A transformative C-Level leader, digital media specialist and Pulitzer Prize recipient, Mitch is currently President and CEO at WCNY. Prior to joining WCNY in 2019, he implemented media and emerging technology strategies for Fortune 500 companies, including CNN and ESPN. He has helped lead international digital operations for news, corporate, cultural and entertainment organizations, deploying cutting-edge media products to drive revenue, increase audience and extend brand awareness. Skills include building relationships, inspiring teams to achieve goals, solving problems and meeting challenges with focus and tenacity.
He enjoys baseball, hockey, fishing, U.S. history and Latin American literature. His wife, Melissa, is a veterinarian; their son, Cris, is 18 years old. The live in Cazenovia on a small farm with three dogs, two horses, one cat and a donkey.
Ken Jackson is the Editor and Publisher at Urban CNY Media. He Writes weekly columns for both Print and Web publications, focusing on topics spanning Community Activism, Minority Media, Government Administration. Previously, Ken was a Contract Specialist at CDM Smith, was president of the Syracuse Press Club in 1995, and attended Ithaca College. Ken is a native of Syracuse, NY.
A former investigative journalist, Joel Kaplan covered city hall for The Chicago Tribune and was a member of the newspaper’s investigative team. From 1979 to 1986, he was a reporter for The Tennessean in Nashville, where he covered the state legislature. In 1986, he was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in investigative reporting for a series on then-U.S. Rep. Bill Boner.
He is co-author of “Murder of Innocence: The Tragic Life and Final Rampage of Laurie Dann” (Warner Books, 1991), the movie version of which was originally broadcast on CBS.
Kaplan was a Nieman Fellow (1985) at Harvard University and a Journalism Fellow at Yale Law School (1991), where he received a master’s in the study of law. He also earned a master’s in journalism from the University of Illinois.
He served as ombudsman for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, and was responsible for reinforcing objectivity, balance, fairness and transparency within public media.
He is a former treasurer and board member of Investigative Reporters and Editors.
Julie McMahon, editor-in-chief of Central Current, Inc., has worked in journalism for a decade, mostly in Central New York, as a reporter, editor and college professor. Central Current, a new nonprofit, non-partisan independent news organization is preparing to launch in 2022.
Prior to her time with Central Current, McMahon covered criminal justice, education, government, breaking news and business as both a reporter and assistant editor at The Post-Standard in Syracuse. Before that, she worked for legal trade publications in Boston and New York City. She earned her undergraduate degree from SUNY Geneseo in 2011.
In addition to being a journalist, McMahon teaches news writing and reporting at Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications in the magazine, news and digital journalism department. She earned her master’s degree in journalism at Syracuse University.
McMahon serves on the Syracuse Press Club’s board of directors, where she recently helped launch the Syracuse Journalism Lab, a project to inspire Syracuse high school students to pursue journalism careers. She has also coordinated Syracuse Press Club’s annual awards contest and recently oversaw the redesign of its website.
McMahon grew up in the Catskills. She enjoys camping in the Adirondacks and Thousand Islands and vacationing in the Berkshires. She has worked in the food service industry most of her life to support her journalism aspirations. When on sabbatical from journalism earlier this year, she took a job as manager of The Sweet Praxis bakery in downtown Syracuse. She and her partner Chris recently bought a home on the east side of Syracuse where they live with Mouse The Cat.