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About Media Relations
Ph: (202) 885-5950
4400 Mass. Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20016-8135

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Last Updated July 18, 2008

AU Media Relations Staff

Maralee Csellar, Acting & Associate Director
Acting and Associate Director
202-885-5952 (w) 202-345-3295 (c)
*After hours/Emergency contact

Associate Director Maralee Csellar is currently serving as the office's acting director. As the office's acting director, she manages the day-to-day business operations, serves as the communications liaison to AU's Vice Presidents and their offices, oversees press and news media activity for five of AU's schools and colleges, and provides crisis communication and issue management support to the university. Csellar joined AU's Media Relations staff in 1999 after earning her MA from AU's School of Communication . For more than eight years, she was responsible for news and press relations for American University 's School of Communication, School of Public Affairs, and College of Arts and Sciences. Recently, she oversaw the media outreach surrounding the grand opening of the University's new Katzen Arts Center and continues to promote the Arts@AU. Prior to AU, she spent four years in the marketing department at C-SPAN after earning her BA in journalism and mass communications from Marymount University.

Maggie Barrett, Public Information Officer
Public Information Officer
202-885-5951 (w) 202-345-3411 (c)
Maggie Barrett joined American University 's Media Relations Office in April, 2007. She responds to media requests, writes and distributes press releases and advisories for AU's schools and colleges (primarily School of Communication, Kogod School of Business and the sciences in the College of Arts & Sciences) , and is responsible for AU's Experts Guide, among other duties. Barrett began her career in higher education media relations at Wake Forest University in 2004. Prior to that, Barrett spent nine years as a television news creative services writer/producer/editor and worked for stations owned by Media General and Hearst-Argyle Television, among others. Barrett graduated from Mary Washington College (now the University of Mary Washington ) in 1995 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English.

Jon Hussey, Media Relations Public Information Officer
202-885-5935 (w) 202-373-9888 (c)
Jon Hussey is the newest addition to the office arriving in August 2007. He responds to media requests, writes and distributes press releases and advisories for AUís schools and colleges (primarily the School of Public Affairs, School of International Service, School of Education and the social sciences in the College of Arts & Sciences) , and is responsible for AU Media Relationsí web presence, among other duties. Hussey began his career in education communications at the Center for Education Reform in 2005, first as a communications coordinator and most recently in the media relations office. Prior to that, Hussey spent four years as a correspondent with The Boston Globe and a year as an editorial assistant with USA Hockey Magazine. Hussey graduated from Salem State College with a Bachelor of Science degree in journalism.

Nell Bryan, Media Relations Assistant
Media Relations Assistant
202-885-5950 (w)
Sharnell (Nell) Bryan is a new addition to Media Relations. As the office's Media Relations Assistant, she serves as the primary gatherer and monitor of news coverage related to the institution, and creates academic and statistical reports on a monthly and calendar year basis. Before joining the American University staff, she was an intern for the Utica Observer-Dispatch in upstate New York, and the Chronicle of Philanthropy. A native Washingtonian, she received her bachelor's degree in journalism from Ball State University in Muncie, IN, in 2003.


AU Athletic Communications

Assistant Athletic Director for Communications
202-885-3079 (w)

WAMU 88.5 Public Information Office

Kay Summers, Director of Public Information, WAMU 88.5 FM
Director of Public Information, WAMU 88.5 FM
202-885-1240 (w)
Kay Summers began work as WAMU 88.5 FM's Director of Public Information in June 2006. She is the spokesperson for the station and the official point of contact for listeners, community representatives, and the media. A newcomer to public radio, Kay came to WAMU from the United States Marine Band, where she worked as a public affairs specialist. Prior to moving to the Washington, D.C., area, Kay worked in the communications office of the Florida Department of Health in Tallahassee, promoting healthy behaviors through paid social marketing. She remains proud of the opportunity to work on awareness campaigns for sexual violence prevention education among teens and young adults and free child health insurance for low-income families. Kay holds a bachelor's degree in music education from Florida State University in Tallahassee, and a master's degree in arts administration from Indiana University in Bloomington. She began her career as public relations manager for the Alabama Shakespeare Festival in Montgomery. All of Kay's professional endeavors have been focused on life improvement and enrichment of the citizenry, and working for public radio is a natural extension of that work ethic.


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Nancy Yasharoff
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Kay Summers
(202) 885-1240