Newhouse honors 50 alumni at '50Forward' gala in New York City

By Wendy S. Loughlin

October 29, 2015


Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications tonight honored 50 accomplished alumni at “50Forward,” a gala event in New York City observing 50 years of the Newhouse School at Syracuse University and celebrating the strength of the school as it moves into the next 50 years. Mike Tirico ’88, sportscaster with ABC and ESPN, served as emcee.

“This is an opportunity to honor 50 of our stellar alumni and their impressive achievements,” said Dean Lorraine Branham as she welcomed guests. “But more than that, we look forward—hence the phrase “50Forward”—and  celebrate the bright future of the school, its future graduates and what is sure to be another outstanding 50 years.

“Tonight we bring together generations of Newhouse alumni—the legends and leaders, the innovators and entrepreneurs, as well as today’s movers-and-shakers, the forward thinkers and media leaders who, like their predecessors, will continue to represent the Newhouse School and extend its reputation as—I’m just going to go ahead and say it—the number one communications school in the country!”

Special recognition went to Bob Costas ’74, sportscaster with NBC, whose award was presented by Ross Greenburg, former president of HBO Sports; Larry Kramer ’72, former president and publisher of USA TODAY, whose award was presented by Chris Matthews, host of MSNBC’s “Hardball with Chris Matthews”;  Rob Light ’78, partner and managing director/head of music at Creative Artists Agency, whose award was presented by Bette Midler, actress and singer; Kitty Lun G’80, chairman and CEO of Lowe China, whose award was presented by Michael Roth, chairman and CEO of Interpublic; and Tonia O’Connor ’92, president of content distribution and corporate business development at Univision Communications, whose award was presented by Teresa Rodríguez, co-anchor of Univision’s “Aquí y Ahora.”

Rounding out the list of honorees:

Shanique Bonelli ’02 Director, Experiential Marketing – Entertainment, Anheuser-Busch InBev

Dwight Caines ’87 President, Domestic Theatrical Marketing, SONY Corporation of America, Columbia TriStar Motion Pictures Group

Sean Carey ’89 Vice President, Content Acquisition, Netflix

Pamela Chen ’05 Editorial Director, Instagram

Jon Cohen ’90 Co-Founder and Co-CEO, The FADER and Cornerstone Agency

Dennis Crowley ’98 Founder and CEO, FourSquare

Carol Cunningham ’87 Vice President, Consumer Insights and Business Strategy, BET

Deborah Curtis ’90 Vice President of Global Sponsorships and Experiential Marketing, American Express Company

Melanie Deziel G’13 Director of Creative Strategy, Time Inc.

Brian Edelman ’03 CEO, RAIN

Andrea Fant-Hobbs ’82 Chief Brand Strategist, Brand Strategy, Development and Innovation

Shelly Lotman Fisher ’80 President and Founder, Hope Paige Designs

Kraig Fox ’90 Senior Managing Director, Guggenheim Partners LLC

Ruth Fremson ’86 Photographer, The New York Times

Jeff Glor ’97 Anchor and Correspondent, CBS News

Meredith Goldstein ’99 Advice Columnist, The Boston Globe

Kristina Hahn ’98 Head of Consumer Packaged Goods, Google Inc.

Marcus Hayes ’90 Sports Columnist, Philadelphia Daily News

Malena Higuera ’01 Senior Vice President, U.S. Marketing, L’Oreal Paris

Larry Hryb ’89 Director of Programming, Xbox Live

Beth Ann Kaminkow ’89 Global Chief Marketing Officer and Executive Vice President, Westfield Corporation

Keith Kaplan ’91 Head, Global Agency and Client Development, Yahoo

Richard Kirshenbaum ’83 CEO, NSG/SWAT

Andrea Lavinthal ’01 Style and Beauty Director, People and

Ed Levine ’78 President and CEO, Galaxy Communications LLC

Chris Licht ’93 Vice President of Programming, CBS News and Executive Producer, “CBS This Morning”

Sandra Cordova Micek ’91 Senior Vice President, Global Brands, Hyatt Hotels Corporation

Stacey Mindich ’86 Broadway producer, “Bridges of Madison County,” “Hedwig and the Angry Inch”

Helena Mitchell G’78, G’87 Executive Director, Center for Advanced Communications Policy, Georgia Tech

James Olson ’91 Vice President, Global Corporate Communications and Asia-Pacific Public Affairs, Starbucks

Stacy Pearsall ’05 Photographer and Founder, Veterans Portrait Project

Sterling Proffer ’08 Head of Growth, VICE Media

Rani Raad ’97 Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer, CNN International

Melissa Richards-Person ’89 Vice President, International Marketing, Papa John’s International

Eli Saslow ’04 Reporter, The Washington Post

Fred Silverman ’58 Owner, Fred Silverman Company

Debra Adams Simmons ’86 Fellow, Nieman Foundation for Journalism, Harvard University

Marcus Solis ’91 Reporter, WABC-TV, New York

Seth Solomons ’91 CEO, North America, Wunderman

Shari Misher Stenzler ’92 Chairman and Co-founder, London Misher Public Relations

Michael H. Weber ’00 Screenwriter, “The Fault in our Stars,” “The Spectacular Now,” “(500) Days of Summer”

Jim Weiss ’87 Chairman and CEO, W2O Group

Lisa Williams-Fauntroy ’91 Senior Vice President, Business and Legal Affairs, Discovery Communications

Ed Wise ’00 Manager, Partnerships, Pinterest

Lee Zurik ’96 Investigative Reporter, WVUE, New Orleans

In addition, the school presented the Tony Malara Award for Distinguished Service to Joan Adler G'76, assistant vice president for regional programs with Syracuse University; Bob Gautieri '76, founding partner of Design on the Fly; Scott Koondel '85, executive vice president and chief corporate content licensing officer with CBS Corp.; and Bryan Wiener '92, chairman of 360i.

Gala co-chairs were Martin Bandier, chairman and CEO of Sony/ATV Music Publishing; Ron Meyer, vice chairman of NBCUniversal; Reda Raad ’95, CEO of TBWA\RAAD Middle East; and David Zaslav, president and CEO of Discovery Communications.

Alumni co-chairs were Deborah Henretta G’95, senior advisor with SSA & Company and retired group president with Procter & Gamble; Scott Koondel ’85, executive vice president and chief corporate content licensing officer with CBS Corp.; John Sykes ’77, president of entertainment enterprises with iHeartMedia; and Tirico.