Higher education executive supervising people, projects, strategy, and crises.
Directing strategic communications and understanding audiences is at the heart of Russ Nunley’s career. Whether working as a local TV anchor and news manager, handling marketing and PR for the world’s largest movie theatre group, or now as Chief Marketing Officer at SUNY Alfred State College, adjunct faculty, and Public Information Officer, he strives to create messages that resonate with audiences and to use communication for information, leadership, persuasion, and inspiration.
Combining experience from diverse fields such as journalism, business management, higher education, entertainment, and analytics, Nunley has a unique perspective and insights to propel marketing and surpass communication goals.
In the News July 11, 2022: National marketing conference relies on expertise from Alfred State
Cornell, Rutgers, and University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Conflict Resolution - Labor Relations Professional Certificate
Cornell University, NYS School of Industrial and Labor Relations (ILR), Ithaca, NY
• Diagnose workplace conflict and navigating labor relations.
• Determine scope of conflict and use of problem-solving.
• Lead challenging conversations and handling emotions.
• Mediate friction and preventing further escalation.
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the Workplace - DEI Professional Certificate
Rutgers University, School of Management and Labor Relations (SMLR), New Brunswick, NJ
• Build a truly diverse, equitable, and inclusive organization.
• Explore the concept of race and the impact of systemic racism.
• Navigate difficulties at the intersection of race, power, and privilege.
• Understand the importance of communication and actions in an organization.
Digital Marketing and Innovation - 12 Graduate Hours Credit
University of Illinois, Gies College of Business, Urbana-Champaign, IL
• Transform business with marketing in a digital world.
• Build measurable outcomes through marketing analytics.
• Use innovation and strategy for entrepreneurship ideas to grow.
Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Marketing
Southeastern Oklahoma State University, Durant, OK
Graduated with High Honors
AACSB and Higher Learning Commission Accreditation
• Marketing studies in consumer behavior, ethics, advertising management, and social media.
• Business studies in behavioral management, data analytics, research, and strategic planning.
• Financial studies in accounting, economics, and fiscal management.
Bachelor of Science (BS) in Broadcast Journalism and Management
University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN
Graduated with Honors
AACSB, ACEJMC, and SACSCOC Accreditation
• Concentrated studies in Colleges of Business and Communications.
• Learned journalism, business, and presentation skills at student radio station WUTK.
• Anchored "This Week in Big Orange Country" airing on five Fox television stations.
Chief Marketing Officer
State University of New York (SUNY) Alfred State College
2016 – Present
Rochester, New York Area
• The lead executive for both marketing and communications at the No. 1 SUNY Regional College as ranked for multiple years by US News & World Report.
• Member of President's Council. Coordinate efforts with dozens of college executives from every division. Supervise staff of 11 including Print and Mail Services.
• Responsibilities include strategy development, implementation, and analysis of marketing efforts to promote the college to prospective students, parents, and alumni, special events planning and execution, along with integrated communications to both internal and external audiences.
• The head of marketing and communications has primary working relationships with the President, President's Council, Provost, Deans, Enrollment Management, Admissions, and Institutional Advancement.
• Crisis communications include student arrests, employee lawsuits, deaths, COVID-19, weather-related incidents, and IT systems disabled from a ransomware attack.
• Strategic communications include consistent image and brand messaging, public relations, internal communications, social media, and advertising.
State University of New York (SUNY) Alfred State College
2020 – Present
• BUAD 2033 Business Communication
• CJUS 4103 Policing in a Free Society (Communication)
• MKTG 2073 Principles of Marketing
Vice President of Marketing and Communications
Regal Entertainment Group
1999 – 2015
• Inspired employees, including dozens of staff members and cross-functional teams.
• Served on executive committee to build KPI-based bonus program for operations.
• Organized annual General Manager Conference to boost company morale.
• Supervised up to 40 in-office and remote employees in the division.
• Excelled in 360-degree assessments from subordinates, peers, and stakeholders.
• Earned excellent scores for: credibility, acumen, results-focus, and integrity.
• Promoted frequently: 1999 Theatre Opener, 2001 Marketing Manager, 2005 MarCom Director and 2008 MarCom Vice President.
• Directed grand openings for 120+ new theaters and 200+ premium or luxury sites.
• Managed $3 million annual ad budget, traded for $10 million+ in additional ads.
• Integrated marketing programs from mergers & acquisitions.
• Supervised marketing with 100+ theatre and competitor visits annually.
• Attained Regal’s highest open and click-through rates with localized emails and offers.
• Initiated aid for underperforming sites to reverse declines and added revenue at each.
• Proposed the Regal Crown Club loyalty and rewards program with 14 million annual attendees.
• Coordinated crises by analyzing risk, drafting statements, gaining stakeholder agreement, then implementing and monitoring responses.
• Served as spokesperson, with up to 300+ media inquiries per day during crises, writing press releases, talking points, speeches, and social media.
• Tracked earned media objectively through third party vendors with media coverage valued at $30 million annually, 93% positive stories.
• Coached staff for media interviews by phone, in person and on camera.
• Built multi-cultural PR approach with Hispanic emphasis, the most frequent moviegoer.
• Established Regal Foundation to coordinate Cause Marketing.
• Hosted annual film premiere for charity and generated $4 million with Stars of Hope annual fundraiser.
Television Anchor, Reporter, and Producer
1989 – 1999
• Supervised staff and determined news content for live newscasts.
• Achieved top-rated broadcasts and most watched TV program when anchoring weekday mornings and weekend evenings.
• Served as business/political reporter, interviewing corporate and government leaders.
• Promoted frequently: Intern, Videographer, Editor, Producer, Reporter, and Anchor.
Crisis Communications and Emergency Management
• FEMA certified as Public Information Officer and trained in the implementation of Incident Command Systems.
• Crisis response coordination related to a multi-state rash of theatre shootings with months of local, national, and international media attention.
• Higher education crises include missing persons, fires with building occupants, student arrests, and computer hacks with ransomware.
• Homeland Security training of 124 hours including advanced ICS-300 and ICS-400.
Selected Conference Presentations
• "Is Higher Education Dying or Dynamic? Changes in Student Perceptions of ROI" RNL National Higher Education Conference. Washington, DC, July 2022.
• "Digital Marketing to Students: Big Data and Big Impacts" SUNYCUAD Statewide Conference for advancement and marketing leaders. Ithaca, NY, March 2022.
Skills and Knowledge
• Marketing and communications experience in areas of education, entertainment, media relations, food service, retail, and customer service.
• Results-driven management style generates measurable outcomes, relying on financial analysis to track progress, and attainment of goals.
• Calm and experienced approach to organizing emergency management of incidents and the related crisis communications.
• Proven project manager for marketing, advertising, creative content, public relations, special events, publicity, cause marketing, social media, driving brand strategy, and alignment.
• Focused communication skills to share passion for the brand, raising public awareness, and generating revenue.
• Content Management System (CMS) experience with Drupal, WordPress, and Modern Campus Omni.
• Customer Relationship Management (CRM-CXM) experience with Salesforce and Slate.
• Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) and Student Information System (SIS) experience with Ellucian Banner.
• Learning Management System (LMS) experience with Blackboard and Canvas.
• Media monitoring experience with Cision, Critical Mention, Meltwater, and Vocus PR.
• Portal system experience with Ellucian Portal and Microsoft SharePoint.
• Student Success Management System (SSMS) experience with EAB Starfish
• Strong work ethic for attaining achievements personally and for promoting team performance.
• Unwavering drive for proactive results with an enthusiasm to devise effective strategies in a matrixed structure to address challenges or crises while using innovative approaches to tackle new initiatives.
• Campus-Wide Strategic Planning Leadership Committee
• Commencement Planning Committee
• Content Creation Across Campus Team
• Degree Completion Partnership of WNY
• Educational Foundation of Alfred, Inc. - PR Committee
• Enrollment Management Advisory Team
• Enrollment Management Directors' Committee
• Faculty Search Committees
• Homecoming Committee
• Inauguration Committee Chair
• Institutional Advancement Publicity Committee
• Major Gifts Communication Committee
• Middle States Accreditation Steering Committee
• Middle States Standard VI Co-Chair: Planning, Resources, and Inst. Improvement
• Past Allocations Committee, United Way of Greater Knoxville
• Past Board of Directors, Allegany County United Way
• Past Board of Directors, Dogwood Arts Festival Knoxville
• Past Loaned Executive, United Way of Greater Knoxville
• Past Narrative Feature Film Judge, Knoxville Film Festival
• Perkins Funds and Corporate Grant Committees
• Presidential Inauguration Committee
• Presidential Transition Committee
• President's Council Board Member
• Programming Priorities for ASC Web Committee
• Residential Housing Communication Committee
• Scholarships Leveraged for Enrollment Goals Committee
• Student Club Advisor Certification by College Media Association
• WETD-FM Student Club Advisor
• WNY Pipeline, Consortium of Colleges Committee
Leading with Emotional Intelligence - EQ Professional Certificate
American Management Association, Chicago, IL
• Utilize emotional intelligence consciously regarding oneself and others.
• Integrate empathy to promote strong relationships and achieve team results.
• Recognize emotional responses during negotiation, teamwork, and coaching.
• Apply collaborative, inclusive, influential, and creative communication.
• Achieved high scores through 360-degree assessments.
Individual Qualification - Digital Analytics Certificate
Google Analytics Academy
• Digital marketing analysis to measure audience, acquisition, behavior, and conversions.
• Skills include planning, data collection, administration, reports, and metrics.
Resilient Change Leader - Professional Certificate
SUNY SAIL Institute for Strategic, Academic, and Innovative Leadership
Insights to envision, align, and execute change efforts.
• Envision, align, and execute change efforts.
• Navigate challenges in higher education.
• Identify opportunities for a stronger SUNY.
• Engage students successfully.
• Use inclusive leadership for stronger teams.
Self-Study Institute for Accreditation
Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)
• Serve as chair for planning, resources, and institutional improvement.
• Perform an in-depth self-study to achieve accreditation.
• Set strategic priorities as a catalyst for innovation.
• Demonstrate compliance through assessment.
• Identify and present data for evidence inventories.