Shel Holtz, Principal
Holtz Communication + Technology, California, USA
Shel Holtz, accredited business communicator, brings nearly 35 years of organizational communications experience in both corporate and consulting environments. He is experienced in employee communications, corporate public relations, crisis communications, media relations, financial communications, investor relations, marketing communications and compensation and benefits communications. In addition to integrating technology into communications strategies, his expertise includes strategic communications planning, change management, organizational culture, business initiatives and communications research.
Before forming Holtz Communication + Technology in 1996, Shel was senior communications consultant and the communications practice leader for Alexander & Alexander Consulting Group in San Francisco, California. Other positions include director of corporate communications for Allergan, Inc., a Fortune 400 pharmaceutical company, and at Mattel, Inc. He also has worked for William M. Mercer, Inc., ARCO and Transamerica Financial Corporation.
Shel is a regular speaker on topics surrounding the application of online technology to strategic organizational communication. He speaks regularly at the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) and Ragan Communication conferences. Shel is a five-time winner of IABC's Gold Quill award, and was named IABC/Los Angeles' Communicator of the Year. Shel served six years on IABC's executive board. In 2005, Shel was named an IABC Fellow, the IABC highest honor.
Shel is a founding research fellow and advisory board member of the Society for New Communication Research and serves on the advisory board of The Mayo Clinic Center for Social Media. His recent books include Tactical Transparency, How to Do Everything with Podcasting and Blogging for Business.
Shel graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from California State University, Northridge.
Russell Allert, Online Communications Coordinator
Queenslanders Credit Union Ltd, Australia
Russell Allert is on a mission to promote credit unions as a way people can change the world and believes this can be achieved using social media. Russell specializes in social media marketing, online marketing campaigns and social networking.
Russell manages the social media and online communications for Queenslanders Credit Union where he has been for the last three years. He also runs a business, Baked Social Media, which helps small business owners use social media to grow their business online.
Before joining Queenslanders Credit Union, Russell spent five years with Suncorp Bank, one of Australia's largest banks and the largest general insurance group, where he moved quickly from online technical support to call center workforce planning, to reporting officer for all branches Australia-wide.
He has worked extensively in the retail sector. In addition to building his skills at the Myer department store, he managed a video game store for over two years and established a successful eBay business for an antique store.
Russell can see the potential for credit unions all over the world to be a catalyst for change. For this to happen, credit unions need to embrace social media and use the various networks and tools available to tell the credit union story and the story of its members, while providing useful tools and information.
Tara Bross, Marketing Specialist
Linn Area Credit Union, Iowa, USA
Tara Bross is a marketing specialist for Linn Area Credit Union. With a passion for anything and everything social, Tara has found her niche in being the eyes, ears and, on occasion, the face for her credit union. With her trademark infectious energy and enthusiasm, she strives to color outside the lines of credit union "norms" by not focusing so much on competitors, but being true to Linn Area Credit Union's brand. In addition to her social media duties, she is a graphic designer and tries to get her hands on as many tech projects as possible within her credit union.
Tara has been a featured panelist at a variety of credit union events for the Iowa Credit Union League, World Council and the Linn County Chapter of Credit Unions. Her graphic design and marketing talents helped her credit union win many CUNA Marketing and Business Development Diamond awards for design and social media work. Tara served as the vice president of her local credit union chapter for three years and is currently assisting in planning the 2014 CUNA Marketing and Business Development Conference.
Tara has been part of the Linn Area Credit Union family for four years. Prior to joining Linn Area, Tara worked for more than three years at the Cedar Rapids Gazette where she excelled in advertising sales.