US Coins

Former United States Mint official releases new book

Tom Jurkowsky, the retired director of the U.S. Mint’s Office of Corporate Communications, has written a new book on handling the media as a spokesman for three different employers, including the U.S. Navy.

Portrait image by Rob Cannon

A new book, The Secret Sauce for Organizational Success: Communications and Leadership on the Same Page, has been written by Tom Jurkowsky, the retired director of the U.S. Mint’s Office of Corporate Communications.

The 148-page book is published by Air University Press.

A retired rear admiral in the United States Navy, Jurkowsky concluded his 31-year naval career in 2000, serving as the armed forces branch’s chief spokesman. Jurkowsky moved to the private sector, serving as vice president of media relations for Lockheed Martin until 2008, when he was hired by former U.S. Mint Director Edmund C. Moy to serve as the chief communications official for the Mint.

In his new book, Jurkowsky addresses many of the challenges he faced disseminating information to the media and ensuring that communicated messages jived with those of his superiors, to whom he reported. He also examines the importance of being responsive to the media.

In one Mint case, although not mentioning me by name, he recounts my enquiries seeking confirmation that Matthew Rhett Jeppson would be nominated as the 39th Mint director.

The Mint had sent an email to 1,800 Mint employees alerting them to the pending nomination, and I learned of that notification.

Jurkowsky confirmed to me the details of that email, and he notes in his book that a Treasury official then “went ballistic” when Jurkowsky alerted them that he had confirmed to me the announcement about Jeppson before it became public.

Jurkowsky writes that, when he explained to the Treasury official that nothing in the Mint’s notice to employees about Jeppson was classified, the official responded, “if you receive any more media calls on this issue, send them to voice mail.”

“Guidance such as this violates every rule in the book about how to deal with the media,” Jurkowsky writes.

Download or purchase a copy at www.tomjurkowsky.net/.

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