MARK BLACKMON can be found jugglng marketing, public and media relations, internal communications, brand management, creative services, publications and the development of institution-wide, multi-level and multi-modal strategic plans on any given day.
He joined the administrative faculty at Earlham College in 2007 and he served as Director of Media Relations, overseeing all of the College’s interactions with the national media and implementing strategies to attract attention to the College using new and emerging technology until 2013.
In addition to his role as Director of Media Relations, he was asked to serve a concurrent term as Associate Vice President for Public Affairs, managing the communications division of the College during a time of historic organizational change.
At Earlham, he was tasked with leading a national visibility initiative and successfully placed stories that raised the national profile of the College significantly in the popular press.
He also implemented an across-the-board plan to integrate nimble enrollment-focused multimedia into the College’s strategic planning for enrollment and advancement. This included the creation of the College’s award-winning audio podcast series, the video series, “Earlham at Eleven,” live online Web chats for prospective students, and the student-written daily blog, “Life at Earlham.”
In 2005, Blackmon co-founded Chanticleer Productions, LLP, one of the first firms to harness the benefits of emerging new media and created the first new media infrastructure for producing, designing, writing, editing, syndicating and hosting audio-visual programming targeted at organizations which, at the time, could not have otherwise afforded them, producing, writing, editing and narrating programs for a diverse group of clients ranging from international humanitarian organizations to some of the nation’s most prestigious arts organizations and educational institutions as well as small businesses.
After developing a strategic, data-driven, comprehensive, multi-pronged audience development and stabilization plan for the Baltimore Shakespeare Festival, Blackmon joined the Festival as Head of Institutional Development, an integrated position combining all fundraising, marketing and promotional activities of the organization to implement his plan, which saw audience size double within one year.
For nearly a decade, he served as a charter member of the innovative senior Management Team at the Round House Theatre in suburban Washington, D.C., where he oversaw all sales, marketing, and audience development initiatives, developed and implemented more than 50 discrete promotional plans, and conceived and directed a data-driven audience development strategy that resulted in a subscription revenue increase of nearly 700%, education program revenue increase 200% and saw paid attendance more than treble during his tenure. Of the organization’s Top Ten list of highest grossing shows (1978-2003), Blackmon developed the promotional strategies for all of them.
A former Vice President of the League of Washington Theatres and a four-term nominator for the prestigious Helen Hayes Awards, Blackmon also served as Director of Public Relations for the Washington, D.C.-based Corporation Against Drug Abuse (CADA) where he developed and implemented grassroots strategies for information dissemination which served as a model for communities worldwide, and wrote and produced the annual CADA Awards galas at such venues as the Kennedy Center.
Originally schooled as a broadcast journalist, Blackmon has also worked as a management consultant, entrepreneur, playwright, librettist, theatrical rights manager and graphic designer. He makes excellent coffee.