Leona Long is the public information officer for the College of Rural and Community Development at the University of Fairbanks. Her work in rural Alaska has been honored with five Public Relations Society of America Alaska Chapter Aurora Awards and Awards of Excellence in the last two and half years. She designed and implemented UAF's first public relations effort for any of the five rural campuses.
To better connect with the rural communities she serves, Leona planned and executed a media relations campaign advocating for Alaska Native food security. She arranged statewide coverage for reality star and Native leader PJ Simon that showed the generosity of traditional culture and humanized one of Alaska's most controversial political issues. Working on behalf of the Allakaket Tribal Council, Leona arranged front-page and syndicated coverage for the July 2014 meeting discussing the proposed road to the Ambler Mining District. This volunteer campaign with a $12 budget placed third in public affairs in the 2015 Aurora Awards.
Leona has more than a decade of experience in public relations
and marketing communications. She was an account supervisor at Miller Geer & Associates (MGA), a Los Angeles area public relations agency, where she began her career as an intern. She has worked with clients in almost all facets of health care from hospitals and Medicare providers to public awareness campaigns for initiatives such as HIV/AIDS testing and organ and tissue donation.