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  • Writer's pictureBen Finzel

Five Years Later: Thanks, Photos and the Playlist from our Fifth Anniversary Celebration

As I wrote in a post last week, I had no idea when I launched RENEWPR five years ago what the future would hold. It’s been an amazing – and fantastic – first five years. And the milestone is certainly worthy of celebration. After celebrating the firm’s first and second anniversaries with receptions, I had always planned to hold another one for our fifth anniversary.

I knew this celebration had to be even more special – it’s not every day that a small business reaches the five-year milestone (and it's a first for me). To start, I reached out to clients, former bosses, colleagues, partners and leaders who have inspired me and asked them to serve on a Honorary Host Committee for the celebration. To my delight, everyone I asked said yes. Thank you to each one of you for the role you’ve played in my career and the encouragement you’ve provided to me over the years: Brian Bond, Chris Kelley Cimko, Wesley Combs, Brad Crabtree, Lisa Fels Davitt, Ingrid Duran, Joe Fuld, Taylor Gross, Wendy Hagen, Katherine Hamilton, Henry Hubbard, Lisa Jacobson, David Leiter, Mary Lojacono, Chase Cormier Maggiano, Christine Middleton, Marcene Mitchell, Justin Nelson, Mayor Annise Parker, Catherine Pino, Dan Reicher, Marty Rendon, Thomas Sanchez, Deborah Sauri, Anthony Shop, Laura Taylor, Stacia Tipton, Kurt Waltzer, Scott Widmeyer and Bob Witeck.

And what a party it was! Thanks to our hosts (and maybe the lovely venue too?), we had record turnout: more than 125 people joined us in the Main Dining Room of The George Town Club for drinks and appetizers, photographs, music and lots of conversation (and yes, it was so loud that you couldn’t really hear the music playing - again!). It was a wonderful evening, made all the more special by the fabulous people from so many different parts of my career who joined us. In fact, we had so many fellow Edelman, FleishmanHillard and Widmeyer alumni that we hosted mini reunions for each firm at the party and marked the occasion with a series of group photos.

I’ve included a selection of those photos from the party below. For more, head on over to our new Instagram page next week to see a bigger collection of shots taken by our awesome photographer John Jack Gallagher of John Jack Photography (2019 winner of the Washington Blade’s Best of Gay DC in the Artist Category).

And if you’ve ever wondered what music to select for a fifth anniversary in

business party, here’s our playlist:

  • Lucky Man, Dave Koz

  • Seven Years of Good Luck, Joe Sample

  • Every Reason to Smile/Wings of Love, Al Jarreau (featuring Jeffrey Osborne)

  • Firework, Katy Perry

  • The Best Is Yet To Come, Chaka Khan & the London Symphony Orchestra

  • I Know This Town, Bette Midler

  • Everybody Says Don’t (From “Anyone Can Whistle”), Cleo Laine

  • I’m Still Here (From “Follies”), Cleo Laine

  • Ain’t No Stopping Us Now, Luther Vandross

  • New Attitude, Patti Labelle

  • You’ve Got a Friend, Carole King & James Taylor

  • Got to Be Real, Cheryl Lynn

  • The Long Way Around, Dixie Chicks

  • Proud, Heather Small

  • Strength, Courage & Wisdom, India.Arie

  • Just Do You, India.Arie

  • Lights and Virtues, Jackson Browne

  • Golden, Jill Scott

  • Prove Yourself, Joan Armatrading

  • Kind Words (And A Real Good Heart), Joan Armatrading

  • Big Time, Linda Eder

  • Things Can Only Get Better, Howard Jones

  • Golden Days, Matt Bianco featuring Basia

  • Stir it Up, Patti Labelle

  • A Change Would Do You Good, Sheryl Crow

  • Breakout, Swing Out Sister

  • The Best, Tina Turner

  • I Will Be, Wynonna Judd

  • Indian Summer, Chris Botti

Thanks to all of you who joined us as well as those of you who couldn’t be there in person but who have wished us well and joined in the celebration virtually. We appreciate your support, encouragement and friendship. Indeed, we wouldn't be here without it. As we wrap up our celebration of Common Sense, Connections and Colleagues, we celebrate YOU!

Ben Finzel

The DC-based RENEWPR team: Annette Larkin, Ben Finzel and Jayne Brady

Ben Finzel and Honorary Host Committee member Marcene Mitchell

Dean Scott, Ben Finzel and Honorary Host Committee member Brad Crabtree

Bob Perciasepe, Ben Finzel and Krista Cupp

Honorary Host Committee member Scott Widmeyer and Ben Finzel

Lee Beck, Justin Ong, Ben Finzel and Jessie Stolark

Ben Finzel and Chris Jones (both Texas Tech University graduates, hence the "Guns Up" salute

Ben Finzel and Pattie Yu

Sean Meloy, Reggie Greer and Ben Finzel

Honorary Host Committee member David Leiter, Honorary Host Committee member Katherine Hamilton and Jaime Steve

The Edelman mini reunion: Audrey Waters, Jere Sullivan, George-Ann Rosenberg, Eric Hoffman, Honorary Host Committee member Chris Kelley Cimko, Ben Finzel, Debbie Drucker, Susan Webb, Anika Jackson, Frank Kauffman

The FleishmanHillard mini reunion: Carmel Ferrer, Honorary Host Committee member Christine Middleton, Coleman Hutchins, Debbie Drucker, Anika Jackson, Nancy Payne, Annalisa Rosmarin Meyer, Sonia Osinloye, Ben Finzel, Honorary Host Committee member Mary Lojacono, Stacey Kerans, Lori Rivera, Laurie Ann Phillips, Carolyn Fearing, Ann Davison, Chris Lisi, Dan Horowitz, Anne Banner and Frank Kauffman (not pictured: Annette Larkin who also attended)

The Widmeyer mini reunion: Honorary Host Committee member Stacia Tipton, Sonia Osinloye, Armando Diaz, Mary Elizabeth Burke, Renee Rosenfeld, Ben Finzel, Nona Richardson, Elizabeth Curwen, Stacey Plotnick Finkel, Adam Shapiro and Honorary Host Committee member Scott Widmeyer (not pictured: Jim Luetkemeyer and Chris Messina-Boyer who also attended)

Thanks again to our fabulous Honorary Host Committee!



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