Sarah Cirkiel is taking the public relations field by storm! This Austin, Texas native with New York family roots is the CEO and founder of Pitch Control Public Relations which is dedicated to helping emerging and creative companies garner exposure through non-traditional, innovative, and extremely effective means. Her experience and passion for the world of lifestyle, entertainment, fashion, and event planning has allowed her to be the driving voice behind public relations campaigns for some very impressive companies and brands. She has worked with Karmaloop, Sean John Boys, Boost Mobile, Izod, Lil’ Kim, MTV Movies Awards Style Suites, VH1 Save the Music, and Sidetrack Films among many others. She also spearheaded the successful reinvigoration and U.S. re-launch of PRO-Keds (PK) sneakers for the Stride Rite Corporation. Through a blend of press outreach, her efforts led to various product seeding and introducing the brand to Damon Dash who later acquired the PRO-Keds brand for Rocawear. She’s dedicated to turning Pitch Control Public Relations into a powerhouse agency and is not afraid to kick off the heels and run around in sneakers while doing so! Sarah Cirkiel reminds us that with an independent mentality, passion, and good old hard work, strong women can be at the top of any game! For all of her hard work and determination, M.I.S.S. salutes Miss Sarah Circkiel.
It wasn’t until managing the marketing and PR for her brother’s 5-Star Austin restaurant, Jean Luc’s Bistro that Sarah first caught the bug for public relations. She also worked in-house PR at Halina’s European Skincare Salon and was an Account Supervisor at 5WPR. She studied at New York’s FIT and believes that, combined with her work experience, guided her into the career path of public relations.
Sarah Cirkiel’s latest business venture is the ultra cool Buenas Olas Hotel. This is a new boutique hotel property that she is a part of in Isabela, Puerto Rico. It’s a prime surf sot for surfers of any level and its mission is to maintain an environment of good vibes. This amazing hotel is currently open, but in the process of renovations so they’re definitely bigger and better things to come from Sarah Cirkiel!
Sarah Cirkiel spends some Q & A time with M.I.S.S.:
M.I.S.S.: What woman, besides your mom or grandmother, do you find inspirational?
A lot of women inspire me but not mentioning my mother or both my grandmothers make it tough. My Mom has her own real estate firm with 26 agents, one Grandma worked at the Pentagon during WWII & the other Grandmother wrote poetry and made significant civic changes in the community. There have also been quite a few men in my life that inspire me. Beyond that I’d say that the former governor of Texas, Ann Richards. This woman was an amazing leader and had a lot of guts in a male dominated southern state. My closest girlfriends spread out between NYC, ATX and LA round out the list.
M.I.S.S.: How did you get your start?
(My New York start…) A girlfriend of mine suggested that I work as an assistant for the newly re-launched PRO-Keds sneaker brand. The PR director moved from London to help re-launch the brand in the U.S. shortly before I decided to move back from Austin. While here apartment hunting we were scheduled to meet, and unfortunately due to computer issues weren’t able to connect. My last night in NYC, we ended up running into each other at Max Fish officially met, played pool all night and voila. Next thing you know, I’m getting laced with kicks and flown to MAGIC two weeks later from Austin. I always thought my first time in Las Vegas I’d be in heels..little did I know I’d be rockin’ sneakers everyday. The rest is history!
M.I.S.S.: What’s your favorite project that you’ve worked on?
I’ve worked on so many amazing projects and feel that here at Pitch Control we make it a point to be a part of unique and different campaigns. With one of our clients specifically, Karmaloop, we’ve been involved in some really cool initiatives. Some including Shepard Fairey’s 20th anniversary retrospective at the Institute of Contemporary Art to their partnership and fashion show with the Boston Ballet to name a few.
On a personal level, a project that my family and I started a number of years ago during the holiday season. We make a couple of hundred bags of lunches/care packages and hand them out around Austin to the underprivileged and homeless.
M.I.S.S.: Who would you like to work with in the future?
That’s hard because there are so many talented people out there to want to work with. I also look forward to continue building with my current network. If I were to narrow this list down to only one and keep it strictly in fashion, it would have to be Levis – the all American classic.
M.I.S.S.: What part of representing clients/running a PR company is the most challenging and do you dislike the most?
Collecting payment and seeing companies that have incredible potential but no funding to stay in business.
M.I.S.S.: Any advice for ladies who are just starting out in a career path similar to yours?
Advice across the board – Work hard, be honest and don’t ever give up. You can’t have good without bad so sometimes you’ll fall before you see the light.
- She’s Got Sole: Keds x Happy Socks Champion Collaboration
- Pro-Keds 60th Anniversary Royal Collection
- PRO-Keds Goes Back To Basics
- Women Making History: Sarah Morrison
- Women Making History: Margaret Sanger