Comings and goings: GBH announces executive changes, WOSU appoints chief advancement officer …

Print More

GBH in Boston announced several appointments to its executive leadership team.


Shane Miner will shift from CTO to COO. He succeeds Claudia Palmer, who has served as interim COO while the station searched for her successor.

Miner joined GBH in 2014 as senior director of media technology and was promoted to CTO in 2019. “Over the past decade, I’ve had the pleasure of helping GBH transform from a traditional broadcast company into a multiplatform media organization,” said Miner in a news release. “I’m looking forward to helping the organization continue to grow and evolve, leading the industry as technology and audience behaviors continue to change.”

Wilson and Simmons

Edward Wilson was hired as CDO. Wilson most recently worked as chief of development and strategic partnerships for The Trustees of Reservations. Before that he was a strategic consultant for World Monuments Fund and CEO of the Earthwatch Institute.

Debra Adams Simmons became senior director of editorial projects. Simmons previously worked as VP of DEI and executive director of history and culture for National Geographic. She was also VP of news development for Advance Publications and worked as an editor for the Plain Dealer in Cleveland, the Virginian-Pilot and the Detroit Free Press.

Laura Baker was appointed associate GM and chief advancement officer for WOSU Public Media in Columbus, Ohio.


Baker joined the station in 2016 as senior director of development and has also worked as interim co-GM and chief development officer. “In her tenure, Baker has brought philanthropy to the forefront of WOSU’s work, having led all aspects of WOSU’s completed capital campaign having raised more than $12 million,” according to a news release.

“It’s an honor to serve WOSU and our stakeholders in this role,” Baker said in the release. “I see this transition as a critical step toward building greater organizational capacity and providing central Ohio with the best public media content and experience possible.”

New England Public Media in Springfield, Mass., announced several staff changes.


Maria Burke was named senior major gifts officer. She previously worked as advancement and marketing director for KNOX, Inc. in Hartford, Conn. She also held development positions with the Springfield Symphony Orchestra and the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Holyoke.

Vanessa Lima became senior business manager. She most recently worked as a senior budget analyst for the city of Springfield. Lima also worked as a data analyst for Baystate Health Foundation and Boston Public Schools.

Lima and Zimmerman

Cathy Zimmerman joined NEPM as accounts payable clerk. She previously worked in accounts payable for the Masis Professional Group and was also a finance manager for the United Way of the Franklin and Hampshire Region.

And Jonthany Rivera and Jill McNally were hired as multimedia account executives McNally previously worked for commercial radio stations in Massachusetts and Connecticut. Rivera is a recent graduate of Westfield State University.


James Payne was hired as a finance associate for the Association of Independents in Radio. He previously worked for the corporate tax accounting division of SS&C Technologies.



Laurel Wamsley joined NPR’s National Desk as a correspondent reporting on cities and housing. “I’m thrilled to be covering my dream beat,” she said on Twitter. Wamsley first joined NPR as a Weekend Edition Saturday intern in 2007 and has since worked as a producer for the Washington Desk and as a reporter for the News Desk.


Jeff Hullinger was hired as EP of local content for Georgia Public Broadcasting. Hullinger most recently worked as an anchor for WXIA, Atlanta’s NBC affiliate. He has also been a weeknight sports anchor and sports director for WAGA, Atlanta’s Fox affiliate. “I’ve had a front row seat to news and sports and everything in between for the last 40 years that I’m grateful for,” said Hullinger in a news release. “It really matters to me that people know about and understand where they live. I love this state so much. I’m looking forward to my beginnings at GPB and doing those things that are near to my heart.”


Matt Blitz was hired as a producer for The Politics Hour with Kojo Nnamdi, a Friday program produced by WAMU in Washington, D.C. Blitz started working for WAMU/DCist as a freelancer in 2018 and has been interim producer for the program since May. He will also produce the station’s “Kojo In Our Community” town hall events. Before working in journalism, Blitz was a production assistant for CSI: Miami and also worked on network comedies, including How I Met Your Mother. “There’s actually a whole How I Met Your Mother episode named after me. Please don’t look it up,” he said on a recent episode of The Politics Hour


Ann Thompson, a reporter and midday host for WVXU in Cincinnati, is leaving the station. A WVXU news story said she’ll announce her new job later this month. “I’m staying local, and continuing in broadcasting,” she said. Thompson joined WVXU in 1998 as news director before Xavier University sold the station to Cincinnati Public Radio in 2005. Maryanne Zeleznik, WVXU VP of news, told staff she will miss Thompson’s “tenacious reporting” and versatility, according to the station’s story. “There is no source she is afraid to question and no story she’s hesitant to tackle,” Zeleznik said. “I’ve always said when there’s a difficult story to cover, Ann is always willing to raise her hand and take it on.”


Aja Drain is leaving her position as a general assignment reporter for WAMU/DCist in Washington, D.C. “I’m so proud of all the work I’ve gotten to do and people I’ve been able to work with. I’ll have lots to say soon, but I’m excited to explore new opportunities!” she said on Twitter. Drain joined the organization last year after working as a Code Switch and It’s Been a Minute intern for NPR.


Firelight Media announced the first cohort for the PBS/Firelight William Greaves Production Fund. The program will support these mid-career filmmakers and their projects:

  • Nina Alvarez’s Almost American, a film about a Washington, D.C., family that had Temporary Protected Status for 19 years but faces threats of deportation.
  • Rodrigo Dorfman’s Bulls and Saints, a POV documentary available for streaming. The film centers on an undocumented family that has lived in the U.S. for 20 years and their decision to return to Mexico.
  • Thomas Allen Harris’ My Mom, The Scientist. Dubbed as “part essay, part personal documentary,” the film covers Harris’ mother’s career as a chemist, activist and Bronx Community College professor.
  • Ellen Martinez and Steph Ching’s Slumlord Millionaire focuses on neighborhoods that are rapidly gentrifying in New York City and the residents who fight back against landlords.
  • Keith McQuirter’s The 3,000 Project follows four stories about crime, punishment, rehabilitation and the parole system in America.
  • Karla Murthy’s The Gas Station Attendant discusses a daughter’s immigrant experience in America and the story of her South Asian father.
  • Par Parekh’s Sister Úna Lived a Good Death, set to air on Independent Lens in February, covers the cancer diagnosis and end-of-life planning for a “smoking, wisecracking Catholic nun dedicated to social justice.”
  • Christinie Turner’s J’Nai Bridges Unamplified, an American Masters film available for streaming, which documents the career of one of the world’s top opera singers and her status as a leading figure surrounding racial justice in the arts.

Send news of “comings and goings” to

Corrections: An earlier version of this column incorrectly said that Claudia Palmer left her position as COO for GBH in 2022. Although Palmer did leave the station that year, she returned in December as interim COO while the station searched for her replacement. The column also incorrectly said that Laura Baker joined WOSU Public Media in 2013 as associate director of development and that she also worked as senior director of advancement. She joined the station in 2016 as senior director of development, and she has not held the position of senior director of advancement.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *