Public relations is a set of long-term strategies and activities – strategies and activities that must be constantly updated based on benchmarking and changes in the marketplace. 

PR strategies almost always are unsuccessful if developed and pursued in response to a short-term event or crisis.  Instead, successful PR programs are developed and conducted over a mid- to long-term period, during which companies or organizations can establish stable, open and trusted relationships with opinion-leaders and policymakers during "normal" times, as well as during "crises."

Executives who think about PR strategically and include it in the budget at the front end, have greater success and can avoid getting lost in the crowd.

Meet the Expert

About Cathie

  • 30 years of successful experience in public relations, public affairs, media relations, issue management, event management, women marketing strategies and non-profit development strategies.
  • Media Strategist for numerous clients resulting in feature stories in New YorkTimes,, ABC World News, CBS Morning Show, San Francisco Chronicle, Washington Post and numerous other digital channels.
  • Senior management of the California Governor’s Conference for Women for three California Governors, a $4 million one-day event for 14,000 women.
  • Senior management for three Governors’ Global Climate Summits, for world leaders from six continents.
  • Event Producer for the California Plug-In Electric Vehicle (PEV) Collaborative featuring Governor Jerry Brown and 40 Fortune 500 companies, including 8 car companies.


President • The CBW Group
2005 — Present
  • The CBW Group, Inc. is a strategic communications agency with a track record of effective public relations campaigns working with high-profile clients to create, sustain or enhance their public relations objectives. 
  • Recent clients include creating/producing a highly successful media event for the California Plug-In Electric Vehicle (PEV) Collaborative featuring Governor Jerry Brown, former Secretary of State George Shultz, winemaker/film maker Francis Ford Coppola, 8 car manufacturers and 25 corporate executives (
  • Media Liaison for the San Francisco-based Koret Foundation, a private philanthropic organization
  • Media Strategist for the launch of Jane McGonigal's social on-line game SuperBetter
Director • The Women's Conference
1997 — 2007
  • Conference Director and Director of Sponsorship & Marketing Partnerships for California Governors Pete Wilson, Gray Davis and Arnold Schwarzenegger
  • The Women's Conference (originally the CA Governor and First Lady's Conference on Women) is a non-profit, non-partisan, public interest forum for women small business owners. 
  • Part of team which grew the conference from 1,500 to 14,000 in 2007 - The Women's Conference, has become the largest one-day conference for women in the nation
Director • Public Strategies, Inc.
1998 — 2004
  • Director of the San Francisco office
  • Public Strategies, Inc. (a subsidiary of WPP Group plc) operates as a public affairs company. The company’s activities involve managing campaigns for corporate clients.
  • Managed five special events and sponsor relations for Governor Schwarzenegger’s trip to UN COP 15 held in Copenhagen.
Director, Public Affairs • Burson-Marsteller
1995 — 1997
  • For the San Francisco office of this global public relations and communications firm
Director • U.S. Senator Pete Wilson
1989 — 1993
  • Director, Northern California for the US Senate for Pete Wilson, 1989-1991
  • Director of Bay Area Office, Office of the Governor Pete Wilson, 1991-1993
Deputy Assistant Administrator for Public Affairs • U.S. Agency for International Development
1983 — 1987
  • Second-in-command for the USAID's Public Affairs, Press and Communications operation.
  • Ran the White House Liaison Office for the Agency, in cooperation with the State Department.


The George Washington University
BA, Political Science, 1977


  • Board Member, Marin General Hospital Foundation (2010 - Present)
  • Board Member, San Domenico School (2010 - Present)
  • Chair, California Medical Assistance Commission (2004-2008)


  • Panelist for The White House Project - Why Women Matter: Lessons About Women’s Political Leadership from Home and Abroad, March 6, 2003 (Cathie represented The Lincoln Club of Northern California)
Packages with Cathie starting from $500

Your Expert Package Includes:

Best Practices

Access to ALL Best Practices authored by TrustedPeer Expert Cathie Bennett Warner on this topic.

Pre-Meeting Discovery Process

Review and analysis of your issue with pre-meeting discovery questions by Cathie, followed by a 30- or 60-minute one-on-one call. Sample

One+-on-One Call

Your (+colleagues) meeting is directed and focused from the first minute.

Meeting Summary Report

After your call, Cathie completes a Meeting Summary Report to provide you with the session’s discussion topics, analysis, assessment and recommendations for next steps. Sample

Post-Meeting Engagement

After your meeting, continue your relationship with Cathie on your own, or with TrustedPeer’s support.