The Wixted & Company Team
Wixted & Company’s communication professionals are all familiar with the media—as Emmy Award-winning television reporters and anchors, newsroom journalists and longtime public relations professionals. They know how the media think. What’s more, they understand how communication decisions translate in the court of public opinion and work to prepare executives, leaders and spokespersons to handle the toughest communication situations with clear and consistent messaging.
With more than two decades of experience, Eileen has a keen understanding of issues affecting the nuclear, health care, energy and manufacturing industries. In fact, over 50 percent of commercially owned and operated nuclear power plants in North America and several hundred of the nation’s hospitals depend on Eileen for expert counsel, media support, training and drills.
Eileen is a native of Brooklyn, New York. After graduating from Michigan State University with a mass communications degree, she spent a decade as a broadcast journalist and anchor, during which time she received an Emmy Award and her health segments were nationally syndicated. Eileen also authored Media Guide to Radiological Issues; served as interim senior vice president of communications and government affairs for Advocate Health Care, Illinois’ largest health care system; and was guest speaker for the Executive Education Programs at Center for Homeland Defense and Security, Naval Postgraduate School.
Jake brings a background in communication plan development and marketing for diverse clients that include multi-million-dollar corporations and nationally recognized nonprofits. He is experienced in writing, marketing and enterprise communication management.
Jake is a graduate of the University of Iowa and earned his master’s degree in public communication from the American University.
During his career, Cory has served in nearly every production role imaginable. Working from the ground up has allowed him to understand how the process works – from managing snacks and soda, to producing and directing large budget television commercials. His producing, directing and writing have gathered regional and national level awards, including projects for Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital, Animal Humane Society and Upper Iowa University.
Cory proudly served as a broadcast journalist in the U.S. Army, receiving the Humanitarian Service Medal for his efforts in the Great Flood of 1993.
A native of Bancroft, Iowa, Lauri has 11 years of experience in television news and video production in the public and private sectors. She spent five years as a television news reporter, photographer and video editor for the NBC affiliate in Sioux City, Iowa, and the CBS affiliate in Madison, Wisconsin, where she ran the station’s news bureau. As a general assignment reporter, Lauri covered a broad range of news events ranging from human interest stories to crime and business news.
During her six years as a producer and writer for Iowa Public Television, Lauri created award-winning educational content for K—12 schools and produced content for the local programs, Student Voices and Zoom Iowa. She also produced and hosted live, interactive field trips using video conferencing technology. A familiar face to Iowans, Lauri is a past host for Festival, IPTV’s fundraising broadcast.
Lauri earned her bachelor’s degree in journalism and mass communications from Iowa State University.
Communications Advisor & Trainer
Jeff brings a unique and impressive communications background to Wixted & Company. His broad industry experience allows him to work closely with clients to develop high-impact communications strategies. He is also a skilled trainer, able to guide clients in handling even the toughest media interviews in a way that projects a positive image for the person and business.
Jeff began his career as a reporter with a daily newspaper in the Chicago area, and then served as a political campaign manager, analyst and speechwriter in the Illinois State Senate. In 2010, he moved to Thailand to work as a foreign media advisor under former Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva. Most recently, he oversaw internal and external communications for an urban school district with 22 schools and 1,800 employees in Central Illinois.
Jeff earned his bachelor of science degree in newspaper reporting from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism in Evanston, Illinois.
Senior Communications Advisor
In addition to spending more than a decade as a corporate marketing director, Tamera has led a variety of organizations in the areas of branding, graphic design, advertising, media relations, copywriting, event management, web development and strategic marketing planning.
Tamera’s experience also crosses a range of industries including hospitality, real estate, industrial technology, construction, retail and publishing. She is a graduate of Iowa State University and the University of California, Los Angeles.
During his years working for CBS and ABC affiliates in the Midwest, Jeff covered state and national events—including the World Series and the NCAA Basketball Tournament—and interviewed former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, football great Walter Payton and baseball legend Bob Feller. Having experience in writing, producing and editing newscasts on a daily basis gives Jeff an intimate knowledge of the news media and how to best tailor messages for their audiences.
Jeff earned his bachelor’s degree in journalism and mass communication from Iowa State University with a minor in psychology. In 2010, Jeff was honored with a regional Emmy Award for his directing work with Mediacom Communications.
Communications Advisor & Trainer
Jeff brings a unique background of press experience, including as a local newspaper writer, correspondent for the Des Moines Register, and staff writer for Politico. He has also written pieces in The Wall Street Journal, Reason Magazine and the Quad-City Times, among others. Jeff relies on a research-driven, narrative writing approach to ensure clients’ messages stand out as credible and compelling in a crowded marketplace of ideas.
For the past decade, Jeff worked as a research and communications consultant for candidates for public office, policy advocacy organizations and political consulting firms. That experience—including working for Members of Congress, a state political party and national policy research nonprofits—provided a solid foundation for developing communications plans, engaging audiences with public relations efforts, navigating business and policy issues through crises and managing clients’ brands and reputations.
A graduate of the University of Iowa, Jeff earned bachelor of arts degrees in journalism and political science.
Office & Training Program Manager
Prior to joining Wixted & Company, Crystal was the Director of Business Relations & Marketing for the Iowa Hospital Association where she managed sponsorships and trade shows and served as the liaison to Associate Members and other external constituencies.
Crystal graduated from Iowa State University with a degree in Child and Family Services.
Throughout her career she has gained diverse communications experience in the fields of manufacturing, agriculture and association management, bringing a unique outlook to the Wixted team.
A graduate of Central College, Jordan earned her bachelor of arts degree in English and minor in Spanish.
Communications Advisor & Trainer
His 20-year career in television and radio includes serving as news director at WHO-TV in Des Moines. Under Al’s leadership, WHO-TV ranked among the top-rated NBC affiliates nationwide, earned three Emmy Awards and was recognized six consecutive years as Iowa’s best television news department. His broadcast news experience also includes WHO-AM and radio stations in Omaha, Neb., North Dakota and Montana. Al garnered extensive media relations experience as communications director for a world-class scientific research center and as the public relations director at a full-service marketing agency. He coordinated coverage from such notable media outlets as TIME magazine, National Public Radio, The New York Times and CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360. Al is a military veteran who served six years in the U.S. Army including a four-year tour with Allied military intelligence in Berlin. He attended the University of Maryland-University College Europe and Brown College in Minneapolis.
His 20-year career in television and radio includes serving as news director at WHO-TV in Des Moines. Under Al’s leadership, WHO-TV ranked among the top-rated NBC affiliates nationwide, earned three Emmy Awards and was recognized six consecutive years as Iowa’s best television news department. His broadcast news experience also includes WHO-AM and radio stations in Omaha, Neb., North Dakota and Montana.
Al garnered extensive media relations experience as communications director for a world-class scientific research center and as the public relations director at a full-service marketing agency. He coordinated coverage from such notable media outlets as TIME magazine, National Public Radio, The New York Times and CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360.
Al is a military veteran who served six years in the U.S. Army including a four-year tour with Allied military intelligence in Berlin. He attended the University of Maryland-University College Europe and Brown College in Minneapolis.
With more than 25 years of professional experience, Mark has worked in a variety of communications and marketing-related positions during his career, including roles in the senior living, agriculture, manufacturing, insurance, health and wellness, and travel/tourism industries. He has also done consulting work for clients on matters related to public relations, media relations, marketing communications, strategic communications, government affairs, and more.
Mark also offers an extensive background as a freelance writer. Besides experience developing content for annual reports, white papers, brochures, and other marketing collateral, he has written more than 600 articles for a variety of local, statewide, regional, and national publications. For example, his work has appeared in Family Living, The Spokesman, Teach & Travel, Groups Today, Service Truck Magazine, Farm Futures, Farm Industry News, Corridor Business Journal, dsm, Iowa History Journal, AAA Home & Away, Michigan Living, Cosmopolitan Home – Grand Rapids, and many more. Additionally, he has ghostwritten three books and also served as an editor on three other business books.
An Iowa native, Mark has a B.A. degree in Radio-TV Communications – Business from the University of Northern Iowa.