It hardly seems accurate to introduce Burson-Marsteller’s Mike Lake as a guest speaker in tonight’s Dallas Communication Leaders class. The “communication leader” part is abundantly true, as Lake has 25 years of extensive national political experience, and private/public sector public relations expertise in developing public policy programs, media campaigns, grassroots operations, marketing programs, advocacy advertising campaigns and crisis communications strategies. As head of Burson’s Southwest operations and Chair of the U.S. Public Affairs Practice, Lake is credited with building the Dallas office, and helping make it the third largest agency in this market. He’s a member of the Dallas Press Club, Texas Association of Business, Dallas Friday Group, PRSA and the National Register's "Who's Who" in Executives and Professionals.
No doubt he has earned top ranking among communication professionals. But it’s the “guest speaker” part that doesn’t ring true. Lake is hardly a guest in the halls of SMU’s Communication Studies division. Rather, he has become a highly regarded fixture, having spoken in dozens of communication classes over the years, serving on and/or presiding over the CCPA Advisory Board, opening his office to countless communication interns, and tirelessly mentoring our students.
And who better than Mike Lake to help students discern what type of communications work to pursue in this competitive and vast field? He’s done it all. Lake has directed international, national, state and local communications programs for most business sectors, from airline and telecommunications to education and agriculture. He has handled a raft of complicated crisis communications issues including the crisis in the beef industry surrounding mad cow disease in the U.S.
We are privileged to welcome Mike Lake, more than a guest speaker.