Meet Your #ITSDC2019 Communications Committee: The ITS America Staff
Vice President, Membership and Marketing
What is your role and what does it entail? I’m a Jill-of-All-Trades. On any given day, there’s a variety of stuff on at my desk - I talk to prospective members about their business objectives, I track our department revenue goals and pipelines, I schedule webinars, I plan digital advertising and media spending and enter into marketing trades and agreements. I'll occasionally copy edit, create a flyer or a social media graphic. I manage marketing vendors and RFPs. I write the member newsletter and the occasional event recap, so I spend a decent amount of time scraping headlines for breaking transportation/mobility news. I’m a staff liaison for a few committees, and I'll attend industry events, especially those where our members are speaking or presenting.
Favorite part of working in ITS comms/marketing? I am enthralled with new technology and how transportation tech can be a part of a more equitable future. At my last position, I spent less than year in a non-technical industry, and I really missed working alongside and learning from engineers. Also, I like working on a small staff - it necessitates effective collaboration. I spend a lot of time with Jade, Cathy, Laura Chace, our Chief Operating Officer, and Rachel Rettberg, Director of Meetings and Events.
How many ITS Annual Meetings have you attended? This will only be my second! I joined ITSA right before the 2017 World Congress in Montreal, and I was totally green. Last year in Detroit was great, but I feel like I have my sea legs for 2019.
What you are most looking forward to at #ITSDC2019? I'm excited to host the Annual Meeting in my hometown - I was born in D.C. and I'm still passionate about all the amazing experiences my city has to offer. I have a background in trade shows, so I always have a soft spot for the exhibit floor. The Women in Transportation breakfast is a fantastic event. The program was new last year, and it was inspiring to listen to so many brilliant women both on the stage and in the audience.
What’s one thing about you that surprises people? I have no idea - you should ask one of my co-workers what they find surprising? But I can offer a few personal-life type details: I have two sons; I am a passable weak side hitter in volleyball; my degree is in fine art, I am passionate about my volunteer work with a free medical clinic program; and unlike Rob Morosi… I am not a great cook.
Best advice you’ve ever been given? I am lucky to have had several mentors who give great advice (sometimes I even remember to follow it.) A few of my favorites:
Stay curious. Let education be your sword, and not just your shield.
Defend those who need defending. Attempt to right wrongs, even when no one gives you credit for it.
Send a handwritten card. Write the thank you note, the apology letter, the congratulations or birthday greetings, the heartfelt sympathy. An email or text doesn’t really count.
Buy luggage packing cubes. :)
Director, Digital Media and Member Outreach
• What is your role and what does it entail? I play a dual role at ITS America! I serve as the voice behind all ITS America social media platforms and I also work closely with Lindsay Shelton-Gross, VP of Membership and Marketing on developing ways to engage members and prospective members.
• Favorite part of working in ITS comms/marketing? Besides being a part of the “Fun” committee? Serving as the voice of our members and developing creative ways to make our message heard for a safer, greener & smarter world.
• How many ITS Annual Meetings have you attended? I’ve been to two before - I’m looking forward to my third!
• What you are most looking forward to at #ITSDC2019? The ITS America Social Media Lounge
• What’s one thing about you that surprises people? I was Miss Maryland 2014, I am a former sports reporter and I have a mini goldendoodle named Reba. That’s 3 things =).
• Best advice you’ve ever been given? My mother always tells me to “Be selfish about your dreams.”
Cathy St. Denis
Vice President, Communications and Strategic Initiatives
• What is your role and what does it entail? I wear a few hats, but the common thread is helping position ITS America as a go-to resource on intelligent mobility.
• Favorite part of working in ITS comms/marketing? Connected and automated vehicles have amazing potential to make our roads safer and less congested, so it’s really an exciting time to be communicating the benefits of these and other technologies.
• How many ITS Annual Meetings have you attended? This will be my second!
• What you are most looking forward to at #ITSDC2019? The women’s breakfast – I love hearing from awesome women!
• What’s one thing about you that surprises people? I spent 6 months as an assistant innkeeper in the south of France.
• Best advice you’ve ever been given? Think before you speak – or translated into ‘comms language,’ know your talking points and deliver them with confidence.