Meet Alum David Cotrone ’13, Director of Public Relations and Communications

Name: David Cotrone

Class Year: 2013

Title: Director of Public Relations and Communications

Organization Name: PRX

1. In one sentence, what does your job entail?

PR and communications is wide-ranging, but in a nutshell: I help to identify and achieve publicity opportunities through a mix of media relations and strategic communications. PRX is a nonprofit public media company specializing in podcasting and radio. The organization won the 2022 Pulitzer Prize for audio, and Fast Company named it one of the top 10 most innovative media companies. PRX works in partnership with an incredible array of content creators: The Moth, the Smithsonian, Radiotopia, Futuro Media, Religion of Sports, GBH in Boston, and many more.

2. What planned and unplanned events connected you to your industry and your first employer after Holy Cross? How did you learn/decide it was a good fit for you?  

I went to grad school in New York right after Holy Cross, in a creative field, thanks in part to a Beinecke Scholarship. Because I gained communication skills through liberal arts, I was a fit for an internship at a public relations firm in the city and working my way up from there. This allowed me to attend grad school and to work at the same time. Eventually, I would combine all my skills into the career I have now, in public media. At its best, public media reaches audiences through trust and human-centered stories. It’s also a rich service.

3. What were you involved in when you were on campus?

Alternate College Theater. I wasn’t any good at acting or anything like that, but I enjoyed the social aspect of it.

4. What was your major and how did it affect your career decisions?

My major was English with a focus in creative writing. My goal wasn’t to become a professional writer, but to work in a creative field or to bring creativity with me. As I now work in a field that values the power of narrative––both personal storytelling, stories rooted in journalism, and documentary––I haven’t strayed too far from that original goal.

5. What are one or two skills that you developed at Holy Cross that you use in your work?

Leveraging critical thinking and curiosity.

6. What advice do you have for students on campus today?

Take classes in as many different subjects as possible, including outside your comfort zone. Second: find mentors. Third: take full advantage of Kimball Dining Hall while you can. At the end of the day, there is perhaps no greater joy than being there when lunch turns over to dinner.