Meet the MarCom Staff

Our History

Today's Office of Marketing and Communications has been known by several names in Benedictine University's history.

In 1997, when the office was known as University Relations, there were three staff members in the department – a director, a writer and a graphic designer who were assisted by student staff and interns. In Fall 1997, the department expanded with the addition of an office assistant. Functions of the department at that time included advertising, media relations, photography, institutional branding and communications, publications management and the very early days of website management.

The advances of technology dramatically altered the function of this office through the years, and in the late 1990s specialized staff began to join the department to keep pace with current trends. The University Switchboard operations also were briefly a part of this department during this time.

In early 2001, the name changed to Office of Public Relations and had a staff of five. In November 2003, the department moved from the now demolished Benedictine Hall to the lower level of Lownik Hall and had grown to a staff of seven, including a webmaster and magazine editor/writer.

On March 2, 2007 (BenU's 120th anniversary), the department name changed to Marketing and Communications, reflecting a more modern and accurate description of our true function. Along with the overall University growth, the department grew each year and today includes 15 staff.

In February 2011, MarCom restructured to focus on content and delivery in a Marketing and Creative Agency structure positioned for continued BenU growth. The Creative Services division focuses on content and the New Media division focuses on delivery. Although our role today has expanded from the early days, we remain committed to maintaining the integrity of the Benedictine University brand in all we do.

Who We Are and What We Do...

The Office of Marketing and Communications enhances the image and visibility of Benedictine University through publications, public and media relations, marketing, Internet, new media, advertising, recruitment, retention and fundraising programs.

We accomplish this by focusing on content and delivery in a Marketing and Creative Agency structure positioned for continued BenU growth. Working together with brand partners, we emphasize a partner- and project-based work flow through appropriate lead time, mutual trust and respect and prioritization.

By utilizing our marketing, creative and new media knowledge and talents, we help our brand partners achieve their recruitment, retention, revenue and service goals. Implementing promotional strategy, communications opportunities and advertising programs, we further cultivate the Benedictine University brand resulting in University success.

The Office of Marketing and Communications is located in the lower level of Lownik Hall. Please call us first to see if we are available to meet with you or to make an appointment. Drop-in visits are discouraged.

Executive Staff

Mercy Robb
Executive Director
of Marketing and Communications

Mercy is the chief communications officer and oversees all areas of marketing and communications for Benedictine University. She is also the University spokesperson.

Jody Conidi
Project Coordinator
Jody coordinates the project details for work produced by the Office of Marketing and Communications.

Creative Services Staff

Linda Hale
Director of Marketing and Operations
Linda directs the creative staff and oversees all creative marketing efforts. She is also the editor of the University's magazine, Voices, and coordinates all content and design for this publication.

Karon Ringgenberg
Associate Director of Graphic Design

Karon supervises the work of the graphic designers and manages use of photography. She manages all Benedictine University publications, advertising, campus signage and promotional item graphic design.

Elliott Peppers
Associate Director of Media Relations

Elliott is the University's primary liaison with all members of the press to increase the visibility and enhance the image of Benedictine University's programs and events through relationships with media members, news releases, story pitches, social media and Internet content. He works closely with all areas of the University as he puts together stories and news articles to promote Benedictine.

Laura Saunders
Marketing and Advertising Manager

Laura manages every aspect of direct response marketing programs, contracts and schedules advertising and performs media buys to support marketing campaigns.

Phil Brozynski
Senior Writer

Phil increases the visibility and enhances the image of the University's programs and events through campus communication vehicles and publications.

Ryan Blackburn
Copy Editor
Ryan provides writing and proofreading services for University materials. He is also responsible for assisting in the writing, editing and production of the University's magazine, Voices.

Tony Zupancic
Graphic Designer

Tony creates and maintains the design, look and style for all University communications to internal and external audiences through publications.

Amanda Johnston
Graphic Designer

Amanda creates and maintains the design, look and style for all University communications to internal and external audiences through publications.

Digital Media Staff

Joseph (J.W.) Beatovich
Multimedia Manager
J.W. manages the design, organization, development, implementation and maintenance of multimedia and digital media initiatives. He also coordinates, produces and maintains video content for the University's website and the University's YouTube channel.

Max Bednarski
Digital Media Assistant
Max assists the new media team in many areas including the taping and editing of videos, social media and web updates, as well as coordination of video shoots. He is also responsible for the closed circuit TVs and the electronic sign located at the intersection of College Road and Maple Avenue.

Marketing and Communications
Jody Conidi, Project Coordinator
Phone: (630) 829-6068
Fax: (630) 829-6091
Lownik Hall
Monday - Friday
8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.