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Entertainment and Sports Spring 2009 Newsletter

A Message From PRSA Entertainment & Sports Newsletter Committee
Meet the Members of the Entertainment & Sports Committee
Upcoming Events
Newsletter Q&A: Tell Us What You Want

A Message from PRSA Entertainment & Sports Newsletter Committee

On behalf of the Entertainment & Sports Section Executive Committee, we welcome you to the reactivated Section newsletter, which is a direct result of feedback from this year’s Section survey. The newsletter, to be produced quarterly, is back by popular demand and this issue marks the first for 2009. To get the newsletter underway, we need additional feedback from you. To help, we’ve added a short Q&A that is due back to us by Friday, April 10.

We know the challenges everyone faces with regard to “too much email,” so our newsletter will focus on those things most important to you, as identified by the survey results. We want to make it your “go-to” source that helps you network, facilitate professional connections, find resources, learn about professional development opportunities, share experiences, and understand key issues and trends from the industry and public relations.

To kick off the newly updated newsletter, our focus is to welcome you, introduce you to the executive committee and pick your brain for future issues. Our goal is to provide you resource information, success stories, professional development opportunities and interviews with some of our more prominent members to learn the lessons of their successes.

As we begin 2009, we encourage you to attend as many PRSA and Section events as possible (for these are great networking opportunities), ask you to encourage other public relations colleagues to consider PRSA if they aren’t members already, and complete and submit the newsletter Q&A so we can make this a valuable tool for you. But, most importantly, welcome to the PRSA Entertainment & Sports Section!

Newsletter Committee
Tricia Farwell (co-chair)
Gloria Stone (co-chair)
Kari Conley

Meet the Members of the Entertainment & Sports Committee
As we mentioned earlier, we want to introduce the executive committee to you so that you can learn more about those who are charged with steering this Section for 2009.

John Ingoldsby, co-chair
John Ingoldsby is president of IIR Sports & Entertainment, Inc., located near Boston. He is a public relations executive who has provided a wide variety of public relations and sports marketing services for numerous sports and entertainment organizations and personalities, including a national award-winning event with Jonathan Kraft, president of the New England Patriots, as speaker. Ingoldsby began his career as a sports journalist, and has covered the NFL and NCAA, while also conducting exclusive interviews with the likes of Curt Schilling and Pete Carroll. In addition to PRSA, John is a member of The Gridiron Club of Greater Boston, The Boston College Gridiron Club, The National Sports Marketing Network and The Great Fenway Park Writers Series. He is a graduate of St. Francis University in Pennsylvania with a Bachelor of Arts in English and journalism.

Hanna Pantle, co-chair
Hanna Pantle is assistant vice president for corporate and media relations at BMI, which is based in Los Angeles, Calif.. Pantle oversees and is responsible for the company’s global media strategy, as well as directing BMI’s media relations teams in Los Angeles, Nashville and New York. She serves as the senior editor of BMI’s Music World magazine and as an editorial contributor to Pantle has been at BMI for 12 years, having previously held the positions of executive director, Media Relations, and senior director, Media Relations and New Media Relations. She is a board member for the following organizations: the Entertainment Public Relations Professionals Society, the Music and Entertainment Auxiliary of Childhelp USA, and the TJ Martell Foundation, Los Angeles chapter. Pantle also is a member of the City of Hope Music & Entertainment chapter, the Recording Academy’s Los Angeles chapter and the Country Music Association. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism and mass communications from the University of Oklahoma.

Tricia M. Farwell, Ph.D., secretary
Dr. Tricia M. Farwell, assistant professor of advertising, joined Middle Tennessee State University’s (MTSU) School of Journalism in 2008. She is the current teaching co-chair of the public relations division of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC). Dr. Farwell holds a Bachelor of Arts degree, concurrent master’s degrees and a Ph.D. from Arizona State University. Professionally, she has worked in small corporate communications for more than 17 years. Prior to arriving at MTSU, Dr. Farwell taught public relations at Arizona State University, as well as advertising and public relations at Morehead State University. She has presented her research at several conferences, including the Hawaii International Conference on Arts and Humanities and the Midwest Popular Culture Association. Her book reviews have appeared in Journal of Advertising Education and Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly. Additionally, Dr. Farwell is the author of “Love and Death in Edith Wharton’s Fiction.”

Sheila Francis, special events chair
Sheila Francis, director of event and venue public relations, started at Washington Sports & Entertainment seven years ago as the Event & Venue Public Relations coordinator. Four months later, she was promoted to assistant director; two years later, she was promoted to her current position as director. Francis acts as the press liaison for events, concerts and family shows held at the Verizon Center and Patriot Center arenas. Additional responsibilities include acting as a spokesperson for the organization, publicizing building benchmarks and activities, and coordinating media events and interviews with the chairmen, owners and high-ranking executives within the organization. She has worked on various publicity campaigns and events, including the “Walking with the Dinosaurs — the Live Experience” show; the Verizon Center’s 10th anniversary season-long campaign; media days with World Wrestling Entertainment, Sesame Street Live and the Harlem Globetrotters; and a rededication ceremony for the Sixth & I Historic Synagogue involving high-profile dignitaries. Francis has been on the Event & Arena Marketing Conference planning committee for two years, and has been a PRSA member for the past three years.


Ramon Alvarez
Ramon Alvarez, public relations director for Fox Sports Southwest/Houston/Oklahoma, has promoted regional sports television networks since 1990, when he helped create the public relations department for Prime Network, the pre-cursor to Fox Sports Net. He serves as the primary spokesman and oversees publicity and community relations for Fox Sports Southwest, Fox Sports Houston and Fox Sports Oklahoma. Prior to entering the public relations field, Alvarez spent six years as a sportswriter for the Pasadena Star-News in Pasadena, Calif., where he wrote a weekly sports media column and spent several seasons as the paper’s beat writer for the Los Angeles Lakers, California Angels and Los Angeles Rams.

Tara August
Tara August, senior manager of production services for Turner Sports, oversees production activities for the company’s marquee roster of on-air sports announcers, including basketball legends Charles Barkley and Reggie Miller, baseball Hall of Famers Cal Ripken, Jr. and Dennis Eckersley, former NASCAR driver Kyle Petty and former golf major winner Ian Baker-Finch. Previously, August served as the public relations manager for Turner Sports, where she directed visibility efforts for Turner’s sports programming on the TNT, TBS and NBA TV networks, as well as the digital platforms of,, and In addition to PRSA, August is a member of the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ). She is a graduate of the University of San Francisco with a Master of Arts degree in sport management, and of San Diego State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in comparative literature.

Colleen Sperry Aungst
Colleen Sperry Aungst, public relations manager for US Lacrosse, the national governing body for the sport of lacrosse, initiates and leads internal and external communications to represent US Lacrosse constituencies. US Lacrosse is located in Baltimore, Md. Aungst received her Master of Business Administration from the University of Baltimore in 2007 and Bachelor of Science from Le Moyne College (Syracuse, N.Y.) in 2003. Aungst has more than seven years experience focusing on public relations, marketing, media relations and social media.

Charles Bloom
Charles Bloom is associate commissioner in the Southeastern Conference (SEC) office and oversees media and public relations. He supervises the media and public relations operations for the league’s 20 sports, serves as chief spokesperson and oversees communication strategies for the office. He also serves as media director for the SEC Football Championship Game and various other conference and NCAA championships.  Bloom assisted with the creation of the Bowl Championship Series, including its formula for ranking teams and developing its media relations policies and procedures. He also serves as chief administrator for baseball in the SEC office, setting conference schedules, serving as liaison for the league’s coaches and umpires, and overseeing game operations with the conference tournament. Bloom also has served as assistant athletics director/sports information director at East Carolina University, associate sports information director at Ole Miss and assistant sports information director at LSU. He is a 1985 graduate of the University of South Carolina.

Kari Conley, APR
Kari Conley, director of community relations and the Orlando Magic Youth Fund for the Orlando Magic for nine seasons, oversees the strategic direction for the organization’s corporate philanthropy in the areas of education, the arts, and health and wellness. Prior to joining the Orlando Magic, Conley was responsible for implementing public relations and branding strategies at Carlman Booker Reis public relations agency and The Salvation Army National Headquarters in Washington, D.C. She received her master’s degree in organizational communication from Baylor University and her bachelor of arts degree from Samford University. Conley serves on the boards for the Ronald McDonald House in Orlando, Valencia Community College Take Stock in Children, Nap Ford Charter School Foundation and the Children’s Home Society. She is the past president of the Florida Public Relations Association Orlando Area chapter and is Accredited in Public Relations.

Doug Dull
Doug Dull, associate athletics director for media relations for the past six years at the University of Maryland, is part of an overall communications group in athletics that is responsible for providing public relations, publicity and media relations for 27 intercollegiate sports at Maryland. Now in his 18th year in athletics media relations, Dull also has directed units at Chico State University, University of California Davis and Kansas State University. In 2006, he served as president of the College Sports Information Directors of America, an organization of collegiate publicists throughout the United States and Canada that now includes more than 2,300 members. He is a 1981 graduate of the University of Maryland in athletics administration.

Rachel McCallister
Rachel McCallister, co-founder and co-president of mPRm Public Relations, shares in the strategic direction and overall management of the company. She also provides guidance for the company’s corporate, television, and digital media and technology clients. Recognized by the Publicists Guild of America with its Les Mason Award for outstanding career achievement, McCallister includes among her career highlights the launch of E! Entertainment Television, FX, Classic Sports Network, The WB, RealNetworks,, and numerous television series and specials including “Dynasty,” “ALF,” “In Living Color” and “Lonesome Dove.” She is chair of Television Publicity Executive Committee, and sits on the Digital Coast Roundtable board. She also founded Rachel McCallister & Associates, and co-founded KillerApp Communications, which were merged into mPRm.

Andrew McGowan
Andrew McGowan, vice president, communications and community relations for Red Bull New York, oversees corporate communications, television and radio broadcasting, community relations and the company’s online presences. He also serves as the company’s spokesperson and works closely with Major League Soccer and Red Bull, the world’s leading energy drink, in promoting the team and the brand. McGowan previously served as vice president, communications, for the National Hockey League’s Washington Capitals and as director of public relations for the National Hockey League. He also has taught strategic sports communications at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, George Washington University and Iona College. He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University at Albany, a master’s degree in sports management from Springfield College and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Hartford.

Annie Metarko
Annie Metarko, administrative assistant in the media relations and communications division at Little League Baseball and Softball in Williamsport, Pa., coordinates the news media support during the Little League Baseball World Series, coordinates the media credential request process and background checks for those media representatives attending the annual tournament, coordinates media center operations during events, maintains and updates media relations databases and photo and slip files, and designs and/or updates approximately 100 different publications during the year while coordinating with commercial printers on the technical aspects of printing various publications.

Mark Miller
Mark Miller, corporate communications manager for the United States Bowling Congress (USBC), oversees non-tournament communications at USBC, the national governing body for the sport of bowling. This includes media and general inquiries on USBC and bowling and the new International Bowling Campus. He also oversees USBC Convention communications, monitors media stories, maintains bowling history and keeps track of all-time bowler achievements. A 23-bowling industry public relations and publications veteran, Miller was the key public relations person during the formation of USBC in 2004 and 2005. Previously, the University of Wisconsin journalism graduate spent seven years as a sportswriter in Pine Bluff, Ark., and Bloomington, Ill.

Mark Pogachefsky
Mark Pogachefsky, co-founder and co-president of mPRm Public Relations, shares in the strategic direction and overall management of the company. He also provides guidance for the company’s film and corporate clients. Campaign highlights include: “In The Bedroom,” “Memento,” “Elizabeth,” “You Can Count on Me,” “The Ice Storm,” “L.A. Confidential,” “The Usual Suspects” and “Fargo.” He founded The Pogachefsky Company in 1992, which was merged into mPRm in 1998.

Dave Rashford
Dave Rashford is director of communications and on-air promotions for Rogers Sportsnet, the Canadian (near Toronto) high-definition leader in live-events sports broadcasting. He is a member of the Sportsnet senior management team and a network original (1998). He is in charge of strategic planning for key stakeholders of the eight-channel network, including the Canadian Olympic Broadcast Media Consortium. Rashford started his media career as a sports journalist, working for the Hamilton Spectator and Canadian Press. He is a journalism graduate of Conestoga College.

Melissa A.E. Sanders
Melissa Sanders, director of public and media relations for the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra since January 2008, oversees strategic communications, media relations, and publicity for Atlanta Symphony Orchestra activities, including performances at Atlanta Symphony Hall, Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre at Encore Park and Chastain Park Amphitheater. Prior to coming to Atlanta, Sanders spent 11 years in the public relations department of the New York Philharmonic, and also has worked with arts organizations in Ohio, including Opera Columbus and BalletMet Columbus. She has been a PRSA member for 12 years and a League of American Orchestras member for 10 years. Sanders received her bachelor of arts degree in journalism/public relations from The Ohio State University.

Gloria C. Stone
Gloria Stone, communications consultant, oversees a broad range of communications — from public relations to corporate social responsibility, marketing communications, event management and public affairs. 2009 marks her second year on executive committee. Her experience spans more than 20 years in corporate and agency settings and a wide variety of industries (aerospace, automotive, agriculture, animal health, plastics, chemicals, pharmaceuticals). She recently entered the entertainment and sports areas. In her most recent global corporate experience with Novartis Oncology, she launched many cancer medications — one announced by the secretary of Health & Human Services and featured as the cover of Time magazine. Stone also worked on the first global cancer access program helping thousands of people around the world receive free medicine and patient information and counseling, and she initiated symposia, bringing together world experts to highlight global challenges of cancer to the public health community. She is past chair of the New York chapter of the International Association of Business Communicators, member of the Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association (HBA) and member of the Global Health Council. Stone received her Master of Science from Rutgers University, her Master of Business Administration from Fairleigh Dickinson University and her Bachelor of Arts from American University.

Rita Tateel
Rita Tateel, president of The Celebrity Source, has worked with celebrities for more than 25 years, including the last 20 as president of The Celebrity Source. Her company recruits and coordinates celebrities for special events and public relations/marketing campaigns for corporate and nonprofit clients. The Celebrity Source has been hired by Disney, Paramount, Coca-Cola, Hallmark, Nestle, People Magazine, Purina, Toyota Motorsports, Habitat for Humanity, American Red Cross and Special Olympics, among many others. Tateel has been interviewed and quoted as an expert on celebrities in numerous publications and media sources, including CNN, The Wall Street Journal, People Magazine, Playboy Magazine, The Los Angeles Times, New York Times, USA Today, as well as E! Entertainment Television, “EXTRA!” and “Entertainment Tonight.” Serving as president of the PRSA-LA Chapter for a second term in 2009, Tateel is only the third president to do so in the 60-year history of the Chapter. She also helped create PRSA’s Entertainment & Sports Section. Tateel has a master’s degree in social work and a bachelor’s degree in child development

Upcoming Events
E&S Section Networking Event
TBD, but around Memorial Day

2009 PRSA International Conference: Delivering Value
San Diego
November 7–10, 2009

**Click here for 2009 Events Calendar

Submit additions to 2009 Events by emailing Andrew McGowan

Newsletter Q&A: Tell Us What You Want
Your input is important to us as we move forward with our updated newsletter. Tell us what you would like to see in upcoming issues. Take a few minutes to fill out a short online survey no later than Friday, April 10, 2009.

Click here to start the survey.

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