To provide maximum support to The American Legion, the Auxiliary must be well thought of in the
community. It must have a reputation for worthwhile community endeavors. This can
only be accomplished by telling the public about the work of the Auxiliary and its value to the
Public relations is simply a matter of establishing and maintaining goodwill. It is telling
the general public of the value of the American Legion Auxiliary to the community and the country.
Public Relations covers every kind of communication from personal contact in casual conversation,
to speakers , and to carefully prepared news releases for the media. It is not a complicated
job, but it is a vitally important one. It is a job for every member of the Auxiliary
as well as the Public Relations Committee.
There is only one way to build a reputation for worthwhile work, and that is by doing things well and making sure the public is aware of both the effort and the result. There are many ways to
build goodwill, and an active Unit will take advantage of each of them, appointing a committee
to make personal contact with newspapers, radio, and television stations, thus building a bridge
from the Unit to the media. There is interesting and important information that can be given
to the public about all the Auxiliary programs.
Local Broadcasting and Training
There are many programs devoted to the local community that can provide an avenue
for reaching the public. The local program schedule (published in the newspaper) can point
out opportunities. Many radio and television stations provide air time for public service
announcements. There are locally produced talk shows and sports on human interest stories.
Community access television and community calendars are other options.
The Unit chairman should meet with the staff of all available electronic and print media to
explain the Unit's objectives. Frankly asking for suggestions fro the station on how
these programs can be promoted can encourage interest and provide solutions. The Chairman
should offer to provide information on veteran's affairs, community service and other matters
to assist the media. The chairman can provide the opportunity and, at the same time,
build and excellent rapport with the media that will be helpful in the future. If she
asks for their professional assistance, they will usually be happy to help. Be sure
to thank them for their cooperation.
Your National and Department committees can offer suggestions and give assistance, but it is up
to the local chairman and members to put a Public Relations program into action.
You have a wonderful story to tell; the story of the American Legion Auxiliary. If you
use the right approach, know your program, and have established goodwill in the community and
good rapport with the media, you can bring invaluable support to all your program activities.