Marketing and Communications
Kari Plog ’11, senior editor
Kari returned to PLU in January 2016. She previously spent five years working in nearly every corner of the newsroom at The News Tribune in Tacoma. Her experience spanned from sports and news copy editing and pagination to local government, communities and breaking news reporting.
In addition, Kari’s investigative stories earned her multiple awards, including New Journalist of the Year in June 2015.
During her time at PLU, the 2011 graduate contributed to many media and leadership organizations on campus, including The Mooring Mast and MediaLab.
Kari also works part time as an adjunct faculty member at the University of Puget Sound advising the student newspaper, The Trail.
Rustin Dwyer, videographer
Rustin Dwyer joined the Marketing and Communications department in December 2014 in a desperate bid to avoid another bitter winter in New York City. He spent his last eight years there working as the staff videographer at The New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx. He has also worked with Disney, ESPN and the International Federation of Competitive Eating.
John Froschauer, photographer
John will soon hit his sixth year at PLU. Prior to his time at the university, he spent 15 years working for himself with a main client, Associated Press and APImages, but also worked with regional and international news outlets along with corporate clients.
Way back when — in 1977 — John graduated from Ohio University with a B.F.A. in photography and an emphasis on photojournalism. John mostly spent his working life as a photojournalist with newspapers or news agencies.
Zach Powers ’10, media and content manager
A proud graduate of PLU ’10, Zach worked as media and content manager until April 2017. He previously served as the director of marketing and communications for The Grand Cinema and Tacoma Film Festival. He also managed political campaigns for state Sen. Jeannie Darneille and state Rep. Jake Fey, worked as a legislative aide in the office of state Sen. Christine Rolfes and contributed as a freelance writer to the Weekly Volcano, Tacoma Weekly, South Sound Magazine and Anchorage Daily News.
Zach also is an active volunteer in Tacoma’s advocacy and arts communities, currently serving as chair of the Metro Parks Tacoma Culture & Heritage Advisory Council, on the Broadway Center for the Performing Arts Programming Committee, and formerly on the Tacoma Art Commission.
Simon Sung, executive creative director
Simon Sung graduated in 1990 from the University of Washington. During his tenure in the design field he has worked for various clients including Simon and Schuster, Random House, Crown, Disney, Chronicle Books, Starbucks and the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown.
Lace M. Smith, executive director of content development
Lace is responsible for curating adaptive and sharable content on PLU social media. Starting in PLU’s Student Involvement and Leadership in 2005, Lace has a rooted background in connecting technology, marketing and communications with the concepts of student development.
Lace has been a facilitator for the Student Social Justice Training Institute, at multiple queer student leadership retreats and has presented at both National Association of Student Personnel Administrators conference and NASPAtech.
Donna L. Gibbs, vice president of marketing and communications
Gibbs most recently served as managing director, and helped establish the west coast operations, of Bluetext, a Washington, D.C.-based digital marketing and strategic communications firm that counts among its clients Google, Adobe, Cisco and Intel. Before joining Bluetext, Gibbs lived and worked in Malta and Barcelona, Spain, where she served as chief marketing officer for emerging mobile media companies.
Prior to moving abroad, Gibbs served as senior vice president for consumer marketing and ecommerce at PlanetOut, a leading media and entertainment company based in San Francisco. She also helped lead the company to a successful IPO in 2004.
Earlier, Gibbs was executive vice president at The Weber Group (later Weber Shandwick Worldwide), where she managed six offices and participated in managing key enterprise accounts including Adobe and Gateway Computer.
Gibbs has also served as vice president of corporate communications at Nike, where she was chief communications strategist and spokesperson on a wide range of issues including regulatory concerns, production sourcing and labor practices, mergers and acquisitions and financial performance during one of Nike’s most rapid periods of global expansion.
Prior to Nike, Gibbs was director of public relations at Mattel, Inc., where she was a member of an integrated brand marketing team devoted to reaching the billion-dollar milestone for Barbie worldwide sales. Gibbs began her corporate career at Apple as a public relations manager.
Gibbs graduated with a bachelor’s degree in communications arts and sciences from Michigan State University. Gibbs and her husband live in Gig Harbor with her spoiled standard poodle. She is a longtime volunteer for Meals on Wheels and National Public Radio.
Chris Albert, director of web development
Chris currently leads our web team in planning, designing, developing and implementing the PLU website. He started at PLU in 2008 as a content development specialist creating different ways to tell the PLU story. Before that he spent more than two years as a reporter at the Pierce County Herald, covering Bonney Lake and Puyallup.
Logan Seelye, senior web designer
Logan graduated from Central Washington University in 2009 and did freelance work for several years. He started working at PLU in 2012. Since then, he’s been responsible for completely redesigning the university’s website, and was a huge contributor ahead of an award for outstanding design and functionality in 2015. He is also the author of the book, 10 and 90: The Tackle That Changed Everything, and an inspirational speaker. He is on a mission to share his story and positive attitude after a spinal cord injury in high school left him in a wheelchair and derailed his dreams of playing professional football.
When he’s not designing, writing or speaking, Logan enjoys going to the gym and relaxing at home with his wife, daughter and dog. They currently reside in the beautiful Pacific Northwest, and are lifelong Seattle Seahawks fans.
Hans Fleurimont, Senior Graphic Designer
Hans joined PLU as a senior graphic designer in 2016. He previously worked as a freelance graphic designer for various clients, including the University of Washington Tacoma. He earned an Associate of Applied Science in graphic design at The Art Institute of New York, as well as a bachelor’s in media art and animation from The Art Institute of Pittsburgh.
Sam O’Hara ’16, Web/UX Designer and Animator
Sam O’Hara graduated in 2003 from Western Washington University. She received her MBA at PLU in 2016, and has designed for past clients including Disney and Nickelodeon, and was Stephanie Anne Johnson’s manager and publicist during her time on The Voice.
Jessica Spring learned to set type in 1989 and has been a letterpress printer ever since, most recently inventing Daredevil Furniture to help other printers set type in circles, curves and angles. Her work at Springtide Press — artist books, broadsides and ephemera — is included in collections around the country and abroad. Spring has an MFA from Columbia College Chicago and teaches graphic design and book arts while managing the Elliott Press at PLU. Since 2008 she has collaborated on a series of Dead Feminists broadsides, and is co-author of Dead Feminists: Historical Heroines in Living Color, published in 2016.
Mare Blocker has been making limited edition and unique books since 1977 and established the MKimberly Press in 1984 when she bought her first Vandercook 219. Her work can be found in more than 85 public collections and museums, including the National Museum of Women in the Arts, The Victoria and Albert, The University of Washington Special Collections and The Library of Congress. Mare is the President of the Book Arts Guild, a regional organization for book artists and enthusiasts, and currently serves as the Treasurer of the College Book Arts Association. She teaches Foundations and Printmaking in the Art and Design Department. A retrospective of her work will be featured in the Collins Library at the University of Puget Sound August 2017-March 2018.
Lorna Rodriguez ’11
Lorna Rodriguez, class of 2011, works as a substitute teacher in the San Francisco Bay Area and is pursuing her teaching credential and Master of Arts in Education. Most recently, she wrote stories and managed the newsletter for The Nueva School, an independent school for gifted students. She previously covered education and small cities as a reporter for small newspapers on the Southern Oregon Coast and in Humboldt County. While a student at PLU, Lorna participated in a variety of instrumental music ensembles and was a member of MediaLab.
Genny Boots ’18
Genny is a communication/mass media and journalism major with a minor in global development at PLU. Since leaving her hometown of Anchorage, Alaska, Genny has been exploring new places. From backpacking in south and central America and central Europe to a semi-settled life in the Puget Sound, Genny has enjoyed writing and telling stories. You can find her work around campus, through PLU’s Division of Marketing and Communications as well as Mast Media, and in The News Tribune of Tacoma. She’s embraced the Pacific Northwest lifestyle, driving around in her Subaru, hiking mountains and drinking craft beer.