Laurenti Named PR Director

Public Relations

Laurenti Named PR Director

Laurenti Named PR Director 768 384 Champions Empowering Champions

Laurenti Named PR Director of Champions Empowering Champions

Lynn Laurenti has joined Champions Empowering Champions, a new organization based at Florida Atlantic University, as director of public relations, a volunteer position.

Laurenti is a South Florida public relations veteran, having worked in both the private and public sectors for more than three decades. She retired from FAU in 2016 after serving the university for 25 years in a number of capacities, including director of media relations.

Prior to joining FAU, she was a partner in Bitner, Laurenti and Pierson, a leading Fort Lauderdale public relations firm. Over a period of 10 years, she represented a wide variety of clients including medical and legal practices, real estate developers, restaurants, banks, government entities and community-based non-profit organizations. In 2003 she was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award by the South Florida chapter of Women in Communications.

“I am delighted to contribute my talent and experience to the Champions Empowering Champions initiative, which has the mission of providing a support network to incoming FAU students who have experienced foster care or homelessness,” Laurenti said.

The new organization is led by Dr. Kimberly Dunn of FAU’s distinguished accounting faculty. She recently made a presentation to the panel judging applicants for admission to the seventh entrepreneurial class hosted by FAU Tech Runway, winning a $15,000 cash award and a year’s worth of hands-on assistance. Tech Runway is a public-private partnership that serves as a hub to accelerate the development of start-up enterprises.

Under current Florida law, most young people in foster care age out of the state-supported system at 21. This presents them with the daunting challenge of developing coping skills overnight with little or no guidance from caring adults. National statistics show that 20 percent of those who age out of foster care become instantly homeless and fewer than three percent earn a college degree by age 25.

Champions Empowering Champions is designed to reach out to this population through programming that includes creating a person-to-person support network, presenting workshops to remedy deficiencies in academic and life skills, providing financial assistance to help meet college and living expenses, and offering participants the opportunity to “pay it forward” through community service projects that benefit younger foster children. The program is expected to get under way at FAU this fall.

The organization’s name brings together four kinds of “champions”: Student Champions, who have experienced foster care or homelessness with courage and resilience; Volunteer Champions, who assist the students through mentoring and other kinds of help; Business Champions, who provide internships and job opportunities for graduating students; and Donor Champions, who support the program through monetary gifts.

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