Katie Wagner, President
Katie spent more than 15 years as a journalist. After graduating Magna Cum Laude from Boston University with a B.S. in Broadcast Journalism and a B.A. in International Relations, she began her career as an investigative reporter, and then spent a decade as a television and radio news anchor. Katie has worked at CBS, ABC, Fox, CNN and National Public Radio. In addition, she has appeared on dozens of commercials, educational videos and websites. She has hosted her own talk show, had columns published in major newspapers and blogs, and is a popular public speaker.
In 2010, Katie realized that she could use the skills she learned in the newsroom to help business owners connect with their clients online. She opened KWSM to help companies and organizations tell their story, building the agency with journalists, whom she knew understood how to establish a relationship with their audience and convey information in an engaging and educational way.
Katie is a proud member of Vistage, Provisors and the Young Entrepreneur Council. She has served as a member of the Advisory Board for Web Wise Kids, a non-profit focused on keeping kids safe on the internet and social media. In 2012, she was honored with the organization's 'Champion for Children Award.' Over the years she has served as an Entrepreneur in Residence at Chapman University's Leatherby Center for Entrepreneurship and Business Ethics, a Mentor for Chapman's MBA Program, and a guest lecturer for Chapman, California Southern University and California State University, Fullerton.
Katie is also a certified first responder with the American Humane Association (She was one of the first rescuers allowed into New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina) and has worked and volunteered in dozens of animal shelters across the country. In her free time, you can find her hiking with her 5 rescue dogs, or at the barn with her horse.
Stephen Wagner, VP of Operations & Finance
Stephen has a finance background and an entrepreneurial heart.
With a degree in Finance from Oregon State University, Stephen has worked in Finance & Operations Management at two Fortune 100 companies. In addition, he spent 5 years as a small business consultant, working with clients in the real estate, food & beverage, retail, and finance industries. Though involved from the beginning, he joined the KWSM Team full-time in 2011.
As an entrepreneur himself, Stephen identifies with the challenges of starting a business and trying to ‘get it all done’ with limited resources. He loves showing our clients how they can level the playing field with an engaging social media presence.
Stephen is well-trained in Search Engine Optimization, and works with our clients to make sure they are getting the most SEO benefit from the work we do. A blogger and social media enthusiast, Stephen holds Yelp Elite status. He brings business savvy to the world of social media, and is looking forward to helping your business build social media channels that further your goals.
Away from the office, Stephen plays the bass and makes his own wine. The third vintage of ‘Wagner Estates’ (a Syrah) will be released this Christmas.
Jeff Soto, VP of Strategy & Client Relations
Jeff is an effective storyteller with a history of creating engaging, results-driven campaigns for his clients. He loves digital marketing because of the power social media has to connect with consumers.
Jeff graduated from the University of California Irvine with a degree in English.
He worked for 15+ years in TV news in the Los Angeles market as an Assignment Editor, Writer, Producer and Executive Producer and is the winner of numerous Emmy and Golden Mike awards for his newscasts, breaking news and special event coverage.
After transitioning to digital marketing nearly 10 years ago, Jeff gained experience in Content Marketing, Social Media, Community Management and Public Relations, both in agency and in-house roles. He has helped launch PR and marketing strategies for companies in a variety of industries, including medical, beauty, travel, hospitality, food and beverage, consumer products, transportation, shipping, supply chain and logistics.
Jeff’s experience managing a newsroom serves him well as the leader of KWSM’s Content Team, which is made up of journalists. His previous roles in digital marketing have prepared him for guiding successful campaigns for our clients. He joined the KWSM Team in 2016.
An Orange County native, Jeff is married with three children. He is a History buff and a Foodie who enjoys golf, traveling and reading. Even in his free time, you can usually find him on Twitter.
Taylor Lizura, Senior Digital Marketing Strategist
Manager, Content, Advertising & Training
Taylor is an experienced digital marketer with a background in public relations and social media for small businesses and professionals. She is a passionate storyteller who gets excited about learning the language of the brands she works with.
Taylor holds a degree in Public Relations from Northern Arizona University, with a minor in Electronic Media and Film. She joined the KWSM Team in 2016.
When she’s not in the office, Taylor loves film and television and is our resident pop culture expert. She also enjoys finding new restaurants, and hanging out with her puppy, Brett Favre.
Jessica Brown, Digital Marketing Strategist
Jessica has extensive experience in digital and influencer marketing, as well as traditional and experiential marketing. She has held both agency and in-house marketing roles, and has working primarily in the hospitality, entertainment and food & beverage industries.
Jessica is originally from St. Louis, and received a Journalism degree from the University of Missouri with an emphasis in Strategic Communications and Public Relations. She also earned minors in Business and Spanish.
Outside of work, Jessica is an avid animal lover, fitness fanatic, foodie, music junkie and travel enthusiast (when time allows).
Jessica Bramall, Digital Marketing Strategist & Copywriter
Jessica is a passionate writer and storyteller who feels most comfortable expressing herself and her creativity on the page (or screen!). She has extensive experience in copywriting and editing and has worked in public relations and publishing. Jessica also spent time as a middle school English teacher.
Jessica graduated from Wake Forest University with a degree in English and a minor in Journalism. She also holds a master's degree in Education from Vanguard University. While at Wake Forest, she played collegiate soccer and continues to coach and mentor young soccer players with her husband, whom she met in college.
In her free time, you can find Jessica cuddling her Pugs, Jaxon and Olive, trying new restaurants and going to the movies. The way to her heart is popcorn and nachos.
Meredith Ashburn, Digital Marketing Strategist
Meredith is a curious marketer who loves learning about brands and people. She is fascinated by consumer behavior and what will stop a person from scrolling. Her favorite part of working in digital marketing is the challenge of being able to empathize and deeply understand each client's passion and mission, and create engaging content from that place.
Meredith graduated with a degree in Marketing from the University of Georgia. She comes to KWSM from another digital marketing agency in Athens, GA, and moved to Atlanta to join the KWSM Team.
Passionate about writing for as long as she can remember, Meredith has written short stories, poems, and songs since she was a kid. She had a personal blog for it in college, and is considering reviving it.
In her free time, you can find Meredith playing guitar, writing a new poem, crushing it at the gym, or hanging out with friends. She loves taking spontaneous weekend trips, animals (especially koalas, corgis, and baby raccoons), shopping, skincare, and gazing at beautiful outdoor scenery with a cup of *decaf* coffee.
Brianna Zambrano, Digital Marketing Strategist
Brianna is versatile digital marketer with experience in social media, public relations, copywriting and SEO. She has worked in the hospitality, non-profit and small business industries. Her favorite part of working in marketing is the balance between responding to customer needs and maintaining the identity of the brand.
Brianna holds a degree in Journalism and Media Studies from the University of Nevada – Las Vegas. She grew up in Las Vegas and loves the city.
When not at the office, she enjoys hiking and playing games with her husband, spending time with her son and two dogs, going to gym and practicing aerial lyra and silks.
Dalia Grelin, Junior Digital Marketing Specialist
Dalia owned a small business in the tourism and hospitality industry before joining the KWSM Team. She has a background in sales and marketing, largely in the retail and events industries.
Dalia graduated from the University of Nevada - Las Vegas with a degree in Marketing. She also holds Google ads certifications in the Display, Search, Video and Shopping categories.
Dalia loves Disneyland, Netflix and coffee. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her husband and her cat, and studying French culture.
Erika Fernandes, Junior Digital Marketing Specialist
Erika has a background in digital marketing, social media and public relations. Prior to joining the KWSM team, she worked in hospitality, food & wine, and entertainment. Her favorite parts of her job are creating social media content and helping her clients build relationships with their customers online.
Erika graduated from Chapman University with a BA in Strategic and Corporate Communication and a minor in English.
Outside of work, Erika loves to travel, cook, write, hike and spend time outdoors. She enjoys the quiet moments when she can curl up with a good book or watch a thriller.
Enes Ozekin, Content Creator
Enes has a passion for analytics and designing sales and lead generation systems that get results for his clients. He has more than 5 years of experience in digital media buying and management experience, and has worked in both in-house and agency roles. He has helped design digital marketing strategies for clients like Roku, US Olympic Figure Skating, Cirque Du Soleil and HBO.
Enes was born and raised in Colorado, and is the son of Turkish immigrants. He has a degree in Business from Colorado State University, with concentrations in Marketing and Organization & Innovation Management, and certificates in International Business, Entrepreneurship and Human Resource Management. He also holds a Graduate Certificate in Marketing Strategy from Cornell University and a Master's in Communication and Graduate Certificate in Strategic Communication Management from Purdue University.
Enes is fluent in Turkish, Proficient in Spanish, and can read Arabic. He has traveled to 40 countries and is a Certified First Responder, Wildland Firefighter and Swiftwater & Open Water Technical Rescue Diver. When not at the office, he loves backpacking and camping, and trying new foods.
Samantha Dobson, Content Creator
Samantha is an accomplished writer and blogger who has been featured on several online publications and is a contributing writer for a national lifestyle print publication.
She earned her degree in English from Cal State Fullerton, and graduated Cum Laude.
Before joining the KWSM Team, Sam worked in management and marketing in a small business environment, and she understands the importance of a strong online presence for companies trying to attract and build relationships with new customers.
Sam is passionate about animals and volunteers for a dog rescue in her free time. She also participates in a book club and enjoys hanging out with her husband and their three rescue dogs.
Julia Chanterrwyn, Web Designer & Copywriter
Julia is a versatile creative skilled in graphic design, web design, photography, and copywriting. She is a member of both our content and web departments and understands how each discipline lends itself to telling the whole story for our clients.
Julia grew up in Detroit and received her BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago with a focus in Photography and Visual Communication. In 2012, she made her way to San Diego after two years teaching English in South Korea.
In her free time, Julia loves reading and going for rambling neighborhood walks with her husband, two-year-old son, and five-year-old Schnoodle named Fritz.
Angie Smith, Senior Web Designer
Angie has always enjoyed drawing and painting, and has won awards for her work. In college she discovered her love for graphic design, and translated that passion into website design.
Angie grew up in rural Wisconsin and has a degree in Graphic Design from the University of Wisconsin Eau Claire, with a minor in Web Design and specialized training in photography and printmaking. She moved to Southern California and joined the KWSM Team in 2016.
An accomplished designer, Angie has held both agency and in-house roles, working on projects that included website and mobile app design, brand development, packaging design, online marketing and creation of printed materials.
In her free time, Angie enjoys exploring California, spending time at the beach and finding new places to hike with her husband and two daughters.
Madeleine Hagan, Web Designer
Madeleine is a talented marketer whose love for the written word turned into a love for visual storytelling and communication, particularly graphic design and website design. She enjoys the creativity involved in creating designs that are clean and modern.
After growing up just north of Atlanta, Madeleine lived overseas for three years. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Creative and Media Writing from the University of Portsmouth (England).
When she’s not working, Madeleine is often found in local coffee shops working on a novel or writing for her blog. She reads a lot (about dragons preferably) and likes collecting stamps in her passport.
Billy Bates, Web Designer
Billy is a designer and front end developer who loves creating all forms of digital media, from video to websites. He began his digital career in 2011 by designing websites for small businesses. He taught himself to code by taking online classes and constantly pushing himself to learn more.
Billy now has extensive development experience, including a stint as a Creative Developer at Google where he worked in video editing, motion graphics, design and coding. At KWSM, he works in both our web and video departments, and loves that his job combines both his creative and intellectual sides.
Billy grew up in San Francisco, and recently moved to Orange County. When not at the office, he can frequently be found in the studio. He’s an accomplished musician who recently released a record – on vinyl!
Tiffany Lundberg, Video Producer & Content Editor
Tiffany spent a decade as a TV producer, reporter and anchor, before joining the KWSM Team. She won 2 Emmys and an Illinois Broadcasters Association Award for her work. Today, she is a detail-oriented brand journalist who loves to create engaging content.
Tiffany graduated from Cal State Fullerton with a degree in Communications and and emphasis in Broadcast Journalism. Her career took her to Wyoming, Texas, New York, Iowa and Illinois before returning home to Orange County.
Tiffany’s favorite part of her role at KWSM is also what she loved most about the news industry – meeting new people and sharing their unique stories. Outside of work, she enjoys hanging out with her husband Patrick and dog Meatball, trying new restaurants, and riding bikes on the beach.
Andrew Worley, Videographer
Andrew is a versatile creative with more than 7 years of experience in filmmaking, wedding and fashion photography, print and graphic design. He has created videos and photos for hundreds of businesses and organizations and loves producing creative corporate content.
Andrew attended the Art Institute of Orange County and studied Opera at a Music Conservatory. He is passionate about all types of music, art and design.
Andrew is married to his high school sweetheart. Outside of work, you can frequently find him in a coffee bar. He loves traveling and is 100% obsessed with HGTV.
Janae Raphael, Public Relations
Janae is a dedicated Public Relations professional specializing in the health and beauty industry. For more than a decade she has worked closely with distributors, manufacturers, salons, retail stores and beauty professionals, helping to build brands and garner media attention. Janae excels at helping clients reach consumers and inspire them to act.
Janae holds a degree in Chemistry with a minor in Public Relations from Chapman University. She earned her M.A. in Strategic Public Relations from USC.
Skilled at producing and executing innovative PR plans that generate results, Janae has worked with many established beauty brands, but is equally excited about helping to launch new brands and set them up for success.
In her free time, Janae makes jewelry, and enjoys cooking, traveling and spending time with her husband and two daughters.
Jules Wagner, Support Staff
Ella Jules Wagner is an 14 year old Staffordshire Bull Terrier who has been part of the KWSM Team since the company was founded in 2010.
Jules was adopted in 2007 from the Greenhill Humane Society, where Katie served as the Marketing & Development Director. They met during the shooting of a ‘News Anchors with Adoptable Pets’ fundraising calendar.
Jules brings extensive experience in cuddling, humorous antics, and providing stress relief. When not on the job, you can find her curled up on the couch, or wrestling with her brother, Louie. (Who is not allowed at the office due to being a good dog who makes very bad choices.)
You can connect with Jules on her Instagram account: @SocialBullJules
Natalie Schleicher, Executive Assistant
Natalie brings extensive experience in management and customer service to her role at KWSM, having worked in the banking and food & beverage industries before joining the KWSM Team in 2015.
Natalie graduated Cum Laude from San Diego State University with a degree in Multimedia and a minor in Television & Film. She has studied illustration, graphic design, video editing and script writing.
In her free time, Natalie likes drawing, reading, watching movies and keeping up with her favorite TV shows. She doesn’t claim to be a great chef, but enjoys eating the work of others.
Bethany Gustavsen, Copywriter
Bethany has been a professional writer for more than a decade, but her love of words started long before that. As a child, when she was given a blank canvas and paintbrush, she would paint words - telling stories instead of drawing pictures.
Bethany began her career as a senior staff writer and editor in the Governor of Hawaii’s Office of Information. Since then, she has worked as a copywriter and marketer for clients in the auto, travel, sports, video game and food & beverage industries.
In addition to writing and editing, Bethany has experience in event marketing, and spent time launching event marketing campaigns with an agency in LA. She joined the KWSM Team in 2014.
Bethany graduated Magna Cum Laude from Hawaii Pacific University. She has a degree in Communications with a concentration in Public Relations.