Here are some of the latest news about Philip Merrill College of Journalism alumni. If you should like to share your latest news, please send an e-mail to alums@umd.edu.

Merrill Alumna Sulerzyski Named Maryland Judiciary Chief of Staff

Graduation Year: 
1986

Maryland Court of Appeals Chief Judge Mary Ellen Barbera has named Victoria Z. Sulerzyski as her chief of staff. Sulerzyski, who had been with the law firm of Ober|Kaler in Baltimore, began her new duties with the Maryland Judiciary Jan. 13, 2014.

As chief of staff, Sulerzyski reports directly to Chief Judge Barbera and will manage the daily operations of the chief judge’s chambers, including supervising staff, handling communications, inquiries, and scheduling, providing research, reviewing reports, advising, and, as directed, communicating on the chief judge’s behalf. The chief judge is the head of Maryland’s judicial branch and is responsible for the administration of the state court system, overseeing a budget of $468 million with nearly 300 judges and about 4,000 employees.

Maria Douglas Reeve Wins Minneapolis Star Tribune Promotion

Graduation Year: 
1992

Maria Douglas Reeve has been named (Jan. 2014) the new deputy metro editor for the Minneapolis Star Tribune, where she has served as the east metro team leader and features team leader. Reeve graduated with a Master's Degree in Journalism from the Merrill College in 1992. Her undergraduate work (English) was done at Davidson College. Reeve came to the Star Tribune from the St. Paul Pioneer Press, where she worked as the politics editor for 19 years.) In more good news, her husband, Tad, was just named sports editor at the Pioneer Press.

Ph.D. Graduate Lewis Gains Tenure at the University of Florida

Graduation Year: 
2007

Professor Norm Lewis has been granted tenure at the University of Florida in Gainesville. He began his graduate program in the Philip Merrill College of Journalism in 2004, graduating in 2007.

Professor Lewis reports he has already published 11 research articles in top peer-reviewed journals (10 of which were sole- or first-authored papers) and was awarded Teacher of the Year for the entire university (and its 3,000 full-time faculty) in 2010.

He says he’s glad to add to the list of Maryland doctoral graduates who have received tenure at Research 1 universities: “Maryland’s terrific faculty helped me grow from a practitioner to a scholar by showing me how to apply social science methods to empirical research while remaining firmly rooted in the craft of journalism. Thanks to Maryland, I love to both teach journalism and study it.”

 

Adam Littlefield Named Producer for NBC Sports

Graduation Year: 
2003

Adam Littlefield has been named an NBC Sports producer, moving up to the network from Comcast Sportsnet Bay Area (Comcast owns the NBC network). He reports, "I'm number two in the chain of command on the team that is launching NBC's English Premier League soccer coverage in August. The season begins on Saturday, August 17 and runs until May. I will be highly involved in the production of all the studio shows surrounding our live coverage of the games every weekend."

Adam also says that his Maryland journalism degree has made all the difference in his career: "I wouldn't be where I am without my experience at UMD, simply stated. I've been lucky enough to work with some very talented people since graduation, but the preparation that I received while in College Park was second to none. I'm sometimes amazed at how ill-prepared most of the young people who come into the workforce are because I always felt like I was ready for any challenge when I came out of Maryland and think that shows how thorough and well-taught the curriculum is at the J-School."

 

John Seng Wins Prestigious PRSA Lifetime Achievement Award

Graduation Year: 
1979

Merrill College Board of Visitors' member John Seng has been awarded the Public Relations Society of America’s 2013 Frank J. Weaver Lifetime Achievement Award. Seng founded the Washington, D.C. based Spectrum Science Communications, and is president and CEO. The company ranks among the top three health care-only independent public relations firms in the United States, and is now the number one health care PR office in the Nation’s capital.

This distinguished award honors an individual who has made outstanding contributions to the field of health care public relations and changed the practice of public relations in America.

Seng has dedicated his life and career to improving the health and lives of others with the best tool that he has – his ability to relate and effectively communicate with others.

Since founding Spectrum in 1996 to focus solely on health and science communications, he has created a special environment that fosters a passion for health care, science, creativity and an entrepreneurial spirit that continues to inspire his employees day in and out, while representing great clients and amazing causes.