Laurie Fenlason Headshot

RW Jones Agency Strengthens Higher Education Board & Strategic Planning Practice with Addition of Laurie Fenlason; Fenlason Joins Group of Experts Advising Presidents, Boards & Other Higher Education Leaders in Navigating Critical Issues

The RW Jones Agency, a longtime national leader in strategic consulting for higher education with a focus on communications and engagement, announced that Laurie Fenlason is joining the agency as a senior counselor. Fenlason will join a team with deep expertise in working with boards, presidents and higher education leaders on critical issues surrounding governance, campus climate, change management, equity and ethos-based, long-range growth for colleges and universities.

Fenlason brings expertise to add even more strength to the strategic planning and leadership work for which the  RW Jones Agency is known. Over the past 25 years, Fenlason served in various senior leadership capacities at Smith College. Most recently, she served as vice president for strategic initiatives at Smith. Prior, she was the college’s vice president for college relations and public affairs. Earlier in her career, she spent time leading and working in communications at the University of Michigan, University of Pennsylvania and Hobart & William Smith Colleges.

“We’re thrilled to have someone with Laurie’s depth and rich expertise join the firm,” said Sean Rossall, CEO and managing partner of the RW Jones Agency. “The caliber of Laurie’s expertise in working with boards and campus leaders is unmatched.”

Fenlason joins the RW Jones Agency as the firm continues to experience consistent growth and demand for its work in strategic planning, change management and campus management. Led by Managing Partners Sean Rossall and Scott Willyerd, as well as President Maggy Ralbovsky and Senior Vice President Ashley Northington, the firm's strategic planning practice helps campus leaders look deeply at their institutional values and shape their communities in an institutionally-distinctive, ethos-centered model rooted in equity.

“I’ve been privileged to work with RW Jones for many years as a client,” Fenlason said. “The way they approach their work is distinctive in its thoughtful discernment of institutions’ needs and aspirations and deep knowledge of the higher education landscape. Like me, they think deeply about the role that leaders and their teams play in building meaningful academic and social cultures on our campuses.”

In her capacity with RW Jones, Fenlason will provide expertise on the intersection of the campus community, campus leadership and the relationship with the board of trustees. Her focus will include helping presidents, boards and other campus leaders build relationships and practices that create shared values and culture.

“I’ve had the privilege of knowing Laurie as an incisive, accomplished communications professional and strategic counselor,” said Maggy Ralbovsky, president of the RW Jones Agency. “I’ve seen how transformative her leadership has been, and I’m excited that we will have the opportunity to share her expertise with current and future clients.”

On September 16, Fenlason will provide counsel during a webinar on establishing trusted relationships between boards of trustees and campus leaders. She’ll be joined by RW Jones CEO Sean Rossall, as well as Council of Independent Colleges President and former Rhodes College President Marjorie Hass. Registration is free and available here.

RW Jones has served colleges and universities for more than 30 years. Launched by Richard W. “Dick” Jones in 1987 as Dick Jones Communications, the agency has grown from a provider of marketing and media-relations support into a full-service PR firm with more than 20 professionals. 

To learn more about the RW Jones Agency, visit


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