St. Paul, Minn., July 10, 2017—As it strives to serve more audiences, American Public Media Group has appointed a new chief marketing officer and promoted several of its senior staff to leadership positions. The changes consolidate oversight of some activities with an eye toward agility in an increasingly disruptive media landscape.
“These changes will help us achieve our goals in expanding and diversifying our audiences,” said Dave Kansas, executive vice president and chief operating officer. “As we seek to increase our audience, it is vital that we better understand current and prospective listeners, find ways to build on recent strong audience gains in our regional services, maintain our deep relationships with stations across the country and continue to explore new content in the digital and on demand space.”
Carmen Rodriguez Johnson has been hired as senior vice president for audience development and chief marketing officer. Johnson comes to APMG after a 14-year stint at General Mills, most recently as director, consumer insights, innovation and core brand renovation. Her work at General Mills helped drive significant growth through brand innovation, sophisticated marketing, deep research and knowledge of consumers. Prior to working at General Mills, Johnson worked for six years in marketing and sales at Procter & Gamble in Cincinnati. In addition to her marketing and insights background, she has worked in talent recruitment, development and retention with a special focus on diversity.
Nick Kereakos has been named senior vice president and general manager of MPR’s regional services. He retains his role as chief technology officer and will continue to oversee technology, engineering and operations for American Public Media Group. Kereakos has been leading MPR’s regional and national music services and now adds MPR News to his portfolio. As general manager of MPR’s regional services, he will develop and execute strategies that will maximize reach across MPR News, The Current and Classical MPR. Prior to his promotion, he led The Current and Classical MPR to strong audience gains.
Shona Koester has been named vice president of content distribution and partnerships. Koester has held the role of interim head of the division since late 2016. Under her leadership of the distribution team, the reboot of A Prairie Home Companion with host Chris Thile has been warmly received by stations and listeners. In addition, she and her team secured an early renewal of APMG’s partnership with the BBC World Service. In the first five years of the APMG/BBC World Service partnership, the BBC World Service’s audience in the U.S. has nearly doubled.
Mike Reszler, vice president and chief digital officer, adds business planning and project management to his portfolio. Reszler currently oversees APM’s podcast network, digital platforms, the Public Insight Network, The Splendid Table and Dinner Party Download. He has overseen several key initiatives over the past several years, including the launch of several award-winning and highly praised podcasts, including Terrible, Thanks for Asking, The Hilarious World of Depression and Historically Black.
John Kavanagh, has been promoted to managing director for public and regulatory affairs. Kavanagh, an attorney, oversees MPR’s government relations and regulatory compliance efforts and serves as the liaison for MPR’s networked stations, both on the state and local level as well as nationally in Washington, D.C., and oversees regulatory compliance and filing. He recently led the effort during the 2017 Minnesota Legislative Session to fund equipment grants to support MPR’s role as the backbone to Minnesota’s Emergency/Amber Alert System. In his expanded role, he also will work with national stakeholders, including the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, to ensure funding for public media.