Cut to the Chase with Colleen Gallagher, OnWrd & UpWrd-Associations & Nonprofits

Cut to the Chase with Colleen Gallagher, OnWrd & UpWrd-Associations & Nonprofits

Colleen Lerro Gallagher is the President and CEO of OnWrd & UpWrd Marketing and Communications.

OnWrd & UpWrd is a diverse, women-owned marketing and communications firm focused on associations, nonprofits and corporate travel.

Some key highlights from our interview:

  • What does Colleen choose to kick things off: answering an RFP or eating a bucket of hot mayonnaise on a beach?
  • Colleen talks her background and how her brand/advocacy and travel work led to starting OnWrd & UpWrd.
  • Starting the firm during COVID.
  • OnWrd & UpWrd’s point of difference (Execution makes all the difference. )
  • How The Association 100 impacts the firm and what it is. (A bi-monthly newsletter featuring interviews, videos, and posts sent to 30K associations & nonprofits professionals.)
  • How Colleen and her team take advantage of conventions and conferences post-pandemic to drive new business and thought leadership.
  • Advice Colleen would give to other principals on attending conferences today and taking advantage of them for business development.
  • Her weekly Association Insights videos and how the process works. (Tightly focused on one question association-related, each usually 2-3 minutes.)
  • Advice to PR/agency principals and new business leaders on creating and keeping up with content.
  • And one piece of advice Colleen would give to a client/marketer to make their agency relationships more effective.

More about Colleen: She uses her expertise in communications and advocacy, media relations, and video and podcast production to help clients enhance their brand as an industry thought leader.

At OnWrd & UpWrd, she works with clients to secure national and local media coverage, develop strategic communications plans and implement video and digital strategies to set them apart from the competition.

She also serves on the Washington Women in Public Relations Board of Directors and the ASAE Communications Professionals Advisory Council.

Prior to joining OnWrd & UpWrd, Colleen was a Vice President at Curley Company, a DC-based brand and advocacy PR firm.

Before that, she was the Vice President of Communications & Research for the Global Business Travel Association where she led and implemented award-winning PR campaigns, launched a broadcast studio, and provided strategic input for the overall direction of the association.

Key URLs from our interview:

Colleen’s LI profile:

OnWrd & UpWrd site:

The Association 100 site:

Colleen’s post we discuss at the end of the interview on principles to apply for effective relationships with an agency

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