Speaker Profiles

Here is some information about just a couple of the great speakers coming to the conference.

Each was asked 2 questions:

 

  • What is something you wish you had been told as a woman starting out in the industry?
  • What is the most memorable moment you have had thus far in your career?

Laura Davidson

Laura Clapp Davidson is the eastern retail market development specialist for legendary Shure Incorporated. After initially forging her path as a singer/songwriter, Laura’s voice took her all over the world and eventually led her to a career in the MI industry. For the past twelve years she has worked with various manufacturers in product demonstration, global event coordination and marketing management. Since joining Shure last year, Laura has designed and created new initiatives to drive business and awareness in the retail segment and has been tasked with creating regular social media content for the brand. Her expertise is in fostering connections with customers through a focus on solution-based knowledge.
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Jess Garcia

From Director & Cinematographer, to audio engineer and branding/marketing specialist, Jess Garcia has gained expert knowledge in a wide range of related fields which have led to where she is today. As the CEO and Founder of Springwood Productions, Jess has edited, produced, and directed over 250 videos since its establishment in 2008, garnering a massive list of clientele including major companies like SE Electronics, DW Drums, and Vic Firth Drumsticks, as well as high profile creative professionals including Matt Greiner of August Burns Red, Adam Gray of Texas in July, and YouTube personality and singer, Christina Grimmie. She has also worked extensively in software and application development, negotiating contracts, and providing other professional services for corporations like Siemens, Mayo Clinic, and The American Dental Association. Jess’s other major accomplishments include but are not limited to developing and creating a Mobile App used by millions of people, world travel and non-profit work in countries including Ethiopia and China, as well as marketing campaigns that obtained at least a thousand leads, some within 24 hours. All of these accomplishments were achieved before the age of 30, with many accolades granted by clients and associates for her attention to detail, and work ethic, as well as her genuine emotional connection to the people she works with. She hopes to continue to inspire people to Be Bold and go after their dreams.

Ayelet Schiffman

As a 22-year veteran at Sony Music, Ayelet Schiffman, Senior Vice President of Rhythm &,Dance,Promotion at Columbia Records has been instrumental in the massive radio success of award-,winning multiplatinum artists including Beyoncé, J. Cole,Pharrell, John Legend, Adele and The,Chainsmokers and many more from the very beginning of their respective careers. Ms. Schiffman began her career in Sony Music’s CollegeDepartment in 1994. She held positions, in Alternative Marketing and Promotion in Los Angeles before relocating back to New York as a,National rep. In 2002, she moved to Sony Urban, guiding projects for both Columbia Records, and Epic Records. 2005 saw her become VP of RhythmPromotion. In 2011, her focus would, solely be Columbia Records artists. She was born in Israeland raised in Westchester, NY where, she currently resides with her husband and two young daughters.

Cristabelle Braden 

Cristabelle Braden (LVC ’15) is a nationally touring singer/songwriter and speaker. After suffering a traumatic brain injury as a teen, she began to write music. Since then, she has surpassed medical expectations and thrived in her newfound gift of music, by graduating from college, recording and releasing original music, and touring independently across the nation. She is also a music producer, graphic designer, author, and the founder of Hope After Head Injury, an organization dedicated to brain injury awareness and support. Her new album “Start With Hello” releases November 2018. She is excited to be back at LVC to share her experiences in the music industry, and to encourage students and attendees to follow their dreams. More: www.cristabellebraden.com
  • Don’t take no for an answer. Believe in your craft - you are capable, and you don’t have to wait on anyone else to get your “break”. Just do your thing! Having a substantial career is a process of building a solid foundation. It takes time, but continue to work hard, and you will be stronger for it! 
  • It was a few years ago, I was on tour and a 13 year old girl came to a show with her mother after driving about 5 hours to see me. She was also a brain injury survivor and she wanted to be a singer. Her mother had tears in her eyes as she shared how my music has helped her daughter to have more confidence in herself and in sharing her story. That hit my heart in a huge way, and it showed me that my voice can make a real difference in people's lives. From that point forward I never looked at my career the same way. I still keep in contact with her and her family, I don't think she knows what a huge impact she had on me! When I feel like giving up, it's moments like that which keep me going and remind me why I do this.

Amanda Fink

I graduated from Lebanon Valley College's MRT program in May 2016 and was fortunate, enough to have two jobs in the entertainment industry acquired before graduation day. I've always had the desire to do something impossible and something that I can be proud of, and after over a year of working 16 hour days in television, my body having been through immense physical and mental abuse, I was blessed enough to be given an opportunity toprove myself in the NFL at the age of 25. Now, on my second season and loving every minute of it, I get to spend my free time traveling the country and the world, spend time with my derpy dog/child, Fred, and getting out any remaining stress I might have through kickboxing. The road was hard to get here, but I absolutely wouldn't change a thing!
  • I don't know if there is anything anyone could have told me that could have prepared me for the entertainment industry, I had a tendency to ignore a lot of advice I was given. Many times this worked in my favor, but many times I also found myself falling for mistakes I was warned about. Every person has a different experience, and while it is absolutely important to listen and consider someone else's advice and opinion, at the end of the day you have to do what is best for you, and sometimes experience mistakes, failures, and successes for yourself.  It's the only way you can grow and learn, that applies for everyone and not just women.
  • The most memorable moment of my career was getting snowed in and sharing a hotel with my morning news crew while the snow was forecasted to be 3-9 feet. The station put us up in a hotel down the road so we could get to work in the morning and back to the hotel until the snow cleared. 7 people crammed into a tiny room for a day and a half to play games and vent about work, this  made for a lifetime of memories!

Kaitlin Jumper

TV & Digital marketing strategies while serving current accounts needs. She is also a Radio Personality at FM 90.3 WJTL where she serves a weekend shift providing Christian Music to the local Community. During her time at Lebanon Valley College, she served as the 11th annual president of the Vale Media Industries Conference. She learned that serving others is possible in all types of industries. After her time at LVC, she worked at WJTL and other small businesses and non-profits working to better the community before starting at abc27 in 2017. When Katlyn isn’t busy at work, she is serving her church, spending time with family and friends, or adventuring with her Fiancé. She is excited to share her experiences thus far at the Vale Media Industries Conference. Katlyn can be contacted at kjumper@abc27.com to talk more about marketing, multi-media plans, or to just meet up for coffee.
  • I wish I was told that it is possible to succeed as a woman in the music and media industry. Many people put down the idea of women being successful but in reality, anything is possible if you achieve your goals and dream big!
  • There are so many memorable moments from the short time I have had outside of college. My first job offer working in media will forever be my most memorable, I was interning with WJTL for the summer of 2015. When my experience was almost over, my now boss Fred, asked me if I wanted to become a weekend DJ and I couldn’t pass down the offer to join the team. That moment started my career in media, and it changed my life, I will be forever grateful!

Liz de Lise

Philly-based, dreamy rock band, Lizdelise, with her bandmate and partner in crime, Mark Watter. Lizdelise's new album, Holy Matrimony, will be released later in 2018. She is a composer and performer with David Dorfman Dance, whose most recent work premiered at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. She performs in Yara Travieso's new works, La Medea (SXSW Film Festival) and El Ciclón. Elizabeth scores podcasts and has most recently created an original score for The Erin Roy Show. Additionally, de Lise collaborates closely with Liz Charky, a film maker, director, and choreographer based in NYC. Their newest work, You Are What You Eat, will be performed at Cucalorus Fest this November. Elizabeth is a teacher with Buildabridge International, a non-profit organization that uses trauma-informed art-making to teach vulnerable communities in the Greater Philadelphia Area and abroad. She also teaches private guitar and songwriting lessons to students of all ages. For more deets on Lizdelise and Elizabeth's work, visit www.lizdelise.com or email bookings@lizdelise.com.
  • When I was 12, I had the honor of meeting Miss Patti LaBelle. After my dad told her that I wanted to be a singer, she said, “If you want to be a singer, you have to be a bitch.” Since being 12 years old it was a piece of advice has stuck with me. I wish that I had heard that more since someone had given me “permission” to be tough made me realize early that not everyone is going to like you, and that it's okay. I was afraid of words like “bossy” and “bitchy,” words that are so often only applied to women but I am learning to practice finding a balance between being kind and being firm. I do my best to be cordial, but at a certain point, politeness allows ignorant people to take advantage and to take-up your valuable time. I wish that I'd been told by more woman-identifying mentors that I would be faced by people-- mostly straight, cisgendered men-- who would question my ability in my profession. The face of the music industry is changing, and I hope to be a small part of that change, most of my guitar students are young girls and I hope that I can help guide them on whatever musical path they choose while also validating whatever decisions are the most authentic to who they are. 
  • When I was a junior in college, I got to be Gwen Stefani in a No Doubt cover band. Weirdly enough, that's the memory I always come back to. It was at the very beginning of my career as a professional musician. It was the first time that I got to embody a character on stage, while playing in a band. I think that experience helped me connect the dots between my love of acting, and playing a different version of myself as a musician. It also helped me begin to take myself a little less seriously, while still being passionate about my work. 
  • More recently, in 2016, I embarked on a two-month, cross-country tour with my bandmate and now partner, Mark Watter. Mostly, I'm still shocked that he agreed to something so outrageous-- we'd been playing together for about 5 months. The tour was a crash-course in applying the "kind but firm" mantra I'd mentioned. It was at the beginning of what I think of as "my mental health journey," realizing that I was dealing with depression and anxiety, and slowly understanding that touring was going to be a real trigger for those things. We drove across the US in my 1994 GMC Jimmy, may she rest in power. The AC broke just as we entered the Southwest. We were sweaty and exhausted, and only halfway through the tour. Mark had fallen asleep and I was driving through the Arizona desert, blasting Billy Joel's record, The Stranger. The last track, "Everybody Has a Dream" came on just as we were cresting a huge hill. The desert was glowing in oranges and purples and I was crying and belting along, feeling so thankful to be alive. 

Rosemary Bucher

Rosemary Bucher (a proud LVC music business/English alum!) works in NYC as a Educational Theatre Licensing Representative at Samuel French, Inc., the world's oldest and largest theatrical publishing and licensing company. Working specifically with schools and youth organizations, she helps teaching artists and educators throughout the US and Canada choose, license, and produce their shows. Samuel French represents many iconic and contemporary authors, including Agatha Christie, Thornton Wilder, Neil Simon, August Wilson, Tom Stoppard, Dominique Morriseau, Bekah Brunstetter, Ken Ludwig, and more. Her extensive theatrical experience includes directing, producing, programming, advocacy, stage management, development, and marketing for Lebanon Valley College, Gretna Theatre, Boston University, Central Square Theater, various podcasts, and several high school theatre programs. While at LVC, she was involved with Wig and Buckle (directing two productions and designing show branding), La Vie, concert choir, SAI, and the music industry conference. She has an MS in arts administration from Boston University. Rosemary is also a freelance graphic designer, specializing in theatrical publicity and poster design-- check out her work at rosemarybucher.com.

Stephanie Hoffmeier

I graduated from Penn State in 2015 with a degree in business. After a short stint in payroll and HR, I realized it was not for me and found myself in the AV industry. I started out knowing nothing about technology and AV, and have learned everything on the job in the last 2 and a half years. Luckily with some great women as mentors I have found myself to be more confident in my tech knowledge every day.

Katie Doyle

Raised in a family of engineers and introduced to the arts at an, early age, Katie has always enjoyed tinkering and creating. At a, young age she found theatre and immersed herself in the, backstage world. Graduating from the University of Maine in 2013, with a degree in Mechanical Engineering Technology, she also completed minors in Electrical Engineering Technology and,Theatre. This led her to start her career as a Controls Designer at,TAIT headquartered in Lititz, Pennsylvania. In 2017, she shifted, into a Mechanical Design role in the Touring Department at TAIT, working on projects such as U2's Joshua Tree Tour, Lady Gaga's, Joann e World Tour, Elton John's Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour,,as well as many other touring shows and permanent installations.TAIT is the World Market Leader in designing, constructing, and, delivering the finest live event equipment in the world. Whether it’s creating awe-inspiring, spectaculars, complex touring stages, theatre engineering solutions, brand activations, or cruise ship, installations, TAIT delivers world-class solutions for live experiences.

Brianna Steinitz

Conference! During her time at Lebanon Valley College, Steinitz served as President of Vale Records, was heavily involved in the Vale Conference, and an active member of Sigma Alpha Iota. For the past four years, she has bridged the creative and administrative sides of the country music industry, working in both the A&R (Artists & Repertoire) and Publishing divisions of Big Machine Label Group in Nashville, TN. Currently as A&R Coordinator, Steinitz compiles label copy (a collection of important metadata, including song titles, songwriters, publishers, lyrics, and musicians) for each release; this content ultimately becomes part of the album artwork. She has contributed to albums for nearly every artist on the BMLG roster, including Taylor Swift, Florida Georgia Line, Rascal Flatts, Reba McEntire, Steven Tyler, the cast of CMT's Nashville, and more.

Susan Larkin

Susan Larkin is Vice President of Allied Personnel Services, the largest staffing service in the Lehigh Valley. Allied has been partnering with leading businesses since 1984 and focuses on building strong relationships with clients while providing an unparalleled knowledge of the local labor market.A graduate of Penn State, Susan has led the growth of Allied for the past 23 years. She holds multiple industry certifications, including SPHR, the SHRM Senior Certified Professional designation, and Certified Staffing Professional from the American Staffing Association, and she is very active in the community.She serves on numerous boards, including the Women in Leadership task force for the American Staffing Association, and locally as an executive board member for Communities in Schools of the Lehigh Valley. Her commitment to the community led her to be named a Lehigh Valley Business Woman of Influence in 2015.

Kristi Jacobsen

Kristi Jacobsen is the Customer Service Manager at Alfred Music and the founder of Broken Glass Media LLC. As Customer Service Manager at Alfred Music, Kristi leads a team of business-to-business and business-to-consumer customer service representatives, streamlines processes and project management within the team and department to aid in achieving department sales goals, and develops close business relationships with music retailers, Alfred authors, and artists across the country. She manages and executes projects for high profile artists and authors, ensuring orders are executed in a timely fashion to reach the destination in time for their events. Kristi founded Broken Glass Media in 2018, after recognizing the need for women in the music industry to have a safe space to connect, collaborate, and support each other. It all started with a blog and evolved into an interview style podcast and an online community for women to connect and support each other. Kristi holds a BA in Music Business from Lebanon Valley College, and an MA in Music Industry Administration from California State University, Northridge, where she developed marketing strategy, entrepreneurship, and business management skills.

Gina Sansivero

Gina Sansivero is currently the Director of Business Development, Education for NJ-based manufacturer, FSR. She has over twelve years of experience working with media services, AV, IT and library services departments in educational facilities nationwide, and has the pleasure of collaborating with a great network of industry experts. The knowledge and experience gained from communicating and working with these experts allows Gina to share information from a variety of viewpoints with an exceptional understanding of the potential limitations that budgets, bureaucracy and resources have on technology departments. She is presents and speaks on the impact of technology in higher education. As an active industry cheerleader, Gina believes in giving back to an industry that has helped her grow and mature professionally. She is a board member for CCUMC, and AQAV; a member of Avixa and PADLA; a regional group leader for the NYC metro and Boston Avixa Women’s Councils; and a proud supporter and volunteer for NSCA. Gina’s passion is fueled by her love of the people in this industry, the need to keep learning and the challenges of keeping up with the fast-changing world of technology. Gina is also passionate about her son, her pup, her family, and (however unfortunately) the NY Mets.

Colleen Leskowich

○Graduate of Penn State University, 1989 ○Liberal Arts Degree in Administration of Justice ○Varsity Letter for Swimming ○I started my career busting shoplifters and realized I wanted nothing to do with criminals! ○Moved into customer service and worked in a turkey processing facility then on to a job in customer service with a disc duplication/CD replication company. ○From that point, I made my entry into the world of AV!In 2000 I secured a job as sales admin for Advanced AV (now New Era). ○As my time moved along, I started acquiring my own customers and turned that into a job of inside sales – where I remain today.

Kathleen Phillips

Kathleen Phillips is a social worker turned Systems Engineer for New Era Technology, an audio/video integration company. She has been in the Audio/Video industry for 12 years where she got her start as a drafter and worked her way to engineer. She has a Bachelors of Social Work from West Chester University and an Interior Design Certificate from the Pennsylvania College of Art and Design. She loves engineering and the daily challenges it brings. Outside of work she spends her time playing with her 2 young sons and husband and just tries to enjoy life day by day.

Becky Woodhouse

Becky Woodhouse is a Frontend Developer and Partner with Level Eleven Art Department LLC based in Lebanon, PA. As a business owner and marketing professional, Becky works closely with her clients to create a consistent on and off-line business presence. In her spare time, Becky likes to use her skills to volunteer with nonprofits such as Mentor a Mother which works to helps young mothers reach their full potential, and Ayiti Bèl, Ayiti Vèt, a ground-breaking recycling and clean up effort in Haiti.

Paula Savastano

Specializing in Copyright, Licensing, Royalties and Publishing, Paula Savastano has worked in the music business for more than 25 years. As a classically trained musician, she began her career in Opera Management, but quickly made the switch to the popular music realm. She has worked in administrative management and intellectual property departments for several notable companies including Broadcast Music, Inc. (BMI), Spirit Music Group, Rykomusic, Cherry Lane Music, Musical Heritage Society and Turn up the Music. For several years, Paula’s knowledge and experience has been sought after by publishers and record companies to assist them with audits, royalties and copyright issues. After significant and continued demand, she started her own company, SSA Music, which provides financial, auditing, licensing and royalty consulting services to a diverse clientele ranging from independent musicians to major music publishers and record companies. In recent years, SSA Music has expanded to offer catalog pitching and placement for a select clientele. Due to recent changes in partnership, SSA Music has disbanded as of October 1st, 2018. Paula continues to offer consulting and pitching services to clients under the new entity of Savvy Songs. With a smaller, more concise group of artists available for placement (most as one-stop licensing), and a ramped-up consulting business, she is excited to move forward with continued top-notch service to all of her clients. Paula has been an active speaker at educational conferences and universities around the country for more than 10 years. She has held the position of Adjunct Professor in the Music Industry Department at Drexel University and William Paterson University. She is active member of the California Copyright Conference (CCC), National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS), National Association for Recording Industry Professionals (NARIP), Association of Independent Music Publishers (AIMP), Women in Music (WIM) and Sigma Alpha Iota (Professional Music Fraternity). She is also an active musician, performing in the greater New York, Philadelphia and Los Angeles, metropolitan areas, as a freelance flautist.

 Kathleen Organtini

Kathleen Organtini is the box office manager for the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra.  She also is a part time house manager at the Whitaker Center, where she gets to support numerous arts organizations in central PA with their performances.  As the box office manager, she provides exceptional service to all patrons, and seeks to cultivate a new generation of symphony subscribers and lovers by expanding programs offered by the Harrisburg Symphony. 


  • I wish I had been told that it’s ok to question the status quo and ask why.  All of my coworkers at the HSO are older and more experienced with business, so I’d been sitting quietly and taking notes, when I should’ve been voicing my opinion.  It’s something I’m still learning, and struggling with, but my coworkers do value my input and advice.
  • My most memorable moment in my career, all 2 years of it? I can’t say I’ve had one specific moment!  What I’ve truly enjoyed is getting to know the people who support and attend the Symphony. Music truly is something that can bring people of all ages and backgrounds together and it’s amazing to look into a full concert hall and see the hub-bub and excitement before a show!

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