teams

Our
People

Hover and click on the state (or country) to read more (no infringement intended)

leadership

mel adler

President

Jennifer Phelps

Chief Operations officer

Gene Sicard

Chief Production Officer

Marc Montoya

Chief REVENUE ADVISOR

dave santaniello

music & brand partnerships

Dawna Smith

Human Resources

David Young

Chief Financial & Investment Consultant

Carson Coldiron

digital & social media marketing

Alan Wallace

Publicity

Rob Dixter

Syndication

Lindsay Calabrese

Influencer Marketing

editorial

diana barcelata

senior writer - latam

Andres Fabris

Senior Writer

Patrick Leu

Junior Writer

Maia Robbins

Junior Writer

Ava Treviño

Junior Writer

Sam Stephenson

Junior Writer

Julia Laughlin

Junior Editor

Grace Powers

Writer/Talent

Teresa Bigioli

International writer

Genevieve Christon

Junior Blogger

content

Kelsey Perry

Tracks Editor

Grace McGonagle

Music Coordinator

Jeffery Martin

Music Content Intern

Leydi Gonzalez

Music Content Intern

Mallary Zajicek

Content Manager Intern

marketing

Grace McGONAGLE

Instagram Team Lead

Luis Perez

instagram reels

Jimena Villarreal

Instagram Reels

Sherrie Williams

Instagram Intern

Aleena Waldron

Webmaster and Analytics

Andres Fabris

Communications Manager

Rae Lawhon

Graphic Design Intern

Jason McCleod

Tiktok Intern

Ryan Fisher

Twitter/Youtube Intern

production

TED UTZ

EXECUTIVE PRODUCER. LIVESTREAMS

Matt Varga

Multimedia Editor

Luis Perez

Production Coordinator

KEVIN FERNANDEZ

Senior editor

Charlie Woodberry

Junior Editor

Jack Stoner

Junior Editor

Stefano McKinney

Junior Editor

Gerard Blandina

video editor

LaNea Tolbert

Video Editor

Siris Washington Jr

Video Editor

John Slusser

Senior Copywriter

Ashley Ogando

Copywriter / Animation Video Editor

Sophia Steele

Copywriter

Liz Ciocher

Copywriter Intern

Rodrigo Salume

audio engineer

diana barcelata

Talent

Paloma Pimentel

Talent

Ariel Dorsey

Talent

TED UTZ

Executive Director, Long-Form Content

GENE SICARD

Executive Producer

JENNIFER PHELPS

Production Manager/Operations

NANCY PALADINO

Creative Director

support

consultants

TRECTER ENT.

Licensing

JENSEN COMM.

PUBLIC RELATIONS

NAZAR VOITKO

Web services

JOCK MCCLEAN

PROGRAMMING & ARTIST RELATIONS

GARY KRANTZ

AUDIO PLATFORMS

DAVID KOBER

LEGAL EAGLE

DAN SCHERER

digital platforms

Rae Lawhon

Graphic Design Intern

mel adler

president

Mel is an accomplished media entertainment executive with over twenty five years experience in multimedia sales, management, production and distribution for both large scale companies as well as start up environments.

A strong hands-on professional, he has developed and activated marketing programs for many fortune 500 brands including Microsoft, Mercedes, L’Oreal, Hennessy, Citi, and Kraft while at companies like CBS Interactive Music, Clear Channel Interactive, National Lampoon, Tribune and iHeart Radio.

An early adopter of cross-platform and branded integrations, Mel has also executive produced programs for broadcast television and streaming web including South Side Johnny Live (NYE Special), ‘Cool Notes’ Jazz, Segway Music Countdown, and iHeart Radio’s Jingle Ball.

“The Dark Side of the Moon cover intrigued me when I  bought it in April 1973.  I was 19 at the time and Pink Floyd was becoming a mainstream success with a growing fan base, myself included.  The mind-blowing music coupled with lyrics exploring themes of alienation, loss, and materialism struck a personal note which echoes within me to this day.”   MA

 

JENNIFER PHELPS

Production Manager/Operations
Jennifer is a persuasive and passionate executive with an extensive career in Music, Film, Television and Advertising. She has worked with many award winning icons in the entertainment world in developing strategies, executing plans and analyzing results. Skilled in contract negotiation, strategic brand building, budgeting and strengthening relationships with power brokers, artists and management, she is also adept at Project Management and identifying strategic partnerships.

GENE SICARD

EXECUTIVE IN CHARGE OF PRODUCTION

Gene’s experience brings an eclectic musical and production background to AWE. He trained as a classical musician and singer at the Manhattan School of Music, sang baritone with the New York City Opera, and later became a producer, composer and arranger for Atlantic Records.

Beginning in 1985, Gene owned and operated several production houses catering to major advertising and corporate clients. His musical training and experience has provided him with a finely tuned ear and great directorial expertise, which is reflected in his craftsmanship. Gene has a recognized style featuring strong creativity, high energy, and an emphasis on intricate production techniques.

MARC MONTOYA

chief REVENUE advisor

With over three decades in the competitive, continually evolving world of digital media, Marc has held executive positions at such prominent media companies as Nexstar Media Group Match.com, AOL, Yahoo!, Broadcast.com and Belo Broadcasting. Marc’s ability to anticipate trends and innovate has enabled him to develop and transform businesses through the power of digital and traditional broadcast video

Dave Santaniello

Music & Brand Partnership

Dave believes Content Connects and Inspires. A serial Entertainment intra/entrepreneur and private investor, he is uniquely suited to help Brands, Businesses, Investors, and Individuals of Consequence connect to issues that matter most to them and execute breakthrough campaigns.

Widely associated as a forefather of “Brand Partnerships” at Sony Music, and Head of Music at Edelman / United Entertainment Group, Dave’s work has contributed to Grammy, Cannes Lions, Webby, Shorty, Digiday, and Billboard Awards, alongside Sony’s CEO Award for Global Entrepreneurship.

Dawna Smith

Human Resources Director

I am Dawna, an author, a poet, and I love helping people discover where they fit in to do what they are born to do. I love creating art about people who make loving bonds and inspire others. I love my best friend, Opal. I love being her human. I love being a mom, a sister, a daughter, a friend, and a helper.

“My favorite album is Ode to Billie Joe, by Bobbie Gentry. She was the first artist I could remember, and I loved all her songs. Plus, I was born the year her album came out. “

David Young

chief financial & investment consultant

I confess to being a numbers guy with a passion for taking new product and service ideas from concept to reality. I am an inventor, investor, and winning team builder. I have experience working entry level positions and leading from executive suites. With three successful startups under my belt, I am amazed by what great teams can accomplish. I have learned to ask good questions, communicate complex ideas, and motivate people to overcome obstacles in pursuit of their potential and to the benefit of the team.

Carson Coldiron

Digital & Social Media Marketing

Carson brings an unbeatable combination of experience and creativity to his critical role of directing our digital marketing team. Carson is an entrepreneur with sufficient agency experience to understand how to maximize the effectiveness of digital and traditional marketing tools increase audience and engagement across all our channels. 

Rob Dixter

Syndicated TV

Rob has an extensive career in both linear and digital television.  He got his start on MTV’s TRL becoming the producer of the show. He followed a 7 year stint at MTV by  building and launching the digital video team at Fuse TV.   Later he was tasked to run the production department at Sinclair Broadcast’s Circa.com, a digital news service targetting Millennials.  Finally running all video and podcasts for Us Weekly and Men’s Journal.

Lindsay calabrese

influencer marketing specialist

★ 12yr Influencer Marketing Veteran
★ Led award winning influencer marketing strategy and long-term creator programs, tactics and execution for some of the biggest brands in the world
★ Named Social Media’s Rising Star in the Events Industry by Event Solutions
★ Named one of the top 42 Most Passionate Business Women on Twitter – Huff Po

Diana Barcelata

Senior Blogger

Diana is a senior writer at Music daily! She is from Vera Cruz Mexico and she graduated in May 2020 from North Central College with a double Bachelor’s degree in Broadcast Communications & Organizational Communications and will be attending Northeastern Illinois University for my Master’s starting this Fall!

Diana’s favorite album is Happiness Begins by the Jonas Brothers. By the way… her favorite group is the Jonas Brothers as well!

“It was the Jonas Brothers’ first album in 10 years and it marked their reunion! Plus, every song is very meaningful as it brings back memories from my childhood and with loved ones.”

Sam Stephenson

Junior Writer

Hi! I’m Sam- a junior blogger for MD. I love writing (pretty much anything from poetry to journalism to literary analysis) and music. I listen to country and alternative pop, but I’m a huge fan of Thomas Rhett, Taylor Swift, AJR, and Broadway music. I’m a junior majoring in English at Stevenson University patiently awaiting my career path in teaching, but hoping to make my start in blogging along the way. :)

“My favorite album is 1989 by Taylor Swift! I’m a huge country fan, so it’s difficult for me to be defined so strongly by a pop album. Yet, I grew up on this album. It lives in my car’s CD player while the rest of my CD’s sit in a case, because this album has such a wide array of emotions on it. Whether it’s the best day of your life or you’re ‘going for a drive’ so that you can cry alone, this album has your back and scream singing isn’t just allowed, it’s welcomed.”

 

 

Andres Fabris

Senior Writer/
Communications Manager/
Social Media Strategist

Andres is a Senior Writer, Communications Manager, and Social Media Strategist at Music Daily.  He is a Senior at the University of Delaware with a double major of English and Public Relations and a minor in Italian.

His favorite album is Daydream, by Mariah Carey.

“Thematically, Daydream is the most emotionally crushing album I’ve heard. Upon the first track, perhaps the listener is unaware that they too are daydreaming with Mariah, many fantasies of romance and starry nights. However, by the end of the album, the visions of love are gone, and we see an isolating reality for Mariah, even if she is a superstar diva. Perhaps, these daydreams were her survival, and, if true or not, it feels like looking into her diary—personal, precious, and a moment in time.”

Rae Lawhon

Social Media Graphic Design Intern

Rae Lawhon is 18, about to graduate college and loves music and video games. Her favorite things to design are interfaces and logos.

“I’d have to say “Everything I Know About Love” by Laufey is my favorite album. I’ve been following her from the beginning of her first releases and it was super exciting hearing her first album. I really like the jazz-inspired pop music and it’s even more enjoyable singing to it.”

Patrick Leu

Jr. Writer

Patrick is a junior writer at Music Daily.He likes to read, creatively write, play jazz+classical trumpet, play piano, and play Garageband!

“My favorite album right now is the UNDERTALE Soundtrack because it by far has the strongest OST from a video game ever. Also all the songs are bops.”

Leydi Gonzalez

Music Content Intern

Leydi Gonzalez is an undergraduate student at the University of Houston majoring in Strategic Communications with a minor in Marketing. She loves everything music and photography!

“My favorite album is Shea Butter Baby by Ari Lennox. This is an album that I do not get tired of listening to throughout the years. Her buttery vocals over a variety of different styles of production is what sets this album apart for me. This project is filled with songs to match different energies, for a party-like mood there is “BMO” and a more classic RnB feel “Facetime”. Ari Lennox delivered a cohesive, soulful, and warm masterpiece of a debut album. “

Maia Robbins

Writer
Maia is one of Music Daily’s more prolific writers.  Maia joins us from Stetson University where she’s a Digital Arts major with a Creative Writing minor.  Maia likes to spend her time reading, writing, playing pool, and bingeing tv shows. She loves photography and videography, and hopes to one day work in the film industry.  She also adores cats, could live off of just rice and noodles, and currently owns 41 decks of cards!
 
“Kelly Clarkson was probably the first artist whose music I fell in love with and have since followed through the years. I remember singing along to “Breakaway,” “Since U Been Gone,” and all the other songs on her album ‘Breakaway.’ As an incredibly nostalgic person, that album will always mean a lot to me.”
 

Ava Treviño

junior writer

Ava attends the The University of North Texas majoring in Broadcasting and Digital Media

She loves listening to rock music. She grew up playing games such as Rock Band and Guitar Hero and the music stuck with her. For her 20th birthday, she had a rock and roll party.

Ava’s favorite album is Hypnotize by System Of A Down.

“All the songs just hit. I grew up with System of a Down and this is also my most played album.”

Sherrie Williams

Social Media Intern (Instagram)

Sherrie is a communications major at California State Polytechnic University in Pomona, California, studying multimedia journalism.

Her goals are to go into social media marketing, travel Europe, maybe start a small café/bookstore.

She is optimistic, kind, sarcastic, more of an introvert, but can still be chatty.

“My favorite album is The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, by Lauren Hill. Hill’s lyrical flow never gets old and I am into older R&B”

LaNea Tolbert

Video Editor

LaNea is a student in her last year of studying film and psychology at San Fransisco State University. She was born and raised in San Francisco and after college, she hopes to become a cinematographer or editor for film.

“My favorite album is This Old Dog, by Mac DeMarco. From start to finish, every song on this album brings good vibrations! My favorite track is Moonlight on the River, I love the ending how everything slows down and becomes almost eerie yet intriguing.”

Julia Laughlin

Writer

Julia graduated from the University of Massachusetts in May of 2021 with a degree in communication.i

She loves to write, create, outdoors, music, and animals.

Julia became a corporate trainer at Boston Direct after graduation and built her own team She  coached, motivated and pushed them to succeed and reach their goals.

“I currently write for Music Daily  about music news, new songs, and album releases.   My favorite artists include Billie Eilish, One Direction, Olivia Rodrigo and the Weeknd.”

“My favorite album is Whack World by Tierra Whack because of how versatile and different it was. I strive to make music that sounds like nothing that is out right now and be extremely creative with it.”

Grace Powers

Junior Writer, Vlogger

Grace is a junior writer and on-camera talent at Music Daily.  She attends Appalachian State University in Boone, NC and majors in Electronic Media and Broadcasting with a minor in Graphic Arts and Imaging Technology.

“Lost in the Dream by the War on Drugs is my favorite album and has been since I was 15 years old. The way they blend their heartland Americana style with a psychedelic flare instills a visceral emotional response. The way their songs build up to such a cathartic crescendo made this album an instant favorite of mine.”

Teresa Bigioli

Inernational Wrier

Teresa’s is our International Writer for Music Daily. She  attends University of Southern California and studies Journalism.

Some of Teresa’s favorite artists include David Bowie, Harry Styles, Miley Cyrus, Olivia Rodrigo, Taylor Swift, 5SOS, FKA Twigs, DIY Valentine, Selena, Lesley Gore, Amy Winehouse, The Killers, Nirvana. Her favorite album is Miley Cyrus & Her Dead Petz by Miley Cyrus.

“I first discovered Miley Cyrus & Her Dead Petz during a hard emotional time in my life, and through this album, I was able to resonate and connect to the songs and feel understood and heard. It holds a special place in my music heart for being the soundtrack of my emotions during that period of my life”

Genevieve Christon

Junior Blogger

I’m a creative writer who currently loves learning anything and everything I can about the world, values, people, and what could be. I want to establish as an author, it’s quite simply my passion. I’m one year away from graduating college, and though I have no set plan in motion, I’m excited for what’s to come. :)

kelsey perry

coordinator
Kelsey is a Coordinator on the content team at Music Daily.  She is a student at Ball State University studying Advertising. She also loves to thrift, loves fashion, and making playlists! Also a huge cat person.
 
Her favorite artists include Samia, The Wrecks, Taylor Swift, Clairo, Lorde and her favorite album is The Baby by Samia!
 
“Samia’s lyrics are beautiful, unique, and so relatable for a young adult female listener. ‘The Baby’ is raw, original, and honest and perfectly expresses the emotions and angst that come with young adulthood as a woman. Her tracks are different and strong enough that they are all able to stand and be appreciated alone, but the album is also able to come together as a perfect cohesive unit. I’ve been listening to this album consistently for over a year now and it hasn’t aged one bit!”
 

Grace McGonagle

Music Coordinator/IG

Grace does double duty at Music Daily! She heads up our Instagram team and also coordinates with our Content team on music curation. 

Grace is a Public Relations major at Suffolk University in Massachusetts.

“My music taste is constantly changing I love everything from country to rap. All depends on the day!”

Jeffery Martin

Music Content Intern

Jeffery is currently a communications major, with minors in English and Writing, at Marian University. Music has always been a passion of his, especially thanks to old records that his parents used to have.

Jeffery’s favorite genres are Jazz and international music, mainly Spanish or J-Pop. 

“I fall in love with music most often for 2 reasons: 1) the beauty or unique sound of it & its artists’ voice and 2) the captivating story it traps me in while I listen or sing along. It’s hard to pick my absolute favorite but it would have to be Frank Sinatra’s My Way Album. It’s my favorite album because Frank Sinatra got me into Jazz and Swing music. My Way stands out to me because it’s the song I chose for my high school graduation speech. It made me feel powerful as I entered into the world knowing that my decisions from now on will make a big impact on me.”

Mallary Zajicek

Content Manager Intern

I am 21 and I have lived in Germany for the last three years but will be moving to Chicago this summer. I am majoring in communications with a minor in marketing online at the University of Maryland and have traveled a ton throughout Europe. Traveling has become one of my favorite hobbies, whether I am going to a new country or discovering a new small town in Germany. I love listening to music and have it on 24/7, and I am always on the hunt for new artists and songs to listen to. Just a few of my favorite artists are Rainbow Kitten Surprise, M83, and Tame Impala. When I am not working or studying, I love hanging out with friends at the park or at a cute café.

My favorite album is Currents by Tame Impala.

“The feel from Currents, by Tame Impala, is something incomparable to any other. Every song brings a new emotion and just sounds like magic, and Tame Impala did a really great job with making every song on this album a hit. I could listen to each song in a completely different setting or scenario and it would still be a vibe.”

gerard blandina

video editor

Gerard is a Film & Television graduate of Rider University. He loves watching Godzilla movies and listening to 80s music. Gerard’s favorite artist is Devo. He also collects fluorescent minerals. Gerard hopes to expand upon his skills and craft as a filmmaker and will become a professional video editor and camera operator in the future.

“One of my favorite albums is Big Country’s The Crossing. The songs have a kinetic almost anthemic, call-to-action energy about them that leave you wanting to throw caution to the wind, as you dance, shout, and if you are adventurous, maybe go on a treasure hunt. Their signature sound are the bagpipe-like guitars that are prevalent in every song. Stuart Adamson, the late lead vocalist of Big Country had vocals that had an impressive range that carried a deep well of emotion and inspiration to anyone who heard it.”

Luis Perez

Production Coordinator

Luis graduated with a degree in Film Production. He wants to get into the industry, with aspirations of creating his own show.

Luis is a hard worker, who brings a positive vibe to everyone he works with.

Luis’ favorite album is Abbey Road by The Beatles.

“I love the Beatles and the type of music they create.”

Ashley Rosario Ogando

Copywriter/Editor

Ashley is studying Film & Production at Hofstra University and is not only a junior editor at Music Daily, she is also an aspiring animator! 

She LOVES cartoons, drawing, creative writing, playing video games and want to one day make a Cartoon Feature.

Ashley’s favorite album is Stormcrow by Cain’s Offering.

“I love power metal and I feel that the range the band brings to this album is phenomenal. The usage of fast pace drums and guitars to the slow piano and choir was beautiful.”

Jimena Villarreal

Instagram reels creator

Jimena is a senior at St. Edward’s University, majoring in Digital Media Management.

Jimena is from Monterrey, Mexico. She loves watching movies and TV, reading, listening to music, sunsets, and being with her friends and family.

Aleena Waldron

Webmaster and Analytic Intern

My name is Aleena Waldron, I am currently attending Quinnipiac University in an accelerated 4+1 program. I had graduated with my Bachelors in Computer Information systems in 2022. I am currently getting my MBA in business analytics. I am originally from The Bronx, in New York City. I love music and getting introduced with even more artists. It is a great way to express emotions and feelings which is so powerful.

Jason McCleod

TikTok Intern

Jason is a Graduate student from South Florida. He recently received his Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from the University of Pennsylvania where he minored in music and participated in an A Capella group on campus. He has played the trombone since the fourth grade and began singing when he was a Freshman in High School. He is an avid music fan and is currently trying to hone his music knowledge to learn a new skill, DJing.

Ryan Fisher

Twitter/YouTube Intern

Ryan is currently a Senior at SUNY Fredonia with a Major in Music Industry and a Minor in Communications. His goals are to get a job in the music industry either with live performances or social media.

Stefano McKinney

Junior Editor

Stefano is a cinema major at San Francisco State University. He is originally from Los Angeles, but has moved around a bit. He wants to make his own feature film. He is also on the San Francisco Wrestling team.

“My favorite album is In Utero, because I am a huge fan of Nirvana and Kurt Cobain.”

 

TED UTZ

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, LONG-FORM CONTENT

Ted is an accomplished entertainment executive with experience in start-ups, major-market station management, artist development and management, business and programming development. Having direct experience in the Traditional, Digital, On-site, Social, Mobile and ‘Cross-Platform‘ media business, he has created innovative solutions for competitive and technical challenges facing customers and strategic partners. Specializing in revenue development through building and maintaining excellent relationships with clients, vendors, and staff, while ensuring seamless communication between internal and external groups and all essential vehicles of content distribution.

Jack Stoner

Junior Editor

I am a junior at MSU. I am from Seattle, WA. I love the outdoors, watching movies, and taking pictures

Matt Varga

Multimedia Editor

Matt is an editor at Music Daily.  He is a Senior at the University of Delaware with a double major of English and Public Relations and a minor in Italian.

“Thematically, Daydream is the most emotionally crushing album I’ve heard. Upon the first track, perhaps the listener is unaware that they too are daydreaming with Mariah, many fantasies of romance and starry nights. However, by the end of the album, the visions of love are gone, and we see an isolating reality for Mariah, even if she is a superstar diva. Perhaps, these daydreams were her survival, and, if true or not, it feels like looking into her diary– personal, precious, and a moment in time.”

Charlie Woodberry

Junior Editor

I am a film student living in Northern Virginia who loves to help people. My biggest interests are different forms of media, stories, and cultures. I also love baseball and football.

“My favorite album is HiLo by Jack Stauber. It’s unconventional lyrics and sound makes it one of the most emotional albums I have ever listened to with this and Jack’s other works always inspire me to create stuff.”

Siris Washington Jr

Video Editor

Siris graduated from Central Texas College. He has aspirations to become a Film / Documentary editor.

He was born in Manhattan, New York on July 17, 1975. In 1980, he moved to Winston-Salem, North Carolina, graduating from RJ Reynolds in 1994. In 2001 he moved to Texas and in 2011, enrolled at Central Texas Colleges Television and Radio program as a communications major.
 
 “My favorite album is Donny Hathaway, because of the great music behind the album cover.”

Paloma Pimentel

Talent

I am Paloma Pimentel, I am bilingual and speak English and Spanish. I am a senior at college, a practicing communicator and journalist. I have been to 19 countries and have a multi-cultural understanding of people and societies. I hope one day to become a communications expert.

Sophia Steele

Copywriter

I am earning my master’s degree at American University in investigative journalism. I graduated with a bachelor’s in English from Clemson University, where I wrote for the opinions column of the Tiger newspaper. I am one of the staff writers for the free press magazine, Zeal & Pristine, and also write for the sister site, Baby Z. My personal blog, SoupScribbles, contains articles on mental health and lifestyle tips. When I’m not writing, I am either reading all sorts of books or am out hiking with my dog.

Liz Ciocher

Copywriter Intern

Liz Ciocher is a junior college student at The College of New Jersey in Ewing, New Jersey, studying Journalism and Professional Writing with a minor in Creative Writing. Liz has also studied at Ocean County College where she has acquired an Associate’s Degree, and has been taking her passion for writing to each school she has attended. She is 21 years old and has always loved music and writing about music. She listens to a variety of different genres, so many that she doesn’t really have a favorite! 

“My favorite album is Dark Sky Paradise by Big Sean. The album has so many different themes, styles and featured artists. No matter what mood I am in, I can find a song on this album to fit it.”

Ariel Dorsey

Talent

When I am not working and attending school, you can find me spending time with friends and serving at my church! I love trying new things and rarely pass up any opportunity for an adventure. As much as I am an extrovert, I also enjoy spending time with myself to recharge. Watching movies, going to cafes, and sunset beach drives with good music are a few things my introvert self loves to do!