Presenter Biographies


Berkeley Burgess is the Manager of Operations and Administration for the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation, an educational non-profit headquartered in northern Virginia.  There she is responsible for the day to day functions of the foundation’s administrative staff, facility oversight, and project management. Berkeley joined in the foundation in January 2006 as an event coordinator, working in that capacity until April 2017.  As the event coordinator she was responsible for all event logistics for the foundation’s summer, local, regional, and thought leadership conference events.

Berkeley earned her Master of Tourism Administration from The George Washington University in Washington, DC in December 2009. She also holds the Certified Meeting Professional designation (CMP) as, one of the top credentials in the meetings and events industry. For her undergraduate education, she attended Longwood University in Farmville, Virginia, and received her B.A. in Communication Studies with a minor in Sociology.

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Peggy Disney has extensive professional experience in corporate communications and marketing with 25 years of working in diverse industries, including retail, telecommunications and construction materials. She has worked with large publicly-traded companies as well as small trade associations and, as a result, has managed multiple and complex projects from concept to completion.

Peggy began her career as a special events coordinator for Macy’s-acquired Hecht’s department store in its public relations department. She handled in-store appearances for Elizabeth Taylor, Cher, Tom Cruise, Adam West and Darth Vader, just to name a few. She would eventually become vice president of the division.

Later, in her various positions, Peggy served as a liaison in coordinating corporately sponsored programs for distinguished national institutions including The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, The National Gallery of Art, The National Building Museum and the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History.  For nine years as associate vice president of communications for a trade association in Northern Virginia, she managed all internal communications activities and media relations.

This past fall, the American Peanut Council named Peggy as their new membership and marketing manager. She received a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of Maryland and an MBA, with a concentration in marketing, from Trinity Washington University.

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Tim Vaughn is a Senior Client Solutions Manager with Freeman and a strong demonstrated history of working in the live events industry.  In addition to being the account lead for the 2016 Vice Presidential Debate, Tim has served as the lead account executive for the NFL account team (including the Super Bowl, Pro Bowl and Draft), Oprah hosted live events most notably the OWN Studio’s “Super Soul Sessions”, the United Nations (UN Women) and the U.S. Department of State. He has lead the planning team for multiple music tours in arenas across North America in addition to the Dove Christian Music Awards.

In addition to sports and entertainment Tim is the lead account executive for multiple corporate accounts including Morgan Stanley, Sanofi Pharmaceuticals, Victoria Secret, Autodesk, Vectorworks and CoreNet Global.  Tim’s background includes event planning, audio-visual, broadcasting, advertising, video editing and entertainment production management.  He is the senior executive for many global accounts and manages events around the world. In addition to continuing education in event focused training Tim earned his associate degree in Computer Aided Drafting & Design with an emphasis in architecture from Phoenix Institute of Technology and a Bachelor of Science in Design focused on architectural studies from Arizona State University.

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Emily Pilk

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Dr. Alec R. Hosterman is an assistant professor in the Communication Studies program at Longwood University. He teaches courses in public relations writing, public relations research, public relations campaigns, visual communication, and senior seminar. Before coming to Longwood, Alec spent 13 years teaching communication courses at Indiana University South Bend.

Alec is also an avid photographer who specializes in nature, street, and photodocumenting social events. Most recently he photographed the Unite the Right rally held in Charlottesville, VA in August of 2017. His work has been featured at the Longwood Center for the Visual Arts, Red Door 104, and will soon be at the Virginia Holocaust Museum in Richmond, VA.

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Johnson 2016 - Landscape

Dr. Naomi Johnson is an associate professor and chair of the Communication Studies program at Longwood University.  She teaches courses in Public Relations, Organizational Communication, and Research Methods. As chair, she has developed numerous student and alumni affairs, including a Student-Alumni Career Exploration Conference, and various networking, social, and educational events.  She is responsible for 250 majors and minors, course scheduling, and other administrative responsibilities.

Her research has been reviewed in The New York TimesNewsweekNPRThe Richmond Times-Dispatch, and other regional media outlets.  Prior to becoming a professor, Dr. Johnson served as a District Manager for CMD Group (now ConstructConnect), a construction news publication, in which she was responsible for up to 8 regional reporting centers with over 100 reporters and staff members.

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