John is the Principal of JGPR, founding the public relations firm in 2013 to support media relations for police and fire departments during a crisis. Since then, the company has expanded to include school districts, public health agencies, public works, state/county agencies and whole municipal governments, as well as non-profits and business clients.
Early on, John identified that his services could free up command staff to focus on crisis operations, while John could handle press releases, social media and news media. Starting with one single client after a bank robbery in Arlington, Mass. in 2014, the company has grown to serve 300 plus municipal public relations clients across New England with offices on the South Shore and North Shore of Massachusetts, as well as a website division.
John has been nationally honored for his leadership of JGPR. In 2015 and 2016 he was named the National Public Affairs Professional of the Year by the public relations trade association PR News. The same organization also named him the 2016 National Crisis Manager of the Year, and later, one of the industry’s 50 National Game Changers of Public Relations in 2017. He also shared the 2015 Publicity Club of England Gold Bell Ringer Award for Public Affairs for the company’s work on law enforcement approaches to the nationwide opioid crisis.
John’s interest in public safety came at a young age—his father and brother serve as firefighters on the same department in Connecticut—and journalism and the media became a passion. In 2007 John completed a double bachelor’s degree in journalism and criminal justice with a concentration in policing studies at Northeastern University, and in 2010 he received a Master’s Degree from Emerson College.
John started at the Boston Globe in 2006 as a Northeastern co-op student and worked his way up to staff reporter where he primarily covered breaking news, working closely with public safety officials across New England. He left after 2011 to become Deputy Press Secretary to legendary Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino. In the Mayor’s Office, John helped handle everything from crisis management, to ribbon cuttings, to internal communications. He also worked with other city agencies and their press officers to pitch story ideas to the local media.
John teaches journalism and public relations at Northeastern University and Lasell University and has a knack for bringing out the best in people. He loves bringing teams together and likes to use his diverse interests to come up with new and interesting ways to help clients. John lives in Groveland and is married with two young daughters.