting the job done. 

What was the most fulfilling professional moment you have experienced? 
I’ve had many fulfilling moments, but seeing students’ faces light up when I walk into the room, and hearing them say, “There’s the camera lady!” and immediately seeing them get into position for a photo just makes my day. The fact that they enjoy getting their photo taken and are not dreading it makes it all worth it.

What are the most challenging and/or rewarding part about working in school PR? 
The most challenging part is that no day is ever the same. I like to plan my days, but there is a usually a wrench thrown into them with last minute requests and special projects that I have weave into the day and still meet deadlines on everything else.

What’s your favorite work app and personal app?
My favorite work app is Outlook, because I use it for obviously email, but also, the calendar part of it really helps me with reminders and deadlines. My personal app(s) are my social media app – Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, because I use them for work as well. Besides monitoring posts and comments for the district and each of the schools, social media is also the way I keep up with general news – in my city, state and across the country.

What book has inspired you professionally? 
I have a list of them: Basic Black, by Cathie Black, Lean In, by Sheryl Sandberg, The Career Code, by Hillary Kerr and Katherine Power.

How has NSPRA and your state chapter guided you along the way? 
When I first joined the Kentucky chapter of NSPRA – KYSPRA, I had just taken my job in school public relations and the conferences I attended helped me tremendously. Then I attended my first NSPRA seminar in 2016 in Chicago, and it was like nothing I’d ever been to before. To say I was enlightened is an understatement. I learn so much at NSPRA seminars and the contacts you gain from attending help as well. I was able to get a jump-start in my career in school public relations just by investing in these memberships!

What is a recent communications/media campaign you enjoyed – either one of your own or one you saw nationally?
Our back-to-school campaign really went well this year, and I think teachers and staff enjoyed it!

What emerging trends in school public relations get you excited? 
School district apps and videos are always emerging and changing and updating. It’s always exciting and inspiring to see what other districts, particularly, those who are around my size, are accomplishing!