View of a residential neighborhood from above

Westwood Tract Development

Challenge: When Union Presbyterian Seminary sold a parcel of land adjacent to its campus to a leading national multifamily developer, a vocal group of neighbors organized to block the development. Despite the need for new, quality housing in the community, this classic NIMBY effort played out in legal courts and the court of public opinion, threatening the development’s viability and Union’s long-standing reputation. 

Solution: Gray Ryan Communications developed a comprehensive crisis communications and reputation management response. A key campaign component was shifting the negative media coverage and better positioning this development as a significant win for the neighborhood and the larger city. The campaign included media relations, strategic messaging, community relations, social media monitoring and response, and neighborhood engagement.


Bottom Line: These proactive campaigns increased visibility for the firm, positioned key team members as leaders in the industry, and helped drive business development efforts. Gray Ryan Communications has secured over 35 high-value media placements in local news outlets and national trade publications, including 10 profiles and two cover story features. These placements have involved five studios covering a variety of industries, such as higher education, historic preservation, cultural institutions and museums, and hospitality.


95% reduction in negative sentiment


Positive news stories


Development approved and built

Ready to Grow?