Here are FIPP’s Top 30 Rising Stars in Media for 2015

What’s more, we also have the names of the three overall winners who will be invited to participate in a panel discussion at the FIPP World Congress, taking place from 13-15 October in Toronto, Canada.

All of the entrants showed extraordinary passion, talent, insight and dedication to contribute in newfound, creative ways to the ongoing development and well being of their brands, often in the most surprising of ways.

The top 30 Rising Stars in Media are from Canada, India, Poland, Russia, South Africa, Zimbabwe, the UK and the USA, specialists in fields such as ad operations technologies, content and community development, digital operations, data science and integrated marketing. The list includes writers, editors and account managers and more. In short, they reflect a lot of what there is to celebrate about in magazine media today.

Ruud van den Berg, UPM’s senior vice president for magazine publishing and advertising, sponsor of the initiative and one of the judges, said: “I’ve been overwhelmed by the scope of the entries and was impressed by the drive, persistence and enthusiasm the young executives have in developing their magazine media brands”.

The judges

Chris Llewellyn, president, and CEO, FIPP

Fabrizio D’Angelo, CEO, Burda International, Hubert Burda Media, Germany (and FIPP chairman)

Ruud van den Berg, senior vice president for magazine publishing and advertising, UPM, Germany

Yolanda Ausín Castañeda, general manager, Asociación de Revistas de Información (ARI), Spain

Duncan Edwards, president and CEO, Hearst Magazines International, USA

Henk Scheenstra, CEO, Sanoma Media Belgium, Belgium

Christine Huntingford, vice president of FIPP, who led the project, said: “This was a great initiative and a rewarding experience to see the variety of young talent within our industry. The competition was tough and these 30 Rising Stars shone above the rest.”

Top 30 FIPP Rising Stars in Media (in alphabetical order)

  1. Alexandra Sinenkova, ELLE girl brand manager, Hearst Shkulev Media, Russia
  2. Alexander Voronov, data scientist, Burda International, Russia
  3. Andrea Leitch, director of digital travel, National Geographic Society,USA
  4. Annie McGillicuddy, associate director, Integrated Marketing, Hearst Magazines International, USA
  5. Apeksha Bhateja, features writer (advertorials), Exposure Media Marketing, India
  6. Breanna Mroczek, editor of Where Calgary and assistant editor of Glass Buffalo, St Joseph Communications Canada
  7. Charlotte Morgan, web and commissioning editor, Immediate Media, UK
  8. Cole Ingraham, manager, Business Operations, National Geographic Society, USA
  9. Eleanor Jones, lifestyle writer, Time Inc. UK, UK
  10. Francesca Wilson, marketing and events executive, Immediate Media, UK
  11. Hannah Banks-Walker, fashion news writer, Time Inc. UK, UK
  12. Hannah Boag, sales executive, Time Inc. UK, UK
  13. Igor Nowiński, content and community specialist, Burda Media Polska, Poland
  14. Jessica Dady, digital content editor, Time Inc. UK, UK
  15. Jonathan Holmes, writer, Immediate Media, UK
  16. Katelyn MacLachlan, associate director, Product Design and UX, Hearst Magazines International, USA
  17. Laura Wilson, associate director, Integrated Marketing, Hearst Magazines International, USA
  18. Linda Mali, editor, Caxton Magazines, South Africa
  19. Lyana Boranukova, producer, Burda International, Russia
  20. Martin Lukáš, graphic/webmaster, Burda Praha, Czech Republic
  21. Matthew Stepanic, editor of Glass Buffalo and Assistant Editor of Where Edmonton, Where Edmonton, Canada
  22. Melissa Michael, advertising manager, The River Group, UK
  23. Pauline Beroud, head of business marketing, Hearst Magazines, UK
  24. Prateek Bahri, manager – Activation Sales, Exposure Media Marketing, India
  25. Richard Morley, international account manager, Time Inc. UK, UK
  26. Ruramai Ottilia Madyara, co-founder and advisor, The Ambassador Magazine, Zimbabwe
  27. Samantha Freedman, beauty editor, Time Inc. UK, UK
  28. Scott Both, senior ad operations technologist, Hearst Corporation, USA
  29. Shweta Chawla, associate marketing manager, Exposure Media Marketing, India
  30. Tessa Webb, account executive, Time Inc. UK, UK

Rising Star winners

The top three Rising Stars will attend the FIPP World Congress next month in Toronto, Canada, where they will receive their awards on the opening night and participate in a panel discussion on the main stage on day two.

Rising Stars 2015 ()

Matthew Stepanic, editor of Glass Buffalo and assistant editor of Where Edmonton

Where Edmonton, Canada

In 2012, Matthew Stepanic founded literary magazine, Glass Buffalo, to give emerging writers a platform to publish and polish their work and expose readers to high-quality work from unfamiliar talent. 

As Editor, Matthew’s encompassing role means he not only engages face to face with writers, offering accessible mentorship and guidance to strengthen their skills and knowledge of the magazine industry  – but simultaneously connects personally with advertisers to address their thoughts about the magazine.  Attending relevant events, libraries, bookstores, festivals and artisan markets to promote the magazine to new readers and also engage with current readers to gain first-hand feedback on what is like, and what can be improved.  He has built the Glass Buffalo brand – creating a financially stable well-received magazine, which has gone on to win Best New Magazine and be nominated for Magazine of the Year at the Alberta Magazine Awards. Its writers have been nominated for and have won four Alberta Magazine awards, with one nominated for a National magazine Award, demonstrating that emerging talent can compete with seasoned writers.

The judges said, ‘Matthew is already Rising Star in Canada where he – in the era of free – launched a new paid for literary magazine. He has a good eye for new talented writers whose stories get published in Glass Buffalo.  Matthew is very visible in the market, a spokesperson for the brand at many events and also selling advertising himself, making an all-round media professional.’  

Francesca Wilson, marketing and events executive

Immediate Media, UK

Francesca joined Immediate Media in June 2014 and dived straight in to take control of Marketing and Events activity across three different brands, where she played an instrumental role in securing sponsorship revenue from Sainsbury’s Little Ones for the Prima Baby Awards 2015. She quickly gained the reputation of a reliable, likeable and highly-valued member of the team.

She truly demonstrates multi-tasking skills and has brought a new level of creativity and revenue to the brands that she manages – often adopting ‘fewer, bigger, better’ approach to in-magazine competitions. 

Shortly after joining Immediate Media, Francesca won a PPA’s new talent award for New Events Professional of the Year 2014.

The judges said that ‘it is really interesting what she has done around events and its success. Even just reading her synopsis you can feel the passion she puts into the job’.

Laura Wilson, associate director, Integrated Marketing

Hearst Corporation, USA

Town & Country aimed to provide a platform to discuss issues that the panellists of the first-ever Philanthropy Summit are passionate about while sharing success and inspiration. Laura Wilson was given the task of building and executing sponsorship packages for advertisers and striving to offset Town & Country’s marketing investment costs.

Laura’s contributions to Town & Country’s Philanthropy Summit resulted in critical advertising partners and significant revenue gains for the brand.  From concept to activation, she managed two critical summit sponsors.  

Laura’s contributions resulted in critical advertising partners and significant revenue gains for the Town & Country brand. She also managed two critical summit sponsors and created Town & Country’s first video series.

Laura’s innate ability to effectively ideate, present, , coupled with her keen attention to detail, creativity, collaborative spirit, smart business instincts, and positive approach to all things Town & Country have enabled Laura Wilson to shine above her peers since she arrived at the brand.

The judges said that ‘Running major sponsorship relationships at the Philanthropy Summit is a prime example of converting ideas into execution, enhancing the Town & Country brand and demonstrating great account handling skills.’

We will share more about the fantastic contributions from the shortlist via in coming weeks, so stay tuned to find out how the young talent of our industry is shaping the future.

If you haven’t booked to be at the FIPP World Congress in Toronto yet, do so today where you will have a chance not only to meet Matthew, Francesca and Laura, but also more than 80 top speakers and high-level colleagues from around the world.

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