Jen Eyer – a Senior Vice President – has been named Partner at Vanguard Public Affairs, a Lansing-based strategic communications and public relations firm, officials announced today.
“Over the past three years, I have watched Jen Eyer grow into a well-rounded public relations and strategic communications professional, and I’m thrilled about this development,” said TJ Bucholz, Vanguard Public Affairs President and Managing Partner. “I trust and rely upon her regularly for perspective and guidance as we continue to grow our business into a leader in Michigan and beyond. She’s formidable, intelligent, works tirelessly to treat current and prospective clients with integrity and respect, and is motivated by our company’s strategic vision – all of the traits I’m looking for as we navigate the business world together.”
Eyer has an equity stake in Vanguard Public Affairs, but company officials did not disclose further details. Eyer’s partnership with Vanguard begins officially on Jan. 2, 2019.
Vanguard Public Affairs, founded by Bucholz in 2013 as a one-person communications shop, has grown to an integrated strategic communications firm with 12 staff members in less than five years. Based two blocks from the State Capitol, Vanguard has worked with clients in the private, public, and non-profit sectors since its inception. This year, the company expects to surpass $1 million in annual revenue as an organization.
As an integral member of the company, Eyer brought communications and media relationships expertise to the table, quickly adding the ability to manage client service as well as developing the acumen to bring new clients to Vanguard.
“I joined Vanguard because I could see that TJ was creating something special here. In that time, TJ has given me the tools and mentoring I needed not only to transition from journalism to PR, but to learn how to build the business,” Eyer said. “With TJ and the team at Vanguard, I’ve been able to pursue helping people and organizations I believe in. I’m so proud to be a partner in this firm, and I look forward to our continued growth together.”
Eyer, a Vice President at Vanguard since 2016, has lent significant media relations expertise to a wide array of political, labor, and corporate clients, spearheading media relations for former Michigan Democratic Party Chair Lon Johnson’s 2016 run for Congress in the First District, helped to launch Governor-Elect Gretchen Whitmer’s successful campaign for office, and was instrumental in the election of Congressman-Elect Andy Levin in Michigan’s 9th District.
Eyer, 44, grew up in the greater Lansing area and is a graduate of Grand Ledge High School. She went on to study at the University of Michigan and Michigan State University, graduating from the MSU School of Journalism in 1997. Fluent in French, Eyer also has studied at the Alliance Francaise in Paris, France and worked for Agence France-Presse, the world’s oldest news agency also headquartered in Paris.
Eyer lives in Ann Arbor with her two children, Belle, 15, and Wesley, 12.
Well known in the media community, Eyer has more than 20 years of journalism and communications experience in Michigan, including serving as the opinion-editorial voice of the MLive media company and winning the APME award for best editorial writer in the state two years in a row.
Eyer has been working in digital news media since its inception in the 1990s. Starting in 2000, she held a variety of leadership positions with MLive, and from 2010 to 2016 served as director of engagement — first for AnnArbor.com, then for MLive Media Group — overseeing the company’s editorial board, social media, and reader engagement strategies.
Vanguard is a full-service public affairs firm, specializing in strategic communications, fundraising, media relations, message development, public affairs, crisis communications, and digital media. It currently represents 18 clients in three states ranging from education, financial services, energy, law firms, consumer products, transportation, and campaigns and elections.