From The Minors to the Majors

Thursday, October 31, 8:00am - 1:30pm

COMM Day 2013 has many great events and opportunities in store. "Get Off The Bench" and get a professional headshot at the "Pro Shop", bring your polished resume and visit our internship fair, and connect with UT-Arlington Department of Communication alumni at one of our outstanding panels.

Get involved at COMM Day 2013 and take aways tips, techniques and advice about how to transform yourself from a 'Minor Leaguer' to a 'Major Leaguer'.

Martin Lisius

Martin Lisius began his storm chase career in the mid-1980's. He is founder of Prairie Pictures, a film and video production company, and StormStock, the world's premier storm footage library.

In addition, Martin founded and chairs the Texas Severe Storms Association (TESSA), a national non-profit dedicated to severe weather education. .

Martin produced, directed and wrote several television programs relating to severe weather including "Chasing the Wind" (1991), "Beneath Stormy Skies" (1994), and "The Chasers of Tornado Alley" (1995).

He directed, co-produced and co-wrote "StormWatch" for the National Weather Service, which employs it nationwide as their official storm spotter training video. And, he photographed the first-ever violent class tornado on 35 mm motion picture film on May 30, 1998 in Spencer, South Dakota.

In 1999, Martin teamed with Chevy Trucks to help create their "Storm Chaser" commercial for S-10 pickups. He is a graduate of the University of Texas at Arlington and member of the legendary "Spencer 4," a group that forecasted, intercepted, and tracked the deadliest tornado in South Dakota history.


  • 8:00AM - 9:20AM Networking and Internship Expo | Opening Coffee Coffee in the Foyer, Networking Expo in Bluebonnet North
  • 9:30AM - 9:35AM Welcome – Dr. Charla Markham Shaw, Chair, Department of Communication Bluebonnet Center (Simulcast seating in Bluebonnet South)
  • 9:35AM - 9:40AM Remarks from Dr. Ron Elsenbaumer, Provost Bluebonnet Center
  • 9:40AM Introductory video Bluebonnet North
  • 9:40AM - 10:15AM Keynote – Martin Lisius Bluebonnet North
  • 10:15AM - 11:00AM Networking and Internship Expo Bluebonnet Center
  • 11:00AM - 11:45 AM Panel - Strategies for promoting yourself Bluebonnet South Erikka Neroes ('11) Public Affairs Writer-Editor, Department of Veteran Affairs
    Derrick Thompson (MA, '12) Marketing Communications Specialist, City of Irving
    Jared Chism ('11) Social Media Analytics St. Specialist, JC Penney
  • 11:00AM - 11:45PM Panel - Building your resume and portfolio Bluebonnet Center Julie Garcia ('93) - Marketing Associate, American Mensa
    Jeff Kovarsky ('88) - Entertainment Manager, Dallas Stars
    Joey Prebynski (MA, '08) - Texas Rangers
  • 11:45AM - 12:30PM Networking and Internship Expo Bluebonnet North
  • 12:30PM - 1:15PM Panel - Interviewing techniques Bluebonnet South Carl Esposito (MA, '11) - Assistant Director for University Recruiting, UTA

  • 12:30PM - 1:15PM Panel - Expectations in the real world Bluebonnet Center Joan Khalaf ('10) - Audience Development Manager, D Magazine
    Chris Childs ('09) - Blaze TV Linda Levy

Speaker Bios

Joey Prebynski

Joey Prebynski serves as Assistant Advance Scout for the Texas Rangers Baseball Club. In his role he assists in preparing Major League Advance Reports and analysis for upcoming opponents during the season. Prebynski spent the previous three seasons from 2009-11 in the Rangers organization as Video Coordinator/Research Analyst, where he oversaw the use of video at the Major League level and in the Player Development System as well as within the Amateur, Pro, and International Scouting departments. He also conducts various research projects and statistical studies for the baseball operations department.

Prebynski was the Director of Baseball Operations at the University of Texas at Arlington from 2005-2008, where he earned his undergraduate degree in Business Administration, along with a Master of Arts in Communication and an MBA at the school.

A native of Mansfield, Ohio, Prebynski is actively involved with the Miracle League of Dallas-Fort Worth, Junior Achievement, and Big Brothers-Big Sisters of North Texas.

Joan Khalaf

Joan Khalaf serves as an intern manager at D Magazine, recruiting hundreds of students for the program year-round. She is also in her third year as social media manager for several national brands at D Magazine’s content marketing agency, D Custom.

Her background as editor-in-chief at The Shorthorn, production assistant at Fox Sports Southwest, and a community newspaper editor have armed her with the broad experience to tackle just about any aspect of the journalism industry. Joan’s enthusiasm for educating and growing student journalists coupled with her passion for people make her a natural fit for finding the right talent for D Magazine’s gifted team.

Chris Childs

Chris Childs grew up in the broadcasting industry by watching his father work in radio and television. At the age of eleven Chris became Texas’ youngest DJ at KOZA in Odessa, Texas.

At the age of thirteen he graduated to the role of cameraman and confirmed that he had indeed chosen a “cool” career path. Thirty years later Chris has been part of hundreds of productions for various networks including ESPN, ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox.

Most recently Chris spent six years as the production manager for Christ Chapel Bible Church in Fort Worth, Texas. The weekly attendance of Christ Chapel is 4000; this does not include its large live streaming audience. He was an integral part of the design for the video backbone of the church in his time there.

In 2011 he became the Dallas Technical Director for The Blaze (then GBTV.) In this role he TD’d ‘Glenn Beck,’ “The Glenn Beck Program’ (radio), ‘The Fourth Hour’ and various specials.

He has since been officially hired as a Director for The Blaze and in this role continues to TD while also taking on the added responsibility of directing ‘Pat & Stu’ and ‘The Wonderful World of Stu’ After thirty years in the biz Chris can still confirm how very “cool” his career is.

Linda Levy

Linda Levy

Linda Levy has led broadcast journalists in covering major events as well as day-to-day coverage. It is that valuable experience that motivated her to become one of the founders of The NWT Group, No Whining Talent. The company is comprised of former news directors, station managers, anchors, reporters and executive producers. The team of agents guides the careers of some of the brightest up-and-coming broadcast journalists in the business today. The NWT Group represents journalists in job placements and contract negotiations. It's the NWT coaching program that clients receive that sets the group apart from other agencies, and is an integral part of the NWT model.

Linda’s experience as a broadcast news leader is invaluable guiding careers through an ever-changing landscape. She has been a News Director in markets ranging from the top five market at KTVT, the CBS O&O in Dallas to medium markets—including WKBW in Buffalo, WDSU in New Orleans, KOCO in Oklahoma City, Bay New 9 in Tampa—to small markets, such as KATC in Lafayette, LA.

Linda also worked in news at the corporate level, as Director of News Services for Belo. In that role, she oversaw shared coverage of major news events, including the Oklahoma City bombing to hurricanes to the '96 Presidential campaign. While at Belo, she also served as one of the Senior Producers of "Prime Time Texas,” a weekly newsmagazine that aired in several markets in the state.

While at KTVT, the news department was recognized by the Pew Center as #1 major market late newscast in the country in its “Project for Excellence in Journalism” and Linda has been the recipient of numerous other recognitions and awards, including regional Emmy honors.

Linda served as a faculty member of the Reynolds National Center for Courts and Media, formed by The National Judicial College. Its goal is to better communications between judges and journalists through seminars and workshops. In addition, Linda served as a guest faculty member at the Poynter Institute for Media Studies.

Linda is an avid supporter of cancer research and participates in a research advocacy program for hereditary cancer diseases. She lives in Arlington, Texas.

Internship Fair

    List of Participating Companies
  • Concussion Advertising

    Concussion is a full service advertising agency in Fort Worth Texas. They offer strategic marketing, creative advertising, and design services for local, regional and national clients.

  • Honey Be Natural Magazine

    Honey Be Natural Magazine is a publication that covers news, events, and people a part of the natural world. Whether hair, fashion, beauty, food, or health, HoneyB will provide you with news you can use.

  • D Magazine

    D Magazine is Dallas' connection to the best restaurants, things to do in Dallas, arts, politics, and commentary about the city.

  • CW 33

    Independent TV news station in DFW.

  • Steadfast Creative

    Award-winning creative agency in DFW, with a number of high-profile clients, including UT-Arlington, TCU, Whole Foods, and Cantina Laredo.

  • Ride For The Brand

    Ride For The Brand LLC, is an award winning Fort Worth and Dallas area web design firm specializing in website design, website development, search engine optimization and interactive marketing. Located in the historic Fort Worth Stockyards.

    List of Professional Organizations
  • Alliance For Women in Media

    National organization that keeps the concerns of women at the forefront of national and industry leaders.

  • PRSA of Fort Worth

    With over 170 members in and around Tarrant County, the Greater Fort Worth Chapter of the PRSA provides great opportunities for networking, career development and fellowship in a friendly and supportive environment. Their members come from the corporate, public, non-profit and agency sectors to create an organization serving as the area’s most prestigious public relations network.

  • AAF of Fort Worth

    The American Advertising Federation – Fort Worth (AAF-FW) is an organization of advertising professionals with a common goal – to encourage and enhance the education and advancement of the advertising community in Fort Worth.

  • AAF of Dallas

    The Dallas chapter of the American Advertising Federation is the oldest civic organization in Dallas and celebrated its 100th year anniversary in 2008. They are the only association that represents all facets of the advertising industry.

  • Social Media Club of Forth Worth

    The Social Media Club of Fort Worth aims to provide a community for social media enthusiasts and business practitioners to share their ideas, passions, and knowledge of social media, as well as learn about the latest trends in this ever-changing arena. Through informal tweet-ups and formal speaker events, SMCFW will help you stay on the cutting edge of social media.

  • SPJ of Fort Worth

    The only SPJ (Society of Professional Journalists) professional chapter in North Texas.


Please drop by the pro shop to get a professional headshot. Please dress to impress.

Our professional, in-house photographer, the distinguished Jeff Williams, will be providing the service.

Individuals wishing to obtain a free headshot should bring some sort of USB device to download the image from our computer.