Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Congrats FCN 2014 Leadership Team

Posted by: Britt Ehrhardt, December 24, 2013

The results are in! Please welcome your 2014 Federal Communicators Network leadership team. We’re looking forward to accomplishing great things in the coming year. Personally, I’m really excited to work with such an accomplished and enthusiastic group.

Co-Chairs
Dave Hebert, USGS
Britt Ehrhardt, NIH

Activity Team Leads
Ethan Alpern, USGS
Cori Bassett, DHS/ICE
Sara Crocoll, NIH
Debra Harris, DFAS
Yasmine Kloth, NIH
Lisa Wilcox, USDA

Thanks to all who participated in nominations and voting. The competition for activity lead positions was very close. Our organization is lucky that so many qualified folks were willing to step forward to fill these roles.

And, of course, we’ve all benefited from the service of the 2013 team, who have labored mightily on your behalf over the past months. As the year draws to a close, I’ll send out a note about that, so you can join me in thanking them for their service.


David Hebert

Internal Communications Chief, U.S. Geological Survey
David on LinkedIn
3 to 10 years of experience in government communications

Why are you the right person to help lead FCN? Tell voters about your skills, past experience, and plans for the organization (500 words or less).
I believe that government at every level employs professional communicators — like those of you in the FCN — who can bring tremendous expertise and creativity to bear on great challenges facing our nation. I want 2014 to be the year that collective potential is realized through our Network. In 2013, we on the FCN board worked to help you do your job through practical blog posts, training, and social events. We also moved to the HowTo.gov community, which brought us the listserv where we debated, discussed, and shared training, job announcements, and news in ways we couldn't before. And we are in the midst of a budding relationship with the FCN's counterparts in the Canadian and British governments, which is yielding useful results for you (stay tuned for more). In 2014, I want to help bring you regular training on critical topics (that you can attend from anywhere), more chances outside of work to make valuable connections (that you have to be there for), and more content and problem solving that employ all that formidable skill of yours. In short, I am passionate about the FCN, I want to help it become all that it’s capable of being, and I hope you will give me another chance to serve you in its leadership. I have 10 years of experience in gov. comm., including executive comm. and employee engagement, public affairs, congressional outreach, web, social media, multimedia, publications, and more. I've also been a co-chair for the FCN for the past year. See more at www.linkedin.com/in/davehebert.


Britt Ehrhardt

Technical Writer/Editor, National Institutes of Health
Britt on LinkedIn
3 to 10 years of experience in government communications

Why are you the right person to help lead FCN? Tell voters about your skills, past experience, and plans for the organization (500 words or less).  
This is a tough time to be in government communications. We're beset by shrinking budgets, falling morale (in some cases), a low approval rating of the federal workforce, and a rapidly changing media environment with new demands for technical skills. Now, more than ever, we need professional organizations to link us to each other and to training opportunities. FCN has provided some of this over the years, and there are opportunities for so much more. Over the past year, I've done a lot of the small and big things that keep FCN running on a daily basis, from Board meetings to website hosting. Dave and I managed the transition to the GSA listserv, which gives you so much more access to your peers. I also ran the FCN blog and website over the past year, soliciting, editing and laying out more than 40 posts. The FCN Twitter account was me too, where we grew followers from 60 to 1,300, as was some of the LinkedIn and GovLoop activity. And finally, we've opened some great conversations with other GSA Communities of Practice and with international organizations that do the same thing for government communicators in other countries. We hope those conversations will bear great fruit in the coming year.


Ethan Alpern

Public Affairs Specialist, U.S. Geological Survey
Ethan on LinkedIn
Ethan on Twitter
Less than 3 years of experience in government communications

Why are you the right person to help lead FCN? Tell voters about your skills, past experience, and plans for the organization (500 words or less).
Though I am a newcomer to the government communications environment, I pride myself on being adventurous and creative. Even while working for the U.S. Geological Survey, a government science agency, I have found ways to integrate popular culture into my writing. For instance, I most recently wrote a feature called "Could Species Conservation be Key to Winning a College Football National Championship", which is a new and innovative approach to science publicity (http://on.doi.gov/1gH2NFL). I know I can bring that same enthusiasm, creativity, and dedication to Federal Communications Network, and I would love the opportunity to do so. Ethan


Cori Bassett

Strategic Communications Branch Chief, US Immigration and Customs Enforcement
Cori on LinkedIn
3 to 10 years of experience in government communications

Why are you the right person to help lead FCN? Tell voters about your skills, past experience, and plans for the organization (500 words or less).
In my 17 years as a public affairs professional, I have led, directed, and administered public affairs communication programs at the national and local levels. I am particularly interested in building on the great work of those before me to make this network an even more valuable resource and to bring more awareness across the federal government of the importance of good communication both internal and external. I would love the opportunity work with other government professionals to share ideas but also to create some new and exciting ways for federal communicators to learn from each other and share best practices. I am most interested in working with any of the social media activities or blog.


Sara Crocoll

Presidential Management Fellow, National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Sara on LinkedIn
Less than 3 years of experience in government communications

Why are you the right person to help lead FCN? Tell voters about your skills, past experience, and plans for the organization (500 words or less).
I have thoroughly enjoyed being an FCN member and am excited about the opportunity to take on a larger role within FCN. This year, I was happy to contribute a post to the blog and have recommended the group to many fellow government communicators. During my fellowship, I have focused on developing my government communications skills, especially with regard to new media. I would relish the opportunity to use and expand on those skills in support of FCN. I have also developed a knowledge of social media analytics, which I could use to analyze the success of FCN social media and provide recommendations on moving forward. Thank you for considering me for a position as an activity team lead!


Debra Harris

Public Affairs Specialist, Defense Finance and Accounting Agency
Debra on LinkedIn
3 to 10 years of experience in government communications

Why are you the right person to help lead FCN? Tell voters about your skills, past experience, and plans for the organization (500 words or less).
I have more than five years’ experience leading project teams and creative teams. I bring 16 years design experience in both federal government and corporate environments. I have managed several communication strategies and special projects that required research, planning and evaluation. I serve as traffic manager for the corporate communications organization to provide customer service, project management, mentor visual artists, and run regular reports for agency leadership. I led a complete overhaul of the Defense Finance and Accounting Service’s website, www.dfas.mil. The project included selecting a new host, purchasing software, creating the design and navigation, migrating content and training team members. I’ve written and executed communication plans for a variety of needs aimed at both the agency’s internal and external audiences. This includes drafting messages, creating designs, defining methods of distribution and measuring success.


Yasmine Kloth

Digital and Social Media Strategist, National Institutes of Health
Yasmine on LinkedIn
Yasmine on Twitter
Yasmine on Instagram
3 to 10 years of experience in government communications

Why are you the right person to help lead FCN? Tell voters about your skills, past experience, and plans for the organization (500 words or less).
I am interested in becoming involved in FCN in a leadership role because it would be an opportunity to share my content development and digital and social media communications skills with a group of talented communications individuals from across the government while at the same time allowing me to learn from this team of individuals all they have to offer. Over the past year and a half I have lead the development and growth of the social media program at the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM). During this time I have led the Center’s monthly Twitter chats and have particularly focused on developing partnerships with other Institutes and Centers as a way to help strengthen internal NIH ties as we share and spread important health information through these chats. FCN would be an opportunity to continue working with individuals in the communications field and I’d love to work on building and strengthening the professional relationships within FCN so that it is a place that can be a truly educational forum as we help each other to succeed in our respective subject areas. While I have spent the last three and a half years working on different communications teams at NCCAM, including content management, media, and product development, I began my career in journalism and believe FCN would be a chance to reconnect to that beginning—an opportunity to write, stay up-to-date on what’s new and exciting in the world of communications, and to remain connected to individuals with common goals and interests. Leading an FCN team would allow me to share what I’ve learned at NCCAM with a great government communications network, but to also learn new skills. For example, I would love to be able to work on the FCN blog, which would allow me to tap in to my writing skills as well as provide me with an opportunity to work on a platform that I haven’t yet had the chance to fully explore at NCCAM. I look forward to learning more about FCN and meeting all those involved.


Lisa Wilcox

Web Designer, USDA
Lisa on LinkedIn
Less than 3 years years of experience in government communications

Why are you the right person to help lead FCN? Tell voters about your skills, past experience, and plans for the organization (500 words or less).
Current guest blogger for the GSA's Mobile Gov Blog Tuesday Trends section, 12 years in the private sector of Social Media, web and UI design.



This post is brought to you by the Federal Communicators Network. FCN members are government employees managing U.S. government communications. 

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