Fake News and What's Real: Separating Truth from Spin

Fredericksburg Public Relations Society


Seminar & Lunch

Thursday, March 26, 2020

11:30am - 1:00pm

Howell Branch, Meeting Room 2
Central Rappahannock Regional Library
806 Lyons Boulevard, Fredericksburg VA 22406


Registration is $20, cash/check/charge at the door.
RSVP by 3/24 to fredericksburgpr@gmail.com

Topic: Fake News and What's Real

Fake news can be intentional or accidental, viral or targeted, and incredibly hard to combat. Public relations experts are waging an ongoing battle against misinformation that can attack the innocent, undermine social and political movements, while making a lot of money for those in the business of creating and spreading misleading publicity.


Fredericksburg Public Relations Society
Fredericksburg Public Relations Society
Fredericksburg Public Relations Society

Dr. Anand Rao

Director of the Speaker Center and the Speaking Intensive Program at the University of Mary Washington


Dr. Anand Rao focuses on uses of new media, including social networking, blogging, and convergence media. He co-founded and serves as director of the new Communication and Digital Studies major at the university, which focuses on the digital and technological aspects of communication. In addition, Rao is serving as chair of UMW’s University Faculty Council, and is past president of the Faculty Senate of Virginia. He is former chair of the National Association of Communication Centers and past president of the American Association for the Rhetoric of Science and Technology.

Cathy Jett

Veteran reporter and editor with The Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star

In 2019, she received the Virginia Professional Communicators’ 2019 Communicator of Achievement Award, the highest honor bestowed by the state group to those members who have distinguished themselves within and beyond their profession. Jett began her career with The Free Lance-Star in 1976 and has written thousands of news and feature stories on diverse topics, including education, city government, and business. Formerly editor of the Style section, she is currently business editor, while also covering the Fredericksburg City Council and School Board. Jett has received numerous state and national journalism awards for her work and has given talks and served on panels on journalism topics. 

Griff Ashooh (left)

Adult Services Programmer at the Porter Branch 

Ashooh helped develop and implement the Civic Lab, a civic engagement program that aims to facilitate community discussions surrounding a range of social issues including news literacy and critically examining social media and viral news. Ashooh has a Master’s degree in International Development from American University’s School of International Service and has worked in Kenya, Rwanda, and the Appalachian region on a variety of community development projects.

Erin Creighton (right)

Adult Services Department Head for CRRL's Porter Branch

Creighton is a member of the American Library Association and the Public Library Association, and has worked in public, academic, and school libraries. She has also previously served on statewide library planning committees, and co-chaired the first Rhode Island Library Marketing Unconference in 2016. This year, Creighton will be presenting at the Public Library Association's annual conference on creating library How-To festivals.