Celebrating Ragan’s Top Women in Communications Class of 2024

Winners were celebrated at a special awards luncheon in New York City on Thursday.

The 2024 Ragan Top Women in Communication Awards celebrated the trailblazing achievements of the women who have raised the bar for the rest of the comms world through their work developing high-performance, relentlessly creative work across internal and external communications, HR, public relations and beyond

Ragan Communications hosted an awards luncheon on Feb. 29th at New York City’s City Winery, where attendees took time to celebrate each other in the face of both global and internal trials to overcome today’s most urgent challenges.

“This year’s class of Top Women exemplifies the heights that women can reach across our industry when they come together,” said Diane Schwartz, CEO of Ragan. “It’s an honor to recognize their power and celebrate their ability to enact meaningful change through their efforts.”

Ragan also had two Hall of Fame honorees in attendance, who spoke to crowd about their takeaways from their accomplished careers.

“What this industry really needs is great people, and we need one another,” said Marian Salzman, senior vice president at Philip Morris International. “What we need is a workplace that embraces differences, champions strengths, and guides us all through it together.”

Susan Donlon, chief communications officer at KeyBank, acknowledged that her induction as a Hall of Famer wasn’t an individual pursuit.

“I want to thank my team because they always bring professionalism and fun to my role every day,” she said.

Congratulations to all of this year’s winners and nominees.

Bridge Builders

Melissa Buscher, Vice President, Chief Communications and Marketing, Officer SPX FLOW

Laci Hasenour, Vice President of Global Marketing and Global Brand Owner, Berry Global, Inc.

Kimberly Leidgertwood, Vice President, Internal Communications, Cognia

Trish Nicolas, Executive Vice President, rf.engage, Ruder Finn

Yolanda Schufford, Chief Communications & Public Affairs Officer, Beyond Finance

Gina Spatafore, Vice President of Corporate Communications & Public Relations, Ancestry

Angela Sullivan, EGM/SVP of Communications, Xero

Racquel White, Vice President of Corporate Affairs for Royal Canin North America, Royal Canin North America

Crisis Navigators

Marisa Bluestone, Senior Director, Communications, Macmillan Learning

Kristy Campbell, Chief Communications Officer, OneTrust

Gina Czark, System Vice President Public Relations and Content Strategy, CommonSpirit Health

Atalanta Rafferty, Co-Founder and Senior Executive Managing Director, RF|Binder

Sara Sendek, Managing Director, FTI Consulting

Data Dynamos

Jacqueline Boggess, Director of Communications, Corn Refiners Association

Alex Christian, VP, Research & Analytics, EvolveMKD

Karen Cyphers, Partner and Director of Research, Sachs Media

Sally Slater, EVP, Head of Innovation, The Bliss Group

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Champions

Ti’Ara Brown, Manager, Brand Communications, McDonald’s

Eliza Chlebeck, Vice President, Communications & Community, Andersen Corporation

Jewelyn Cosgrove, Vice President of Government and Public Relations, Melwood

Gigi García Russo, Chief Innovation + Growth Officer, HUNTER

Madeline Hiller, Senior Account Executive, French/West/Vaughan (FWV)

Priscila Martinez, Founder and CEO, The Brand Agency

Leah Reynolds, Principal, Engagement Practice, Buck, A Gallagher Company

Jenny Wang , Senior Vice President, Clyde Group

Dynamic Do-ers

Holland Behn, Lead US PR Manager for Smartphones and Lifestyle – Mobile, Samsung Electronics America

Lenee Breckenridge, Senior Vice President of Communications, UFC

Cortney Collins, Director, US Communications and Employee Engagement at Haleon, Haleon

Kenzie Freeman, Senior Program Specialist, Communications, Institute of Nuclear Power Operations (INPO)

Erin Frostad, Employee Communications and Involvement Manager, Mohegan Sun

Reed Handley, Executive Vice President, Head of Growth, Financial Services Practice Co-Lead, The Bliss Group

Mayra Hernandez Bergman, Vice President, Communications & Marketing, Pepco Holdings

Megan Kessler, Chief of Integrated Marketing and Strategy, PAN Communications

Christina Leeds, Senior Director Public Relations, Amtrak

Stephanie McCay, Director, U.S. Communications, PCL Construction

Claire Nance, Head of Global Communications & Industry Marketing, Activision Blizzard

Jasmine Palmer, Supervisor, Brand Communications, McDonald’s

Krysta Pellegrino, Chief Client Officer, Health+Commerce

Amy Persons, Senior Manager, Earned Media, Aflac

Jordan Phillips, Senior Manager of Public Relations, Avocados From Mexico

Rania Rostom, Head of Global Communications & Marketing for GE, GE

Stephanie Rufo, Senior Manager, Brand PR & Influence, PATRÓN Tequila

Julie Sculley, Director, Corporate Communications, Virgin Pulse

Athena Snow, Senior Manager of Public Relations & Giving, Coldwell Banker Real Estate

Steph Spanos, Senior Director, Corporate Communications & Operations, Exact Sciences

Kristina Spychalski, Head of Communications, Spire Global, Inc.

Michelle Trautman, Director, Marketing Communications, SPX FLOW

Nancy White, Senior Director, Communications, Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association

Alison Zurcher, Director, Internal Communications, Seattle Children’s Hospital


Jodi Amendola, CEO, Amendola Communications

Dawn Buzynski, Assistant Vice President, Communications, Hy-Vee, Inc.

Katie Clark, Vice President of Communications, Mattress Firm

Anne DeAngelis, Executive Vice President, Employee Engagement, Zeno Group

Vanessa DeGier, AVP, Communications, Providence

Nina Devlin, Senior Vice President and Chief Communications Officer, Vertex Pharmaceuticals

Keally DeWitt, VP Marketing & Public Policy, GAF Energy

Megan Doern, Public Relations & External Communications Leader, Deloitte Consulting, LLP

Theresa Dolge, EVP, Chief Media Relations Office, Evoke Kyne

Monique Fahlstedt, Senior Director, Internal Communications, ESPN

Melanie Fatouros-Richardson, Vice-President, Communications and Government Relations, SkipTheDishes

Brittany Geldmacherm, SVP, Head of Corporate Brand & Communications, Scopely

Erin Griffin, SVP of Marketing & Communications, Riddell

Mara Hedgecoth, Chief Communications & Marketing Officer, APCO Worldwide

Suzanne Hendery, Chief Marketing, Communications & Customer Officer at Renown Health, Renown Health

Jennifer Hines, Chief Communications Officer, Tyler ISD

Jessica Hohn-Cabana, Sr. VP of Global Communications, Cloudera

Katie Huang Shin, President, Big Valley Marketing

Ashley Kline Shapiro, Vice President, Publicity ABC Entertainment, The Walt Disney Company

Melissa Lander, Vice President, Communications, Trinity Health

Kate Laufer Gorenstein, Founder & President, KLG Public Relations

Lisa Lesniak, Senior Vice President and Chief Public Affairs Officer, Advocate Health

Amanda Marotti, Director, Strategic Communications & OCM, AWL Strategies, LLC

Johnna Muscente, Vice President of Communications & Public Relations, The Corcoran Group

Rebecca Nunez, Founder & CEO, The MRN Agency

Lauren Pearson Riley, Director of Communications, American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons

Joellen Perry, Global Head of Public Relations, SAP

Dalya Qualls White, Senior Vice President, Chief Communications Officer, BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee

Melissa Sachs. Senior Vice President, Communications, Link Logistics

Lauren Triffler, Director of Corporate Communications, HARIBO of America

Hannah Vazzana, SVP, Chief Communications Officer, Hilton Grand Vacations

Heather Young, Vice President, Communications, Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology (OIST)

Mentors & Coaches

Samantha Anderson, Vice President, EvolveMKD

Cindy Auten, Senior Partner, Communications, ICF

Ellen Bremseth, Director, Strategic Communications, Milhouse

Elizabeth Erpelding, Head of Partner & Client Experience, Marketing and Communication, Albertsons Media Collective

Jessie Monroe, Communications Consultant, Alliant Insurance Services, Inc.

Susan Stipa, Executive Vice President, CG Life

Tech Leaders

Donetta Allen, Chief Social + Digital Officer, HUNTER

Rachel Pipan, Founder, Maneuvre

Kelly Waltrich, Co-Founder and CEO, Intention.ly

Stephanie Wilson, Director, Global Marketing and Communications, ZS


Diana Castellanos, Head of Marketing & Communications, Atlas Renewable Energy

Adrienne Chance, Senior Vice President of Communications and Executive Director of the SpartanNash Foundation, SpartanNash

Karlin Keller, Senior Director, Employee Communications and Employer Brand, Intel

Erin Lickliter, VP, Associate & Clinical Communications, Bon Secours Mercy Health

Stephanie Lowenthal, Global Head of Communications, Builder.AI

Tess Mattingly, Director, Brand Communications, McDonald’s

Kelly Miller, Managing Director, FTI Consulting

Justine Sacco, Chief Communications Officer, Match Group

Christina Stejskal, VP of Global PR & Communications, Fender Musical Instruments Corporation

Jody Sunna, Vice President of Corporate Communications, Philip Morris International

Nichole Tillman, EVP-Communications, Philadelphia Housing Authority

Cheryl Waide, Chief Communications Officer, Vote Run Lead

Sharlene Wells, Senior Vice President of Public Relations and Organizational Communications, Mountain America Credit Union


Sara Aiello, VP, Corporate Marketing, Trellix

Rhiannon D’Angelo-Parsons, Director of External Communications & Media Engagement, Reynolds American Inc.

Gina Faridniya, Vice President, Spaces, Antenna Group

Tori Fernandes, VP, Corporate Communications, The Walt Disney Company

Sara Garibaldi, President, BODEN Agency

Jenna McMullin, Vice President of Communications, Lockheed Martin, Space

Marisol Mendez Peron, Senior Vice President, Communications & Corporate Affairs, Genmab

Jennifer Moreau, Vice President, Public Relations, Dollar General

Kristina Peterson-Lohman, Vice President, Global Communications, Weber

Amanda Schoch, Chief Communication Officer,, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Tracy St. Pierre, Executive Vice President, Global Communications & Marketing, Universal Studio Group

Emily Williams, Senior Vice President, Global Strategy Group

Courtney Young, Director Hulu Originals Publicity, Hulu

Jill Zuckman, Partner, SKDK

Rising Stars (Age 30 and Under)

Kristen Blomstrom, Director, The Levinson Group

Julia Brown, Director of Strategy, Kaplow Communications

Jessica Bryant, Account Manager, SourceCode Communications

Samantha Casamento, Senior Account Executive, EvolveMKD

Allison Chavez, Associate State Director of Communications, AARP-Florida

Amy Climenhage, Account Manager, Sachs Media

Sawyer Coffey Noel, Director of Communications and Marketing, Kentucky Chamber of Commerce

Kelsey Dalton, Senior Media Relations Specialist, City of Hope Orange County

Jane Ha, Manager, Communications, The Walt Disney Company

Sunjay Lee, Account Supervisor, Ruder Finn

Vianca Lopez, Account Manager, The MRN Agency

Samantha Miller, Senior Manager, Internal Communications, Xperi Inc.

Sabrina Negron, Director, FTI Consulting

Annah Otis, Account Supervisor, The Bliss Group

Michele Owen, Communications Director, City of Muncie

Maredie Palmer, Digital Communications and Employee Experience Manager, Dominos

Bailey Williams, Manager, Crisis Communications, McDonald’s

Michaela Zukowski, Senior Manager, Publicity ABC Entertainment, Walt Disney Company

Learn more about our full list of winners here.

Sean Devlin is an editor at Ragan Communications. In his spare time he enjoys Philly sports, a good pint and ’90s trivia night.


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