College Hires New Chief Communications Officer
Issue   |   Wed, 02/01/2017 - 01:05

President Biddy Martin announced the selection of Sandra Genelius as the college’s chief communications officer in an email to the college community on Tuesday, Jan. 4.

Genelius will replace Pete Mackey, who resigned from the position last August.

“We selected Sandy after an extensive national search, through which she emerged as the top choice for this important position,” wrote Martin in her announcement. Chief Finance and Administrative Officer Kevin Weinman chaired the search.

Genelius has considerable experience in the field of communications, having held positions in sports, news and corporate businesses. She started her career at CBS Sports, later becoming the vice president of communications at CBS News.

After working there for 14 years, she left the network to work as the vice president of corporate communications and public affairs at Sony Corporation of America. Most recently, she had been a strategic communications consultant.

“I’m a firm believer that each experience we have in our lives helps to prepare us for the next — that a career is a process and a progression,” said Genelius in an email interview. “[My job at CBS News] was wildly unpredictable, highly stressful and enormously varied in the subject matter, situations and people I dealt with … That made me feel I could manage just about anything moving forward.”

As the college’s CCO, Genelius will create, supervise and execute a communications program for the college in collaboration with the communications team.

She will be in charge of the college’s public affairs, marketing, major event programming and all other communications projects.

“The world in which we live is constantly changing and increasingly complex, and I believe the liberal arts education … is one of the best ways to prepare young people to successfully navigate it,” Genelius said. “Finding new, creative and effective ways of communicating that message and having it be understood and embraced is critically important for Amherst.”

Before this school year, Mackey oversaw communications projects like creating the Daily Mail and a new college website and bringing well-known speakers and new communications team members to campus in his role as CCO.

During the interlude between Mackey and Genelius, Martin, Chief Advancement Officer Megan Morey and a hired consultant presided over the role of chief communications officer, according to the college website.

“The people I’ve met so far at Amherst have been kind, welcoming, open, straightforward and passionate — qualities I regard highly — that I really can’t wait to get started,” Genelius said.

Genelius will officially take on her new role on Wednesday, March 1.