Hello everyone, and happy new year.I wanted to say a big thank you for having me as MICA chair last year. I think we have all worked together to achieve a lot in a short space of time, despite frustrations with cancellations, pesky PRs and bureaucracy blights!I’m sure everyone has their own highlights, but I thought I’d list off a few key ones.

  1. Our first masterclass at Silverstone! What a triumph, with a bigger turnout than we had initially hoped for. Fantastic speakers, great location, engaged audience and even a few new members off the back of it. A brilliant first foray for MICA’s live events.
  2. Our evening with Octane columnist and Design Museum founding CEO Stephen Bayley. I was absolutely gutted to miss this one, and heard fantastic things about the atmosphere, calibre of the attendees and the engaging discussion. I think the evening drinks vibe clearly suited the London crowd.
  3. The new website is already looking fantastic, and I think will be a huge boost to our organisation both in terms of admin and events. It looks so professional and will show our members that we mean business. Thank you to all who made it possible, from introductions to content. I’m excited to see where it takes us.
  4. The Guild award is a fantastic addition to our calendar, and really shows that we are aligned with the best of the best in both PR and journalism. Our winner Elizabeth is clearly a woman on the rise.
  5. A brilliant part of the prize for Elizabeth is the mentoring with one of our most senior members. This is an element of MICA I am particularly passionate about and am keen to build in 2023.
  6. Freeing ourselves (perhaps a bit strong!) from the PRCA admin side of things is already proving to be the right decision. Big thanks to the PRCA for helping us get going quickly when we started, it really helped, and for the continuing affiliation that gives MICA members access to many excellent training courses, some of which are free to MICA members.

Mostly I would like to thank you all for your friendship, dedication, and enthusiasm over the year. MICA is still in its early days and I know we all have incredibly busy lives around which to try and fit things. We have had weddings, house moves, job moves, exotic holidays, product launches, promotions, some brilliant new cars and a lot of good chat. I think 2023 will be a cracking year for MICA, and I look forward to seeing who steps in to the chair’s shoes later this year.

Poppy McKenzie Smith

Chair, MICA