Staying in touch with old friends and professors also is a way to stay in touch with The Media School. Check out these class notes from the 1990s.
Staying in touch with old friends and professors also is a way to stay in touch with The Media School. Check out these class notes from the 1990s.
Eric Deggans, BA’90, was awarded the Excellence in the Reporting of Social Issues Award by the American Sociological Association. In 2019, he will chair the Peabody Award Board of Jurors. He has served on the board since 2013, and he is the first African-American to hold the position. Deggans is NPR’s first full-time TV critic. He served as a TV and media critic at the Tampa Bay Times for almost 20 years. He has worked at the Asbury Park Press in New Jersey and both the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and Pittsburgh Press newspapers in Pennsylvania. Deggans has been recognized by the Society for Features Journalism, American Association of Sunday and Feature Editors, the Society of Professional Journalists, the National Association of Black Journalists, The Florida Press Club and the Florida Society of News Editors. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, Salon magazine, CNN.com, The Washington Post, the Chicago Tribune, the Detroit Free Press, the Chicago Sun-Times, The Seattle Times, Rolling Stone and other publications across the country. (January 2019)
Doug Haddix, MA’90, has been named executive director of Investigative Reporters and Editors, a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the quality of investigative reporting. Haddix, director of the Kiplinger Program in Public Affairs Journalism at Ohio State University, previously was a training director for the organization. In his new position, he will oversee all of IRE’s programs. (December 2016)
Lisa Long, BA’90, has been named editor of the Greater Fort Wayne Business Weekly. She first joined the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel as a metro and general assignments reporter in 1990 and went on to be editor of the metro and business beats. (January 2019)
Kara Winton, BA’90, MS’13, is a full-time professor at Florida Gulf Coast University teaching public relations in the Department of Communication & Philosophy. Previously, she was an adjunct professor. (July 2019)
Michelle Medlock Adams, BAJ’91, is a journalist and author. She had been awarded the Selah Award for Best in Children’s Literature three times. Her most recent book, "Dinosaur Devotions: 75 Dino Discoveries, Bible Truths, Fun Facts, and More!" will be published on Oct. 16. She has authored more than 80 books. (October 2018)
Lori Bergen, PhD’91, was appointed to the Poynter Institute’s board of trustees. Bergen is the founding dean of the University of Colorado Boulder’s College of Media, Communication and Information. She has previously served as dean of the J. William and Mary Diederich College of Communication at Marquette University, associate director of the A.Q. Miller School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Kansas State University and director of the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Texas State University. (December 2017)
Jennifer Gong-Gershowitz, BAJ’91, won the Democratic primary for the Illinois 17th District state representative seat. Gong-Gershowitz will face Republican Peter Lee, who ran unopposed, in the 2018 general election in November.
Gong-Gershowitz is the director of immigration law practice at Highwood Legal Aid Clinic in Highland Park, Illinois. She holds a J.D. from Loyola University Chicago School of Law and an L.L.M. in international human rights law from the Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law. (April 2018)
Lynne Klyde-Silverstein, BA’91, is an associate professor of journalism in the University of Northern Colorado’s Journalism and Mass Communications program. She has worked as a reporter and editor for the Connecticut Post in Bridgeport and the Herald-Sun in Durham, North Carolina. She has a master’s in journalism and mass communication from University of North Carolina and a Ph.D. in journalism from Ohio University. (March 2016)
Bob Pockrass, BA'91, contributes breaking news, analysis and inside information across linear and digital platforms as a NASCAR insider for FOX Sports. He previously served as a writer for ESPN.com. Pockrass has twice been awarded Writer of the Year by the National Motorsports Press Association and earned a spot on SI.com’s “Twitter 100” list of 100 must-follow sports personalities in 2011 and 2012. (January 2019)
Raju Narisetti, MA’91, will join the Columbia Journalism School’s faculty as professor of professional practice and the new director of the Knight-Bagehot Fellowship in Economics and Business Journalism. In 2016, he was named CEO of Gizmodo Media Group. Narisetti previously served as senior vice president of strategy at News Corp., managing editor of The Wall Street Journal’s Digital Network and managing editor of The Washington Post. (June 2018)
Laysha Ward, BA’91, is executive vice president and chief external engagement officer for Target, where she has worked for 28 years. She also served as a board chair for President Barack Obama and as a board member for the Corporation of National and Community Service under President George W. Bush.
Ward currently volunteers as a graduation coach for Minnesota high school students through Achieve Minneapolis. In May 2019, she was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Minnesota for public service. (May 2019)
Cathy Kightlinger, BA’92, is a writer/producer for Well Done Marketing in Indianapolis. Previously, she was the first-ever lifestyle communication manager for the IndyCar Series. Prior to that, she served as a news reporter and columnist with The Indianapolis Star and The Chronicle-Tribune in Marion, Ind. (November 2019)
Barry Mordis, BA’92, journalism, is a senior vice president and leads the Mordis Group at Merrill, the wealth management division of Bank of America. He has 27 years of experience advising families, the last 22 years at Merrill. Mordis holds the prestigious Certified Financial Planner designation, and this year, he was again named to Forbes “Best-in-State Wealth Advisors.” (September 2019)
James Portolese, BA’92, produced the award-winning feature film “Spare Room,” which was released Dec. 3, 2019 by Gravitas Ventures. The film is available on all VOD platforms and DVD.
Portolese has produced over 45 films, including “All Stars” and “Beast of Burden.” (December 2019)
Troy Schneider, BA’92, is editor-in-chief of business technology publications FCW and GCN, members of 1105 Media. Previously, he was director of media and technology for the New America Foundation and managing editor for electronic publishing at Atlantic Media Company. Schneider has written for many publications, including The New York Times, The Washington Post and Slate. (February 2018)
Matthew Tully, BAJ’92, a columnist at the Indy Star, announced June 21 in a piece published on the Star’s website that he would be taking a “cancer break.” He assured readers that this was just a hiatus following his diagnosis in the fall of 2016 and recent health challenges, and that he would be back. “It’s just a break,” he said, “Whether you like it or not, I fully expect to be back.” (July 2018).
Brad Wolverton, BAJ’92, has received the Drake Group’s inaugural Drake Hero award for his reporting on collegiate athletics for the Chronicle of Higher Education. The Drake Group is an organization that aims to defend academic integrity in higher education. The award honors an individual who has helped advance the collegiate sports reform movement. (April 2017)
Mike Barz, BA’93, returned to Indianapolis in March 2018 to anchor the evening news at WISH-TV. He was previously a news anchor at KDVR-TV/KWGN-TV in Denver. Barz is an Emmy award-winning anchor and reporter and has more than 24 years of experience in the television business. (February 2018)
Kristie Bunton, PhD’93, is dean of the Bob Schieffer College of Communication at Texas Christian University. She was featured in a 2017 book, Overload: Finding the Truth in Today’s Deluge of News. She authored a chapter on training reporters for the new era. (February 2018)
George Hanlin, BA’93, MPA’01, is director of grants at Indiana Humanities. He previously edited award-winning books and periodicals at FlashPoint and the Indiana Historical Society. (August 2016)
Leslie Leasure, BA’93, MFA’04, was ordained by the United Church of Christ in October. Leasure is the program director for the Ignite Institute, which provides spiritually based training for leaders working in social transformation such as economic and racial justice. She also created the Into the Wilderness spiritual community and blogs for both organizations. She lives in Berkeley, California. (March 2016)
Chad Millman, BA’93, is head of media for the Action Network, a progressive online organization platform. Millman was previously editor-in-chief of ESPN.com and ESPN The Magazine. (December 2017)
Chris Parente, BA’93, is co-anchor on the new KWGN-Channel 2 “Daybreak” program in Denver, Colorado.
Previously, Parente hosted the network’s “Everyday” program. (June 2019)
Kaylene Riemen Rickett, BA'93, has accepted a role as the communications manager for Katz, Sapper & Miller in Indianapolis after a two-year stint as a freelance marketing communications consultant. She has held communications roles at Indy Homes Team, Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, Clarian Health (now Indiana University Health) and Rolls-Royce. After many moves, Riemen and her husband, Chris Rickett, BA’97, have returned to the Indianapolis area. (January 2019)
Kindra Strupp, BAJ’93, is vice president for marketing and communications at the University of Southern Indiana. She provides strategic leadership for university communications, marketing and advertising.
Strupp joined the university in 2013 as assistant vice president for marketing and communications and was promoted to associate vice president for marketing and communications in 2016. Prior to joining USI, Strupp worked for Eli Lilly in corporate and executive communications.
Previously, she was an on-air television reporter for WTVW and WEVV in Evansville. (April 2018)
David Zupko, BA’93, is associate dean in the office of international affairs at Tsinghua University in Beijing, China. He focuses on the university’s global strategy and making the campus more welcoming to international students.
Previously, Zupko spent two and a half decades in academe, working at Loyola University Chicago, the University of Chicago, and as deputy registrar at Yale University. (November 2019)
Richard Culp, BAJ’94, MEd’00, is an educational specialist in staff development and training for Fairfax County (Virginia) Public Schools. He has managed the Great Beginnings new teacher induction program for the school system for the last 10 years. The county hires more than 1,500 new teachers each year, and Culp works closely with 200 schools and centers, the Virginia Department of Education and business partners to make the new teachers’ transition smooth and positive. (April 2017)
Jill Strawder-Bubala, BAJ’94, was named upper school director at Sage Ridge School in Reno, Nevada. She joined the school, an independent school program for grades 4-12, in 2011, where she has worked as a teacher, sixth-grade team leader and website writer and editor. (July 2018)
Brooke Barnett, MA’95, PhD’01, will be the new dean of Butler University’s College of Communication starting June 1, 2019. She has taught at Elon University’s School of Communications since 2001. During her time at IU, she was a news director, reporter and host on WTIU. She is a board member of The Media School’s Alumni Association. (November 2018)
Julie DiCaro, BAJ’95, is currently the only woman in local Chicago sports radio with her own show, which is on Chicago’s sports radio station 670 The Score. She has been awarded a book contract with Dutton, an imprint of Penguin/Random House. The book, which is due out in Spring of 2021, will focus on her experiences as a woman in sports media, as well as broader social issues in sports. (October 2019)
Lori Keekley, BAJ’95, is the 2016 Dow Jones News Fund National High School Journalism Teacher of the Year. She will receive recognition at the JEA/NSPA Fall National High School Journalism Convention this fall. Keekley is an English and journalism teacher at St. Louis Park High School in Minnesota. She was editor of the 1994 Arbutus and copy chief of the Indiana Daily Student in her time at IU. (September 2016)
Anne Mamaghani, BAJ’96, worked in several positions in Web usability in Boston and Silicon Valley after earning a master’s of science degree in human factors in information design from Bentley University. She currently is the senior manager for user experience research and human factors at eBay Inc. She has served as a customer insights researcher for Yahoo. While at IU, Mamaghani studied journalism and women’s studies. (December 2015)
Jon Gorman, BAJ’96, MS’02, was named executive director of the Network of Vertafore Users in November 2019. Previously he was senior vice president at Cornerstone Credit Union League, the nation’s largest regional credit union trade association. Prior to that, he was director of alumni communications at Ball State University and director of member communications for the National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies. (November 2019)
Erika Josephson-Heise, BAJ’96, is a senior producer for MSNBC’s “Andrea Mitchell Reports.” She lives in New York City with her husband and daughter.
Ken Bikoff, BAJ’97, is a communications specialist at the IU School of Informatics and Computing, as well as media director at peegs.com. Bikoff also hosts a post-game call-in show for IU football and provides news and analysis about IU athletics. (April 2017)
Kristen Desmond LeFevre, BAJ’97, is a freelance writer and editor. She was recognized with a 2017 Clarion Award for feature writing by the Association for Women in Communications for her feature story on women’s concussions. Her profile of pioneering civil engineer Nora Stanton Blatch Barney won second place in the profile category at the Florida chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists’ 2017 Sunshine State Awards. (October 2017)
Nanci Healy, BAJ’97, is the assistant director of student affairs at New York University. Before taking this position in 2015, Healy was the business manager for the university. (March 2016)
Jamie Izaks, BAJ’97, is president of All Points Public Relations.
He has previously worked as an anchor, reporter and producer at various NBC, ABC, FOX and FOX SportsNet affiliates. (July 2019)
Lisanne (Carothers) Jensen, BAJ’97, is a coordinator of faith formation and youth ministry at The Church of St. Joseph in Stottville, New York, and coordinator of secondary faith formation and youth ministry at St. James Parish in Catham, New York. She also writes for Catechist Magazine, a national publication that serves catechists and catechetical leaders in parish religious education and formation programs and religion teachers in Catholic schools. (July 2018)
Shannon Quinn, BA’97, is VP, media director at EchoPoint Media in Indianapolis. (July 2019)
Madelyn Ritrosky, PhD’97, served as screenwriter and producer of the short film "Stardust & Moonbeams." She is also coauthor of the novel on which the film is based. The film explores themes of art and gender in the 1920s and is currently playing festivals around the country. Ritrosky filmed the project with a mostly female crew at the Farmer House Museum in Bloomington. (January 2018)
Norman Thoeming, BA’97, is the author of thriller novel ‘Come and Get Me,’ under pen name August Norman. The novel, set in Bloomington, is expected to be the first in a series.
Prior to a career as a novelist, Thoeming worked as an actor, screenwriter, comedian and musician in California. (May 2019)
Rebecca M. Townsend, MA’97, is a professor and chair of the Department of Communications and Humanities at Manchester Community College in Longmeadow, Massachusetts. In 2012, she was awarded a $77,000 Federal Transit Administration Grant to conduct research into culturally sensitive deliberation during transit planning as part of the Public Transportation Participation Pilot Program. (December 2015)
Ron Whitworth, BAJ’97, is chief privacy officer of SunTrust in Atlanta. He previously served in the same role at EverBank in Jacksonville, Florida. In addition to his duties as CPO, Whitworth manages SunTrust’s compliance teams for human resources, marketing and information security. (February 2017)
Paul Hoover, BA’98, is a banking recruiter for MSI International in Atlanta, Georgia. Before taking this position, Hoover was the assistant director of admissions at the Art Institute of Atlanta. (December 2015)
Josh Newell, BAJ’98, was appointed executive director of Jesus Film Project, an evangelical organization founded in 1981 to distribute religious-based films in English and a variety of other major world languages. (June 2018).
Chris Stolle, BAJ’98, has worked as a development editor with Alpha Books and DK Books, divisions of Penguin Random House, in Indianapolis since October 2015. He has started to explore the business of acquiring books. (April 2017)
Rachael Bosley, MA’99, is a freelance editor and writer in New Jersey. Her feature on AMC’s "Better Call Saul" will be published in American Cinematographer’s July 2017 issue. (April 2017)
Ryan Cole, BA'99, MA'07, has published “Light-Horse Harry Lee: The Rise and Fall of a Revolutionary Hero — The Tragic Life of Robert E. Lee's Father.”
Cole has previously served in communications roles for former Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels and Sen.Todd Young, R-Ind.. He has written about American history for several publications, including The Wall Street Journal, National Review, The New Criterion, Civil War Times, The American Interest and The Indianapolis Star. (January 2019)
Jennifer Emily, BAJ’99, is an award-winning reporter at The Dallas Morning News. She has covered the justice system from the street to the courtroom to the execution chamber. She has also written about child criminals, growing up in prison, wrongful convictions, police shootings and the flaws of eyewitness testimony. (October 2019)
Jeff Fleischer, BAJ’99, is a Chicago-based author, journalist and editor. He has written several nonfiction books, including "Votes of Confidence: A Young Person’s Guide to American Elections, Rockin’ the Boat: 50 Iconic Revolutionaries" and "The Latest Craze: A Short History of Mass Hysterias." "Fleischer’s 2015 book Rockin’ the Boat: 50 Iconic Revolutionaries from Joan of Arc to Malcolm X" was named a 2017 Illinois Reads book, one of six books chosen as part of a statewide reading initiative aimed at high school students. The program encourages people to read books by Illinois authors.(August 2017)
Sarah Nichols, BAJ’99, teaches journalism, photojournalism, mass media and publications at Whitney High School in Rocklin, California. This year, she was honored as the Journalism Education Association’s Carl Towley Award recipient at the Journalism Educators Association and National Scholastic Press Association’s fall national convention. This award is the JEA’s highest honor. Nichols developed an online journalism curriculum available to JEA members. (December 2015)
Eric Pankowski, BA’99, is executive producer and showrunner of Apple’s “Carpool Karoke: The Series.” He won an Emmy for Outstanding Short Form Variety Series in 2018. In addition to his work for shows including “It’s Not You, It’s Men” and “The Arsenio Hall Show,” he also served as CBS’s executive producer and senior vice president of programming and development. Pankowski is co-host of the “Hoosier Hysterics” podcast with fellow alumnus Ward Roberts, BA’00. (February 2019)
Sheila Schroeder, PhD’99, is an associate professor at the University of Denver. Schroeder started Project DU F.I.L.M., an initiative that pairs existing University of Denver Film Studies and Production students with professional alumni mentors. Schroeder led a team to complete the award-winning film "Happy F-ing Valentine’s Day." Maya Ferrario, BA’15, served on the team as on-set sound recordist. The short film, which Schroeder co-wrote and produced, has received two best narrative short film awards and two audience choice awards. (December 2016)