Enhancing the profession in Pensacola since 1957

Sarah Whitfield

President

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Sarah Whitfield is a public information specialist for Santa Rosa County. Working directly under the public information officer, she is responsible for the dissemination of accurate and timely information to Santa Rosa County residents, the media and employees. She also conceptualizes, designs and distributes communication products which support the county's mission, programs and services, including brochures, newsletters, surveys and news releases. Her responsibilities also include two-way communication with the media and the public.

In 2017, Whitfield was honored as a member of the Joe Curley Rising Leader Class and received a Certificate of Special Congressional Recognition from Congressman Matt Gaetz for this honor. She also received an Award of Distinction for her work on the Santa Rosa County “Cant’ Stop the Feeling” video that showcased why Santa Rosa County is a great place to live, work and play. Whitfield earned a bachelor's degree in art with a specialization in graphic design from the University of West Florida. 

She is actively involved in her community, graduating from Leadership Santa Rosa Class 30 in 2016, serving as a co-leader of the Living Truth Church Soul Sisters, acting as a buddy for special needs children on Sundays and during monthly respite events and serving as the secretary for One Love Florida – a group that performs acts of kindness throughout Santa Rosa County each year during the week leading up to Easter. In her spare time, she enjoys photography, coffee dates with friends and spending time with her family. 

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Kim Stefansson

Vice President of Membership/President Elect

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Kim Stefansson is the Public Relations Coordinator for the Escambia County School District, an organization responsible for the education of over 42,000 students in 47 schools and 27 other district-owned sites. ECSD is also the 2nd largest employer in Escambia County. Stefansson graduated from Towson University in Maryland with a B.S. Degree in Mass Communication and was commissioned into the US Navy. Her service was primarily as a Public Affairs Officer taking her literally around the world before arriving in Pensacola. She retired from the Navy and soon found a new adventure in education, earned a Master’s Degree from UWF, and taught for 10 years before becoming the District’s PR Coordinator two school years ago. 

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Brandi Gomez

Immediate Past President

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Brandi Gomez is a Communications Specialist at Gulf Power Company. She also has a passion for blogging and maintains her own motherhood and lifestyle blog called Wing It All.

When it's all said and done, Brandi finds her happiness in bettering the community and empowering others. Whether volunteering with her family or attending a social event, she strives to find a way to sprinkle kindness among every person and place she meets.

Brandi’s accomplishments include being honored with the 2017 President's Award for FPRA Pensacola Chapter and being awarded the Member of the Year for two consecutive years. In 2015, she received a Grand All Image Award for her work on Council on Aging of West Florida’s Rat Race 5K and was selected as a member of the 2015 Joe Curley Rising Leader Class. She has been honored as an InWeekly Rising Star and is a graduate of the Leadership Pensacola Class of 2017. Let’s connect on LinkedIn!

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Payton Anderson

Secretary

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Payton Anderson is the Communications Coordinator for the Pensacola Association of REALTORS®. Her responsibilities include social media management, association and event promotion, content creation and membership services and support for the Association’s Commercial Multiple Listing Service, Gulf
Coast CMLS. Additionally, she serves as the staff liaison for the Association’s Young Professionals Network and REALTOR® Commercial Alliance Committee where she organizes meetings, events and works to enhance each member’s experience.

Anderson was born and raised in Pensacola. In 2015, she graduated from the University of West Florida with a bachelor’s degree in communications specializing in public relations with a minor in marketing and business. During her time at UWF, she was actively involved in her sorority, Alpha Chi Omega, and the UWF Collegiate Panhellenic Counsel.

In her free time, Anderson loves to work on her photography business, go to the beach, travel and spend time with her family and friends in her favorite place, Pensacola.

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Kelsi Gulig

Vice President of Finance

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Kelsi Gulig is a marketing and communications specialist at Sacred Heart Health System, where her role includes media relations, social media and mass-advertising campaigns, such as direct mail, e-mail marketing, digital, out-of-home, print, radio and TV advertisements. A Pensacola native, she is currently a member of Leadership Pensacola’s Class of 2019. 

Gulig graduated with her bachelor's degree from the University of Florida in Gainesville, and she received her master's degree in business administration from the University of South Florida St. Petersburg.  Before coming home to Pensacola, she served as internal communications manager for the Florida Hospital Volusia/Flagler Region and as marketing coordinator for Florida Hospital Memorial Medical Center in Daytona Beach. 

In her free time, she enjoys reading, writing, traveling and spending time with her husband and daughter.

 

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Lindsey Steck

Vice President of Networking

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Lindsey Steck joined Visit Pensacola in 2017 and is currently serving as a marketing associate. Visit Pensacola supports the community vision of tourism by serving as the central body responsible for building tourism as an economic engine for the community through leadership, connection, collaboration and communication.

Steck earned a bachelor’s degree in public relations from the University of West Florida in 2016. She specializes in public relations and integrated marketing. Previously, she served in corporate communications for the Kansas City Chiefs, athletic communications for the University of West Florida and political communications for Florida House on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C.

She is actively involved in the community as a member of the Junior League of Pensacola and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northwest Florida. A Pensacola native, Steck enjoys hosting dinner parties, traveling, paddle boarding, and NFL football in her spare time.

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Michelle Griffin

Vice President of Communications

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Michelle Griffin is the Executive Director of the Windstorm Insurance Network (WIND), a B2B membership association for the property insurance claims industry.

She is responsible for all aspects of WIND’s marketing and member communications, educational outreach, and plans and promotes the Windstorm Insurance Conference, a three-day annual event for 1,000+ property insurance claims professionals who attend from across the U.S. and abroad.

She earned a master’s degree in Communication/Public Relations from California State University, Fullerton and a bachelor’s degree in Communication/Advertising from Florida State University. In addition, she holds numerous industry certifications in digital marketing, inbound/content marketing, copywriting and social media.

Michelle has served as the president of the Volusia County Chapter of FPRA and was a past president and regional director for the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) during grad school. She has served on several nonprofit, civic and social organizations in the Pensacola area. Michelle is also the organizer of the Gulf Coast Small Business Marketing Meetup, which hosts bi-monthly marketing and networking events for area small business owners and solopreneurs.

Outside of marketing and PR, Michelle is an avid health, fitness, animal and nature evangelist, and is always on the quest to find new gluten free/dairy free offerings. She is married to Mark and is a proud mom to two daughters, Lauren and Anna, and a son, Luke.

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Josh Newby

Vice President of Programs

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Josh Newby is the Marketing/Communications Director for Council on Aging of West Florida, where his responsibilities include media relations, event management, community advocacy, marketing and advertising, and overseeing fund development. Previously he served as editor at Ballinger Publishing and a communications specialist at University of West Florida.

Newby earned a master’s degree in Strategic Leadership and Communication from UWF in 2014 and a bachelor’s of public relations from UWF in 2010. He is a graduate of the Pensacola Chamber Foundation’s Leadership Pensacola program class of 2016, a board member with EscaRosa Coalition on the Homeless, the District 1 representative for Florida Association of Aging Service Providers, a committee member with the Escambia County School Marketing Advisory Council, and a member of Five Flags Rotary. In 2010, he and a team of UWF students won FPRA’s state Golden Image Award; in 2012, he and his colleagues won FPRA’s local Judge’s, Image and Grand Image Awards. Newby enjoys spending time with his dogs and wife (in that order), renovating his house, and being active in the community.

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Michelle Salzman

Vice President of Image Awards

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Michelle Salzman has been a community volunteer for about 15 years.  As a community leader and advocate for children, she spends many hours a week serving the various non-profits along the Gulf Coast. Michelle is also the proud owner of Salz Studio in Pensacola for 12 years.  The studio specializes in event photography and architectural photography.  Salz Studio has won many awards over the years for their incredible customer service, philanthropy work, and breathtaking photos. Michelle’s background is in marketing and logistics but is also a decorated wounded warrior, who served in the US Army.

Michelle has a passion for public relations and believes that PR is a relevant topic for all components of both the business and personal life.  Michelle is eager to help develop and grow the FPRA team in Pensacola as well as continue to learn from the various speakers and teammates here at FPRA.

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Megan Siefert

At Large

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Megan Siefert has worked at ProHealth as the senior account executive since 2007. Her role is to maintain and build client relationships through marketing and communication outreach. 

She earned a bachelor's degree in public relations and marketing from the University of West Florida.  She is involved in the local community as a member of the Pensacola Beach Chamber, and also serves as an ambassador with the Pensacola Chamber of Commerce. She is a Pensacola native and loves spending time with her husband and two children, Camden and Sadie.

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