Media and Public Relations Policies and Procedures

Title:  Media Policy

Last updated:  July 28, 2016
Source:  Executive Director
Primary Location:  Communications and Press, Policies


NACCHO wants to provide clear and accurate information to the news media, and wants to help employees and board members have successful interactions when they represent NACCHO in interviews with newspaper, magazine, Web, TV and radio journalists.  We also want to help employees and board members have op-eds and articles published in the mass media.  The goal of our dealings with the media is to educate the public to understand and appreciate the important work of the local health departments we represent, as well as of NACCHO itself.


NACCHO’s Marketing and Communications (Marcomm) team exists to help our employees and members achieve the above media relations goal, and is a useful resource for communicating with the media. The team can obtain background information from journalists about the scope and venue of interviews, along with information about the news organizations and journalists conducting interviews, and about the subjects covered by interviews.  The team can also assist employees and board members in preparing their remarks for interviews.

To maximize the effectiveness of communications with the media, NACCHO has instituted this Media Policy, which is similar to policies at many nonprofits, government agencies and private sector businesses.


NACCHO employees should refer all media inquiries whenever possible to the Director of Media and Public Relations, Theresa Spinner at 202-783-5551 or to the email address 

Board members who will be conducting interviews as a NACCHO spokesperson should contact Theresa Spinner prior to accepting and conducting the interview.   The Executive Director will determine if the board member should speak on NACCHO’s behalf or if a more appropriate spokesperson or subject matter expert should be assigned.

NACCHO’s media policy applies to all NACCHO employees and board members giving interviews or writing for newspapers, magazines, TV and radio stations and networks, and websites that are aimed at general audiences, when the topic of the interviews or writing is related to the work of NACCHO or issues dealt with by NACCHO.


There will be times when it is not possible to contact the Director of Media and Public Relations, such as if an employee or board member at an event is approached by a journalist for an immediate interview.  However, if an employee or board member is interviewed by phone or at NACCHO, or has a planned interview at another location, a Marcomm staff member should join the interview whenever possible in person or by phone.


When interviewed as a representative of NACCHO, employees and board members should ask the journalists conducting the interviews to identify them as NACCHO staff or board members in any news stories or broadcasts resulting from the interviews.


In addition, employees or board members writing op-eds, other articles and letters to the editor for newspapers, magazines and general interest publications and websites on issues NACCHO deals with should work with the Marcomm team on the editing a placement of these pieces.


When board members are acting as spokespersons for their local health department or expressing their opinion as a local health department or subject matter expert, it is not necessary to involve the NACCHO Marcomm team.  However, the Marcomm team may be available to assist upon request.