Trisch Smith Keynote [National Assembly 2019 Recap]

Session: Friday Keynote Speaker

Presenter: Trisch Smith, Global Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer, Edelman

Recap: No matter where you look, diversity and inclusion is a topic of discussion in today’s society. From the MeToo movement to the #AerieReal campaign, the world is starting to follow a change of action that no longer represents the minority but the rising majority.

Trisch Smith shared with PRSSA members the importance of understanding our roles in Diversity and Inclusion by presenting the Four A’s model; acceptance, awareness, action and accountability. Smith said that we must accept and acknowledge that the world is different and that we often perform better when we have diversity at the table. Awareness is also crucial to diversity and inclusion because we must have awareness to understand our own competence so we can then better understand each other and to work together. Another critical step is to take action. If we see that something is wrong, it is vital that we act on it, address it and correct the wrongdoing. Lastly, having accountability is essential. Smith encourages us to hold others accountable, hold ourselves accountable and to be a supportive and vocal ally to those around us.


  • “Find your passion and it will propel you to your purpose.”
  • “A seat at the table is nothing if the person’s voice is not heard.”
  • “When you know better, you do better.”
  • “We must be consciously curious and consistently courageous.”

Nicole Tobias is a junior public relations major with a marketing minor. She serves as the President of Waynesburg University PRSSA, as well as an Assistant Firm Director, Account Executive and the Public Relations director of Waynesburg’s Nationally Affiliated Firm, Red Brick Communications. Nicole also serves as a Student Ambassador for the university’s Office of Admissions. Nicole currently works seasonally for the Pittsburgh Kids Foundation as their Social Media Manager.

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