Confirmed Speakers Attending:
Presenting the Keynote Speaker for the 2012 PASSHE Collegiate Media Summit:
SREE SREENIVASAN (@sree) is the newly-appointed first Chief Digital Officer of Columbia University, focusing on online learning and other aspects of digital and social media, and working with Provost John Coatsworth, the university’s top academic officer. He is also a member of the faculty at the Graduate School of Journalism, where he spent 20 years (one as a student, 19 as a professor and 7 as a dean). He was most recently Dean of Student Affairs, overseeing admissions, student services and career services. He specializes in explaining technology to non-techies. He writes the SreeTips blog for CNET [ http://cnet.co/sreetips ] and appears regularly on CBS and elsewhere to talk tech. For more than eight years, he served as technology reporter for WABC-TV and WNBC-TV in NYC. In 2010, a Manhattan-news site he helped create, DNAinfo.com, was named one of the six hottest news startups by BusinessInsider. He has written articles for The New York Times, BusinessWeek, Rolling Stone, National Journal, Bloomberg, Forbes and Popular Science and taught digital workshops at the WSJ,NYT, Boston Globe, LAT, CNN, NBC, ABC, CBS and dozens of other newsrooms. He is co-founder of SAJA, the South Asian Journalists Association, a group of 1,000+ journalists across the US & Canada. In 2009, he was named one of AdAge’s 25 media people to follow on Twitter and in 2010 was named one of Poynter’s the 35 most influential people in social media. He is creator of such learning opportunities as Social Media Weekend, Social Media One-Night Stand and more.
His CNET blog posts are at http://news.cnet.com/sree-tips/?tag=mncol;bc
Katrina Foster, owner of Kconceptual Kreations, now KKPR Marketing & Public Relations, is a marketing and public relations executive based in Milford, PA. Dubbed by some of her contemporaries and associates as the “Spark Plug” and the “Mad Scientist”, Katrina adds light, energy and creativity into every project her company takes on. Katrina learned the value of hard work and time management, as she worked full-time and completed a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Management & Marketing from Penn State University. Graduating Magna Cum Laude, she was destined to make her mark in this world. In 2006, she decided to launch her own marketing and public relations agency, Kconceptual Kreations and over the course of the last six and a half years, she has grown from a one-woman, home-based business to having part-time administrative staff, sales executives, designers, and additional marketing and public relations executives. Katrina has been named “Top 20 Under 40 Business and Community Leaders” by Sussex County in 2009, as well as nominated for 2010 SBA Young Entrepreneur of the Year. Most recently KKPR took home their first Addy award in 2011, along with a SAGE award for Best Practices in Marketing & Communications.
Jeremy Powlus graduated from Bloomsburg University in 1997 with a degree in Mass Communications – Public Relations. He has held various web design, graphic design, internet consulting and network/systems administration positions. He is presently employed as the Director of Marketing and IT Manager of a small company in eastern Pennsylvania, and is also Pennsylvania’s first Google Trusted Photographer for the Google Business Photos program.
Vince Benedetto is a media entrepreneur and the owner, founder and President of Bold Gold Media Group. Bold Gold owns and operates nine radio stations throughout Northeast Pennsylvania and New York. Bold Gold is on the cutting edge of local radio broadcasting synergized with advanced digital and e-commerce platforms. Vince is a graduate of the United States Air Force Academy, a former Air Force Captain and Special Agent for the Air Force Office of Special Investigations (OSI), where he specialized in counter-intelligence investigations and force protection measures for the Department of Defense. Vince has been recognized as a “Top 20 Under 40” business leader by the Northeast Pennsylvania Business Journal, ‘Business Person of the Year” by the Wayne County Chamber of Commerce, a “Top 40 Under 40” business leader in NEPA by the Times-Leader and a recently featured entrepreneur on Executive Leaders Radio in Philadelphia and WVIA’s Northeast Pennsylvania Business Journal Series.
Dave Marra is a 1991 graduate of Bloomsburg University’s Mass Communications program. As a Senior Systems Engineer for Apple, he has conducted thousands of technology presentations, keynote addresses and workshops for schools, Mac and PC user groups, businesses and other professional organizations across the United States and Canada. Certified as both an Apple Certified Technical Coordinator and an Apple Certified Systems Administrator, his specialty areas include digital multimedia, internet technologies, accessibility and Mac/PC integration.
Dave is the CEO of Future Business Networks, an internet firm that operates web portals reaching visitors in sectors ranging from lifestyle improvement to online gaming. He is also the co-founder of Caysun, an online vacation rentals startup. Prior to founding Future Business Networks and Caysun, Dave ran the day-to-day operations as president of Chillcade Media.
Steve Adler is an Education Solutions Consultant at Adobe Systems. After working for many years in education as an instructor, coordinator, and Adobe Education Leader, Steve focuses on integrating Adobe solutions across the digital campus. Steve has served on numerous faculties including The School of Visual Arts in New York and Stanford University’s Digital Media Academy. He is passionate about empowering the educational community to improve educational processes, integrate curriculum, and prepare learners for the challenges ahead.
Mercedes C. Smith is a 21 year old, Mass Communications professional with expertise in Public Relations and Marketing. She is known for creating innovative strategies for various entertainment, fashion, non-profit and corporate brands. With hard work and determination, Mercedes plans to take the Public Relations world by storm, while hoping to inspire and help build brands in the process. In October 2010, she founded The Imperial Media Group, a New York based media agency that is committed to delivering and customizing inventive tactics to fit their clients unique visions. Mercedes has directed campaigns resulting in creditable results. Furthermore, Mercedes is also the President and PR Director of L&L Online Media Co., a company dedicated to inspiring the world by highlight and featuring emerging talents in different industries. L&L has expanded its media outlets by creating Expose Magazine and L&L Films, which both showcase these outstanding individuals. Mercedes is a proud alumni of Bloomsburg University and credits much of her success to the education and values she learned during her college experience.
Dr. Richard Ganahl
Dr. Richard Ganahl is a professor in mass communications at Bloomsburg University, PA. Dr. Ganahl is a former publisher, entrepreneur, media manager, and marketing consultant. He is co-editor of the award-winning Webcasting Worldwide (2007), and the founding faculty advisor of BUnow, a pure-play, multi-media, student-managed news site. In its first 3-years, more than 187,808 visitors from over 168 countries have viewed over 434,243 pages. BUnow is nearly unique among student news sites because it stands-alone from, and is independent of other campus media. He is a graduate of the School of Journalism at the University of Missouri, and a former Visiting Scholar at Yonsei University, South Korea .
Susan Snyder has covered education for The Philadelphia Inquirer since she joined the paper in 1998. She reported on the Philadelphia School District for nearly a decade before becoming the Inquirer’s higher education reporter in 2008. In May 2010, she joined the Inquirer’s five-reporter investigative team on violence in the city’s public schools. She co-led the reporting team that produced the seven-part series “Assault on Learning” and co-authored several follow-up articles to the series through December 2011. The series won the Pulitzer Prize for public service, a top award from Investigative Reporters and Editors, a Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism and several other accolades. In January 2012, she returned to the higher education beat. Snyder previously won numerous regional, state and national reporting awards, including a first place National Headliner award in education writing for a 2006 series on middle school students who wrote about their struggles in diaries for class. She previously covered both K-12 and higher education at The Morning Call in Allentown. She is a 1985 graduate of Indiana University of Pennsylvania.
Ted Hodgins, the Senior Director of Video Product at Comcast, has over 20 years experience in cable marketing, product management, as well as working experience in the television industry. Ted has worked with production, programming, promotion, marketing and results analysis. He has a strong background in On Demand and PPV programming after managing On Demand content for five Comcast regions.
Rita Abent, executive director of University Public Relations at Slippery Rock University, has more than 35 years experience in media and communications. The former editor of the Hollywood Sun, a 55,000-circulation daily located in South Florida that fell victim to conglomerate journalism, Abent started her professional career as the collegiate media adviser at Eastern Michigan University, where she supervised the independent 3-times-per week student newspaper, yearbook, literary magazine and humor magazine. Under her direction the student newspaper earned 20 consecutive All-American ratings with five stars of distinction. For her efforts, the CMA named her the National Collegiate Media Adviser of the Year.
Andy Mehalshick is the Lead Investigator of the Eyewitness News I-Team. He’s been covering news in Northeast PA for more than 25 years. He began his career in 1979 with a scholarship at Wilkes University where he operated the school radio station and college newspaper. While at Wilkes, he began working at Hazleton Area radio stations WQEQ/WXPX. He also reported for area newspapers. For much of his reporting career, Andy covered the police and crime beats. In that role he did stories that had far-reaching impact. One story resulted in the reopening of a death investigation. Another helped authorities track down a man who faked his own death. A Wilkes University graduate, Andy first joined WBRE-TV in 1985. He has won numerous journalism awards and has frequently appeared on national newscasts, including MSNBC, NBC, and CNN. Andy’s reporting has been recognized by the Associated Press, the Pennsylvania Chief’s of Police Association, and the Pennsylvania State Attorney General.
Dr. Peter M. Gigliotti has spent his 38-year professional career in communications either as a newspaper reporter and editor or in higher education administration/public relations in his current post as executive director for university communications and marketing at Shippensburg University. Dr. Gigliotti earned his bachelor’s degree in journalism in 1974 from St. Bonaventure University in New York state, his master of science degree in communication studies in 1995 from Shippensburg and his doctoral degree in educational leadership from in 2002 Duquesne University. Dr. Gigliotti began his career as a reporter for the Chambersburg Public Opinion. He later worked for the Valley News Dispatch in Tarentum, Pa., Butler County News in Zelienople, Pa., and The Herald-Dispatch in Huntington, W.Va. He served in numerous posts at those newspapers including as a managing editor. In 1985, he returned to Chambersburg where he was city editor and graphics editor before he joined Shippensburg.
Tina Horner graduated from Slippery Rock University in 1989 with a Bachelor of Science in English. Following college, she had a 20-year career in newspaper journalism, 15 years as a reporter and feature writer and five years as editor. In her newspaper career, Tina won various awards for news and feature writing, photography and page design. She joined Clarion University in November 2010 as communication manager and is responsible for multiple print and electronic publications, as well as media relations.
Lauren Grose is a junior and Journalism major/Professional Writing minor at Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania. On campus, she is Vice President of the Forensics Speech and Debate team, Fashion Editor of BU now, a Communications Assistant in the Department of Marketing and Communications, the Husky Connections host and active member in the Society of Professional Journalists. In the fall of 2010, she began writing for The Voice, the campus newspaper, and soon created her own fashion column titled Dear Bloom. Using campus media outlets, Dear Bloom has developed into an online television show and the university’s first fashion media group. Lauren also has her own personal blog, Route 104, where she is able to sit down and interview successful individuals of various industries. In the spring 2012 semester, Lauren interviewed Roc Nation’s artist, J. Cole, after his performance at BU.
Joe is a senior at Bloomsburg University majoring in Mass Communications and Political Science. This past summer he interned at KNBC-TV in Los Angeles. While there, he had the wonderful opportunity of working in a #2 market newsroom and getting hands-on experience in producing, writing for broadcast, and on-air reporting. At Bloomsburg University, Joe is the managing editor for The Voice, BU’s award-winning student newspaper, president of Society for Professional Journalists, staff writer for Bunow, and secretary for Husky Ambassadors. He is also a contributing writer to Inside Pennsylvania Magazine, a regional quarterly publication.
Vanessa Pellechio joined Bloomsburg University’s school paper in her Freshman year and has been involved in it ever since. From Opinion editor, to Managing editor and now Editor-in-Chief, it is safe to say The Voice means a lot to her. Vanessa also got the opportunity to intern at the local Bloomsburg newspaper called The Press Enterprise. Her friends often joked that she was the dog whisperer by covering pet stories, but it gave her good experience without even having a degree. Vanessa had front page bylines, which helped her land a big internship at WWE Magazine. WWE was really impressed with Vanessa’s portfolio and gave her the opportunity to work with them for an entire summer. Vanessa has learned so much there not only about WWE, but about herself and what she wants to pursue in the future.
Kenn Marshall has more than 30 years of experience in the communications field. For the last nearly 15 years, he has served as media relations manager for the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education. Previously, he worked for almost two decades as an award-winning journalist, primarily with The Patriot-News of Harrisburg, where he served as higher education reporter, environment reporter and Capitol Hill correspondent. In his current position, Marshall serves as chief spokesman for PASSHE. He is responsible for developing and implementing communications strategies, planning and conducting news conferences and writing and distributing all news releases issued by the Office of the Chancellor for distribution to statewide and national media. He prepare speeches, position papers, legislative testimony and other related document and helps to coordinate governmental relations efforts, including maintaining regular contacts with legislators and state agency officials.
Bonnie Martin is manager of communications and media relations at Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania and editor of Bloomsburg: The University Magazine. A graduate of Shippensburg University, Martin began her career as a reporter and editor with The Record Herald in Waynesboro, Pa. She has worked in the field of higher education public relations for more than 20 years, including five years at Penn State’s Mont Alto Campus. Still a writer at heart, she is especially proud of profiles she’s written on former Pennsylvania Gov. Mark Schweiker and actor Jimmi Simpson for Bloomsburg magazine.
Sharon B. Stringer has been teaching communication courses at Lock Haven University since 2000. Promoted to full professor in 2010, she was recently selected as a Fulbright Scholar and taught at the University of Ghana, Legon. She has been employed as a writer, editor, and public television producer/director. She teaches print and radio journalism courses and currently serves on the editorial board of her community newspaper, the Centre Daily Times; and as a board member for Bridge of Hope Centre County, an organization dedicated to ending homelessness among single mothers. Her research interests include diversity and bias in the media.
Michelle Fryling has served as director of Media Relations at IUP since October, 1992. In this role, she is responsible for all news communications with all media for the university, along with crisis communications and presidential communications. Before her position at IUP, Michelle worked for Allegheny College in the office of public affairs as a writer editor. She also has been a reporter and city editor for the Meadville Tribune newspaper. Michelle is the 2005 Indiana County Female Civic award and the 2012 ATHENA Leadership Award recipient. She has worked with the United Way of Indiana County since 2006, serving on the Campaign Cabinet and as chair of an allocations committee, responsible for allocation of $125,000 in private donations. She also plays a leadership role in the marketing and public relations efforts of the United Way.
Karl Schwab, a public relations specialist at Slippery Rock University, has written and distributed more than 9,543 news releases in his 22 years in the post. He has written even more breaking news and feature stories as a 15-year reporter and editor for The Vindicator, then a 125,000 daily and Sunday circulation newspaper serving five counties surrounding Youngstown, Ohio. At the newspaper, he learned crisis communication, how to remain calm in the face of history and world-changing events and the fact that no one is ever pleased with their photo – color or black and white – in the newspaper. He believes his fingers would now be 1.5 inches longer had they not been worn away by their constant contact with a keyboard. After nearly 50 years in the news business, he still enjoys getting the story first – getting it right – and seeing that his community is well informed.
Dr. Pat Heilman
Dr. Pat Heilman has been a member of the journalism faculty at Indiana University of Pennsylvania since 1983. From January 1978, she was director of publications and advertising at Indiana University of Pennsylvania and information and publications specialist from 1974 to 1977. She also worked as a reporter for the Courier-News in Somerville, N.J. She holds a bachelor’s degree in communication arts from Seton Hall University, master’s work in journalism from Penn State University, and a master’s and doctorate in British and American Literature from IUP. She has won national awards for computer use in journalism and gender equity in education, state awards in the area of print design and served as a delegate and presenter on women in communications at the Beijing Women’s Conferences in August 1995. She was also a Poynter fellow in Visual Communication at the Poynter Institute for Media Studies in 1999.For her work as APSCUF President she was twice named by The Pennsylvania Report as one of the 100 most influential people in Harrisburg.
Sharon Santus is a faculty member at Bloomsburg University, in the Department of Mass Communications. She has worked as a reporter, projects editor, and writing coach for newspapers in Pennsylvania, Virginia, Missouri, and in Europe. She earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, and a master’s degree in journalism with an international affairs concentration from Columbia University in New York City. She is a Ph.D. candidate in the College of Communications at Penn State. While working as projects editor at the Columbia (Mo.) Tribune from 2003 to 2007, she taught at the Missouri School of Journalism at the University of Missouri. As a reporter, she received more than 40 awards in deadline reporting, commentary, feature writing, and investigative reporting. Her specialty is developing and producing in-depth reports and investigative journalism on social issues including Americans without health insurance, racial profiling, injustice inside America’s courtrooms, and the death penalty. During her journalism career, she covered several major newsmakers including Pope John Paul II, President Bill Clinton and Sen. Ted Kennedy. She is a former president of the Pennsylvania Women’s Press Association, and serves on the board of directors of the Bloomsburg Women’s Center, a shelter for victims of domestic abuse and sexual assault. She is also co-advisor with Dr. Richard Ganahl for BU Now and is faculty advisor for the Bloomsburg University Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.
Dr. Genovese is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Mass Communications at Bloomsburg University of PA. He received his Bachelor’s Degree in Mass Communications from King’s College (PA), a Master’s Degree in Broadcast Journalism from Syracuse University, and his Doctorate in Media Studies from the Pennsylvania State University. Dr. Genovese has presented research at international, national and regional conferences, published sports media research in respected mass communication journals, and co-authored a book with his father, The Pottsville Maroons and the NFL’s Stolen Championship of 1925. His research agenda revolves around sports journalism and new media. Dr. Genovese also worked professionally in radio as a play-by-play announcer and color commentator and in the television industry for over a decade as a producer in both local television news and at a regional sports network.