Information for the following report from Northwestern was given to us by Abe Peck, director of B2B communications and professor emeritus in service at Medill School.
“The fast-paced evolution of the media landscape has required dramatic changes in both strategy and expertise for media organizations to succeed,” Brief Media CEO Elizabeth Green recently noted. As suggested by the Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC), the same is true for journalism education.
To align industry and academy, Green (pictured here)—selected by AM&P Network and Medill as the 2022 McAllister Top Manager—visited Northwestern University’s Evanston, Ill. campus in November to continue a four-decade tradition of leading B2B executives bringing knowledge and values to students, faculty and administrators.
Joining Green was Brief Media’s executive editor, Michelle Munkres, and chief digital & information officer, Natalie Williams. The three lectured across six classes, from an undergraduate “Fundamentals of Reporting and Writing” class and an IMC master’s module on “Leadership” to zooming with San Francisco-based “Audience Development and Analysis” students.
Green’s conclusion? “The Medill program has done a phenomenal job anticipating evolving digital skills and building an industry-leading-curriculum.”
The 2023 McAllister Top Management Fellow will be named next week and presented on Feb. 23 in Orlando at the Business Information & Media Summit (BIMS). Winners prior to Green include: KC Crain, president and CEO, Crain Communications; Marion Minor, CEO, EPG Specialty Media; and Don Pazour, CEO, Access Intelligence.
“We’re delighted to present the 2023 Top Management Fellowship at BIMS,” said Tony Silber, AM&P Network’s director of programming and development. “It’s got a natural synergy with B2B media’s most respected conference for senior B2B-media managers and executives, and this year we expect several prior-year recipients to attend.”
Williams presented to a “Journalism in Practice” class that focuses on how to form and pitch stories to magazines across platforms. She sparked a lively session by sending the group to their phones to identify Google trends around CBD use for dogs (yes, that’s a thing). “The guests were great about coming up with good scenarios,” said assistant professor Karen Springen, who heads Medill’s magazine concentration.
Williams was “particularly impressed with the strong data acumen demonstrated by both undergraduates and graduate students”—a good sign given where the industry is going. Green and team also met with Medill Dean Charles Whitaker, and with professors who have developed the industry-leading Local News Initiative. Green was keen to explore how the project’s readership-boosting data sets and business models could be adapted to the B2B space.
“Medill has curated a program that explores all intersections of journalism and media studies, from news writing and magazines to data application and audience segmenting,” added Munkres. The visit also reached out beyond Medill, dropping in at the futuristic Global Hub of the Kellogg School of Management and engaging student innovators at The Garage, a space that furnishes them with everything from AI to hand tools. A celebratory dinner with area media professionals capped the team’s successful visit.
“Elizabeth, Natalie and Michelle added real value to our students’ education,” said Abe Peck, who directs the McAllister Program. “We have a long-standing relationship with the B2B world, and welcome the trio’s continued participation with the school.”
Green has been invited to re-present her “5 Lessons of Leadership” during winter quarter. The fellowships are endowed by Mr. and Mrs. Donald McAllister, Jr.; Liane E. McAllister; and Geyer-McAllister Publications, in honor of the late Donald McAllister, Sr., and are administered through the Business Press Educational Foundation (BPEF).
McAllister, Sr. was American Business Media’s chairman in 1955. He was an active figure in specialized business media for more than 70 years until his death in 1993, at the age of 91. He was chairman of the executive committee at Geyer-McAllister, one of the country’s oldest family-owned publishing firms until its magazines’ sale to Reed Business Information in 1998.