Andrew Gilman, President
and CEO of CommCore Consulting Group, has been a communications
strategist, crisis counselor and keynote speaker for more than twenty-five
years. Co-author of the best-selling book Get To The Point (Bantam
1990), Andrew is also a lawyer and award-winning journalist. Most
recently he was selected as Educator/Trainer of the Year by PR News.
He and CommCore were also selected as public relations counsel for
the visit of Pope Benedict XVI to Washington, DC.
He frequently is called upon to help senior executives prepare for
media interviews, new business presentations, board meetings, testimony
before Congressional committees and regulatory agencies, expert
witnessing in lawsuits, appearances on TV and radio, road shows,
analyst presentations, and investor meetings. Andrew also develops
and directs the CommCore training and consulting services. His copyrighted
training innovations include the Two-Minute Talking Memo, Art of
the Sound Bite and Message Mapping for media interviews.
As a crisis communications expert, Andrew’s experience includes
providing advice to the University of Virginia Medical Center in
the baby-switching incident and counsel to Johnson & Johnson
during Tylenol I. The J&J assignment included coaching Chairman
James Burke for interviews on 60 Minutes and in other national media.
He also prepared senior Lockheed/Martin executives for Congressional
hearings following the Challenger accident. Andrew conducts crisis
simulations for General Motors, pharmaceutical companies and industry
associations, where he teaches participants how to take control
of news events instead of just reacting to the next fact. Andrew
created CommCore’s industry leading software product Crisis
Plan wRiter, a program that helps clients create a data base and
respond in crisis situations.
As a journalist, Andrew has experience as a reporter for trade and
consumer publications, as well as a radio reporter and host. On
radio, Andrew was a frequent contributor to National Public Radio’s
award-winning programs “All Things Considered” and “Morning
Edition.” His articles have appeared in The New York Times,
National Law Journal, Christian Science Monitor, Risk Management
Newsletter and the Washington Business Journal. He has received
awards from the Fund for Investigative Journalism and has been nominated
for Sigma Delta Chi and National Magazine Awards.
Andrew is often called upon to help professional service firms including
law firms, public relations and advertising agencies, and financial
services firms to improve their media and marketing programs. He
has conducted professional development seminars, and has helped
partners and associates prepare for client presentations, “beauty
contests” and internal meetings.
Andrew is admitted to the Bar in New York State and Federal Courts.
He has delivered Grand Rounds at Yale University, and has lectured
at Harvard University, Wharton School of Business, American Bar
Association, China External Trade Development Council in Taiwan,
American Association of Advertising Agencies, New School of Social
Research, American Society of Association Executives, Cable Telecommunications
Industry Association and D.C. Bar Association. He is a member of
the Board of the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network. He holds
two degrees from the University of Pennsylvania, a Bachelor of Arts
degree in History and a Masters of Science in Education. His law
degree is from Fordham University. In addition to Get to the Point,
he recently contributed two chapters to When Lightning Strikes,
a Crisis case study book compiled by Wayne Pines, as well as a feature
article in the PR NEWS Media Training Guidebook.
Jerry Doyle is principal
of CommCore and heads the New York practice. Aside from managing
and growing operations, Jerry spearheads marketing efforts and business
development for the firm. He delivers communication skills
Jerry works with clients to write content for and manage training
programs. He assists clients by combining the meeting objectives
with a training program that helps reinforce the content.
These programs have been developed for financial, healthcare, insurance
and technology firms. In addition to managing hundreds of
programs in the U.S., Jerry has conducted seminars in Mexico City,
Barcelona, Madrid, London and Prague.
Prior to joining CommCore in 1999, Jerry enjoyed a successful career
in healthcare public relations, working for Edelman Public Relations
Worldwide and Earle Palmer Brown. During this time, Jerry worked
on campaigns and coordinated press events for pharmaceutical clients
Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, Procter & Gamble, Schering-Plough
Jerry’s articles regarding crisis communications and media
relations have been published in The Regan Report, The Advertiser
and Media Insider. Jerry has also delivered talks to graduate students
and entrepreneurs at New York University, Columbia University, University
of Virginia and Manhattanville College on such topics as Effective
Financial Presentations and Developing Different Strategies for
U.S. and Foreign Press.
He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business and Finance Administration
from Mount St. Mary’s College in Maryland.
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more than three decades Nick Peters has been a national award-winning
journalist, and a senior executive in media solutions for the public
relations and corporate and marketing communications needs of Fortune
500 companies, top agencies and major associations. At CommCore
he is Washington, DC-based Senior Vice President, responsible for
business development and managing major accounts and campaigns.
Previously, Nick was SVP Marketing & Strategy for On The Scene
Productions in Los Angeles headquarters, providing client counsel,
and due diligence and implementation for TV, radio and Internet-based
digital media product development and strategic partnerships.
Nick spent the prior 18 years at Medialink in a variety of senior
management roles, including oversight of all live and taped broadcast
and streaming operations, consultative sales and marketing, and
executive committee involvement in corporate governance.
In the Crisis field, most notably in 1993 he managed the Medialink
teams that executed the broadcast components of both Pepsi’s
successful crisis response to a nationwide copycat tampering hoax
involving cans of soda, and General Motors’ response to an
NBC News broadcast alleging unsafe pickup trucks.
More recently he has worked with a coalition of labor, pension rights
organizations, and the National Council of Public Employee Retirement
Systems on responses to attacks from groups seeking to roll back
public sector pension plans in the face of state budget cuts exacerbated
by the national economic crisis since 2008.
Nick is currently of communications counsel as an advisory board
member to the Grassroots Business Fund, a global provider of business
financing to entrepreneurs in poor countries around the world.
In 1999 Nick conceptualized, oversaw development of, and managed
the public relations industry's first website dedicated to the delivery
of downloadable multimedia files to online news operations. This
initiative became a joint venture between Medialink and Business
Wire from 2000 to 2003 before being taken-in house by each company
a journalist he was a producer and news writer at CBS News in New
York, working directly for Dan Rather, Christopher Glenn and Charles
Previously he was News Director, executive producer and on-air anchor
at WHYY-FM (NPR) Philadelphia, where his department won a dozen
national and state awards for excellence in radio journalism from
the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Columbia University, the
Sigma Delta Chi Association of Professional Journalists and the
He was also a multiple award-winning print reporter for major daily
newspapers in Indianapolis, Raleigh and Philadelphia.
Nick is a Big Brother with Big Brothers Big Sisters of the National
Capital Area. He lived in France for 7 years, and is fluent
in spoken and written French. He is a graduate of the University
of Pennsylvania with a degree in Political Science.
Dale Weiss is Senior Vice
President and heads the Dallas practice. Dale Weiss’ twenty
five-year career has spanned media, public affairs and communication
training. The companies he has worked with include General
Motors, Coca-Cola, Sanofi-Aventis, Cephalon, Galderma, Consumer
Reports, and Pfizer. His government clients include the U. S. Department
of State where he has worked on media and presentation skills for
Ambassadors-Designate. Dale has been affiliated with CommCore since
the 1990’s, counseling clients on presentation skills,
crisis preparedness, media and meeting facilitation skills for corporate
CEOs and executives in a wide range of positions including the marketing,
technical, medical, and scientific disciplines. Dale has special
expertise in the health care field preparing pharmaceutical companies
for regulatory challenges such as FDA Advisory Committee panel meetings.
In addition, he has vast experience in other areas of health care
including new drug launches, crisis planning, regulatory speaker
training for medical professionals, and media training specifically
for health care issues.
Dale also spent time as a vice president of corporate communications
for a global pharmaceutical company. In this strategic role
he directed communications programs across the world to help drive
sales, enhance the company’s reputation, and further open
the lines of internal communications.
Dale began his career as a television anchor and reporter working
in local markets and filing regular reports for ABC and CNN.
While a journalist, Dale held several managerial positions including
Executive Producer and News Bureau Chief.
He then moved to Washington, DC where he was Director of Communications/Advertising
for one of the national political parties. During this time
he worked with Members of Congress and two White House Administrations
in communications and message development. Dale received his journalism
degree from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at
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Amy Doman is the Vice
President of Administration for CommCore. She manages the day to
day operations of the Washington, DC practice as well as accounting
responsibilities. Amy also handles account management and assists
in business development initiatives and government contracting.
CommCore, clients, consultants and partners find Amy as a resourceful,
responsive, and efficient professional. This is a value-added for
the many programs, deals and arrangements she facilitates. Amy overseas
CommCore’s program schedule and sees to it that research is
conducted, consultants are prepared, partners are updated and clients
are best served.
Prior to joining CommCore in 2000, Amy spent four years in the medical
industry. She was an assistant manager in the front office at a
large family practice in Fairfax, VA, as well as assisting five
prestigious Neurological Surgeons at a fast paced Washington, DC
practice. She brings her knowledge of working with both patients
and professionals - and administrative skills - when working
with CommCore’s clients. Recently, in her spare time, Amy
worked as a Substance Abuse Counselor at a local clinic.
Amy received her associate’s degree in Medical Administration
from Consolidated School of Business and an associate’s degree
in Substance Abuse Rehabilitation from Northern Virginia Community
College. She currently is working towards her Bachelor’s in
Business and Health Education at George Mason University.
Daiva MacKenzie is the Program Manager for CommCore. She manages campaigns for new business development and conducts research for new and ongoing client programs. Developing relationships with new and existing clients and ensuring the overall success of our programs are at the heart of Daiva’s role with CommCore.
Daiva’s technical skill and computer savvy adds value for our highly customized programs. She is a detail-oriented team member and prepares consultants for programs by designing templates and customized training materials.
Prior to joining CommCore in 2010, Daiva worked as a Conference Manager for Housing & Dining Programs at American University in Washington, DC. Her passion for event planning and administrative skills serves her well at CommCore.
Daiva recently received her Bachelor’s degree in General Studies with a focus on Mathematics from The Catholic University of America. She currently is working towards her Masters of Science in Management with a focus on Leadership from The Catholic University America.
Emily Avila is a business
communications consultant who has worked in television and public
relations for sixteen years. She has focused on health care communications
for the last nine years. Her career started in television as a news
reporter, producer, assignment editor and public affairs director.
She formerly managed production of an award-winning weekly television
medical news magazine, PULSE, which aired on the local ABC affiliate
in Sacramento, CA, as well as eleven countries throughout the Pacific
Rim. Currently this program is featured on cable channel Discovery
She has been the media spokesperson for major academic medical centers
in California, representing the organizations to national, regional
and local media. She also trained and prepared clinicians and administrators
for a variety of print and broadcast media interviews.
She has taught public relations and business communications classes
at San Jose State University’s Professional Development program
and has written for several public relations and marketing magazines,
including the e-business magazine ClickZ. She won the C. Everett
Koop American Heart Association Media Award in 1995, as well as
the International Association of Business Communicators video production
and writing awards in 1992, 1993, 1994 and 1996.
Dan Broden, Senior
Dan Broden, an attorney
and former national television anchor and reporter, has provided
presentation and media skills training for a wide variety of clients.
These clients include CEOs and other C-suite executives from such
companies as Kodak, IBM, Pitney Bowes, Johnson & Johnson, Delta
Airlines, Gillette, and Eli Lilly.
Dan runs a communications coaching consultancy and recently headed
up the Communications Training Network at Ketchum, one of the world's
leading public relations agencies. During his time there,
Dan coached a variety of spokespeople, including physicians, attorneys,
executives, athletes, and celebrities.
Dan also lectures regularly on communications training topics, most
recently at Columbia University , NYU, and Rutgers University .
Prior to Ketchum, Dan spent seven years with Court TV, the national
cable network. During his tenure there, Dan was a news anchor, show
host, reporter, and producer. In those capacities, Dan covered high-profile
legal stories including the Presidential Impeachment trial, both
Oklahoma City bombing trials, the JonBenet Ramsey murder investigation,
the O.J. Simpson criminal and civil trials, and the first Bosnian
war crimes trial in The Hague, Netherlands.
Dan earned his B.A. from Brown University and his law degree from
The George Washington University Law School. He is
fluent in Spanish and conversant in Japanese, having taught English
to executives in Japan for a year before entering law school.
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CommCore Senior Consultant
Greg Brower specializes in communications-based leadership development
programs, DISC-understanding behavioral styles, conflict management,
facilitation, developing a presence, and speaker coaching for clients
including Fortune 500 CEOs, professionals and executives. Greg has
a particular strength with consulting and advising clients to create
processes that develop consistent messages and to implement strategies
for effective problem-solving of communication and relationship
Greg has worked with clients in the pharmaceutical, financial services,
legal, manufacturing, and information technology industry sectors
as well as for nonprofits and government agencies. Clients include
New York Life, Pfizer, SAP, Sanofi-Aventis, JP Morgan, Citigroup,
AstraZeneca, Amgen, Coca-Cola, Celgene, MunichRe, Computer Sciences
Corporation, Roche, and federal agencies including the Patent and
Trademark Office, Department of Agriculture, Department of Education,
and Office of Naval Research.
Greg was an attorney in the Baltimore area providing legal services
to the public, including civil litigation, criminal defense and
family law. He has been a key member in the Maryland business community
promoting the use of Alternative Dispute Resolution programs.
He holds a Bachelor’s degree in B.A. in Economics from Fordham
University and a JD from University of Missouri.
Capps, Senior Consultant
Former Vice President
of Public Affairs at Dallas - Fort Worth International Airport,
the world’s third busiest airport. Capps began communicating
at DFW on September 11, 2001 and managed multiple high-profile crisis
situations during his eight year career – ranging from security/terrorism
issues to financial/bankruptcy events. When American Airlines was
forced to ground all 3,000 of its aircraft for safety issues, Capps
orchestrated a national crisis campaign that reached out to passengers
around the United States. During his tenure at DFW, Capps was named
the Outstanding Spokesperson of the Year by PR News and awarded
Best Investor Relations Campaign by PR Week. Capps also strategized
international media campaigns and government relations programs
His crisis experience
extends to major corporate entities Electronic Data Systems (EDS)
and Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC). Capps led the EDS crisis
team that responded to a national ATM crash that paralyzed major
banking systems. At CSC, he developed crisis communications and
business contingency plans for major clients focused on infrastructure
security and e-commerce. His corporate crisis leadership follows
an award-winning broadcast journalism career at KDFW-TV in Dallas.
There, he delivered live broadcasts from disasters ranging from
the crash of Delta Flight 191 to the Space Shuttle Challenger explosion.
Capps graduated with Highest
Honors in Journalism from The University of Texas in Austin and
received his Masters Degree from the Medill School of Journalism
at Northwestern University. Recently, Capps was invited to be interviewed
and share his experience of starting his executive post at DFW on
9/11 in commemoration of the 10th anniversary of the tragedy. More
examples of his results can be found at kencapps.com.
Carter, Senior Consultant
Jilly Carter is an experienced media trainer, with more than
18 years of experience in radio and television broadcasting in the
United Kingdom and Europe. Since 1990, Jilly has levered
her experience to help clients get the most out of the media through
teaching media interview skills.
She has worked with clients including Intel, EBay, PayPal, Sotheby's,
Whitbread, Rolls Royce, Safeway, Levi's, Mitsubishi, Electrolux,
the NHS, Knoll Pharmaceuticals, Chartered Institute of Taxation,
Reed International, Flemings Bank, NatWest, Commercial Union, Courtaulds
and The Medical Defence Union.
In the early 1980s, she joined BBC Radio Four and also was a local
radio presenter in the region at Two Counties Radio in Bournemouth
. In 1982, she moved into television with TSW in Plymouth
as a presenter and reporter on their main news show. There,
she gained experience reporting on a wide range of subjects including
farming, high fashion, business, and consumer issues.
She also has worked in the United States on an exchange program
with WRAL TV in North Carolina . There, she anchored the news show
and their anniversary state specials. Jilly was news presenter
on BBC Breakfast Time, presenting the hourly national news summaries
on BBC Television. She also was a newscaster on ITN's Into
Jilly has considerable experience conducting live presentations,
including the ITV Telethon. She has presented at many corporate
events and programs, ranging from videos for London Electricity,
Shell International, Renault, Zeneca, Dutch and British Telecom
and The British Heart Foundation.
Born in Widnes , Cheshire , Jilly was educated at Huyton College
near Liverpool. She then took a London University degree in
English, French and History of Art. She also speaks French
Laine Conklin brings over
twenty years of experience as a marketing professional, writer and
teacher. She has worked with CommCore for the last 17 years delivering
executive communications coaching for senior executives and spokespeople.
Her experience runs the gamut from start-up companies to Fortune
100’s including Pfizer, eBay, Time Warner and Deutsche Bank.
CEO’s of note that Laine has counseled include Meg Whitman
and John Donahoe of eBay, Jeff Jordan and Scott Thompson of PayPal
and Jack Dorsey of Twitter.
Recognized for her peer-level coaching and ability to transform
technical concepts into laymen’s language, Laine is sought
after by senior executives in the healthcare, technology, financial
services and consumer goods sectors. Laine specializes in executive/leadership
communications, presentation, media, and meeting facilitation skills.
Her efforts also extend to managers, salespeople, and representatives
who speak to various audiences including customers, employees, analysts,
investors and the media. She has worked with consumer advocate groups,
specifically, Consumer Reports president and spokespeople for press
inquiries, as well as government advocacy.
Laine has worked with many spokespeople involved in global communications
including the president of Tom Online in China, the president of
Latin American Operations for Swiss Re, and the president of Mercado
Libre, the online marketplace for Latin America.
She has prepped many CEO’s and CFO’s for Keynote Addresses
and specializes in content as well as delivery. Her client list
also includes many celebrities, athletes, and authors, including
President Bush’s daughter for her book on disenfranchised
youth in Latin America. She has written promotional material, developed
communication strategy programs and road show presentations for
new and Fortune 100 companies.
Laine also has experience in marketing research and writing. She
has written for medical journals, and worked as an independent report
writer for pharmaceutical firms, biotech and medical device companies.
Roger Conner, Senior Consultant
Roger Conner brings 30+ years of experience in communications, marketing, and public relations to CommCore and Conner Communications. Roger is a 25-year Marriott executive, serving as Vice President, Communications for the leading global hospitality company and one of the world’s Top 100 brands since 1999. In this position—and throughout his career—he has had responsibility for brand and market PR, PR/marketing communications agency selection and management, special events and sponsorships, internal communications, community relations engagement and PR, issues/reputation management, and crisis communications. At Marriott, he served in various brand and corporate PR roles; during the course of his career, Marriott expanded from approximately 20 hotels to over 3,000 hotels in 70 countries. A crisis communications specialist, Roger has managed and led communications teams through some of the most tragic events our world has seen, including, most prominently, 9/11 and the loss of the Marriott World Trade Center hotel. As a Marriott executive, Roger also responded to the assassination of Rabbi Meir Kehane at the New York Marriott East Side Hotel, the bombing of the Jakarta Marriott, and the bombing of the Islamabad Marriott. He is a frequent guest speaker and trainer on crisis communications.
Over the course of his tenure at Marriott, he handled major communication responsibilities for the acquisition of both Renaissance and Ritz-Carlton hotel companies and was a key part of the communications team on Marriott’s strategic development of its “portfolio of brands,” including the company’s move into new media and social media marketing. He created and directed over 100 hotel Grand Openings and other major sports and entertainment events—often in concert with Bill Marriott, the company’s Chairman and CEO—and developed position statements and served as spokesperson on numerous issues management fronts including labor, alcohol serving and consumption, smoking, adult entertainment, animal rights, and religious influence. From a PR standpoint, he led much of the Marriott’s engagement in community relations and corporate social Responsibility, including a 25-year involvement with Children’s Miracle Network, the organization benefiting children’s hospitals throughout North America.
Prior to joining Marriott, Roger was Director of Advertising and PR for HERCO, Inc., part of the Hershey companies in Hershey, PA. Most recently, he was the Senior Director of Communications and Marketing for Catholic Charities USA, with responsibility for all internal and external communications and marketing for the third-largest non-profit organization in the country, comprised of a network of 170+ local agencies across the US.
Roger is a graduate of the Newhouse School of Communications at Syracuse University, where he currently serves as a guest lecturer in Marketing and Brand PR and Crisis Communication and as a member of the school’s Advisory Board. Additionally, Conner serves on the board of “Neediest Kids,” a Washington, DC area non-profit that assists inner city and other economically disadvantaged school children.
Dewey, Senior Consultant
Ady Dewey uses her more
than twenty years’ communications experience to help people
tell their stories and share their data – clearly, memorably,
Throughout her career, Ady has demonstrated high-level project management,
communication and policy analysis skills with special capabilities
in organizational development and planning. She has worked in a
wide variety of fields including emergency response, health care,
utilities, information technology, U.S. and foreign governments,
higher education, museums, and volunteer organizations. Among her
clients have been the American Red Cross, Association of Junior
Leagues International, Bank Street College of Education, Consumer
Credit Counseling Service, Enterprise Ireland, Federal Aviation
Administration, Franklin Institute, Girl Scouts of the USA, March
of Dimes, National Park Service, National Partnership for Women
and Families, New Jersey State Senate, Philadelphia University,
PJM Interconnection, Public Agenda, and QSP Readers Digest
Ady uses her skills in coalition building and research to provide
clients with creative written content on broad range of topics for
keynotes, testimonies, talking points, awards and gifts acceptances,
video scripts, fund raising pitches, PowerPoint presentations, commencement
addresses, toasts, and more. The audiences have ranged from small
groups to Congressional hearings to major conferences, both national
and international. Among the venues where her clients have spoken
are the Creve Coeur Club, the Economic Club of Chicago, the National
Press Club, National Public Radio, the University Club, the U.S.
Congress, and the White House.
She has published well over 100 print feature articles, annual reports,
newsletters, and research reports. For Leader, a magazine published
by Girl Scouts of the U.S.A. (circulation 1 million+), she interviewed
two sitting U.S. Cabinet Secretaries – “Education Secretary
Spellings talks about Girls, and Math, and Science, and the Future”
(Fall, 2006) and “A Conversation with Madeleine Albright”
(Winter 2000). The annual reports she completed for GSUSA received
multiple wins in the International Annual Report Competition and
the juried American Graphic Design Awards.
Ady’s philosophy is begins with continuous improvement –
looking for ways in which she can grow and helping others also to
rethink, relook, and regain their footholds of leadership and excellence.
This is how she approaches her work as well as what she brings the
classroom. In addition to onsite workshops, Ady has taught courses
for undergraduate students at Rutgers University and at a Maryland
community college and adult education classes at the University
of Pennsylvania. She currently holds an appointment as an associate
professor at University of Maryland University College teaching
business writing and public speaking.
Ady has a Bachelors of Science in Education from Virginia Tech and
a Master’s in Government from the University of Pennsylvania.
Gilman, Senior Consultant
Larry Gilman is a communications
coach with more than 24 years of experience. He has led more than
800 training workshops for more than 10,000 people.
Larry's experience spans Fortune 500 companies to start-ups. He
has extensive healthcare experience through his work with hospitals,
managed care providers, pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies.
He also has deep experience in the technology and entertainments
sectors. In finance, Larry has prepared clients for IPOs, road shows
and analyst/investor presentations. Some of his clients include
General Motors, AT&T, Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, eBay, Qualcomm,
Coca-Cola, Nokia, UPS, Zurich , and numerous federal agencies. As
CommCore's Los Angeles based consultant, Larry has many opportunities
to work with celebrities.
Larry counsels clients during product launches, transitions, and
other critical milestones. He works with clients to develop
compelling messages for a wide range of presentations and media
interviews. He works with CEOs, senior executives, R&D directors,
product managers, and other spokespersons.
Larry's media experience has been both in front of and behind the
camera. As an actor and an award-winning director, Larry has appeared
in Broadway and off-Broadway productions, as well as numerous television
programs and featured films.
He is a member of The Screen Actors Guild, Actors Equity Association
and American Federation of Television and Radio Artists. Larry is
a founding member of The Actors Institute in Los Angeles and in
Who's Who in America. He is a graduate of Franklin & Marshall
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Gilroy, Senior Consultant
As a media relations specialist,
CommCore Senior Consultant Brent Gilroy brings to the table more
than 20 years of strategic and tactical communications experience
in Washington, DC. He has created and managed public relations and
public affairs projects and campaigns at agencies including Hill
& Knowlton, Powell Tate, and Burson Marsteller.
His expertise extends across multiple sectors: transportation, national
defense, aerospace, international trade, technology, biotechnology
and the environment. Brent’s media relations experience includes
outreach to top tier domestic and international contacts at print,
broadcast and new media news operations.
Among his international trade credits is day-to-day coordination
of a $4million annual effort to help the Government of Mexico win
support within the US for NAFTA. The work included coordination
of 20 professionals involved in media outreach, materials production,
speaking tours and coalition building.
Brent served as administrative assistant and press secretary for
U.S. Representative George (Buddy) Darden of Georgia. Prior to coming
to Washington, he was a newspaper reporter and editor in Georgia
and South Carolina, and also edited trade journals.
He is a graduate of Georgia State University.
Gold, Senior Consultant
Ed Gold leads CommCore’s
professional business writing workshops. He is a writer and writing
consultant with over 20 years of experience working for clients
in business and government.
A graduate of the University
of Maryland with an M.A. from the Johns Hopkins University Writing
Seminars, Ed taught writing at the University of Maryland for twelve
years. He has trained staff writers for the National Science Foundation,
the U.S. Postal Service, Societe Generale Bank, American Urological
Association, Citibank, the American Society of Association Executives,
the American Bankers Association, Tenneco, Dreyfus Benefits Division
and over seventy trade and professional associations.
Ed specializes in plain
English writing. He has written a wide range of materials for the
Congressional Research Service, U.S. General Accounting Office,
National Institutes of Health, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers,
the U.S. Department of Education, the State of Michigan, Montgomery
County (MD), IBM, and several Washington law firms.
Greenstein, Principal Consultant/Program Developer - Social Media
Howard Greenstein is CommCore's
Principal Consultant and Program Developer for Social Media. From
the early days of “on line communities” to the current
world of social media he has been a recognized Social Media Strategist,
involved in cutting edge technology applications. His recent Social
Media Strategy assignments with clients in the TV, law and non-profit
space have shown tangible results, increasing communications and
outreach with customers and constituents.
Howard Greenstein's years of experience in the technology world,
combined with his background as an executive coach , help him bridge
the gap between business needs and technology requirements, allowing
him to facilitate difficult business conversations and focus on
the required results of any project.
His background includes a role as “Technical Evangelist”
for Microsoft's Developer Relations team, where he helped gain acceptance
and adoption of Internet Explorer and Windows Media, obtaining marketing
and product feature requirements from top corporate partners like
CBS, Fox and Clear Channel. For J.P. Morgan he helped deploy such
futuristic projects as desktop video conferencing, online collaborative
tools and the World Wide Web in 1993-95.
Howard Greenstein has had roles in several New York startups, and
has been an administrator and is currently a lecturer at New York
University. He is co-founder and head of the New York City Chapter
of The Social Media Club. As a networker and community builder,
he is the only person to have been elected to the Board of Directors
of three major New York technology trade organizations: New York
Software Industry Association (NYSIA), NYNMA, and the World Wide
Web Artist's Consortium (WWWAC). Howard was the Director of Operations
for the Twin Towers Fund, which distributed over $216MM to the families
of the rescue worker heroes killed at the World Trade Center on
September 11, 2001.
Harrington, Senior Consultant
Denise has been a professional
communications trainer and coach since 1987. She has provided customized
media and presentation skills development and crisis response preparation
to C-level executives and spokespeople at Nike, Autodesk, Intel,
Microsoft, Adidas, HP, Starbucks, Kaiser Permanente, the NBA’s
Portland Trailblazers, the American Red Cross, Mentor, and Victoria’s
Secret among other organizations.
She has prepared spokespeople for appearances on major news and
sports broadcasts including CBS’s “60 Minutes”
and “48 Hours,” ABC’s “Prime Time,”
HBO’s “Real Sports,” ESPN’s “Up Close,”
and ABC’s “Nightline.”
For Nike, Denise worked with Chairman Phil Knight and his advisory
team as they crafted their response to media coverage of Nike’s
labor crisis in Asia. She also prepared Knight for his address on
the subject to the National Press Club.
Denise also designed and facilitated a women’s leadership
training module for Microsoft that was rolled out worldwide for
the software giant.
For Autodesk, she has coached hundreds of employees and executives
for analyst meetings, media opportunities, product launches and
global conferences in Europe, Asia and Africa.
One of Denise’s areas of expertise is working with premier
and Olympic athletes on media and presentation skills. Her roster
includes Tiger Woods, WNBA star Lisa Leslie, NBA stars such as Scottie
Pippen and Branden Roy, Olympic track & field stars Michael
Johnson Jackie Joyner-Kersee, and Olympic speed skater Apolo Aton
A Washington, DC native, Denise is a graduate of the Tuck School
of Business At Dartmouth College.
Kippen, Senior Consultant
Alexander Kippen joined
CommCore in 2002, providing preparation for news interviews and
message development to clients including Fortune 500 CEO's, professionals
(physicians, engineers, accountants, other subject matter experts),
and executives. He has also trained entertainers like actress Lorraine
Bracco and athletes like Troy Aikman.
Alexander developed CommCore's Internet-based Professional
Profile ™ - a link to a personal promotional platform. Users
can post their profile on the password-protected website, including
news articles and book excerpts as well as video samples from speeches
and TV appearances.
He began as a political reporter in Washington, DC, covering Congress,
the first Bush and then Clinton administrations for Canada's Global
Television Network and later for the Fox Morning News. His stories
ranged from debates over the Clean Air Act and NAFTA, to the first
Gulf War and sanctions against Iraq. After running a Washington
production company with clients that included political talk show
host John McLaughlin, Alexander became a Managing Director with
Hill & Knowlton in Washington and New York, providing media
counsel and media training for both established and emerging corporate
clients. Alexander has contributed reports to CNN, National
Geographic, written for The Washington Monthly, The Washington Post,
New York, Creative Screenwriting, the SAIS Foreign Observer, and
also taught journalism as an adjunct professor at American University
in Washington DC. He is an international policy and economics
graduate of George Washington and Johns Hopkins SAIS universities
focusing on U.S. policy in the Persian Gulf.
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Michaels, Senior Consultant
Jerry’s career spans
30 years as a senior-level communications coach and keynote speaker,
20 of them with CommCore. He has particular expertise in helping
technical subject matter experts communicate effectively with non-technical
audiences. The focus of Jerry’s training is on delivering
the right message to the targeted audience in a way that it will
be both understood and acted upon.
He has conducted media,
presentation and crisis training programs for senior executives,
marketing teams, managers, lawyers, technical experts, and spokespeople
from a broad range of industries including healthcare and pharmaceuticals,
telecommunications, technology, finance, the chemical industry,
the energy sector, and law firms. He has prepared winners of the
Malcolm Baldridge Awards for their industry presentations.
Jerry has been a keynote
speaker at National and Regional Meetings and Conferences for such
organizations as PriceWaterhouseCoopers, IBM, the American Diabetes
Association, American Neurological Association, American Cancer
Society, AT&T, and Nebraska Public Power District.
At the birth of deregulation
of the telephone industry, Jerry worked with all of the baby bells
as well as major players such as AT&T and Sprint deal with government
and community hearings for approval of everything from rate hikes
to consolidation. He has helped the NRC prepare for governmental
and public hearings on for the past 13 years. His governmental work
also includes the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board, Federal
Reserve Bank, U.S. General Accounting Office and the United States
Additionally, Jerry has
helped many pharmaceutical companies and device manufacturers navigate
through FDA hearings to gain approval or deal with adverse events.
He has worked closely with Deloitte teams preparing subject matter
experts for the orals portion of government contract
Jerry holds a Master’s
Degree in Psychology, and has taught Psychology of Communication
in the Graduate Psychology Department at NYU. He has lectured on
topics as varied as Crisis Management Communication, Establishing
Doctor/Patient Rapport, Pharmacist Patient Counseling, Persuasive
Communication Techniques at Wharton School of Finance at the University
of Pennsylvania, Harvard University Medical School, The Arnold and
Marie Schwarz College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences at Long
Island University as well as NYU.
Jerry has appeared on
national programs including the "CBS Evening News" and
"Good Morning America”, to discuss stress management,
controlling addictions and the treatment of phobias. For several
years he coached guests on Good Morning America to help effectively
get their messages across. He has also created motivational and
visualization programs for U.S. Olympic Teams since 1972. He is
the author of several audiotape programs (Prentice Hall) on stress
management and habit control.
Owens, Senior Consultant
Keith Owens specializes
in media relations, financial/investor relations and marketing communications.
He provides value to individuals and organizations by helping them
identify the needs of target audiences and creating effective messaging
and communications programs to inform and persuade those audiences.
Keith is adept at helping managers and sales teams at client organizations
prepare for a variety of "selling" situations through
targeted spokesperson training. He has a wide range of experience
creating and executing communications for sensitive and crisis/regulatory
situations, particularly in the financial services industry. Keith
manages the hands-on execution of proactive media relations efforts
supporting marketing and branding efforts for corporations and non-profit
organizations, including work on both sides of M&A activity.
Prior to his work with CommCore, Keith headed media and public relations
for Zurich North America Commercial Insurance. His financial services
experience also includes work for Kemper Corporation, Kemper Financial
Services, Aon and Unum Group. While working for leading public relations
agencies such as Burson-Marsteller and Lesnik Public Relations,
Keith successfully delivered media relations, marketing communications
and financial/investor relations programs for a wide-range of companies,
including Illinois Tool Works, Congoleum Corporation, Clark Equipment,
Cardinal Health, Helen Curtis Industries and RSM McGladrey.
Keith develops and teaches managerial communications programs for
college and professional association audiences in the Chicago area.
He holds a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in Journalism/Public
Relations from Northern Illinois University and an M.B.A. from the
University of New Hampshire
Perone, Senior Consultant
Herb Perone is a communications
professional with a proven track record of handling crisis communications,
managing complex issues and delivering in high-pressure environments.
His wide range of experience includes a career in broadcast and
print journalism as well as more than a decade in public relations/public
affairs. For CommCore, he has been the prime media and constituent
relations consultant on a nationwide awareness campaign for the
National Conference on Public Employee Retirement Systems.
focus has been in the financial services arena, where he has gained
significant expertise in pension/retirement security issues. He
has served as Director of Media Relations and External Communications
at the American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI), Acting Director
of the Office of Public Affairs for the Securities and Exchange
Commission (SEC) and Associate Vice President for Media Relations
at the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA).
Herb’s work at the
SEC and FINRA also included pension/retirement security matters
– particularly in the areas of investor education and regulatory
He built and directed
a national media relations/public affairs program for the ACLI,
the nation’s largest life insurance trade group, and successfully
branded the organization as a key player in the national pension
reform and long-term care debates. He also positioned the industry
as a key provider of retirement savings instruments. He promoted
the organization’s role with both national media (the New
York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Kiplingers, Associated
Press, CNN and more) and the trade press (Pensions & Investments,
InvestmentNews, National Underwriter). In addition, he wrote and
produced numerous Video News Releases on pension/retirement issues
and conducted radio media tours promoting pension reform.
He also arranged and produced video summaries of focus groups on
pension/retirement security issues.
Herb was a spokesman for
the life insurance industry in the aftermath of the 9-11 terrorist
attacks, handled SEC media relations during the Enron and Global
Analyst Conflicts and the resulting Sarbanes-Oxley reforms and handled
FINRA media relations during the Bernard Madoff scandal.
As a journalist, Herb
was a reporter for several daily and weekly newspapers in the Washington,
DC suburbs and in western Maryland and was a writer, producer and
off-air reporter for ABC News and CNN. He has freelanced for the
Associated Press, New York Times, Washington Post and other major
publications and has written and produced programming for PBS, the
Discovery Channel, Animal Planet and ESPN.
Pfeffer, Senior Consultant
Cary Pfeffer is an accomplished
communications training expert with nearly three decades of experience
in journalism and public speaking. As a news anchor and reporter
in Phoenix and Los Angeles, Cary has covered nearly every major
news story. His work has been featured on CBS, NBC, and CNN, and
also profiled in the New York Times.
He leverages this experience to provide counsel to CommCore clients
on media communications and presentation delivery. Based in Phoenix,
his clients include Rackspace Managed Hosting, Coldstone Creamery
and America West Airlines.
Prior to CommCore, Cary was a news anchor with KPHO-TV in Phoenix,
where he won an Emmy in the category of “Anchor of the Year.”
There, Cary led an 80-person newsroom and anchored the 5:00, 6:00
and 10:00 PM newscasts. Notably, he has interviewed President George
W. Bush on two occasions while covering the national conventions.
Utilizing his presentation and facilitation skills, Cary has managed
contentious town public meetings and debates on topics such as economic
growth, education, and domestic violence.
Cary also was an anchor and reporter for KCAL-TV in Los Angeles,
covering the O.J. Simpson trial, the Northridge earthquake and the
Malibu fires. Prior to his six years in Los Angeles, Cary was a
political reporter at KPNX-TV in Phoenix where he covered high profile
stories such as the Los Angeles riots, the Charles Keating trial,
and the first-ever impeachment of a sitting governor, Evan Mecham.
Cary has experience in radio and newspaper, serving as a reporter
in Phoenix and Omaha. He holds a degree in Journalism and Mass Communications
from Creighton University in Omaha.
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Preston, Senior Consultant
Carol Preston uses her
more than twenty-five years' communications experience to help CommCore
clients win in the court of public opinion.
Carol applies techniques learned as a writer, on-air reporter and
talk show host to counsel clients how to control and be pro-active
in tough interviews, educate audiences and deliver compelling presentations
with comfort and ease.
She works with participants to build, practice and deliver memorable
messages, which resonate with their key stakeholders. She
has counseled clients in healthcare, government, finance, technology,
entertainment, telecommunications and the non-profit arena.
In healthcare, Carol has prepared physicians and scientists to address
FDA advisory panel meetings on such issues as therapies for osteoporosis,
women's health and blood disorders. Carol frequently is called upon
as a crisis communications strategist to help clients handle hot-button
issues including potentially deadly antibody immunities (PRCA),
bio-generics, the continuing international blood plasma therapy
shortage, a massive product recall and Good Manufacturing Practices.
She has helped healthcare clients prepare for successful interviews
with The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal , CNBC and 60 Minutes.
In technology and telecommunications, Carol has coached executives
to conduct successful investor and analyst briefings and handle
the tough Q&A, which inevitably follows the presentation.
She is an orals coach for a major defense contractor, which has
won more than $300 million in lucrative government contracts as
a result of Carol's presentation skills know-how. She also
has worked with clients on IPOs and product launches.
Carol spent most of her journalism career as an on-air news personality
at the Mutual Broadcasting and the NBC Radio networks. The
Associated Press (AP) and United Press International (UPI) have
honored Carol for her documentary on the Holocaust survivors.
She has lectured on media at George Washington University and has
written Congressional testimony and speeches for CEOs. She
remains active with Bread for the City in Washington, DC after serving
eight years on its Board of Directors.
Carol earned both her Master and Bachelor of Science degrees from
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Sigman, Senior Consultant
Michael Sigman, a senior
consultant for CommCore since 2000, brings almost 20 years of experience
in broadcasting and news reporting to communications workshops.
He has worked extensively with clients in the healthcare,
consumer products, automotive and telecommunications industries.
Michael has a passion for thorough preparation and has the flexibility
to immediately meet the changing needs of CommCore clients.
Executives and subject matter experts of all levels call upon him
for counsel on leadership communications skills, speech writing,
reputation management, time management, team building, delegation
skills, speaker skills and media skills.
In addition to corporate work, Michael counsels a number of not-for-profit
agencies and conducts on-going workshops for Executive MBA candidates
at the University of Delaware. He also organizes an executive
club that is devoted to professional education and development.
Early in his career, Michael was a classroom teacher, where he developed
time management methods and a patient methodical approach to effective
education. He applies these techniques to CommCore clients.
Michael's broadcast journalism career began in Philadelphia as a
news planner for WCAU-TV, Channel 10. He was an all-news
radio anchor and PBS television news producer before taking the
anchor chair at Delaware’s only television news station, First
State News, which garnered two Emmy Award nominations. He was also
the prime-time evening news anchor for TSM News, an 11-hour a day
regional cable news operation in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware.
Michael received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Radio, Television
and Film from Temple University’s School of Communications
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Mary Snowdon, Senior Consultant
Mary’s career as
an attorney and a public affairs director for a major Washington
trade association make her uniquely qualified to help CommCore’s
clients craft and deliver compelling messages.
During her years with CommCore, Mary has trained physicians, attorneys,
senior corporate officers, and subject matter experts in a wide
variety of disciplines. She has worked with Fortune 500 clients
and start-ups, and has prepared clients for media coverage on everything
from product launches to sexual harassment allegations. Mary frequently
works with presentation teams and has helped clients like Sprint
prepare successful government contract presentations. She has designed
and implemented crisis training programs and also conducts many
of CommCore’s witness training workshops.
Mary received an undergraduate
degree in journalism from the University of Illinois and a law degree
from the University of Virginia. She is a member of the Illinois
and District of Columbia Bars. Following law school, Mary practiced
for several years as a litigation attorney at Gardner, Carton &
Douglas in Chicago and Swidler & Berlin in Washington, DC. Mary
later served as the Director of Public Affairs for the International
Council of Cruise Lines (ICCL), the trade association representing
the passenger cruise line industry, where she was primarily responsible
for creating and delivering the cruise industry’s messages
on a variety of legislative initiatives, legal issues and safety
measures. Her public affairs experience at the ICCL included work
with Congress, the State Department, the Department of Transportation,
the Immigration & Naturalization Service and the Federal Maritime
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Karen Strauss, DrPH, Senior Consultant
Dr. Karen Strauss helps organizations and individuals succeed
in communicating their messages clearly and effectively —
often in adversarial settings. She specializes in translating technical
scientific language into understandable terms for lay audiences.
Karen conducts educational seminars to improve participants’
abilities to present information in a variety of settings including
public hearings as well as regulatory and legislative hearings.
Her clients have included Sprint, Delphi Automotive Systems and
Karen has appeared on
national television, narrated educational films, and participated
in a wide array of public and media events.
Before her career as a
communicator and consultant, Karen worked for Westinghouse Electric
Corporation in Strategic Planning, Nuclear Safety and Licensing,
and as Project Engineer for two nuclear power stations in Spain.
Karen earned a Masters
in environmental health sciences and a Doctorate in public health
from Johns Hopkins School of Public Health. She graduated Phi Beta
Kappa, with honors in economics, from Sweet Briar College.