5:00pm PT by Chris Gardner
Rogers & Cowan/PMK Chairman Cindi Berger to Deliver Ithaca College Commencement, Receive Honorary Degree
Cindi Berger has a big August ahead.
The chairman of international public relations and marketing firm R&C PMK will deliver a commencement address at the 125th graduation ceremony of Ithaca College where she will also be honored with an honorary Doctor of Letters degree. Environmentalist Bill McKibben is also set for an honorary degree during the same event. Ithaca's virtual ceremonies will be held Aug. 2-5.
Berger will deliver the main address, returning to where her earned a BA degree in politics from the School of Humanities and Sciences in 1983. After graduating, Berger started her entertainment career as a receptionist at PMK, rising through the ranks to serve as an assistant, account executive, vice president, managing director and, later, partner. In 2019, she played an instrumental role in PMK•BNC’s merger with Rogers & Cowan, bringing together Hollywood’s two largest public relations and entertainment marketing agencies.
During her long tenure at the firm, Berger has guided campaigns and careers for some of the biggest names in the various businesses including Robert Redford, Barbara Walters, Norah O’Donnell, Billie Jean King, Billy Crystal, Sharon Stone, Rosie O’Donnell, Sean Combs, DJ Khaled, and The Chicks. Additionally, she consults with Oprah Winfrey and her team on her book club and documentary series for Apple TV+.
Berger most recently returned to the Ithaca campus in 2016 to moderate a Women’s History Month panel discussion sponsored by the Roy H. Park School of Communications, an event that split focus on the underrepresentation of women while highlighting their accomplishments. Among other honors, Berger is a recipient of the New York Women in Communications Matrix Award and New York Women in Film & Television Muse Award, and she is the first publicist to ever be included in Variety’s prestigious Women’s Impact List.
She has been recognized as one of New York’s 50 Most Powerful Women by the New York Post, one of the Top 50 Women Who Run New York by Gotham magazine. In 2016, Berger, married with two children, was was feted by Adweek with its Working Mother of the Year Award. She is a member of the International Alliance of Theatrical State Employees Publicists Guild and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.