Keynote Speakers

Galveston, Texas

Picture of Sam Collins

Sam Collins

Collins, known as Professor Juneteenth, is a seven-generation Texan who is passionate about educating people about Galveston's role as the birthplace of Juneteenth. He has been serving on the Board of Advisors with the National Trust for Historic Preservation since 2007 and is actively involved in the national campaign to expand the narrative and tell the truth about American history. In 2021, Collins co-produced the documentary "Juneteenth: The Galveston Story," which was released one month before Juneteenth became a national holiday.

Picture of J.R. Shaw

J.R. Shaw

Shaw is the creator and host of Galveston Unscripted, an award-winning history podcast. In each episode, he interviews individuals whose lives have been influenced by the history of Galveston and Texas. The podcast also serves as an audio tour of Galveston Island and has received over 600,000 downloads worldwide since its launch in 2021.

Professional Development

Picture of Adam Pitluk

Adam Pitluk

Adam is the co-founder of Midwest Luxury Publishing and Groom Lake Media and is the former editor in chief of American Way magazine and the former group editorial director of American Airlines publishing.

Picture of Jeff Inman

Jeff Inman

Associate Professor of Journalism

Drake School of Journalism and Mass Communication

Jeff Inman joined Drake SJMC in 2008 after spending 15 years covering music and pop culture in both Iowa and Las Vegas. He was the Arts and Entertainment Editor at three alternative newsweeklies, starting with the Des Moines-based Cityview and ending with the Las Vegas Weekly.

Returning to Iowa in late 2001, Jeff started freelancing for numerous magazines and newspapers. His work has appeared in over 50 publications, including Rolling Stone, Billboard, Guitar World, Revolver and Better Homes & Gardens, among others.

He received his bachelor’s degree in rhetoric from Iowa State University and his master’s degree in education from Drake University.

He teaches both Magazine and Brand Media and Multimedia Journalism classes, as well as co-teaches a class in application development. He serves on the Board of Student Communications, which oversees student media on campus, as well as serves as the advisor to the Times-Delphic, the university’s newspaper, and Drake Mag, its national award-winning magazine.

Picture of Jennifer Wilson

Jennifer Wilson

Peggy Fisher and Larry Stelter Chair of Magazine and Brand Media

Jennifer Wilson holds the Peggy Fisher and Larry Stelter Chair of Magazine and Brand Media in the Drake University School of Journalism and Mass Communication.

Wilson previously was executive editor at Principal Financial Group, where she led an editorial team in brand content management, enterprise content strategy and storytelling across multiple platforms. Wilson previously was an executive editor at Meredith Corporation (now Dotdash Meredith). She has written two books, both fiction and nonfiction, and has contributed to and edited several. Her work has appeared in Esquire, National Geographic Traveler, Wilderness, Parents, Chicago Tribune and Better Homes and Gardens, among others. She was an editor at Cityview for four years, and told stories for “The Moth,” “Travel with Rick Steves” and “All Things Considered.” Wilson earned bachelor’s degrees in English and journalism from Iowa State University and her master of fine arts in writing from Bennington College. Awards for her work include Best Nonfiction Book from the American Society of Journalists and Authors, and a 2012 Iowa Author Award.

Her responsibilities include administering the E.T. Meredith Center for Magazine, Brand Media and Multimedia Education, teaching journalism classes and advising student publications.

Picture of Don Nichols

Don Nichols

Don

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