Stephen App is the business development manager at Campus Sonar, a specialized social listening agency that matches high-value social media intelligence and engagement opportunities to organizational strategic initiatives. He is also the host of seasons 1 and 2 of the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast, a bi-weekly podcast that explores new ways higher education marketers connect with audiences through content.
App earned a bachelor's degree in communication from Stonehill College and a master's degree in communication management from Temple University. An amateur runner and professional donut connoisseur, you can frequently find him on Twitter staunchly defending the Oxford Comma.
Jordan is a multidisciplinary designer, illustrator, and communicator with fifteen years of experience, the last seven with the University of Alberta in roles comprising social media, recruitment and issues management as well as design.
For six years, prior to joining the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry in 2018, Jordan was part of the Ancillary Services team at UAlberta, developing high-profile projects encompassing a complete refresh of the Residence Services brand, marketing, social media, and student engagement & recruitment strategies. Jordan has been a trusted communicator on campus, contributing to institutionally-important projects including a 2017 series of CASE award-winning illustrations for the year-long celebration of UAlberta’s contributions to the nation during Canada’s first 150 years.
As a member of the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry communications team, Jordan oversees design, photography, the largest faculty website on campus, and is the lead on social media. In his spare time, Jordan volunteers for the board of Metrocinema.org and maintains freelance work for a client list that includes the Food Network, the NHL, and the Huffington Post.
Social: Twitter/Instagram @_Escape_Artist
Fehraad de Nicker
Fehraad De Nicker is the marketing coordinator for Africa’s leading business school, the University of Cape Town’s Graduate School of Business (UCT GSB) and has been in this role since 2017. He is responsible for driving content marketing and brand management towards developing the recruitment pipeline by facilitating a content-led promotional strategy that emphasises visible thought leadership and engagement with relevant economic, political and social issues.
He graduated with a National Diploma in Public Relations Management from the Cape Peninsula University of Technology and is currently completing his Post-graduate Diploma in Management Practice at the UCT GSB. He is a communications professional with over 14 years’ work experience, having worked for top PR agencies in South Africa (Marcus Brewster, Magna Carta at TBWA, Tin Can PR at Saatchi & Saatchi). In addition, Fehraad also ran a start-up PR and content marketing agency. He has worked on PR campaigns that have won Gold PRISM awards, most notably for his Public Service Announcement campaign ‘I Play Fair – Say NO! To Doping’ for the South African Institute for Drug-Free Sport.
Born and raised in Cape Town, South Africa, Fehraad has plans for further his academic career and plans to complete his MBA at the UCT GSB.
Mallory Driggers is the Director of Development and Annual Giving. Since joining UTEP, she has raised funds through a major gift portfolio, managed the Thank You for 30 campaign, and leads annual giving initiatives. An El Paso native, Dr. Driggers has nearly 10 years of experience in higher education advancement, donor relations and alumni relations, with particular expertise in strategically increasing alumni participation. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Baylor University, a master’s degree from UTEP and a doctorate in Higher Education Leadership and Administration from New Mexico State University. She is a published researcher in the areas of institutional identity and organizational behavior.
Sandra has held the role of Director of Communications at the University of London since early 2015 where she has responsibility for internal and external communications and supporting public engagement activities. Prior to this she was Director of Communications and International Relations at Cardiff University. Before that she had a career in travel and tourism in the private and public sector including the Northern Ireland Tourist Board and ending as Deputy Chief Executive of Visit London. She is a graduate of the University of Edinburgh and a lifelong Francophile.
José Antonio Gea
José Antonio Gea is the Director of Marketing and Sales of Anáhuac University in Mexico City, recognized as the third best university in Mexico according to the QS World University Ranking. José Antonio is in charge of communication, marketing and massive events for the attraction and recruitment of undergraduates. He has spoken at a number of international summits and congresses.
He holds a bachelor's degree in communication and a master's degree in marketing from Universidad Anáhuac. His work has been honored with the CASE Platinum Award Latin America 2018 for the best marketing and communication strategy for the Anáhuac Open Day.
Gemma has over 11 years of experience in the higher ed and non-profit sectors, delivering multi-channel marketing campaigns with a spring in her step and a smile on her face.
In her four years at the University of Glasgow she has worked across directorates to transform and enhance marketing activity. This includes overhauling the UofG alumni social media channels (tripling follower numbers within a year); launching UofG’s flagship digital magazine Avenue e-News; and building an engaged UofG marketing community of 350+ staff through her Marketing Forum training and networking events.
She currently manages the award-winning Team UofG and Future World Changers campaigns, as well as leading a team of student vloggers, producing compelling student-focused content. One of the highlights of her career was having her face turned into a #TeamUofG GIF, which has now been viewed nearly 10 million times worldwide!
Since joining the University of Glasgow in 2013, Emma Gilmartin has revolutionised the way the university approaches social media and student communications, putting its students and staff at the forefront of its activity. As head of the multi award winning team, she leads its creative vision, digital content strategy and community engagement.
She has unified the university's online presence, established and strengthened the UofG social brand and led an overhaul of Glasgow's social output — using emerging channels, live platforms and creative ways to bring the UofG story to life, break news, promote world-changing research and grow community engagement and all things #TeamUofG.
In 2019, Emma won the inaugural ‘Pioneer Award’ at the ContentEd Awards 2019 for being a leader in the Education sector and breaking new ground in content strategy. She has spoken at multiple conferences nationally and internationally and writes blogs on the importance and value of social media in the higher education sector.
Twitter: @embrooksy8 / @UofGlasgow
As a seasoned graphic designer and thought leader, Kurt’s diverse experience in publishing and agency work has informed his many years in higher education. As creative director for Lehigh University’s Office of Communications and Public Affairs, Kurt enjoys merging his passion for fine art and design to tell a more dynamic and interesting story.
A longtime lover of written expression, Kelly Hochbein taught writing to second and fifth graders before entering the exciting world of higher ed communications. She’s found her passion in telling the stories behind the studies as the founding editor of the Lehigh Research Review, Lehigh University’s annual showcase of research and creative expression. Kelly’s background as an elementary school teacher prepared her to think creatively about communicating research—and years of teaching kids has equipped her with the patience and tenacity required for breaking down complex concepts for a broad audience.
Amy Juhnke, director of communications for the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Iowa State University, has more than two decades of experience in marketing communications. Always eager to learn about new industries, she has served in strategic marketing and communications roles in the nonprofit, financial, health care, construction and engineering industries, and most recently higher education. Juhnke earned a bachelor’s degree in technical journalism from Colorado State University and loves to return to the mountains whenever possible. She enjoys collecting and sharing entertaining stories from places she’s worked, so please feel free to ask about baseball games with nuns, taking photos thirty feet under a river, or armed robbery training.
Susan Kirby-Smith is a developer of in-depth stories about research, creative activity, and community engagement at UNC Greensboro. She writes for several UNCG print magazines and websites to reach a wide variety of readers and promote both external and internal engagement. In addition to crafting stories, Susan conceptualizes photography and video projects that illustrate the life and work of North Carolina’s most diverse public university. Susan’s projects touch a wide variety of subjects, from going “Into the Reeds” for an examination of methylmercury activity at the campus wetlands, to exploring UNCG’s Professions in Deafness program, to ensuring all “Spartan dogs have their day,” as part of a spirit-building UNCG photo project. Prior to joining University Communications at UNCG, Susan taught English and writing at Louisiana State University and elsewhere.
From dinosaur bones to science podcasts to the complexities of human value associated with Bitcoin–Julia Lubas’s work is narrative in nature. Julia Lubas is a multimedia designer and collage artist currently working at the University of Michigan College of Literature, Science and the Arts in Ann Arbor, Michigan. As a designer, her goal is to make connections and bring to life storytelling with visually captivating illustrations, collages, and design work. Her work varies from digital vector illustrations to photographed three-dimensional collage pieces. Julia’s collage work (both digital and analog) sets out to create snapshots of surrealistic scenes whose themes range from death to love to the comical nature of life. She has won various awards from CASE and USDA for both her design and illustration work. When not designing or collaging, she spends her free time walking her cat, falling off her mountain bike, and laughing with a salad.
Jon is a media relations and social media manager at BYU where he combines those skillsets to spread the digital reach of the university with influencer relations. His most unique professional accomplishment was landing a pitch to Beyoncé’s publicist and getting a post out to her 63 million Facebook followers, but his most meaningful work as of late has been in using Instagram stories to address hard-hitting and impactful university topics such as sexual assault, consent, mental health, racism, hate speech, respect and more. Jon is also the recipient of the CASE District VII's 2018 Rising Star award.
Cassie Paizis is an award-winning designer, storyteller, and creative strategist with 15+ years of marketing and communication experience in higher education. Cassie currently serves as director of communications at Florida Southern College, the sunshine state's oldest private college. Responsible for the institution's recruitment outreach, she works to set a communication strategy and develop both digital and traditional media that resonates with prospective students and their families. Before joining FSC, Cassie managed the web team at CUNY's Borough of Manhattan Community College.
Santino Stancato joined Georgia Tech’s football staff in 2019 as brand manager. In his role, Stancato manages the brand of Georgia Tech football, primarily through the program’s various social media platforms.
He came to Georgia Tech after spending the previous two seasons working under head coach Geoff Collins at Temple. Stancato arrived at Temple in 2017 as a digital content coordinator and was elevated to assistant director of operations and creative coordinator for TU football in 2018. Among his accomplishments, he was integral in Temple winning Uniform Authority’s award for best uniforms in all of college football in ’18.
Prior to Temple, Stancato spent time as marketing manager for the Brooklyn Cyclones (New York Mets’ minor-league affiliate) and a marketing assistant at Marshall. His career began as a student assistant in the sports information office at Bloomsburg (Pa.) University.
Stancato graduated from Bloomsburg in 2016 with a bachelor’s degree in mass communications.
Alma Stone is a freelance writer and president of Written in Stone, a content marketing and consulting agency. After serving for 10 years as the director of communications for a large independent school in Metro Atlanta, Alma decided to become an entrepreneur and hasn’t looked back. Having been on both sides as an independent school parent and marketer, she has a passion for crafting solid, well-written content that connects with its audience. Her clients include independent schools, higher ed, nonprofits, and a global education publisher. A native Atlantan, Alma resides just south of the “ATL” in Fayetteville, GA, with her husband and a very yappy miniature Schnauzer. She is the proud mom of Zachary, a United States Coast Guard Academy cadet, and Brandon, a junior at Georgia Tech.
Eduardo Aire Torres
Eduardo Aire Torres lives in Mexico City where he works as a designer leading the innovative and creative efforts of the Anahuac University Marketing Team. His experience also includes being involved in projects for global brands like Indio Beer and Johnny Walker.
He graduated with honors from the Graphic Design B. A. at the Anahuac University Mexico, where he started a path in calligraphy and type design. He has taken several workshops with some of the most recognized calligraphers and type designers of this era, and he recently finished the Type@Cooper Condensed Program in New York City.
His work has been recognized nationally and internationally in different design, art and typography blogs such as “Calligraphy Masters” and “36 Days of Type”. Eduardo has been part of exhibitions such as “Art 40 2017” and “Typography Mexico 2018”, as well as teaching workshops and giving talks at several institutions in Mexico.
Melanie is a communications professional with 7+ years of experience at organizations big and small, nonprofit and for-profit, magical and mundane. Previous employers include The Walt Disney Company, a local church, an international ministry, Visit Anaheim and a nonprofit that helps women find purpose and healing.
Today, Melanie is the Director of Advancement Communications at Vanguard University. She drives all communication and marketing strategy and content development for Vanguard's alumni engagement, development, external relations and executive communications. She also oversees the "vanguard" magazine, Vanguard's largest external print publication.
Melanie is passionate about intentionality, inclusivity, diversity and honor in her work, ensuring pieces reflect the people, heart and mission of Vanguard.