Senior PR Executive at Impact Porter Novelli
Rayna hails from the United States. She joined Impact Porter Novelli in 2021 and is responsible for leading day-to-day media and influencer relations, content creation, and project management. She’s known for her creativity, strategic thinking, and passion for delivering exceptional results for her clients.
Having lived in the UAE for over three years, Rayna has fallen in love with the vibrant culture and unique lifestyle that the region offers. She holds a bachelor of arts in strategic, legal, and management communications from Howard University in Washington DC, and uses her skills to help her clients effectively communicate their messages to their audiences.
When she’s not busy client servicing, Rayna loves to travel the world and immerse herself in different cultures. She’s always on the lookout for new adventures and experiences, whether it’s trying new foods or exploring off-the-beaten-path destinations.
Why did you choose this career path?
PR chose me. I was actually on track for a degree in mathematics with the intent of becoming a professor when I got an opportunity to explore PR through an internship and fell in love. I realized I could solve real-world problems through strategic communications and never looked back.
How did you land this job?
Hard work and a lot of patience. I moved to Dubai in 2019, with little knowledge of the regional industry landscape. I started from scratch and made the right connections, which landed me the opportunity to work with a great team and amazing clients.
How do you compare your work life vs what you imagined it would be?
I thought PR was glamorous, but I’ve discovered there’s more going on than what meets the eye. Behind every Instagrammable moment or news-worthy headline, there is blood, sweat, and sometimes tears – but it’s all worth it.
What do you wish you had been told before you started working?
There is never a dull moment in PR. It’s a fast-paced industry and there is always something new on the rise. Whether it is a crisis or an incoming client brief, the job requires a high level of agility to keep everything under control.
What is the best thing someone could tell you about your work?
That it has inspired them. I don’t think there is a better compliment.
What is the worst thing someone could tell you about your work?
That it is easy. Maybe I’ve been indoctrinated by the industry, but I believe that PR professionals are magical. We are often tasked to make the impossible possible and often pull it off without a hitch.
What’s the most valuable lesson you have learned at work so far?
Contrary to popular belief, a no isn’t always a bad thing. In this industry, you must learn how to take no for an answer and then use it to find a yes.
Who’s your role model?
There are many amazing women who I look up to – my grandmother, my mother, and my sister. They inspire me through who they are: resilient, hardworking, loving women. Whenever I face a challenge or feel like giving up, I think of them and draw strength from their example.
If not this, what would you be doing?
If it wasn’t PR, I would be a music producer. Music has always been healing to me and I like to think I have a pretty good ear for a good beat.
What do you see yourself doing in 10 years?
Making the world a better place. I don’t know what the future holds for me, but I want to be positioned to pass down knowledge, pour it into others, create opportunities, and open doors.
The 30 Under 30 ranking was first published in Communicate's Q1 2023 print issue.