HOLLYWOOD, CA (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — A name long associated with entertainment publicity firms, Lee Solters, will, after 60+ years, be retired from the work-a-day world of show business.
In deference to the late PR guru's wishes, Solters' longtime partner, Jerry Digney, is changing the name of Solters & Digney, one of the industry's last remaining independent pr firms, to Digney & Company Public Relations. Joining Digney and adding muscle to its talent ranks are the new Executive Vice-President, Marcia Newberger, public relations head of the Griffin Group of Companies and Merv Griffin Entertainment for the past six years, and Arlene Winnick, a noted publicity executive in the travel and tourism industries.
"We each bring decades of publicity experience to the table," says Digney, personal publicist himself to a host of icons, from Ray Charles to B.B. King to Bob Newhart and Madame Tussauds Wax Museums. "We've collaborated in the past so this is a natural transition."
Since its formation, Solters & Digney has helped clients, such as Concord Records, win eight Grammy Awards for "Genius Loves Company," got the late Pope named an honorary Harlem Globetrotter and partook of the TV wedding of the decade, "Trista and Ryan," on ABC TV.
Until his death in May, 2009, Solters was known for his representation of luminaries such as Barbra Streisand, Frank Sinatra and Michael Jackson. He had various partnerships over the years, before inviting Jerry Digney to rejoin him 11 years ago. Digney, a native Bostonian, first worked for him in New York 36 years ago and then served as vice President of Solters/Roskin/Friedman in Los Angeles. During those years, Digney was director of public relations for Fred Entertainment (producer-owner of Ringling Bros.-Barnum & Bailey Circus) and partnered with fellow executive Newberger on such projects as the launch of Vittel mineral water in the United States, the launch of Regent Air (later MGM Grand Air) and the re-opening of the Pasadena Playhouse.
Prior to joining Merv Griffin in-house, Newberger was executive vice president of Warren Cowan & Associates, Senior Vice President of Rogers & Cowan, Inc., and Vice President of Solters/Roskin/Friedman. Equally adept in the corporate, nonprofit, and entertainment arenas, Newberger has handled theatrical film and television campaigns, hospitality accounts in the U.S., Ireland and Mexico, and the MGM Grand's FX show starring Michael Crawford in Las Vegas. She has represented myriad personalities including Hollywood legend Kirk Douglas, the producing team of Merchant-Ivory, best-selling author Barbara Taylor Bradford, and such stars as Anthony Andrews, Peter Weller and Anthony Hopkins. She also worked closely with the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fund on American fundraising events and has served as public relations consultant to the Young Musicians Foundation for the past decade.
Arlene Winnick, who will head up the agency's travel and tourism efforts, has more than 25 years of public relations, and special events experience on behalf of Raffles L'Ermitage Beverly Hills, BeautifulPlaces, Le Meridien Beverly Hills (now the SLS hotel), RanchWeb, Paradisio de la Bonita, Ceiba del Mar and Pacifica Holistic Resort and Spa (Mexico), Wyndam Bel Age (now The London West Hollywood), Madison and Mulholland (luxury events and celebrity gifting), Lake Arrowhead Resort + Spa, Johnnie Walker and Westlake Village Inn, among others.
"We are changing the name but not the focus of the firm," Digney emphasizes. "We will still do business at the Hollywood and Vine address, retain our longtime NY and DC affiliates, and continue to service clients with personal and effective commitment to their goals." –by CelebrityAccess Staff Writers