Alumni Support

Meet the Alumni Society Board

The Hubbard School Alumni Board is made up of 10 to 13 members who serve in 3-year terms. Members are drawn from the Hubbard School alumni community and represent both the journalism and strategic communication industries. The board meets monthly to coordinate a number of programs designed to keep alumni connected to the school, including the Alumni Mentoring Program, Alumni mixer events, the Alumni Award for Excellence, and the Above the Fold Award.

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Alumni Society Board Leadership

Michael Schommer, Secretary 
MA 2009
Michael Schommer has served as the Minnesota Department of Health communications director since January 2013. In this role, he directs the department’s communications activities including media relations, social media and internal communications. Prior to joining MDH, he served as communications director for the Minnesota Department of Agriculture and as a newspaper reporter in the southern Minnesota towns of New Ulm and Rochester.

Michael earned his master’s degree in strategic communication from the University of Minnesota in 2009. He is president of the National Public Health Information Coalition, and has served as a board member for the organization since 2015. Professional areas of interest include crisis and risk communication, communications psychology and information processing.

Alumni Society Board Members

Kelli (Theiler) Brady
MA 2014
In Kelli's current role as Associate Director of Strategy at Roundpeg Consulting, she takes a "consumer first" approach to research & strategy. By beginning with the attitudes, opinions and behaviors of people, she uncovers insights that help brands focus on what matters to their buyers in today's culture. Before joining Roundpeg, she spent time at local advertising agency, Carmichael Lynch, and consumer insights firm, Gartner/Iconoculture. Her work has impacted strong brands like Securian Financial, Corona, Modelo, Target, 3M & Subaru. She earned her Master of Arts in Strategic Communication from the University of Minnesota in 2014 and Bachelor of Science in Advertising from the Art Institute in 2010. As a lifelong Minnesotan, enthusiasm for the outdoors runs in her blood. On weekends, you can find Kelli camping, biking or taking in an outdoor concert.

Alexa (Trussoni) Cushman
BA 2006
Alexa serves as the Director of Healthcare and Life Sciences Industry Marketing at MuleSoft. She has over a decade of experience working in various aspects of the tech industry and was formerly a television news producer. Ms. Cushman is a graduate of the Hubbard School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities where she received her BA in Professional Journalism along with a minor in Communications Studies in 2006. She and her family now call Boise, Idaho home.

McKenna Ewen
BA 2009
McKenna Ewen is a producer for CNN Digital, where he shoots, writes and edits short documentary films. As a visual storyteller, Ewen brings a cinematic approach to news. He travels the country in search of extraordinary people, challenges conventional wisdom and explores the universal conflicts that connect us all. Prior to joining CNN, Ewen worked at The Washington Post and Minneapolis Star Tribune, where he told stories that empowered people to make the world healthier, safer, freer, greener and wiser. He was named Editor of the Year in 2020 and 2021 and Multimedia Journalist of the Year in 2017 by the White House News Photographers Association. He has received 10 regional Emmy Awards with recognition from NPPA, POYi, SPJ and RTDNA. As a childhood cancer survivor, he graduated magna cum laude from the University of Minnesota. He lives in Excelsior, Minnesota.

Riham Feshir
BA 2008
Riham Feshir has been with RBC Wealth Management since 2021. She is a senior writer working on the corporate communications team to craft articles for various channels, strategically plan and execute content for external audiences and research and pitch byline articles for placement in the financial press as well as mainstream media. She was previously a reporter for Minnesota Public Radio News covering immigration issues, police killings and racial inequities. She was the co-creator of 74 Seconds, an innovative podcast that covered the first-ever trial of a Minnesota police officer criminally charged in an on-duty death. Her work on the podcast won national awards, including a Peabody, Livingston and Third Coast Best Documentary.

Maggie Habashy
BA 2007
Maggie Habashy has been with GREATER MSP since December 2019 and in a full-time role since May 2020. Maggie is responsible for all strategic planning and execution of communications to support the goals and objectives of GREATER MSP and the region at large. Prior to joining the team, Maggie led communications, marketing, social media, local business and community engagement for the 2019 Men’s Final Four in Minneapolis. Maggie has worked in a variety of corporate and consumer public relations roles, with emphasized experience in media relations and crisis communications. Maggie started off her career in news at FOX-Minneapolis and a producer after she graduated from the University of MN with a Journalism degree.

Suzy (Hart) Langdell
BA 2006
Group Account Director, Fallon

Shreya Mukherjee
MA 2007
Chief Strategy Officer, MSLGROUP (Part of Publicis Groupe)

Jenni Pinkley
BA 1997
Jenni Pinkley is the senior video producer for the Minneapolis Star Tribune. She oversees video production, including assigning, coaching and training on daily news stories and projects. She has won four Upper Midwest Regional Emmy awards, three National Edward R. Murrow awards and other industry awards for multimedia projects over the years, as well as multimedia teaching and judging engagements.

Contact Jenni for more information about: 

  • Photo and Video Storytelling
  • Working in the newspaper industry
  • Multimedia

Karen Schultz
MA 2009
Karen Schultz joined the Hubbard School alumni board bringing her extensive marketing and business development experience. She’s worked in the airline industry as well as at various agencies— PR, digital marketing, energy efficiency marketing and three advertising—in client services and communications, but mostly as a director of business development while also leading agency PR and marketing. Currently, Karen runs a small business focusing on Business Development, PR and Marketing for agencies and small to mid-sized companies, called OneAirSpace. The name reflects her previous career in the airline industry, but also her passion for collaborative and authentic communications that help businesses reach their goals. 

Contact Karen at [email protected] for more information about:

  • Identity, Marketing, PR and Business Development for agencies and small to mid-size companies
  • Entrepreneurship/Gig Life
  • Networking
  • Reimagining a career

Emme Strauss
BA 2005
In her current role as Head of Production + Creative Operations at Google Brand Studio, Emme Drews has been responsible for helping bring to life some of Google's biggest brand moments over the past few years including the Helpfulness brand campaign, Racial Equity, Year in Search, Covid-19 efforts, Google One, Olympics, and the Google Store (2015 Webby Award). Prior to Google, Emme worked on the agency side on clients such as Toyota, Nike, Visa, Intel, Bank of America and Merck in roles across account management, production and operations in San Francisco, New York and Minneapolis. She currently lives in the Bay Area with her husband and two young daughters. 

Ex-officio members
Elisia Cohen, Director
Amanda Fretheim Gates, Communications Manager
Jean Kucera, Chief of Staff
Rebecca Rassier, Associate Director of Student Services