CMA Officer Elections 2023

CMA members are electing a new President-Elect, VP for Member Support and VP for Member Training this year.

Voting opens to members April 1 – April 10.

A recording of the candidate forum held on March 27 can be viewed here.

If you have questions about the elections process or the candidates, please do not hesitate to contact Bryce McNeil, chair of the CMA Elections Committee, at

Here are the names of the 2023 CMA Board of Director nominees. Their goals and bios can be found further below. 

Hillary Warren

Vice President of Member Support
Matt Bird-Meyer
Andrea Lewis
Jean Norman

Vice President of Member Training 
Bill DiNome
Julie Lewis

Hillary Warren

Otterbein University

Candidate for President-Elect

It’s an honor to be considered for CMA President-Elect and I appreciate the trust my colleagues have placed in me over the past several years.

I joined CMA in 2002, just after starting as the adviser of T&C Media at Otterbein University in Westerville, OH. Since joining, I have served on the Hall of Fame committee, the Bylaws committee, the Code of Ethics revision committee. I served as the New York convention chair in 2017 and started the ongoing relationship with the Big East Conference that provides an outstanding hands-on opportunity for our students. I started the CMA assessment training workshops with a convention preconference and continue to offer the workshop as part of CMA’s summer workshop series.

I currently serve as the CMA Vice President for Member Support. I believe that everything we do at CMA is member support—that’s the whole point of the organization, serving college media by supporting advisers and their students. Since joining the Board, my main priority has been to improve the CMA’s connection with advisers at every level of the industry and to provide opportunities that all members can access. This has included supporting a listserv for members at faith-based schools, offering affordable summer workshops and expanding categories in contests to give more programs a fair chance. I have also worked with the board to create the new website, which is key to offering resources for members.

As you know, CMA is facing significant challenges. College media has faced cuts in institutional support and advertising revenue—and that makes it harder to keep and expand our membership. CMA must change to support college media as it exists today, in all the places it exists today.

If elected CMA president, my priorities will be

  • Reviewing all aspects of CMA operations for efficiency and value. Every member dollar CMA spends must be clearly connected to serving members and we should seek collaborations that allow us to share costs while preserving benefits.
  • Establishing a clear leadership development process. Our members know how to run non-profit organizations; we do it for a living. Members deserve more opportunities to lead, make decisions and guide the organization. For CMA to grow, we need everyone.
  • Balancing financial realities with the obligation to serve all members. Conventions are necessary for CMA’s financial health, but they don’t serve more than half our members. Members deserve opportunities and resources whether or not they can travel.

If you have read this far, thank you. Regardless of the election, I hope to continue to support CMA’s members—you are what has made my career and my service meaningful.

Andrea Lewis

Ohio University

Candidate for VP for Member Support

Bio: Andrea Lewis is the Director of Student Media at Ohio University. She joined the university in 2019 after serving as the Events and Marketing director for APG Media of Ohio, and content editor and designer for a lifestyle magazine. Through her professional career and board affiliations she had nearly 20 years of experience building relationships through community engagement, event management, and media relations. Andrea also works as a marketing and public relations consultant to help shape and execute external communication strategies, and creative asset development On campus she serves as a safety net and resource for student media organizations, and assists in navigating university systems, working with student orgs on budget strategies, securing funding, problem solving and logistics. She believes in an open-door policy and is always ready to help students work through challenges.

She is a native of Ohio, and an Ohio University Alumna who has lived in Athens for the last 30 years.

Motivation: I entered higher education jut over 4 years ago, coming from a background in marketing, community engagement, and business development. I was working in a multi-faceted newsroom managing the marketing and events department for 10 newspapers in 2 states. My background was a good match as I entered the arena of college media, helping students navigate the business of their news outlets and organizations to help make them fiscally sustainable. However, as a non-faculty member who existed at an arms-length from the college of communication, CMA was the resource that truly armed me with both the knowledge and tools to become a true advocate for our students. They helped me to inform my voice in a way that has been more important than campus resources in how we connect our organizations to peer institutions as well as industry resources to equip them not only for their success on campus, but how they enter the workforce. I realized at convention, and through the listserve that the number of advisors who are not faculty seem to outnumber those who are. I think this speaks to the membership potential of CMA and I think there is an opportunity to onboard our new members in a way that moves them through training in a deliberate way will not only help build the value proposition of CMA but help to create a nexus with recruiting efforts to help reinforce our membership base for the future.

Matt Bird-Meyer

Monroe County Community College

Candidate for VP of Member Support

Please briefly describe your experience in journalism and media: Prior to teaching, I worked at five different weekly and daily newspapers in the Kansas City area for 11 years. During that time, I was fortunate to experience a wide range of responsibilities and beats– editor-in-chief and sports reporter/editor, and covered local schools, business, city and county government, and courts. While working for the Lee’s Summit Journal as its city beat reporter, I ran a biweekly alternative newspaper in Warrensburg for three years. Please briefly describe your experience in college media advising: I returned to school in 2008 to pursue my master’s degree at the University of Central Missouri. As I finished, the adviser to the student newspaper retired. They asked if I would stick around to teach and advise starting in 2012. After earning my doctorate, my family and I moved to Michigan in 2019 where I continue to teach journalism and advise the student newspaper at Monroe County Community College.

Please briefly describe your leadership experience within CMA and/or other similar organizations: I have served as chair of the CMA Membership Committee since 2021. We have accomplished quite a bit in a short amount of time. I think my leadership style centers on being a good listener who leads by consensus. During my time on the committee, I also assisted the CMA leadership in preparing an RFP for redesigning the organization’s website. I also led a confab on fundraising to support student media. Back in Missouri, I was active with the Missouri College Media Association, participating in board meetings to help improve student contest categories, tweak the process for adviser of the year award, and voted to reduce membership costs. I also served as the SPJ Region 7 treasurer, and I continue to serve as a regular paper reviewer for AEJMC (participatory journalism, electronic news and newspaper and online divisions).

Please briefly describe your administrative experience; for example, your work with budgets, contracts, personnel, legal issues, event programming, etc.: As the owner and editor of the Warrensburg Free Press, I managed the budget and hired the staff. As editor of the Lee’s Summit Tribune, I worked with the publisher to manage the newsroom budget and wasalso responsible for hiring staff. While serving as adviser to the student newspaper at UCM, I was responsible for the student publication budget and reporting our financial health to the Student Publications Board. I have the same responsibility at MCCC, but the operation is much smaller. We rely less on advertising and more on college funding. Back at UCM, I reconstituted the campus SPJ chapter, and as treasurer of SPJ’s Region 7, I worked with the regional coordinator to bring the annual conference to our campus.

Please describe the biggest challenge facing college media, then explain how it might be addressed by CMA: Enrollment is down across the country. It does not help that funding and marketing efforts seldom hype careers in the media as interest in the humanities has been declining for some time. As advisers and journalism professors, I know many of us find that the unspoken part of our jobs is to continually recruit to fill the newsroom and the classroom. This effort seems to get harder and harder every year. It’s especially disheartening when our efforts result in a handful of new recruits. When our classes fail to make and when our news staff grow thinner, it becomes easier for administrators to make the case to shelve classes and programs. I wish I knew the solution, but I know that CMA is full of engaged colleagues who share this reality. I found that one of the greatest benefits of membership in CMA is its advocacy and outreach. I’ve seen this firsthand on the Membership Committee when we sought solutions for helping advisers from faith-based schools as they deal with unique free speech issues. They needed a safe outlet to share their experiences and the Membership Committee helped by creating an inclusive listserv for them and other members.

Please list the three priority goals you would hope to see achieved during your term as a CMA officer: First, I think we must continue the progress we have made over the past couple of years. The Membership Committee helped identify the need for a redesigned website, a faith-based listserv, a confab on fundraising, a new grant to help offset the cost to bring students to the conference in NYC, a new Pinnacle award for faith-based reporting, and a coordinated approach to recruiting new members. We must continue to identify ways that members find value in joining and remaining members of CMA. Second, we must listen to and work with the membership. We need to identify our members’ needs and find ways to meet those needs. And we must find ways to encourage more engagement through small groups and communication among the standing committees. Third, we have a new website. Now we need to find ways to fully utilize it. I know much work has gone into identifying outdated files and documents. Let’s refresh those tip sheets and resources and landing pages dedicated to new members. Finally, one way to engage with our membership and identify needs and share ideas about our new website is to bring back a regular newsletter. I think with a good plan, we can have a sustainable, useful and enjoyable newsletter

Jean Norman

Weber State University

Candidate for VP Member Support

Please briefly describe your experience in journalism and media: 

I was a journalist for 30 years starting in 1979 with a small newspaper in Las Vegas, Nevada, and ending at a tiny newspaper in Boulder City, Nevada. Between those two endpoints were gigs at the Providence Journal Bulletin, Hayward Daily Review, Washington Post, USA Today, Navy Times and Las Vegas Sun. About half of that time was spent writing headlines and correcting grammar on copy desks. The other half was editing and reporting/writing work. I discovered my calling as a “sob sister,” writing obits and feature stories in the vein of previous generations of women journalists who were relegated to non-breaking news. I happened to love it. I left journalism in 2009 when the Boulder City News folded. 

Please briefly describe your experience in college media advising: 

I am relatively new to college media advising. I came to The Signpost at Weber State University in 2014, when I was hired as an assistant professor with a newly minted doctoral degree in public policy. This is a second career for me, and it took me a couple of years to realize that I had a supporting, facilitating role in the student newsroom, not a leadership one. I credit CMA with helping me realize that, largely through the conversations on the listserv. I am now an associate professor at Weber State teaching journalism and any other fun courses I can weasel my way into. I have avoided other administrative opportunities available to faculty at my university because I don’t want to give up advising The Signpost. It’s a decent reason to get out of bed in the morning.

Please briefly describe your leadership experience within CMA and/or other similar organizations: 

I have done my best to avoid leadership and service in this organization. I am active on the listserv and am currently a reluctant member of the membership committee. I helped found the Utah College Media Alliance, an informal coalition of college media advisers in my state, and we put on three events a year: a fall symposium for high school media students, one for college media students, and a spring contest for high school media. I am on the board of the Utah Press Association and secretary of the Utah Headliners chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. I also serve on multiple committees at Weber State University, where I am faculty. To be honest, I plan to vote for whoever is running against me for this position. 

Please briefly describe your administrative experience; for example, your work with budgets, contracts, personnel, legal issues, event programming, etc.: 

I am good at taking notes. I rely on our university legal team when it comes to contracts and take great umbrage when students’ First Amendment rights are threatened. As far as other legal issues, I turn to the lawyers. When it comes to personnel, I rely on speaking truth plainly but kindly when corrections are needed. I am not good at all at budgeting. Event programming is exhausting but I can do it.

Please describe the biggest challenge facing college media, then explain how it might be addressed by CMA: 

As far as I can tell, CMA no longer faces an existential crisis. One problem is the health of a volunteer organization like this is wholly dependent on the energy and talent of the volunteers. I don’t know that I would be a huge help because my volunteer time is spread pretty thin and I’m not a big thinker. I’m more of a doer. That said, I do think the most important challenge is drawing in new members as some of our longer time members retire. I guess that would be the job of the VP of membership. 

Please list the three priority goals you would hope to see achieved during your term as a CMA officer: 

  • More regularly extend lifetime memberships to folks who have contributed decades of mentoring so that they remain active on the listserv and wherever else we can cajole them into helping out. Perhaps we can have a process for that.
  • More collaboration with other adjacent organizations.
  • Make a marble statue of Jackie Alexander. She’s a hero of mine.

Bill DiNome

UNC Wilmington

Candidate for VP of Member Training

Please briefly describe your experience in journalism and media:

My experience in media started in 1984 as a staff copywriter for major New York-based book publishers (Berkley-Putnam, St. Martin’s Press) then as a freelance writer for a range of publishers, advertising agencies, magazines and newspapers. Much of my output was advertising copy, feature articles, essays and reviews. As copy chief at St. Martin’s, I was also responsible for hiring and directing freelance copywriters and assisting in conceiving marketing strategies and was awarded two certificates for distinction in creativity in copywriting by Art Direction magazine (1989). 

After moving to North Carolina in 1990, I spent the next 10 years as a freelance writer and editor. I was the chief contributing editor and assistant designer for The Beat, a monthly magazine (18,000 circ.), while also writing programs for theater and music festivals, advertising copy, concert and restaurant reviews, radio scripts, and feature articles for agencies and magazines in North Carolina, San Francisco and New York. I co-authored a travel guide to NC’s Southeast Coast for five annual editions, often contributing original photography as well. In the mid-1990s, I wrote three genre westerns published under a pseudonym for Jove Press (an imprint of Berkeley-Putnam). I have since published shorts stories and poetry in a few unknown or disreputable literary journals.

The Encyclopedia of North Carolina (U Chapel Hill Press, 2006) published 18 of my articles about the natural and cultural history of the state. 

In 1993 I was recruited by WHQR-91.3 FM, the NPR affiliate in Wilmington, NC. For two years I did a variety of jobs: announcing for a daily morning show, volunteer coordination, designing and publishing the monthly program guide and writing original features and interviews, and coordinating special events. There I learned basic HTML to help launch the station’s first website in 1995. I remain an active volunteer and chaired their Community Advisory Board for two years.

In 1997 I earned an MFA in creative writing, which qualified me to be hired as UNCW’s first student media adviser.

Please briefly describe your experience in college media advising:

Now in my 25th year at UNCW, I have advised student media organizations that publish campus news (now online only), a literary magazine, TV news and sketch comedy, podcasts, film and photography. I am the program’s budget authority and a non-voting member of our Student Media Board. Throughout the years, I have designed and delivered a wide variety of trainings, including online asynchronous modules, while playing major roles in retreats, conference travel, contest entries, spending, RFPs for print contracts, and assisting in the design of two office suites housing our program. Each year I introduce new editors to accessing the analytics for their respective websites. As an administrative user of the Campus Labs event platform, I assist student organizations in leveraging the platform’s functions, such as event marketing, member recruitment, attendance tracking and polling. 

Please briefly describe your leadership experience within CMA and/or other similar organizations:

Becoming a member of the College Media Association in 1998, I found a refuge and invaluable resource for someone then new to advising. Over the years I’ve volunteered for the Communication committee and helped copyedit the College Media Review. I have been a member of the First Amendment Advocacy Committee for the past couple of years and assisted with one investigation.

I was a member of SUN (Southern University Newspapers) from 2001 to its closing in 2017, serving as vice-president 2013–2015. I coordinated their contests for three years, and hosted a SUN conference at UNCW in 2015.

Please briefly describe your administrative experience; for example, your work with budgets, contracts, personnel, legal issues, event programming, etc.:

UNCW’s student media program is of a modest size, with an annual budget of nearly $170K. As budget authority, I oversee the entire budget process, all spending and revenue; I initiate PO requests, RFPs (including for print contracts for our newspaper’s print edition until 2019) and IT applications for off-campus web services. I manage the advertising for the Seahawk newspaper which today brings in a fraction of the revenue it earned 20 years ago. I advise the Student Media Board on all issues that come before it, including personnel, legal and ethical issues, marketing and programming, and provide monthly budget reports, minutes and agenda. I oversee a payroll of 35 students who work during the academic year. For seven years I hired and supervised a graduate assistant we well. 

Please describe the biggest challenge facing college media, then explain how it might be addressed by CMA:

Focusing specifically on this election bid, the greatest, most fundamental challenge facing college media is the need for reliable, circumspect advising that is well-informed, current and continuous across academic years. This need is precisely what CMA is conceived to address. The adviser training program, focused on serving the needs of new advisers and honing the skills of experienced advisers, stands at the vanguard of meeting this challenge.

Please list the three priority goals you would hope to see achieved during your term as a CMA officer:

As VP for member training, I propose to:

1. Connect new advisers to veteran advisers by establishing periodic online open sessions and topic-focused roundtables, and the creation of an “adviser bureau” offering individualized mentoring with experienced advisers.

2. Build upon the successes of previous VPs by expanding asynchronous adviser training:

  • Begin by evaluating the effectiveness of existing trainings in all formats and polling membership about needed changes.
  • Explore the viability of creating new elective trainings to include modules specific to media such as magazines (literary and general interest), radio, TV, podcasting and film. Make all such trainings available in synchronous and asynchronous settings.

3. Evaluate live training presentations at conferences to maintain effectiveness and relevance.

Julie Lewis

University of Central Missouri

Candidate for VP of Member Training

Please briefly describe your experience in journalism and media: When I was in high school, my internship with U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley gave me an experience that changed my life. My best days were spent reading and watching his news coverage, while listening to Grassley say, “My job is to make sure people have a voice and journalism gives the people their voice.” Thus began my journalism passion. As a teen, I jumped into reporting for my hometown newspaper and high school newspaper and yearbook. Then, continuing my journey to complete my undergraduate degree at the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Journalism.

During my professional experience, I acquired a record of achievement in public relations and as a reporter. While at various news outlets each story had to be factual and bring attention to the key concepts of justice and care. The craft presented many challenges. Throughout focusing on Civic Journalism, working towards coverage being a catalyst for positive change. My years in public relations specialized in media planning, press management and event planning. I was yelled at, lied to, had doors slammed in my face and even been shot at – all in pursuit of journalism. 

Please briefly describe your experience in college media advising: For over two decades, I have advised students about journalism’s enduring values, guiding them through the constant ever-changing environment of the digital era. Currently. I am in my tenth year as a college media adviser. I have passionately advised publications to operate well, informed their student body and served as its voice. I have developed a strong knowledge base about the integrity of publications, motivated staffers through the time constraints of impending deadlines and captivated minds. 

Twenty years ago, I began advising high school yearbook, broadcast, and newspaper programs in mid-Missouri. Each high school publication reflected quality content, design and news judgment, as Best of Show and Pacemaker Finalists. Then, I moved on to my current position at the University of Central Missouri to advise UCM’s Central News Broadcast and The Backpack Journalism Study Abroad Project. Since July 2020, I have advised The Muleskinner, UCM’s student news outlet. My goal is that students develop critical thinking skills to adapt and apply core journalistic values improving their own citizenship as well as helping others maintain theirs.

The last 20 years have enabled me to strive towards the improvement of journalism education. Advising takes time, patience and the love of a student newsroom. I have spent hours at work on production nights, listening to debates over attributes, and the beauty and nobility of combing through and cross-checking information – all in pursuit of education.

Please briefly describe your leadership experience within CMA and/or other similar organizations: I value leadership by serving my community, campus and the craft of Journalism. Currently, I serve on CMA’s Education and Certification committee. As a committee member, I have co-presented Adviser Certification Training sessions at the 2022 and 2023 CMA National Media Conventions. 

In 2020, I completed my CMA Adviser Certification Training. Being a CMA Certified Media Adviser has empowered me to use polished skills to gain a level of achievement by being receiving the Missouri College Media Association’s “Adviser of the Year” (2020). As well as UCM’s 2021 150 Years of Leadership in Action “Advisor of the Year” Award. In the same way, I was honored with CMA’s 2021 “Honor Roll Adviser (Four-Year, Newspaper) Award”. Then in 2022, UCM’s “Education for Service Award”. Our Muleskinner has won multiple awards from CMA and MCMA awarding them Best Newspaper in Missouri 2021. 

In the same way, I value citizenship be serving my community as an elected Warrensburg R-VI School District School Board member from June 2020 to the present. In addition, I also serve to support the strategic communications and development of our community’s hospital, Western Missouri Medical Center. 

Please briefly describe your administrative experience; for example, your work with budgets, contracts, personnel, legal issues, event programming, etc.: As a faculty adviser, I oversee our publication’s budget and related student payroll. Throughout each semester, I collaborate with university administration on budget issues. All while, continuing to work our UCM’s Alumni Foundation to pursue grants and raise funds for student professional development. 

In that role, I oversee our university’s Student Publication Board, facilitate program committee development and maintenance of program curriculum in collaboration with UCM’s Communication Department and the Missouri Department of Secondary Education, including appropriate course and program student learning outcomes supporting both the missions of high school journalism education and UCM. 

While continually evaluating results, I have helped establish program goals with input from our department, campus and community. As education is changing, I strive to support policies that adapt by helping our program operate for success. Throughout, I advocate utiliizing transparent information with administrators, campus, and community to secure resources necessary for our students’ success.

I also facilitate student trainings through Editorial Leadership Retreats, “Journalism Today” Boot Camps for UCM and high school students, and “Pizza with the Press” events for our campus and community. More recently, as a part of our ongoing efforts to promote news literacy and critical thinking, I moderated a panel discussion with the theme “The Changing Face of News” as three professional journalists spoke on the  evolving forms of journalism and their impact on news consumption. 

Please describe the biggest challenge facing college media, then explain how it might be addressed by CMA: Empowering students to develop into relevant journalists is vital within collegiate media. Our student productions continually battle the challenge of keeping college media relevant. There is a need to continue establishing training and advocacy goals with input from our students and advisers, while continually evaluating results. Journalism Education is changing, and CMA can continue to support training, programs and policies that adapt by helping college media programs operate for success. 

CMA can address student media relevance by continuing to provide excellent adviser and student training, mentorship and support. Then, advisers can be effective in positively influencing and motivating their outlets diverse perspectives. In the same way, creating a safe environment for advocacy helps journalism students to seize the moment and take risks in their coverage. As a woman in journalism, I have benefitted from supportive and unbiased mentors. I understand the value of educators and mentors who promote an atmosphere of inclusion and enable all students to access the tools they need to be successful in the craft. Throughout my teaching career, I have become determined to act towards creating environments that are inviting towards underrepresented minorities, women, and socioeconomically underprivileged students.

Essentially, CMA is a catalyst to empower students to be relevant journalists by providing information to secure resources necessary for our media outlet’s success. It is imperative advisers have the resources and tools to actively seek opportunities to empower their student journalists of different socioeconomic, ethnic, gender groups and continually strive for a broader pool of innovative reporting processes and worldviews. 

Please list the three priority goals you would hope to see achieved during your term as a CMA officer: My passion is to boldly move journalism education into the future. CMA needs to continue valuing a nurturing an inclusive environment for student journalists to make their own decisions and take action with training and ongoing communication. Three of my priorities as VP of Member Training would be:

Creating Inclusive and Diverse Environments. Further create an atmosphere committed to students and advisers knowing they have the ability to gain confidence in making decisions to produce high-quality journalistic coverage. 

Further Expand Training and Education. Continue support and access to training, programs, resources and policies to be impactful educators and mentors.

Ongoing Communication. Encouraging regular communication through scheduled and non-scheduled conferencing, while creating a comfortable and safe learning environments for advisers and mentorships.