The Collegian
Thursday, December 08, 2022

American Express Publishing CEO offers advice at communications expo

Students crowded Jepson Hall Tuesday night to network with some of the most prominent figures in the mass communications industry and get advice from keynote speaker Ed Kelly, CEO and president of American Express Publishing.

Kelly stressed the importance of networking. He also passed on tips for a successful job interview.

"Network, network, network," he said.

Kelly also emphasized the importance of talking to as many different people in as many different divisions and industries as possible. He urged students, mostly seniors, in the Jepson auditorium to remain optimistic and not to let the economy dampen their spirits.

"The economy is in a tail spin and our options are limited," Kelly said. "So let's agree to keep the glass half full."

Kelly assured students that the job market would improve, and said he had graduated during a recession.

More than 60 students attended the event, which was hosted by the Career Development Center. After Kelly's speech, students mingled with various editors and executives in the media, publishing and advertising industries.

Meaghan Griffith, a marketing major, said the event was insightful and that the networking portion was beneficial.

"It's great to hear professionals' real-life stories and get a perspective outside college," she said.

Babui Salsabil, a junior and the public relations chairwoman for the International Club at Richmond, said her conversation with the mass communications professionals had clarified the process of finding a job.

"The advice at the end was especially helpful because real-life exposure is not something you are taught in marketing and management courses," she said.

Yolanda Crewe, associate director of employee relations at the CDC, was pleased with the feedback she heard from students.

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"I think it went really well," Crewe said. "We were very pleased with the turnout. Ed's story is a great one to tell because it shows a networking path of success."

Although the CDC has hosted job expos before, this was the first time it had hosted one for mass communications, said Joe Testani, associate director of the CDC. Crewe and Testani said they hoped to continue this event in the coming years.

Aside from Kelly, students were able to speak with Brad Higdon of The Martin Agency; \0x2028John Ogle of WCVE Public Radio; \0x2028Kelli O'Hara, reporter at WTVR CBS 6; Alissa Poole, president of Richmond Public Relations Society of America and owner of Poole Communications; \0x2028Glenn Proctor, vice president and executive editor of the Richmond Times-Dispatch; \0x2028Jason Roop, editor in chief at Style Weekly; \0x2028Kate Stark, DJ at WRVQ and Jeff Wilson, associate vice president and director of business development at CRT/tanaka public relations.

The magazine brands under American Express Publishing include Travel + Leisure, Food & Wine, Departures, Travel + Leisure Golf, Travel + Leisure Family, Executive Travel and Black Ink.

Contact staff writers Sawyer Weirman at and Nick Mider at

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