William E. Swanger III, MA, APR, Fellow PRSA
William Swanger is Senior Vice President for Corporate Communications and Public Relations with Diakon. He oversees all corporate communications including strategic communications planning and message development, crisis communication, and public relations, as well as publications and collateral materials, most advertising, media relations, website management and video production.
Before being named to his current position, Mr. Swanger was executive for communications with Tressler Lutheran Services, one of the two organizations that created Diakon in 2000. He joined Tressler as public information specialist in 1978 and was soon promoted to director of public information and, later, to executive. He also is a former newspaper editor and reporter.
A member of the Pennsylvania Public Relations Society and past president of the Central Pennsylvania chapter of the Public Relations Society of America, Mr. Swanger is nationally accredited in public relations. He has received national, regional, and local awards for public relations, publications, and writing, including multiple Keystone Awards, a dozen local and regional IABC awards (including “Best of Show”), more than a dozen national APEX awards including a Grand Award, a PANPHA public relations award, and several national Mature Media awards.
In 2019, he was elected to the Public Relations Society of America College of Fellows, an active, honorary organization composed of more than 350 senior practitioners and educators, each of whom, according to the PRSA website, “has left a significant footprint on the public relations profession. A rigorous peer review process has singled out these professionals to be among the ‘best of the best.’ Election to the College is considered the pinnacle of one’s professional career.”
Mr. Swanger earned a bachelor’s degree from Susquehanna University, Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania, from which he was graduated cum laude and received departmental honors in English literature. In late 2008, he received his master’s degree (focus in strategic communication) from the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Journalism, where he was named to Kappa Tau Alpha, the national honor society in journalism and mass communications. A freelance writer, he has sold articles to national publications, newspapers, and business journals and provided public relations consultation to the former National Association of Lutheran Ministries for the Aging. For the last 11 years, Mr. Swanger also has served on the adjunct faculty of Susquehanna University, teaching classes in public relations, crisis communication, public speaking and corporate communications writing.
Mr. Swanger works in Diakon’s ministry support office at 1022 N. Union St, Middletown, Pennsylvania, and can be reached by telephone at (717) 579-9913.