Team

Rebecca Aronauer

Rebecca Aronauer

Rebecca  went to Barnard College, and then spent many years working in media in New York City. She wrote for Gawker, Jossip, and the trade magazine Sales & Marketing Management. Currently based out of Denver, Colorado, Rebecca joined Leap in March of 2013. She specializes in events, speaking opportunities, and writing nearly anything a company might need. Outside of work, she is an avid reader, writer, and runner. She maintains her own blog at rebeccaaronauer.com.

 

Susan Stewart Baldwin

Susan Stewart Baldwin

Susan brings more than 25 years of public relations experience to Leap PR.  Specializing in a wide range of strategic marketing and communications disciplines including branding initiatives, product/company launches, community relations and events, Susan is a proven expert in delivering communications strategies that positively impact business and sales objectives. Most recently Susan served 20 years as executive vice president of The Hoffman Agency — a global, high tech communications firm based in the Silicon Valley — where she executed both business-to-business and consumer-facing campaigns on half of multinational “brand” names (HP, Sony, and Philips) and venture-funded start-ups.   With a focus on developing programs that deviate from the norm and emphasizing execution, Susan enjoys assisting clients tackle the communications challenges that exist in today’s unique market climate.

Hetal Bhatt

Hetal Bhatt

Hetal (rhymes with “metal”) is a social media operative and all-around message massager who excels at turning complex ideas into simple words.No stranger to technology, Hetal has worked on a myriad of Silicon Valley clientele with Leap PR.

In less geekier endeavors, he also has headed publicity/social media for clothing brands, musicians, and even an ice cream company.Hetal has degrees from Stanford University and the University of Illinois-Urbana/Champaign, both of which are collecting impressive amounts of dust somewhere in his parents’ closet.
Merredith Branscombe

Merredith Branscombe

Merredith has 20 years of jaw-dropping wins in PR, journalism, marketing and advertising. She has focused on delivering media relations services designed to elevate her clients’ company profile, CEO, products and messages with the mass media, blogosphere and business press. Merredith has delivered successful media strategy programs for clients from behemoth to tiny, including HP, Amazon and Sony, to ThinkFree, Fenwick & West, BumpTop, Natural Grocers, Loyalize and Gild.

Merredith maintains relationships with key editors in nearly every space – you never know when you’ll need to know someone at the Economist who specializes in social capitalism, or the key tech editor at Men’s Health, or even the most popular Mom Blogger in your area

Her clients have secured coverage and built effective relationships with publications like the Financial Times, Bloomberg BusinessWeek, The Economist, The Wall Street Journal, TechCrunch, ReadWrite, Mashable, Fast Company, Forbes, PC Magazine and Fortune; and dailies such as The New York Times, Investor’s Business Daily, the San Jose Mercury News, The Denver Post, Dallas Morning News and USA Today — plus interesting blogs in social media, food, parenting, green living and more. If her client needs a relationship, she will figure out a way to build it.

Earlier in her career, Merredith produced and wrote programming on education in America for the Discovery Channel and Learning Channel, as well as engaged in freelance writing and production. She previously worked for Fleishman-Hilliard and Darcy Communications, helping to run crisis communications programs as well as mainstream account programs for the Anheuser-Busch, Safeway and Continental Airlines accounts, as well as many tech firms.

Kirsten Gurmendi

Kirsten can figure out how to tell a story visually — and sell it — like no one else in the business. As Leap’s broadcast manager, Kirsten brings clients the benefit of her 15+ years as a local and network reporter — from features like childcare centers teaching sign language to reporting on the stories emerging from post-war Bosnia — Kirsten can find the confluence of humanity and news that makes a story come to life.

Her high-level media contacts span the nation — and cross the globe, hitting news and assignment desks in nearly every state and several countries.

She loves media relations, including story development and pitch strategies, media coaching, corporate spokesperson training, TV & video production & crisis communications.

A few client words include:

“Kirsten provides excellent value and has a phenomenal way of applying leverage to generate unbelievable results. Kirsten’s work has made all the difference in driving our child care business from just below breaking even, to the ability to expand in a tough economy, through 3 TV appearances that aired in short succession nationwide.” -Fleming Schutrumpf, Patience Montessori School

“I am recommending Kirsten for her on-target skills when it comes to deciding story content that fits both market & community. She has a strong ability to put the pieces together so the audience not only gets good information, but it is visually pleasing & entertaining. She has connected clients with media outlets in a way that helps the stations, the audience and  the community.” -Karla Shotts,News Director KJCT-TV

Kimberly Moran

Kim  is Leap’s Business Manager, Operations Manager and persistent heartbeat, who occasionally lends her considerable communications and account services talents to our teams as well. Leap! may be the luckiest startup PR firm in the world, to be able to take advantage of Kim’s intensive experience and background: She is a former regional manager of HR and Operations for Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide, Alexander Ogilvy, and Platte Canyon School. Her rare combination of straightforward intelligence, sunny humor and tact make Leap’s trains run on time. She graduated from the University of Denver with a degree in Communications (and graduate work in Organizational Communications), and also holds her advanced Professional Human Resources Certification.

 

Claire Mylott

Claire Mylott

Claire brings clients almost 20 years of communications experience, particularly in the high-tech, telecommunications, business-to-business, consumer and financial sectors. Claire believes the best communications drive business goals, and as a result, she has a laser focus on communications metrics. In addition to her experience in financial, tech and corporate communications, Claire is part of GFM health and wellness team, pitching in on everything from major health-related transactions to launching anti-obesity campaigns. Because she’s a veteran of both agency and corporate communications environments, Claire brings an extremely well-rounded approach to public relations.

Before joining LEAP!, Claire was the director of corporate communications at Qwest Communications. In that role, she managed external, internal and executive communications for the company’s multibillion-dollar enterprise and its government and wholesale business units. At Qwest, Claire managed several strategic PR efforts for such deals as the $7.05 billion sale of the company’s DEX directory asset and a $20 billion federal government Networx contract, earning coverage in national financial press such as “Mad Money” with Jim Cramer, The Wall Street Journal and the Financial Times.

Prior to her work with Qwest, Claire served as the director of media relations for TeleTech, an international contact center corporation. At TeleTech, she was instrumental in creating a public relations campaign for a corporate-wide rebranding project. She began her career with Silicon Valley-based public relations firm The Hoffman Agency. At The Hoffman Agency, Claire provided strategic public relations counsel and extensive media relations support to numerous high-tech clients including Hewlett-Packard, National Semiconductor and Hyundai Electronics. She managed extensive business-to-business customer-testimonial and case-study programs, executive visibility and media relations as well as industry analyst relations.

Erika Napoletano

Erika Napoletano

Erika Napoletano heads up Digital Strategy for LEAP!’s clientele. She’s a columnist for Entrepreneur Magazine and the author of two books including The Power of Unpopular (Wiley, March 2012). A frequent speaker at conferences across the country on topics ranging from social media strategy and branding, she’s also a veteran SEO copywriter whose client roster includes national brands ranging from nonprofits such as Goodwill Industries to major outdoor retailers like Kahtoola. Awards? Accolades? Yup. The Denver Post recently named Erika as one of Colorado’s top Twitter Personalities and 5280 Magazine awarded her their Top of the Town 2011 Reader’s Choice award for Best Twitter Personality. She’s also a financial and investment industries veteran — a former Tier 1 producer with UBS Financial Services (Series 7, 66, 31, Life and Health producer) and was a multi-million dollar producer in the real estate trust deed industry (specializing in private placements in commercial real estate loans).

The person behind the RedheadWriting persona, Erika excels in every facet of community building, including audience identification, brand persona development, Facebook ad campaigns, blogger outreach, and the ever so important differentiation between numbers and true fans. One will only cost your money while the other will build your business and contribute to your bottom line. Which would you like her to help your brand with? You can learn more about her at ErikaNapoletano.com and check out her Facebook community where she practices the preaching daily.