Class Notes: May 2021

90s

Mike Perlow ’92 is president and founder of Perlow Productions, a corporate video production and animation company now entering its 14th year, with clients including Dell Technologies, Hitachi-Vantara, Scrub Daddy, Subaru and Playmobil. Mike is also the incoming president of the Temple Beth Sholom (Cherry Hill, NJ) Men’s Club.


10s

Lucy Naland ’19 was named designer for the Washington Post’s Instagram team.


20s

Matthew Evenden ’21 joined Major League Baseball as a production assistant.

Rachel Pierce ’21 joined WBOC in Delmarva, Maryland as a multimedia journalist.

Newhouse alumna finishes in top 15 in Hearst multimedia contest

Sari Kamp

Sari Kamp ’20 placed 13th in the national Hearst Multimedia Digital News or Enterprise Story – Individual category for her story, “Everything You Need to Know about Therapy in College,” done for The 61% Project, a special focus project from The NewsHouse.

Class Notes: April 2021

80s

Audrey Melofchik (Bretherick) ’86 was hired as CEO for Wunderman Thompson’s New York office.


90s

Sarah Glover ’96 was named news managing editor of Minneapolis Public Radio.

Candace Kelley ’97 reported on the Derek Chauvin trial for Court TV.


00s

Haley Dubnoff ’08 was promoted to senior director of marketing, communications and creative services at WCNY.


10s

Sgt. Dana Beesley ’18 of the United States Marine Corps just won the Military Visual Awards Photographer of the Year Award.


20s

Alyssa C. Lyons G’20 is a multimedia journalist at WQOW in Eau Claire, Wisconsin.

Sharif D. King G’20 is a multimedia journalist at WETM in Elmira, New York.

Sam Rothman ’20 joined the sports team at KTAL NBC 6 News in Shreveport, LA.

Military program alumna wins international photography competition

Sergeant Dana Beesley '18
Sergeant Dana Beesley ’18

Sgt. Dana Beesley ’18 of the United States Marine Corps just won the Military Visual Awards Photographer of the Year Award.

Beesley, who graduated from the Newhouse Military Visual Journalism program, won for her compelling work documenting military life, with a focus on the recruit experience from her base at Parris Island, South Carolina.

Congratulations, Dana!

Ken Jacobs ’79 discusses leadership in new video series

Ken Jacobs ’79 has been writing the “Taking the Lead” column for the Public Relations Society of America’s (PRSA) “Strategies & Tactics” newspaper since 2015, when last year he decided it was time to take the branding and the idea to video.

“We’ve been speaking to respected senior PR executives about leadership,” says Jacobs. “The dialogue is all about leading people, having teams and peers and stakeholders that want to follow you. It seemed like a very natural progression to offer it on the website and YouTube channel. I like to think it makes for a richer experience for people who want to learn.”

With PRSA’s permission, Jacobs brought the video series to his company website, Jacobs Consulting & Executive Coaching, and began producing independently.

“[The series is] for communications executives, whether they’re agency owners or CEOs, senior executives or corporate communications officers or CMOs who want to achieve their organizational career and personal goals by becoming more effective, inspired and inspiring leaders”

Jacobs (right) with Joe Cohen ’99 (top) and Jim Weiss ’87

Part of moving the series to video was lining up a roster of great leaders he could interview, which turned out to be an embarrassment of riches, Jacobs says. So far, he’s talked about finding passion, purpose and joy with Patrice Tanaka, “Chief Joy Officer” at Joyful Planet; about leading during times of uncertainty with Grace Leong, CEO and partner at Hunter; and about multicultural marketing with Alexis Davis-Smith, CEO of PRecise Communications.

Through his Newhouse association, Jacobs says he’s connected with some of the most brilliant minds in leadership, and so he didn’t hesitate to reach out to Joe Cohen ’99, chief marketing and communications officer at AXIS Capital, and Jim Weiss ’87, chairman, CEO and founder of Real Chemistry, both of whom he had interviewed previously for the column.

“I invite them because they’re respected as leaders,” Jacobs says, “but as leaders of leaders, and leaders-in-training.”

In the future, Jacobs is looking to expand the series by including more live-streaming content and panels. His advice for early-career practitioners is to find the leaders in their company and learn by observing.

“Who, instead of telling someone what to do, asks empowering questions and really listens? Who consistently communicates with respect, no matter whom they’re speaking with? Who is effective at giving constructive feedback?,” Jacobs asks. “You can observe that on your first day of work and become a lifetime leadership learner. So as you’re learning the newest tools in data and social media and analytics, make sure you’re also constantly learning how to lead people.”

Newhouse alumna on covering #StopAsianHate rallies as an Asian photojournalist

Shuran Huang G’18. Photo by Marcus Yam.

On March 16, a shooter walked into a spa in Atlanta, Georgia with a 9mm gun he purchased earlier that day. He shot and killed eight people, including six Asian women. The crime occurred as incidents of anti-Asian racism have been on the rise in the U.S., inspiring protest rallies across the country.

Shuran Huang G’18, a Washington, D.C.-based freelance photojournalist and graduate of Newhouse’s multimedia, photography and design program, covered a rally and a vigil in Washington’s Chinatown for The New York Times, and has also covered the rallies for The Washington Post and Bloomberg. But before she went to her assignment, Huang—who was born in mainland China and grew up in Hong Kong and eight other countries—took a drive.

“It was really hard,” she says. “I felt like my sisters or mother were killed. It was a really emotional time.”

Huang’s passion for her work carried her through the assignment, allowing her to capture an important moment in history while giving her community a medium through which their anguish could be seen and documented.

“I feel like it’s very important for any photojournalist to be a human before being a photographer,” she says, but concedes that protecting that humanity is a conscious process. “I definitely feel very, very vulnerable and I need to take a lot of time off, outside of my assignment time, to heal and recover and reflect.”

Huang says it was very important to her to capture the rally and vigil in the most genuine way possible. To do so, she took time to speak to those around her before she took out her camera.

“Before taking a picture, I need to talk to my subject first. [It’s] the way for you to actually understand what is going on and why they are feeling the way that they do,” she says.

Huang says she was nervous on the way to the rally, but once she got there, she was greeted by a group of organizers who remembered her from her past assignments. She spoke to them for a while and heard their stories. Then she was ready to get to work.

“I can’t be emotional at all times, especially at assignments. I need to be a really good listener. I need to talk to people, connect with people and understand and share their vulnerabilities through visual storytelling,” she says.

Covering cultural stories requires deep empathy, Huang says. Her work has often focused on different communities from cultures other than her own, such as her Strands of Love project documenting a four-generation Black family-owned barbershop in Syracuse, and their impact on the community over 50 years. Huang says she puts herself in the shoes of those she’s documenting to try to convey exactly how they’re feeling in the moment she snaps the picture.

“If I photograph a family, I photograph them like they’re my brothers and sisters,” she says.“Be a human that [feels] the emotions at the event and also understand why you are there.”

Huang’s work is already getting her attention; last year, she was selected as one of 24 early-career photographers to be paired with industry leaders for Women Photographer’s mentorship program.

Huang’s advice for student journalists is to practice their craft every day.

“Photojournalism is a craft that we work on refining everyday,” Huang says. “It doesn’t stop when you receive your degree, get your first job or assignment. You will work on it for the rest of your career. Also, if you are not curious about people, the community or world we live in, you will limit your success.”

Adrianne Morales is a senior in the broadcast and digital journalism program at the Newhouse School.

Alumna honored with music supervision award

Newhouse alumna Maureen Crowe ’79 will be honored this weekend with the Guild of Music Supervisors’ Legacy Award. The award honors individuals who have excelled at the craft of music supervision.

Maureen Crowe
Maureen Crowe

Crowe is a music supervisor who has worked on films including “The Bodyguard,” “True Romance, “Wayne’s World” and “Julie and the Phantoms.” She is the founding president of the Guild of Music Supervisors, and created the Guild of Music Supervisors Awards in 2010. Her advocacy helped lead to the creation of an Emmy Award for music supervision.

The 11th annual Guild of Music Supervisors Awards will be presented April 11 during a virtual ceremony.

Class Notes: March 2021

80s

Howard Woolley ’80 was announced as a board member of Apple Hospitality.


90s

Monica Levinson ’90 produced “Borat Subsequent Moviefilm” which won a Golden Globe.

Keri Potts ’98 G’99 was named vice president of communications and public relations at the America 250 Foundation.


00s

Jessica Weinstein Stone ’00 is the author of “Crossing the Divide: 20 Lessons To Help You Thrive in Cross-Cultural Environments.”

Eli Saslow ’04 won a George Polk Award for Journalism for his oral history series “Voices of the Pandemic,” published in The Washington Post. 

Erin Bushinger ’05 has been promoted to director of corporate communications at Assured Information Security.

Jerry Mikorenda G’06 is the author of “America’s First Freedom Rider: Elizabeth Jennings, Chester A. Arthur & the Early Fight for Civil Rights,” published by Rowman & Littlefield, Globe Pequot imprint.

Katie Krause G’08 was named director of public relations for the Baltimore Orioles.

Boris Sanchez ’09 is the new co-anchor of Weekend New Day on CNN.


10s

Jonathan Miller ’14 is the author of the children’s book, “The ABCs of News.”

Lauren Cavalli G’15 was named gallery manager at the new Southampton branch of Phillips Auction House.

Isabel Sanchez G’17, dayside reporter for Telemundo62 in Philadelphia, became a naturalized United States citizen.


20s

Laiqa Hitt ’20 and Jared Bunn ’20 won the Best of Competition award at the Broadcast Education Association’s Festival of the Media Arts with their film on Caroline Sheldon, “Panacea.” They also won first place for best short form documentary. 

Madeleine Davison ’20 won the collegiate Dan Rather Medal in News and Guts for her Daily Orange story about nursing center violations.

Magazine, news and digital journalism alumna wins Dan Rather Medal

Madeleine Davison

Madeleine Davison ’20, an alumna of the magazine, news and digital journalism program, received the collegiate Dan Rather Medal in News and Guts from the University of Texas’s Moody College of Communications for her Daily Orange story, “Nursing center violations increase during for-profit company ownership.”

Judges lauded Davison’s use of data and detailed interviews to create impact in her story. Dan Rather, who developed the award with the University of Texas, said he hoped journalists would celebrate the work done by Davison and professional medal winner Tony Plohetski, and “be inspired to dig deep for their own courage.”

The prize comes with a $5,000 award.

Congratulations, Madeleine!

Newhouse alumna brings fresh produce to the food insecure

Erica Berman
Erica Berman ’91

Erica Berman graduated from the Newhouse School with a bachelor’s in magazine journalism in 1991. After 20 years in Paris running her vacation rental company, Haven In, Berman moved back to the states with her French husband, Alain, to dedicate her time to her community. She founded Veggies to Table, a nonprofit that donates fruits and vegetables to the food insecure in Maine. Additionally, she curates Hip Paris, a popular cultural blog about Paris. We sat down recently to ask about her work.

How did you get the idea for Veggies to Table?

The whole reason behind Veggies to Table was to donate food to the food insecure, because of the high level of food insecurity in Maine. The population of Maine is around 1.3 million and over 210,000 don’t have enough food to eat every day. About 43% of kids get their main meals from school. For us, it was heartbreaking. I can’t even imagine not having food to eat. The other parts of our mission are education around healthy food and sustainable living and creating lasting community connections through our volunteer program.

Berman donating to Boothbay Pantry. Photo by Kelsey Kobik.
Berman donating to Boothbay Pantry. Photo by Kelsey Kobik.

What advice would you give to those looking to start their own home garden or to switch to sustainable living?

You have to just start. That’s the biggest step to take—starting where you are. If you only have a little balcony and you live in the city, put some pots on your balcony. If you have a small yard, get rid of the grass and put in raised beds. If you have a lot of land, that’s a little bit easier. I didn’t know anything when I began gardening. I started reading, researching, asking farm and gardener friends and, in the end, just doing it.

What advice would you give to Newhouse students trying to figure out their career path?

You can use your major, like I did, in other ways [that aren’t directly related to] your major. I never actually worked as a magazine journalist, but I spend my life writing, editing and taking photos. So, I would say, follow your passion. That’s the most important thing to do. Do it young. Do it as soon as you know what that passion it. There is no time like the present.

If you could give a piece of advice to your college self, what would it be?

I would’ve appreciated being in college more. It’s such an incredible experience to be in this fantastic learning community. I think I would have applied myself more and taken advantage of opportunities I didn’t know were available. It’s the only time in your life when you’re in such a deep learning environment. Seize the day.