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CommuniCon 2021 Planning Committee

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Brooke Clarks

Brooks Clark
News and Information, Office of Communications and Marketing

Like the other members of our team, I do my best to tell the stories of UT. I was a writer-reporter at Sports Illustrated for 10 years, an editor at Whittle Communications for five years, an executive speechwriter at TVA for 15 years, and a freelance writer for magazines near and far. I graduated from Dartmouth College in 1978 and got my MFA in nonfiction writing from UT in 2016. I’ve been at UT since 2013.


Beth Davis
UTIA Marketing and Communications

As a writer and editor for UTIA, I craft language for internal and external communications and edit various projects, such as Extension publications, Land, Life and Science magazine, college and departmental newsletters, and others. I have worked for the university in various roles for eight years and earned my undergraduate degree from UT Knoxville in 2011. In December, I will also complete a master’s degree in strategic communication through UT Martin.


Tyger Glauser Nicholas
Manager of Special Events and University Protocol
Office of Communications and Marketing/Office of the Chancellor

Tyger has worked with the Office of Communications and Marketing on planning the logistics for CommuniCon for the past few years since joining OCM. She handles the room reservations, catering orders, and making sure the conference runs smoothly. Tyger plans hundreds of campus-wide events per year on behalf of the chancellor.


Erin Hatfield
Communications Coordinator
Boyd Center for Business and Economic Research

Erin Hatfield designs and edits dozens of contract projects for the Boyd Center and the Tennessee State Data Center, runs the department’s social media accounts, writes press releases to promote faculty’s contract work and academic research, and oversees communications to the media and the general public. Before joining the Boyd Center, she worked in media for 10 years and won awards for breaking news coverage and feature articles. She has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and electronic media from the University of Tennessee.


Kristy Keel-Blackmon
Communications Specialist
Forestry, Wildlife and Fisheries

Kristy Keel-Blackmon manages the communications channels for the Department of Forestry, Wildlife and Fisheries. She manages and builds departmental websites and provides graphic design, photography, writing, content creation, and other communications services. Kristy holds a fine arts degree in graphic design from the University of South Carolina’s School of Visual Art and Design.


Lindsey Owen
PR Specialist
Office of Communications and Marketing

Lindsey Owen is a PR specialist on the News and Information team in the Office of Communications and Marketing. She first joined the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, in 2019 as the communicator for the UT School of Art upon graduating from the School of Journalism and Electronic Media’s master’s program. While in the master’s program, Lindsey worked as an associate producer on Land Grant Films’ The Library That Dolly Built.


Joe Pecor
Digital and Field Marketing Specialist
School of Information Sciences

Joe Pecor is the digital and field marketing specialist for the University of Tennessee School of Information Sciences and has more than a decade of experience in digital marketing management. His skills include web development, graphic design, and digital advertising tactics, as well as integrated marketing strategy, execution, and analysis. He earned his undergraduate degree in communication from the University of North Florida in 2010 and is a current master’s student in the UT Communication and Information: Strategic and Digital Communication Concentration.

Heather Peters

Heather Peters
Assistant Director of News and Information
Office of Communications and Marketing

Heather Peters is an assistant director of news and information and oversees content strategy for UT, including strategic storytelling efforts to support the mission of the university. Heather started out her career as a broadcast journalist and transitioned into public relations and marketing, serving in roles for major companies including Scripps Networks and Regal. She earned an undergraduate degree in Broadcast Journalism from the University of Missouri and is currently earning her Master’s degree in strategic and digital communications from UT’s College of Communication and Information.


Karli Sanders
Marketing and Communications Specialist
College of Communication and Information

As the marketing and communications specialist for the College of Communication and Information, I am responsible for the strategy and implementation for all marketing and communications efforts for the college and three of its schools. This includes social media, video, email marketing, website content, and event planning. As a CCI grad, I love working for my alma mater!


Sarah Sanders
Project Manager
Office of Communications and Marketing

Sarah Sanders is a project manager in the Office of Communications and Marketing and enjoys working on initiatives to support the Communicators Network in addition to strategic planning and coordination with campus partners. Her professional experience includes work in the agency, nonprofit, and outdoor industry settings, and she loves spending her free time exploring the great outdoors. Building on her undergraduate degree in public relations from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Sarah is working toward completion of the Master of Arts in Strategic Communication program through the University of Tennessee at Martin in December 2021.


Tara Slusher
Project Coordinator
Marketing and Communications—UTIA

I facilitate the marketing efforts within the University of Tennessee’s Institute of Agriculture. My prior professional experience has been producing local and national television programs, and then transitioning into client management for corporate marketing companies. I’m a seventh-generation Floridian and graduated from the University of South Florida. I look forward to getting my master’s here at the University of Tennessee. Go Vols!


Donna Spencer
Senior Editor
Office of Communications and Marketing

Donna Spencer worked as a writer and editor at Ohio University and Mountain State University before coming to Knoxville and UT in 2012. She has a bachelor’s degree in English and linguistics from Morehead State University and a master’s in English from the University of Minnesota.

Marcus Williamson

Marcus Williamson
Senior Graphic Designer
Creative Communications

Marcus Williamson is the senior graphic designer on the creative communications team in the Office of Communications and Marketing.


Lacey Wood
Communications Manager
Division of Student Success

Lacey Wood is the communications manager for the Division of Student Success, managing internal communications for the division, faculty, and staff, all media pitches and inquiries, and communications for the vice provost. A two-time graduate of the University of Tennessee, Lacey has her bachelor’s degree in public relations and a master’s in college student personnel.