Greta Van Susteren, Keynote SpeakerHost, "Full Court Press"
Greta Van Susteren, Keynote Speaker
A veteran of CNN, Fox News Channel and MSNBC, Van Susteren is an award-winning and trusted communicator with decades of experience as an interviewer, analyst, host and moderator. Prior to her on-air career, she spent almost 20 years practicing law.
Van Susteren joined Gray Television in April 2019 as Chief National Political Analyst, providing stations with political analysis of major news events and traveling around the country to report on stories impacting Americans today.
On September 8, 2019, Van Susteren launched the nationally syndicated Sunday show, “Full Court Press with Greta Van Susteren” which is reshaping the political show format to focus on how local communities are affected by critical issues, political decisions, and national events, through substantive interviews of newsmakers, roundtable discussions, and both on-the-ground and investigative reports from Gray stations.
Van Susteren launched “On The Record” in February 2002 at Fox News Channel. The prime time news and interview program was number 1 in its time slot for the entire 14½ years she was at the network. Her reporting took her all across the world including North Korea, Afghanistan, Iraq, Sudan, Egypt, Pakistan, India, and others.
Before joining Fox News, she hosted CNN’s prime-time news and analysis program, “The Point with Greta Van Susteren,” and co-hosted the network’s daily legal analysis show, “Burden of Proof.” Her legal analysis for CNN’s coverage of Election 2000 earned her the American Bar Association’s Presidential Award for Excellence in Journalism.
Van Susteren has interviewed hundreds of leading government officials, from U.S. Presidents to cabinet members, from leaders of the House and Senate, to Generals and Ambassadors. Her interviews include President Donald Trump, President Barack Obama (when he was a U.S. Senator), President George W. Bush, President Bill Clinton, President George H. W. Bush, President Jimmy Carter, Vice President Mike Pence, Vice President Dick Cheney, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley, National Security Advisor General HR McMaster, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, and Former Speakers Paul Ryan, John Boehner, and Newt Gingrich. Her interviews also include members of Congress, governors and spiritual leaders, including the Rev. Billy Graham and the Rev. Franklin Graham.
Joe Jason, Student Awards HostPresident, Joe Jason Media
Joe Jason, Student Awards Host
Joe Jason has celebrated more than 40 years in broadcasting. He has been a radio station owner and on-air talent during that time. He is currently the lead play-by-play announcer for the MHSAA Championship Network, a relationship that began over 30 years ago. Joe is a current Member of the MAB Foundation Board.
Ann Emmerich, BEA Co-HostAnchor, WILX-TV (Lansing)
Ann Emmerich, BEA Co-Host
Ann Emmerich anchors the 5,6, & 11 pm news for WILX-TV 10. She contributes original stories to the newscasts on a regular basis.
A proud graduate of Central Michigan University, Ann has received several awards. She won an Emmy for a 2012 Investigative Report which revealed problems with Ingham County’s 911 Consolidation. Ann’s work has also been recognized by the Associated Press and the Michigan Association of Broadcasters. In 2011, Ingham County Animal Shelter recognized Ann with a Humanitarian of the Year Award.
Ann is active in the community. She’s served on the Board of Highfields, Inc., and is active with the American Cancer Society’s “Making Strides Against Breast Cancer,” and the Tri-County Office on Aging.
Ann is the proud mother of three adult sons Edward, Daniel and Tom. She’s been married to her husband Tom for 32 years.
Jerry Hodak, BEA Co-HostRetired, WXYZ-TV (Detroit)
Jerry Hodak, BEA Co-Host
Jerry Hodak began his broadcast career in 1961 as a newscaster on Detroit’s WDET-FM while studying mass communications at Wayne State University.
At the same time, he was on the announcing staff of WABX-FM, Detroit’s concert music station.
Later, Hodak moved to Florida where he started his TV career at WDBO-TV, the CBS TV station in Orlando. While there, he covered many early space launches from Cape Canaveral for his local station as well as for the CBS Radio and Television networks.
Jerry also covered several hurricanes and became a weathercaster on the station’s 11 P.M. newscast.
Hodak returned to Detroit in 1965 and began his weathercasting career at WJBK-TV. In 1974, he added science reporting to his duties and became the first science and medical reporter on Detroit television.
He covered that specialty for 27 years, first at WJBK-TV and later at WXYZ-TV. His medical reports were distributed to television stations nationwide by Lorimar Productions.
Hodak received a local EMMY for his science reporting in 1988.
Jerry Hodak was inducted into both the Michigan Association of Broadcasting Hall of Fame and the Michigan Journalism Hall of Fame in 2010.
Jerry retired from WXYZ-TV in September, 2010, after 45 years on Detroit television.
Hodak resides in East Lansing with his wife of 56 years, Peggy. The couple has three daughters and five grandsons. Jerry was adopted as an infant and two of grandsons are adoptees.
Mark AdlerPresident, VAIdigital LLC
Mark Adler has morphed his passion of making films and training over a long multifaceted career which includes roles on corporate, commercial and feature film productions. He has found himself on the cutting edge of his craft using new technology to tell stories, capture events or assist the creative team on a number of projects.
A fine writer, he translated that creative ability into television and film production. These strong skills have been honed further by training others in courses and seminars. Through his relationships and experience Mark has become a leader, business owner, event planner, an author (“Production Algebra, a handbook for production assistants” 2009 – Volume 2 ebook June 2018) and a public speaker.
Over the past 25 years, Mark Adler has developed his creative and organizational skills in positions ranging from Trainer and Director to Producer and President of VAIdigital LLC a video support company for the film industry. At present, Mark divides his time between managing VAIdigital and building his 501c6 trade organization, the Michigan Production Alliance with the goal of creating a more stable financial environment for the production community in Michigan.
During his career, Mark has trained hundreds of individuals in the use of production, multimedia methods and technology. As President and primary technician of VAIdigital LLC , Mark functions as liaison and consultant on the video aspects of commercial and feature film productions as well as providing rental of video assist and TelePrompTer display systems.
VAIdigital LLC has provided video assist or “instant replay” service on thousands of local, regional and national commercials over many years – FCA, Ford and GM are clients. He has worked directly with directors as the Video Assist Operator on feature films such as BATMAN v SUPERMAN, and KEY video assist on FREAKY DEAKY, The SET UP, VAMPS, THE DOUBLE, RED DAWN, STONE, HUNG and CONVICTION.
His teleprompter work has included series such as the Daytime Emmy winning Innovation Nation with Mo Rocca, CBS, Did I mention Invention with Alie Ward on the CW and The James Brown Show on CBS Sports. Having always been interested in new technologies Mark began operating robot cameras and Vison Mixers for webcasts and live shows.
Prior to broadcast work, Mark was responsible for the design, oversight and implementation of MacLean-Hunter Cable LTD’s community access center in EastPointe and Centerline, Michigan. As Production Manager, his skills were tested in all areas from training staff, city officials and volunteers to lighting editing, camera operating and directing.
Mark quite literally built a production facility, a mobile production vehicle and a following of community volunteers in order to create entertainment and informational programming for the franchise area. With the start up complete, Mark moved into commercial production in 1982.
Don BackusAccount Manager, Radio Transmitters, Rohde & Schwarz
Don Backus is Account Manager, Radio Transmitters for Rohde & Schwarz, handling Canada and the United States. Prior to joining Rohde & Schwarz in mid-2017, Don was Eastern US Sales Manager for Broadcast Electronics for five years. Don was previously VP of Sales & Marketing at ENCO Systems for 13 years and prior to that has held a number of positions in radio as an on-air personality, production director, general manager and chief engineer. He has presented to a number of professional broadcasting organizations including the Audio Engineering Society, a number of international, state and regional conferences and several SBE chapters. Don has served two terms on the board of the Michigan Association of Broadcasters and has just completed serving a second term on the Michigan Association of Broadcasters Foundation board.
Josh BohnPresident &CEO. Bohn Broadcast Services and MaxxKonnect Wireless
Josh Bohn has worked in the broadcast industry for nearly 25 years, starting out as a part-time DJ and board op, running Penn State football, in Central Pennsylvania. After getting fired by the Chief Engineer for “screwing everything all up” then being rehired after the Chief Engineer got a new job elsewhere, Josh went to college at Point Park University in Pittsburgh for… History. He then went on to work in a variety of technical and engineering positions around the country with Delmarva Broadcasting, Cumulus, Radio One, and Clear Channel. Josh also served as Corporate Engineer for Main Line Broadcasting prior to their merge with Alpha Media. Josh also owns and operates WIEZ-AM in Decatur, Alabama.
Josh is currently President and CEO of Bohn Broadcast Services and MaxxKonnect Wireless. Bohn Broadcast is a broadcast engineering firm that provides technical and integration services to radio and TV clients around the country. MaxxKonnect Wireless, a subsidiary of Bohn Broadcast, provides priority LTE internet connections for broadcast use for transmitter sites, remotes and a variety of other purposes. Both are based in the Birmingham, Alabama area.
Hal ButtermoreDirector, Sales (North America), The Telos Alliance
Hal Buttermore brings more than 30 years of broadcast engineering experience to his role with The Telos Alliance TV Solutions Group. Hal is currently travelling the U.S. and Canada helping broadcasters understand the transition to SMPTE 2110/AES67 and IP based solutions.
Arco GroenenbergDirector of Sales Central Region, LiveU
Arco Groenenberg is a global sales leader with 20+ years of experience growing businesses and driving results across continents and industries including IT, Software and Cloud technologies. Arco demonstrates a proven track record of success spearheading strategic growth initiatives and maintaining long-term client and partner relationships. Arco is a coach, mentor, advisor to colleagues, partners, friends and clients.
Kirk HarnackSenior Systems Consultant, The Telos Alliance
Kirk Harnack brings nearly 40 years of hands-on experience in broadcast engineering and education to his position at The Telos Alliance. His expertise in putting technology to work in broadcast facilities has driven notable expansion in IP-Audio, VoIP for broadcast, and other new technology adoption by audio content creators.
Kirk maintains an active, hands-on role in broadcast engineering through his positions as a partner and VP-Engineering of South Seas Broadcasting, Inc., licensee of KKHJ-FM and WVUV-FM in American Samoa. He is also partner and Director of Engineering for Delta Radio, LLC, licensee of six radio stations in Cleveland, Indianola, and Greenville, Mississippi. Kirk is a certified Meteorologist, Private Pilot, and licensed General Class Amateur Radio operator (KD5FYD). He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Society of Broadcast Engineers, and has served as Chairman of the SBE Chapter in Memphis, Tennessee, and Program Chair and Vice-Chair of SBE Chapter 103 in Nashville, Tennessee.
Kirk founded the Internet video netcast, “This Week in Radio Tech” or “TWiRT”. This 1-hour weekly video netcast, features regular contributors and guests from the world of radio engineering.
Boyd HuppertReporter, KARE-TV (Minneapolis)
During his 35-year career in television news, Boyd Huppert has become widely known for his work as a video storyteller and teacher.
In his primary role, Boyd works as a reporter at KARE TV in Minneapolis, where he produces and hosts the station’s weekly “Land of 10,000 Stories” segment.
Boyd has also presented more than 150 visual storytelling workshops across North America and in Norway, Denmark and New Zealand.
Boyd’s work as a reporter has earned some of journalism’s highest honors, including a national Emmy for feature reporting, more than 100 regional Emmys, the Scripps Howard Award, and multiple National Headliner, Sigma Delta Chi and Gabriel Awards. In 2017 Boyd was recognized with the National Edward R. Murrow Award for news writing, his 16th National Murrow. Boyd is a 2016 recipient of the Sprague Award, the highest honor bestowed by the National Press Photographers Association. Also in 2016, Boyd was inducted into the Emmy Silver Circle, recognizing career contributions to the television industry.
Prior to his arrival at KARE in 1996, Boyd worked at WITI-TV in Milwaukee, KETV in Omaha and WSAW-TV in Wausau, Wisconsin.
Boyd grew up on a dairy farm in Wisconsin and graduated with a journalism degree from UW-River Falls, where he was named the university’s 2013 distinguished alumnus.
Laurie KahnPresident, Media Staffing Network, Inc.
Laurie Kahn is Creator and President of Media Staffing Network, Inc. ™ the first staffing company to cater exclusively to media sales and associated departments for full time placement, consulting and career coaching for the Agency, Broadcast, Cable, Internet, Digital, New Media and Print industries. Successfully placing people since 1993, now offers solutions to finding local sellers in all market sizes.
Kahn’s more than 25 years experience in media includes local and national sales positions in both large and small markets; turn around expertise with new formats; and local and national management positions.
Kahn is currently involved with various industry associations and participates at career fairs, colleges and webinars to educate individuals about career opportunities. Kahn conducts seminars targeting all aspects of talent acquisition, job search and how to grow your career. In addition, Kahn has authored articles appearing in Career Builder, Chicago Tribune, Sales and Marketing Magazine, Radio Ink, Young Money, and Inside the Minds “Staffing Leadership Strategies” to name a few. Kahn has been featured in Crain’s/Chicago and quoted in the Wall Street Journal. She has also developed courses for women re-entering the work force and has mentored numerous women in media.
Kahn has been an elected member of MIW (Most Influential Women in Media) yearly since 2008 and has received numerous awards for sales and management throughout her career.
She regularly presents workplace topics to industry associations nationwide, including Broadcast Education Association, Chicago Advertising Federation, National Association of Broadcasters, Broadcast & Financial Managers Assn. and the Radio Advertising Bureau.
Jay KruzDirector of Branding + Content | 3-7pm Host, Mix 94.9 WREW-FM (Cincinnati)
Named one of Radio’s Rising Stars by Radio Ink Magazine and one of broadcasting’s 30 Under 30 in America by Edison Media, Jay Kruz is the Program Director and Afternoon Host at Mix 94.9 in Cincinnati.
Kruz got his start at the age of 14 at his high school radio station, WSDP/Plymouth, MI. At age 18, he was hired as afternoon drive host at WTWR in Monroe/Toledo, Ohio. He has a diverse media background including stops at MTV Networks in New York City and radio stations in Detroit, Cincinnati and Cayman Islands. He has worked as a program director, on-air personality, imaging director, emcee, and voiceover artist. Kruz helped develop the first MTV podcasts, hosted a nationwide afternoon show on XM Satellite Radio, and has been the voice of multiple radio stations & syndicated radio specials.
Kruz volunteers as a member of the Board of Directors and is a Past President at the Music Resource Center in Cincinnati where he helped start a low power FM station for teenagers, 95.7 MRC. When he’s not on the radio, Kruz serves as emcee for the Cincinnati Cyclones professional hockey team. He enjoys collecting vintage radios, traveling around the world with his wife, and playing hockey.
Karl LahmFounder, Broadcast Transmission Services LLC
Karl Lahm formed Broadcast Transmission Services, LLC, to offer part‐time transmission system consulting services to US broadcasters, following his retirement in June 2018 from 19 years with Univision, where he was the Director, RF Systems Engineering, for the company’s local TV and radio stations. He led the Univision stations’ conversion to digital transmission, selection of final digital channels, and the build‐out of most digital transmitting facilities in service today. He is currently involved in the post‐Auction channel repacking implementation and ATSC‐3 transmission planning.
Prior to joining Univision, Mr. Lahm was a senior RF systems engineer with the US International Broadcasting Bureau, the parent of the Voice of America worldwide radio service, from 1992 to 1999, where he designed and rebuilt high‐power AM‐band transmission systems and oversaw the installation of new transmitters. He was a broadcast consulting engineer with regulatory consulting engineering firms in the Washington, DC area, from 1981 to 1992, where he performed and directed AM, FM, and TV service analyses, coverage optimizations, RF systems design, and many technical submittals to the FCC.
He is a Registered Professional Engineer, received his BS degree in Electrical Engineering from Michigan Technological University, and has presented numerous technical papers on broadcast transmission facilities at industry conferences.
Gary LangleyChief Engineer, Interlochen Public Radio
Gary Langley is a Michigan native who grew up on a horse ranch North of Detroit. He graduated from Caseville Public school in 1992 and served honorably in the USMC as a ground radio repairman from 1992-1996.
He began working in broadcast engineering as a supervising engineer for WEYI in Clio, Michigan in January of 1997. In 2000, Gary took a position with KUSA in Denver, Colorado, where he was the Engineer in Charge for many live remote broadcasts, to include a weekly show with the Denver Bronco’s, Colorado Parade of Lights, and the Western Stock Show. He maintained and serviced 14 remote live cameras, maintained audio and video links to the professional sporting arenas in Denver, such as Coors Field, The Pepsi Center, and the famed Mile High Stadium. His favorite memory of Denver is being able to attend the last game at the old Mile High Stadium and seeing Jerry Rice’s last game as a ’49er. He also climbed towers in the thin Colorado air to repair and install new equipment.
After his father took ill in 2001, Gary moved back to Michigan and took a position with WGTU-TV in Traverse City to be closer to home. Here he was instrumental in moving the entire operations and studio of their sister station WBKP-TV, from Calumet to Marquette in a three day span while keeping them on the air and broadcasting. After the transition, he stayed in the Upper Peninsula as the chief engineer for WBKP. In 2012, Gary took a position with WPBN-TV/WGTU-TV in Traverse City.
In September 2016, Gary made the transition from WPBN 7&4 to Interlochen Public Radio after nearly twenty years in television broadcast engineering. He lives in Traverse City with his wife Tina, and together they have five children. Jesse (Brandi), Kyle, Nicholas, Jordan, Macy and one grandchild, Skylar.
Mike LewandowskiDirector of Sales, Power Techniques
- Director of Sales, Power Techniques since August 2019.
- National Sales Manager, Service-Atlas Copco 2010-2018.
- BSBA Central Michigan University.
- MBA Oakland University.
- Mike grew up in Michigan and lives in Troy.
- Mike is the proud father of 3 and just celebrated 25 years of marriage to his wife Jennifer.
- When not selling new UPS equipment Mike enjoys spending time with his family and playing golf.
Zak McGrawSales/Applications Engineer, ATEQ USA
Working for an ad agency for 4 years, Zak McGraw has worked with clients from all over Michigan and the United States. Gaining experience in videography, 360 photography, aerial photography and even 360 aerial photography has pushed him toward new experiences and technology.
Zak is a 26 year old avid gamer with a knack for skipping dessert for that perfect sunset aerial shot. With an Associates in Computer Graphics Technology, and a curiosity for new technology, becoming a licensed drone pilot and Google certified photographer was a breeze. Flying came easy from the experienced gained from the video games played over the years (for once they came in handy), but studying for the test was the real challenge.
Don’t know what you want to do when you grow up? Trust me, no one does. Just do what makes you happy and you’ll find your calling.
L’areal LipkinsFounder, Lipkins Consulting Group
L’areal Lipkins can be described in three words: dynamic, spitfire, and a pro at what she does.
Over the last 10 years, L’areal has trained thousands of sales people, sales leaders, customer service, CEOs, Presidents, and everyone in between on how to get out of their own way! In fact, executives at Sprint, Aflac, and Lennox have leveraged L’areal’s expertise in developing high-performing sales teams that are founded on accountability, processes, and strong leadership.
L’areal graduated magna cum laude from the University of North Texas with a degree in marketing, and she received her MBA from the University of Texas at Dallas.
Paige NienaberEvil Genius, CPR Promotions
Paige Nienaber got into promotions in Radio after failing at being on the air. And that would be “Fail” with a capital F. After working at stations in Portland, Minneapolis, Charlotte and San Francisco he began consulting stations on Marketing and Promotions and currently works with over 200 stations across the US and Canada.
Madeleine NolandPresident, Advanced Television Systems Committee Inc.
Madeleine Noland is the President of the Advanced Television Systems Committee Inc. A 15-year industry veteran who is widely respected for her consensus-building leadership style, she chaired the technology group that oversees the ATSC 3.0 next-generation broadcast standard before being named ATSC President in May 2019. Previously, she chaired various ATSC 3.0-related specialist groups, ad hoc groups and implementation teams since 2012.
Noland began her career in the television industry in 2004 with Backchannelmedia Inc., an interactive television technology developer. It was during her work there that she first became involved in ATSC projects. In 2012, she moved on to product and project management roles at Telvue Corp. before joining LG Electronics CTO’s office in 2013. Noland represented LG in a variety of industry organizations for over six years.
She received TV NewsCheck’s “2019 Futurist” Women in Technology Award and was named one of 2018’s “Powerful Women in Consumer Technology” by Dealerscope magazine. In 2016, she received the ATSC’s highest technical honor, the Bernard J. Lechner Outstanding Contributor Award recognizing her leadership related to the development of ATSC 3.0 Next Gen TV.
Credited on three U.S. patents for television technology, Noland is a member of the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers, the Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers, and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers – Broadcast Technology Society. Noland graduated cum laude from the University of Massachusetts. She enjoys travel, and she plays keyboards in a band called “Brave Pursuit.”
David OxenfordPartner, Wilkinson Barker Knauer LLP
David is a partner at the law firm of Wilkinson Barker Knauer LLP, practicing out of its Washington, DC office. He has represented broadcasters for over 30 years on a wide array of matters from the negotiation and structuring of station purchase and sale agreements to regulatory matters. His regulatory expertise includes all areas of broadcast law including the FCC’s multiple ownership limitations, the political broadcasting rules, EEO policy, advertising issues, and other programming matters and FCC technical rules.
His clients range from family-owned broadcasters to active mid-market venture-backed companies to one of the largest noncommercial radio licensees in the country. In addition to representing station groups, David represents a number of state broadcast associations, the trade association for media brokers, program and service providers to the broadcast and digital media industry and banks and others providing financing to media companies.
David also represents webcasters and other digital media companies, including serving as counsel to a webcast trade association. He represents these companies on copyright, music licensing and other business and regulatory issues. He was counsel to the small webcasters group which negotiated the first Small Webcasters Agreement with the recording industry in 2002, represented webcasters who negotiated the Pureplay Webcasters Agreement in 2008, and represented webcasters in litigating sound recording performance royalties in both of the webcasting rate setting proceedings held by the Copyright Royalty Board.
David is a regular speaker at broadcasting and digital media conferences, conventions and trade shows across the country, and regularly conducts webinars for many trade associations. He has also served as an expert witness on broadcasting and music licensing issues.
Seth ReslerDigital Dot Connector, The D Brief
Seth Resler is a broadcasting veteran who, for over two decades has worked behind both the mic and the programming desk in major markets, including New York City, Boston, Seattle, St. Louis, Providence, and San Jose. He left radio in 2006 to enter the world of online marketing. But he kept returning to the broadcasting industry, teaching radio stations how to apply the online marketing techniques being used by Silicon Valley companies. He writes a weekly column on AllAccess.com, offering internet strategies for radio broadcasters. In 2015, Seth joined Jacobs Media Strategies as its Digital Dot Connector, helping radio stations combine all of their digital tools into one overarching strategy.
Kevin RobinsonSenior Partner, Audience Development Group
Kevin Robinson is a passionate, record setting and award-winning 35 year broadcast veteran, having experienced programming success with teams in Chicago, Phoenix, St. Louis, Louisville, Buffalo and Lansing in quality companies like CBS Radio, Bonneville International, Hubbard Radio, Infinity Broadcasting, Salem Media Group and others.
With his company Robinson | Media and past partnership with the Audience Development Group, Kevin has advised companies all over America including Entercom Communications, Beasley Broadcast Group, Westwood One, Midwest Communications, Triad Broadcasting, Townsquare Media, Midwest Family Broadcasting Group, Grand Canyon Broadcasters, LaSalle County Broadcasting, EG Radio Marketing and more.
Kevin partnered with Scott Ragain’s EG Media Group as Executive Vice-President, offering recruitment, assessment, development and coaching of global syndication programming.
As former Vice-President of Hot AC for CBS Radio, Kevin counselled 15 brands coast-to-coast in the format, in addition to coaching Leeza Gibbons, Randy Jackson and Billy Bush through his partnership with Westwood One
He also assists with social and traditional branding and acts as Brand Ambassador for this brother Mark’s company, Indy’s Pro Graphix.
Kevin’s varied format expertise is deep and includes Hot AC, Oldies, Christian AC, Mainstream AC, CHR, Adult Hits, Classic Hits, Country and Talk.
Kevin’s brands consistently perform in the Top 3 of the target – often times as the list leader.
Known largely as a trusted talent coach, Kevin is the only personality mentor who’s coached three different morning shows on three different stations in the same major market to the #1 position.
His efforts have been recognized by The World Wide Radio Summit, Radio & Records, NAB’s Marconi, Radio Ink and has coached CMA, ACM and Marconi Award-winning talent.
Kevin lives in Zionsville, Indiana with his wife of 33 years, Monica. Reach Kevin at (314) 882-2148 or robinsonmedia.fm.
Jeremy RuckPrincipal Engineer, Jeremy Ruck & Associates
Jeremy Ruck is Principal Engineer with Jeremy Ruck & Associates in Canton, Illinois. He has worked in broadcasting for nearly 36 years, with the last 29 in RF consulting. He is a graduate of Bradley University with the Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering degree, and is a licensed Professional Engineer in the State of Illinois. He holds membership in the Association of Federal Communications Consulting Engineers (AFCCE), the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), the Society of Broadcast Engineers (SBE), and the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE).
Jeremy SaloProducer, Cinematographer and Editor, CLV Productions
Jeremy Salo is a producer, cinematographer, and editor at CLV Productions. He produced “Your Brush with Nature,” an Emmy-nominated television series which was nationally syndicated on PBS, Create TV, plus internationally on Netflix, Amazon and various foreign broadcast stations. He is the President of the Detroit ACM SIGGRAPH chapter and on the Board of Directors of the Michigan Production Alliance. For over 10 years, Jeremy has shared his 20+ years of TV and media experiences an an Adjunct Assistant Professor in Computer Graphics Technology at Schoolcraft College in Livonia, Michigan. He is college’s Core Ability Team Leader for Demonstrate Creative and Critical Thinking. Jeremy is also a member of the Schoolcraft Advisory Committee. He received a Master of Arts in Teaching from Madonna University along with a BA in Television and Video Communications. Jeremy is an underwater cinematographer and has recorded for Hook n’ Look on the Outdoor Channel. He is an Ambassador for Scuba Diving for Aquatic Adventures of Michigan and a Rescue Diver through PADI.
Matt SchusterExecutive Director, Public Media Network (Kalamazoo)
Matt has been working in the field of community media for more than 20 years and has recently returned to Michigan to serve as the Executive Director for Public Media Network in Kalamazoo. For the last 5 ½ years, Matt was the Executive Director for TV Santa Barbara, a nonprofit media arts center serving the south coast of Santa Barbara County. While at TV Santa Barbara, Matt diversified funding, launched a youth media program, increased partnerships with local nonprofit organizations, and completed the build out of a 4,000 square foot community media center.
Before heading to coastal living, Matt was the Multimedia Services Supervisor for Louisville Metro Government where he led MetroTV to repeated recognition for Overall Excellence in Government Programming. Matt has also worked as the Cable Television Coordinator for Lake County, Illinois, and Meridian Township, Michigan and was responsible for their government media operations and cable communications policy. Both operations were also recognized for Overall Excellence in Government Programming during his tenure.
Matt is a speaker at national and regional conferences on independent media. Matt served on the National Board of Directors of the Alliance for Community Media (ACM) for 6 years, and was the Board Chair for two of those years. Matt has served on various regional boards for the Alliance for Community Media and currently serves on the national Board of Directors of the Foundation of the Alliance for Community Media. The Alliance for Community Media recognized Matt with the National Buske Leadership Award in 2013. Matt has taught media production at Antioch University Santa Barbara and Bellarmine University in Louisville. Matt has a Master’s Degree in Media Arts from Michigan State University, and a Bachelor’s degree from Western Michigan University.
Derron SteenbergenPresident, Swagger Institute
Derron Steenbergen is the President and Founder of the Swagger Institute. The Swagger Institute specializes in sales and leadership training, motivational speaking, custom service training and business consulting. He is also the Chief Revenue Officer of Commonwealth Broadcasting Corporation. Commonwealth Broadcasting owns and operates 17 stations in Kentucky. Steenbergen has nearly 25 years of broadcast sales experience, beginning as a local direct rep and advancing through the ranks of sales management to his current position of CRO. His years hiring and training salespeople led to the formation of Swagger. Steenbergen enjoys teaching simple steps that can help sellers make more magic in their sales careers. His high energy, audience involved seminars are making huge impacts in the business community across the country. Steenbergen has been called “the most relatable sales guy in the country”. He has traveled over 50,000 miles in over 20 states to help businesses and salespeople build their brand and earn real credibility. He is also a past chair of the Kentucky Broadcasters Association where he served several years on the KBA board. He is active with many civic organizations throughout South Central Kentucky. Steenbergen is a graduate of Western Kentucky University, married to Krista Steenbergen and has three daughters, Logan, Lyn Dawsyn and Landry. When he is not working, Derron enjoys relaxing with a good cigar while fishing.
Wally SzczubialkaOwner and Production Manager, Orange Dragin Productions, LLC
Owner and Production Manager at Orange Dragin Productions, LLC, a video and live event production company.
Wally focused his college studies at Wayne State University, in the area of film production. After graduation in 1980, he found opportunity in the world of video production and network television production.
He worked as a cameraman and production manager at Filmcraft Video.
In 1990, he formed a partnership with another camera operator in Detroit to create ENG Detroit, Inc. working on television shows and national news networks.
The business grew and encompassed live event video production.
Orange Dragin Productions was created to handle the television and live event business at this time.
Wally has held positions in all areas of production from production assistant to DP, writer,producer and director.
James SweeneyPlanned Maintenance Territory Manager, Cummins
James Sweeney is an Air Force Vet. He was also in Civil Engineering under the title “Electrical Power Production Specialist.” James worked on Generators for the military from 1996-2002, including running 2 power plants. In the Civilian world, James was a Field Service technician for Kohler prior to becoming a Field Service tech for Cummins. He has been with Cummins for 6 years and for the last two years, he has been the Planned Maintenance Territory Manager.
John TakachChief Engineer, Urban One
John Takach started in broadcast at MyStar Communications in Indianapolis cleaning studios on the weekends. After graduating from Ball State University, John became a full time engineer at MyStar. Five years later, he transitioned to Radio One Indianapolis as Assistant Chief for two years. John then got promoted to Chief Engineer for Radio One in Cincinnati and Corporate Director of Vertical Real Estate. In 2012, he moved back to Indy as Chief Engineer for Urban One.
Al TompkinsSenior Faculty, The Poynter Institute
Al Tompkins is The Poynter Institute’s senior faculty for broadcasting and online. For almost 10 years, thousands of people a day read his online journalism story idea column “Al’s Morning Meeting” on Poynter.org.
Tompkins is the author of the book “Aim For The Heart: A Guide for TV Producers and Reporters,” which was adopted by more than 75 universities as their main broadcast writing textbook.
He co-authored four editions of the Radio and Television News Directors Foundation’s “Newsroom Ethics” workbook. Tompkins joined Poynter’s faculty from his job as news director at WSMV-TV in Nashville, Tenn. For 24 years, he worked as a photojournalist, reporter, producer, anchor, assistant news director, special projects/investigations director, documentary producer and news director.
Tompkins has trained thousands of television news producers, reporters, photojournalists and managers in his One-Day Storytelling Workshops in 45 states, Canada, Denmark, Iceland and South Africa. He has taught and coached print newsrooms in the U.S. and abroad how to build interactive news websites, how to use video more effectively online and how to manage ethical issues that arise online.
Tompkins was inducted into the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame and in 2008 was awarded The Governor’s Award, the highest honor given by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. During his two and a half decades as a journalist, Tompkins has won the National Emmy, the Peabody Award (group award), the Japan Prize, the American Bar Association’s Silver Gavel for Court Reporting, seven National Headliner Awards, two Iris Awards and the Robert F. Kennedy Award.
He is a co-producer of the hour-long documentary, “Saving Stefani,” featured as a special “Dateline NBC” and was awarded the 1999 Clarion Award. The 10-year documentary project tells the story of a young girl that Tompkins and a medical team found dying in a Guatemala hospital.
Tompkins also serves as a final juror on the duPont-Columbia Awards, the Scripps Howard National Journalism Awards and is a national screener for the Investigative Reporter and Editor awards.
Sidney TompkinsLicensed Psychotherapist
Sidney Tompkins is a licensed psychotherapist with decades of experience working with federal law enforcement, Fortune 500 companies and news organizations.
Rev. Tompkins is also a retired United Methodist minister.
She and her husband. Al Tompkins have taught hundreds of journalists from around the globe in their “Managing newsrooms stress and trauma” workshops.
They have been featured speakers at national journalism conferences, major market TV stations in New York and Chicago and in working with journalists working in war and conflict zones in Africa and Eastern Europe.
Brian TownCEO, Michigan Creative
Brian is the CEO of Michigan Creative and a Certified Final Cut Pro Trainer. Brian started Michigan Creative in 2011 after a long career in education as a film and television production teacher. During his time as an educator Brian created a nationally recognized film and TV production program. Now Brian manages a staff of 12 and hundreds of clients from the Mid-Michigan area and surrounding states. Michigan Creative is a creative firm that provides web development, video, branding, and social to help companies build their marketing machine.
Jeff WeltonCBRE, Nautel
Jeff has been with Nautel for over 29 years, the first 17 of which were spent in field service and technical support positions, as well as assisting Engineering with design review of new products and improvement of existing systems. Since moving to Sales in 2007, Jeff keeps finding ways to get his hands dirty and can frequently be found assisting in the install of a transmitter he’s sold, as well as performing several site inspections every year, along with the occasional repair. Recipient of the SBE’s James C. Wulliman Educator of the Year Award for 2018, Jeff writes several articles and performs presentations every year on the topics of lightning protection, grounding, transmitter site safety and various other subjects of interest in the broadcast engineering field, as well as being a contributor to the 11th edition, NAB Engineering Handbook, authoring the chapter on Facility Grounding Practice and Lightning Protection, among others.
Brandie YatesHOMTV Executive Producer/Communications Manager, HOMTV/Meridian Township
Brandie is Meridian Township’s Communications Manager as well as the Executive Producer for HOMTV, the Township’s award-winning Government Access Channel. Not only does Brandie oversee the Township’s communications, marketing and social media strategies, but she also operates the station and public relations of the channel and is responsible for planning content for all programs, evaluating and improving overall quality of the channel and developing new programming. Brandie also manages and coordinates the HOMTV Internship Program which provides intensive hands-on training for those wishing to pursue a career in multimedia television and communications. Brandie began her career at HOMTV as a Reporting Intern in 2007 and worked her way up to where she is today. In 2009, Brandie received her Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Specialization in Public Relations from Michigan State University.