The Office of University Relations has installed new leadership and staff members over the last month.
They introduced the new Senior Associate Vice Chancellor for Marketing and Communications, George Heddleston, to the team in February and he has wasted no time working to strengthen the office.
Heddleston has had a long career in Communications in a variety of elements from representing various NFL, Superbowl teams to owning his own Marketing and Communications agency for 12 years. He has resided in several states including California, Arizona, Ohio and Michigan to name a few.
“I have been somewhat nomadic but lucky enough to have landed in good positions and have been lucky enough to have gained a lot of good experience,” Heddleston said.
He received his degree the University of Mount Union after military service overseas. After over 30 years of out of the higher education realm, he accepted a position at Wright State University as the Vice Chancellor of Communication and Marketing.
Chancellor Angle was also previously employed at Wright State University.
“He was provost there when I was Vice President for Communications and Marketing,” said Heddleston. “We had a big job to do back then in ’09 and we succeeded at it, it took a while and he never forgot that. He feels that there are similar circumstances here at I could be helpful to.”
Heddleston was contacted about coming to UTC in February and it “came together very quickly.”
Heddleston’s overarching goal is to build a larger communications staff of professionals to provide more service to the colleges and other units on campus. A long term objective is to improve and renovate the University website among other tasks.
Since his start at the University just a month ago, Heddleston has worked to add more positions to the Office of University Relations. At this time, the University has hired three new members. In addition, the office is currently interviewing to fill several more positions in the weeks ahead.
“I am hiring people with experience that fulfill hard work positions, I am not looking for a staff of vice chancellors or high ranking executive directors. I am looking for people with experience that would want to work and would love to work at UTC,” said Heddleston. “We are building a staff and that is a big task because you have to get the right people.”
Heddleston does not want to give the impression that there large changes going on at the Office of University Relations, just additions to strengthen the office.
“Historically, this staff [the University Relations Staff] has functioned as well as it can under the circumstances. Those circumstances being: [great demands] and too few people to do too many jobs,” said Heddleston. “I want to use [April Cox’s and Chuck Cantrell’s] expertise to the fullest advantage, but to do that I need to allow them to concentrate on what they are expert in.”
The Office of University Relations hopes to utilize the “news end” of the operation to promote the University and assist admissions in recruiting students.
“Without students, none of us can go on,” said Heddleston. “We not only have to recruit students and once they get here, make sure they are happy, their needs are met and if they have accomplishments, we need to publicize those accomplishments.”
The following are the three new additions to the Office of University Relations.
Worthington was recently hired as a Social Media Director for the University.
The goals of her position are to expand the number of platforms on social media for many units on campus.
Ryan, the new Executive Staff Writer, has been a journalist for over thirty years. He has worked as an editor, columnist and feature writer.
Bond has been hired as a staff writer and is a returning marketing and communication professional from Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Tennessee. She will be a critical part of the University editorial team. Bond will start her position in May.