Jaclyn Kessel, Managing Director of 617MediaGroup, is a veteran public relations strategist with more than 15 years’ experience designing and driving some of the most impactful progressive communications campaigns in the country for major labor unions, advocacy organizations, mission-driven institutions, and political campaigns.

Kessel spent more than a decade at a high-profile New York PR agency, where she helped the organization grow from a small three-person start-up to a nationally recognized firm, advising major clients including New York’s Fight for $15, Freelancers Union, MillionTreesNYC, #GivingTuesday, NOW-NYC, Children’s Defense Fund, Communications Workers of America (CWA), and the campaign to keep Walmart out of NYC.

She was selected one of City and State’s 40 Under 40 Rising Stars for her work amplifying global social movements, successfully challenging Fortune 500 companies, and winning real results for everyday families.

At 617MediaGroup, Jackie is proud to advise social justice and workers’ rights champions, and to guide organizational and staff growth to ensure further victories and quality results in support of her clients’ missions.

Jackie started her career working on political campaigns, electing progressive democrats and helping the NYS DSCC win 4 seats, its largest one-year pick-up in 50 years.

She also served in the ARMY Reserve Officers’ Training Corps.

Key Highlights

  • Directed communications strategy for the historic Fight for $15, the sweeping national movement to raise wages across the fast food industry, which has already resulted in life-changing raises for 22 million Americans, and was selected The New York Observer’s Media Campaign of the Year.
  • Developed the winning campaign strategy for Walmart Free NYC in its successful underdog effort to prevent the world’s largest retailer from opening its first store in New York City.
  • Partnered with the Communications Workers of America (CWA) to stop an anti-worker, anti-consumer scheme by the powerful telecom industry and the business-backed American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) to permanently de-regulate telephone service.
  • Directed communications strategy for Sheet Metal Workers Local 17 during its 12-day strike, helping to win a fair contract with family-sustaining wages and benefits for 1,500 hardworking men and women through public interest messaging, advertising, and earned media.
  • Partnered with Freelancers Union to help pass first-of-its-kind legislation protecting 3 million independent workers from wage theft.


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