They don’t tell you what you want to hear.
They tell you what you need to hear.

About us

As award-winning political and investigative reporters, Chip Scutari and Dave Cieslak were in the trenches.

They know what journalists want. They capture the media’s attention with concise, compelling language – not over-bloated drivel.

With offices in Phoenix, Tucson and San Diego, the Scutari and Cieslak team excels in everything from crisis communications to media relations and communications coaching (a fancy term for media training).

The S&C team has been lauded by clients for candid, constructive honesty. They don’t tell you what you want to hear. They tell you what you need to hear.

Our other specialties include:

    • Public affairs; bi-partisan political advice
    • Reputation management
    • Media buying and planning
    • Copywriting
    • Event production and coordination

You want Yes Men and Women?

Go to another one of those national cookie-cutter agencies with people who wear nice suits but have never gotten their hands dirty. Chip, Dave and the team have the experience, knowledge, savvy and street smarts to handle any PR situation. It just so happens they’re sharp dressers, too.

Why Choose Us ?

    • Personal contacts and close relationships with influential reporters and political leaders.
    • Extensive experience and deep knowledge of the media industry.
    • 24/7 access to guidance and communications support.
    • Honest evaluations that lead to optimal results.
    • Extraordinary storytellers with even better smiles.

Chip Scutari

Chip Scutari is co-founder of Scutari and Cieslak Public Relations and managing partner of the firm’s Phoenix office.

Chip brings an authentic knowledge of politics and public policy, using his reporter’s instinct and nose for a good story to the worlds of public relations, crisis communications and media coaching. For 15 years – including several years covering the Arizona state Capitol – he worked on the journalistic frontlines covering Arizona’s most powerful politicians and influential business leaders.

National news outlets, like Fox News Channel, MSNBC, National Public Radio and The New York Times, frequently call Chip for his take on the news because of his strong connections to all sides of the political spectrum. He’s also been a guest blogger for The Arizona Republic’s election coverage.

In 2006, Chip joined a downtown Phoenix advertising agency in a hybrid role of public relations and business development, helping recruit an array of new clients to the firm. His journalism experience, combined with a web of connections and understanding of the intersection between policy, politics and business helps position clients in a wide range of environments.

Chip moderates a variety of business panel discussions and debates for companies and non-profit groups, such as the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce. He has a B.A. from Providence College in Business Administration and a Master’s degree in journalism from Syracuse University. In 2012, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer appointed Chip to serve on the state’s Lottery Commission, touting his marketing and public relations expertise.

Dave Cieslak

Dave Cieslak is co-founder of Scutari and Cieslak Public Relations and managing partner of the firm’s California office.

During his award-winning journalism career, Dave was a reporter for The Arizona Republic newspaper, where he covered high-profile beats including crime and education. He made the jump into public relations in 2005 as the head of communications for the City of Scottsdale, Ariz., Fire Department. He then joined a marketing firm as a senior public relations manager, overseeing national clients including TASER International and the World Wildlife Fund.

In 2008, Dave was honored to serve as a state communications director for Barack Obama’s presidential campaign. The position put him on a first-name basis with key political and business leaders across the country. In 2012, Dave was elected to the Ocean Beach Town Council in San Diego and served as its public relations chair. He is a member of the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce’s Health Care and Energy & Water committees, and previously sat on the Chamber’s Legislative and Small Business Committee.

Dave has provided public relations and political analysis for The New York Times, Politico, and Newsweek. He has also appeared as a spokesperson and analyst on MSNBC, Fox News Channel, CNBC and Dateline NBC. He has served as a guest lecturer at the Freedom Forum Diversity Institute at Vanderbilt University and has a B.A. in journalism from the University of Arizona.

Our Associates

Bill Bertolino

Bill Bertolino spent 16 years in journalism covering politics, public policy, legislation and city and state government. He’s been a reporter, a city editor and a managing editor in a variety of newsroom settings.

Bill brings those journalism skills, in-depth political knowledge and management expertise to the public-relations field, where he thrives at the constantly evolving intersection of business and public policy.

He specializes in messaging, media- and community-relations, crisis PR and speechwriting. Bill provides strategic communications advice to executive leadership, and develops public-relations and earned-media plans for leading public entities, companies, nonprofit groups and political campaigns.

Bill believes in the power of storytelling and uses his journalism training to pinpoint and highlight the most compelling information about clients– whether they’re people, policies, companies or causes.

His work has been published in the Arizona Republic, Arizona Capitol Times, East Valley Tribune, Orange County Register, and Colorado Springs Gazette, among other publications. He has offered his insights on a variety of TV and radio news shows. Bill has a B.A. in journalism from Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communications.

Holly Amaya

Holly Amaya, a veteran award-winning journalist, has nationwide media contacts and an eye for a compelling story. Before practicing law, she worked in the press office of a United States Senator in Washington, D.C. and in the features department of international fashion magazine Harper’s Bazaar, and covered crime, public safety, and natural disasters for The Arizona Republic in Phoenix (which led to on-air appearances on CNN’s Headline News and Nancy Grace). As a journalist, Holly was known for her tenacious ability to ask the tough questions necessary to make a good story great. She later used those same skills as a trial lawyer to garner stellar results for her clients, first in a law firm and later as the sole in-house counsel for a large global service provider. Holly is seasoned at helping companies weather internal change and external conflict, and years spent on deadline in both journalism and law trained her to think quickly on her feet, tell a convincing story, and produce stellar work.

A proud Hoosier, Holly is a member of the Indiana University School of Law’s Young Alumni Council and serves as President of the Indiana University Alumni Association’s San Diego chapter. In 2012, Holly was named a Top Young Attorney and among San Diego’s Top Corporate Counsel by The San Diego Daily Transcript. In 2013, she was selected as one of SD Metro Magazine’s “40 Under 40.” Last year, Holly was honored with the Lawyers Club of San Diego’s prestigious C. Hugh Friedman Award in recognition of her leadership, community service, and excellence in practicing law.

A native of southern Indiana and a first-generation college student, Holly attended Indiana University on a full-ride merit scholarship, receiving degrees in English and journalism. She is a cum laude graduate of the Indiana University-Bloomington Maurer School of Law and holds a degree in American and British Literature from the University of Kent in Canterbury, England.

  • “This just might be the equivalent of Carville and Matalin without the nuptials.”
    - Len Gutman, Public Relations Executive
Back to top