Who We Are - The Firm

UrbanWords Group

From the simplest messages to comprehensive campaigns, UrbanWords Group advances communications and increases visibility between clients and their audiences by providing:


Founded in 2001 as Katlin Smith Communications, the firm changed its name to UrbanWords Group in early 2007 to reflect its growth and focus. What is the ultimate goal of UrbanWords Group? Simply put— create communications that build organizations and strengthen communities.

Depending on the project and client needs, UrbanWords Group creates communications that:
• inform and educate
• involve and inspire
• produce constructive input
• identify issues
• encourage collaboration

We develop custom approaches that match client budgets and timeline. Collaborating with talented team members in specialized niches, we bring the appropriate staff, skills and passion to the table to partner with clients. As experienced project managers, we ensure that the right team is assembled to meet client goals and expectations.

UrbanWords Group is located in the Vancouver Commerce Center in the heart of revitalizing downtown Vancouver, Washington. The firm is certified as a Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE) for the State of Washington and the State of Oregon.


Katlin Smith, APR, Principal

Katlin SmithThe company’s founder, Katlin has more than 20 years experience in publications, public and media relations, and project administration with an emphasis on public affairs and civic communications. She provides strategic communications and community outreach services for government, non-profit and business clients. She has provided services for more than 40 government and non-profit agencies. She has also helped small businesses increase their visibility.

Public Relations and Promotional Campaigns Katlin has provided public relations services for many organizations as a consultant and as a staff member, including the American Red Cross, United Way and Arc. Her work on public service campaigns including promotions related to ecological automotive shops, products made from recycled goods, household hazardous waste disposal, tourism development, community acceptance of individuals with developmental disabilities, emergency preparedness and fire prevention.

Media Coordination Katlin has placed many articles about and by clients in local, regional and national consumer and trade publications including USA Today, AARP Magazine, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch the New Orleans Times-Picayune and Landscape Architect, among others. Highly skilled in media relations, she also teaches media and communications workshops for government and non-profit agencies.

Writing Katlin is the Publisher and Writer of the regional travel and recreation blog www.southwestwashingtonzest.com. Katlin’s articles have appeared in numerous national and regional magazines. She is the author of the travel book Portland Rainy Day Guide (Chronicle Books) and editor of Developing Training Manuals (Doyle Training). She won the National Print Media Award from the National Down Syndrome Congress for her magazine writing.

Public Involvement Katlin has coordinated public involvement for diverse projects including transportation, parks and community development. Her civic engagement work includes public outreach and workshops, publication development, media coordination and project research.

Education and Professional Affiliations Katlin has a B.S. in Urban Planning from Iowa State University and M.S. in Journalism from the University of Oregon. She is accredited in public relations (APR) by the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) and earned a Certificate for Public Participation from the International Association for Public Participation (IAP2). She is a past president of the PRSA Portland Metro Chapter. She is a current member of PRSA and Vancouver’s Downtown Association (VDA).

Civic Involvement Katlin has a passion for community work and using public relations and writing to strengthen organizations. She is an active member of the Rotary Club of Vancouver, a member of the Board of Directors of the Vancouver Rotary Foundation and member of the Rotary Foundation Festival of Trees Executive Team.  She is Founder and Leader of the Dining for Women Vancouver Chapter, which raises funds for organizations that empower women and girls in developing countries. She is also an avid, weekly deliverer of Meals on Wheels to senior citizens for the Loaves and Fishes Program.

When not meeting with clients and coordinating projects, Katlin practices her passions for world travel, kayaking, tent camper trips and rehabilitation of the vintage Vancouver bungalow she shares with her engineer husband, Gary, and an unruly cottage garden, which features a nightly Squirrel du Soleil show.

We’re in the business of choosing the right words.
Some of our favorite words are:

green spaces