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Mark Estes, ABC – IABC Phoenix Member Spotlight

November 8, 2021

Arizona native Mark Estes, ABC, spent the better part of five decades (yes, you read that right) in journalism, public relations and corporate communications. That includes working for daily and community weekly newspapers, editing a sports magazine, supporting a 501(c)(3) medical foundation, and hitting the campaign trail with candidates for U.S. Senate and the City of Tucson.

A big chunk of his career was with SRP, covering power, water, environmental, telecommunication and employee issues. Besides kilowatts and canals, Estes wrote features for educational and business audiences, including interviews with Edward James Olmos and Grant Woods. Along the way he’s garnered more than 40 awards for writing, editing and publication management.

Estes became involved with IABC in 1982 “because my SRP boss was the local chapter president and I needed to learn more about my craft,” he said. Estes was accredited by IABC in 1990 and has served in various capacities on chapter and regional boards. Highlights include several chapter management awards and IABC Phoenix’s President’s Award.

Estes was on IABC’s Accreditation Council and was honored with the Rae Hamlin Award for his work on the IABC-Shanghai Public Relations Association accreditation project from 2007-2013. He also was chairman of IABC’s Ethics Committee.

More recently, he’s been judging IABC quill entries at all levels. Estes has been on the Gold Quill Blue Ribbon panel as judge and coordinator, in addition to judging quills for local and regional competitions. He is also on the Southern Region board serving as chapter liaison for Phoenix, Austin and Brazos Valley chapters.

Three questions for Mark

You have your own late night talk show, who do you invite as your first guest?

Cormac McCarthy. We’d talk about how he got his ideas, his writing process, and why he generally prefers the company of scientists instead of other writers …

What was the worst job you ever had?

Let’s go instead with most offbeat job—in high school, I operated kiddie rides at an amusement park.

If you could live anywhere in the world for a year, where would it be?

London. I’m mostly UK on my dad’s side of the family — I get a special twinge when I see the Union Jack. Plus, I love soccer, having coached travelling youth teams for about 10 years. I’d see as many Premier League matches as possible.

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