It is entirely possible for me to listen to a conversation, have an idea, and share an insight almost simultaneously. I think they call that multitasking. I help my clients by focusing on connections… how they reach their audiences, how their audiences reach them, how my teams and I can facilitate those interactions. I’ve helped my clients grow and sell companies, acquire firms, improve valuation / stock price, gain market share, manage crises, perfect presentation skills, launch products and the list goes on.
When I’m not working directly with clients, I’m growing Castle — developing partnerships, identifying marketing opportunities and building new client relationships. And when I’m not doing that, I’m out in the marketplace, representing Castle and our clients through our dedication to the community.
PR is all about third-party credibility — so I must share some of our own accolades. We recently won the March of Dimes Franklin Delano Roosevelt Humanitarian Award. I’ve been honored with the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce Pinnacle Award for Entrepreneurship, the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council Business Enterprise Star Award and the Center for Women and Enterprise Rising Star Award. I was also named a Boston Business journal “40 under 40″ (although I would no longer be eligible!). I’ve had the privilege of speaking for groups including the Boston Business Journal, Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce, and Center for Women and Enterprise, many higher education institutions and PR industry organizations.
I serve on the boards of The Center for Women and Enterprise, March of Dimes and the Chief Executives Club of Boston. I’m especially proud to be state board chair for the March of Dimes and most recently was named to its national Volunteer Leadership Council. I also currently chair the WGBH Corporate Executive Council, serve on the Women’s Advisory Network and the Board of Directors of the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce and am a member of the Massachusetts Women’s Forum. I’m on the executive committee of the Public Relations Global Network—interacting almost daily with my “sister” (and “brother”) agency principals in every major media market to develop world-class relationships for our clients and teams.
When I’m not doing that? You might find me with my husband, rooting on my son or daughter at a hockey rink or lacrosse field, or walking my Wheaten Terrier. My favorite place to be is the beach — any beach with a great book and great company. What else do you want to know? Before Wendy and I founded Castle in 1996, I held in-house marketing positions at KPMG, Lesley University and the Massachusetts Bar Association, and was an executive at IQ & J, a premier Boston agency. I’ve worked on everything from pita chips to online travel to medical imaging to student lending. I grew up in Brookline, Mass. and am a proud alumna of UMass Amherst. Let me know if you have any questions.
Wendy Spivak Principal/Founder
I can’t help myself — every time I go to someone else’s event, I find myself thinking about what I would change. How could I make it flow better, what technology would work better, how might the speaker be more impactful, how else could I convey the message? No detail is too small. I bring that same critical eye to Castle’s events team…well before an event begins. While I start working with my clients at a high level — the 50,000-foot view — to determine program or event goals and content, I can also get my hands dirty. Really dirty. I’ve been under the streets of NYC supervising cable workers to ensure the technology worked at an event; in hotel kitchens supervising plating of food; up all night redirecting transportation plans because of a weather emergency. I always have a Plan B. My clients usually don’t know what goes on behind the scenes to make their event a smashing success, but that’s not important. They know and appreciate the results.
When I am not overseeing an event somewhere around the world (I have managed events on almost every continent), I’m often in my office, surrounded by project management plans and ensuring our events proceed as smoothly as possible. With decades of experience in events and marketing, I manage my teams to deliver the same level of quality and service that is my hallmark. I also manage Castle’s operations, making sure that our financial, HR and technology needs are well met.
Part of Castle’s culture is giving back to the community. I’m passionate about the boards I serve on and the organizations we support. It’s truly my privilege to use my professional skills to help them achieve their goals.
Keri McIntosh, CMPSenior Vice President
I have often said that I am willing to go to the ends of the earth for our clients… literally! I have produced events all over the world — from Barcelona to Hawaii, Key West to San Francisco, Cape Cod to the Caribbean. I lead a super creative team of event professionals armed with the task of helping our clients launch new products, plan unique incentive programs, manage large user group conferences and create special events that make an impact.
My role as a 16-year veteran of Castle is to provide our clients with expert event counsel on everything from strategic planning, project management, budget projections, logistics, site selection and contract negotiations. I particularly excel at understanding a program’s needs and seeing “the big picture” – including the meeting space required, the flow of a program and determining which property is the best fit for the client—and for the attendee experience. I am deeply involved in new business development to ensure that potential clients have a solid understanding of Castle’s values, skill set and how we can work together to create value-added programs.
My favorite part of planning an event is seeing it come to life—starting with the initial concept and then stepping back afterwards to say, “Wow!” My tools of the trade include developing a keen understanding of client goals, being willing to change gears at a moment’s notice, employing creative problem solving, keeping a sense of humor—and owning a good pair of comfortable shoes (i.e. “my event slippers”) since we always hit the ground running!
I have been the project lead for most of Castle’s high profile, large-scale events including: AMICAS, Harvard Medical School, Sanofi Genzyme, Microsoft Corporation, MIT, Ocean Spray, Pegasystems and Symantec Corporation.
I hold a dual undergraduate degree in Hospitality Administration and Marketing and an MBA in International Marketing. I am also a Certified Meeting Professional. Outside of work, I enjoy living the island life in Jamestown, Rhode Island and teaching and practicing yoga.
Hilary AllardExecutive Vice President
While my career was founded in consumer PR, working with brand names in CPG, housewares and hospitality, I broadened my horizons at Castle, working with startup and corporate clients in professional and financial services, consumer tech, nonprofit and real estate — to name a few. After 10 years with Castle, I’m amazed at how much the world of marketing has evolved. With the ever-growing field of social media channels and digital tools available, it’s an exciting time.
It’s been said that I’m the calm in the eye of the storm. My approach is to weather the storm by having all the necessary “supplies” at the ready. I excel at staying calm in the fray, while keeping my sense of humor… I’m a great listener. I focus on what is being said — and unsaid. I decipher where things stand at any given moment and then design a path to move to where we want to be. There’s nothing more gratifying to me than to help clients define their objectives, set strategies and create road maps that yield business results.
Yes, I’m a strategist at heart. I have an aptitude for breaking down complex ideas into simple, executable action plans. My mind is always working on ways to tie your message back to your strategic goals. Whether I’m working on your media relations, content creation, social media, executive visibility or crisis management, I employ tried-and-true models as well as fresh new concepts.
As executive vice president, I’m also responsible for promoting Castle. I serve on Castle’s website and 20th anniversary steering committees — constantly searching for creative ways to amplify our story using social and digital channels. I also represent Castle at professional organizations by attending events, serving on committees or speaking. I serve on the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce’s Women’s Network Advisory Board and, for three years, served on its Small Business of the Year Award committee.
I earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. No surprise here– I’m a news junkie. I’m relentlessly reading, watching or listening to the news — online and off. I’m always looking for the next new idea or angle. When I can pull myself away from work — and the news — I enjoy spending time with my family and friends, cooking and movies.
Deborah SpencerVice President, Events & Marketing
What’s your point? You have about two seconds to capture your audience’s attention. Do your marketing materials or event goals do the job?
I am a seasoned marketing strategist and events management professional with more than 30 years of professional experience. Whether I’m planning an event or implementing a new marketing strategy, I am consistently looking for ways to accelerate processes and improve efficiencies — ensuring that more time can be dedicated to creativity, keeping ahead of the curve and exceeding customer expectations.
I take creativity seriously! One of my greatest assets is the ability to extract the essence of your message and reflect it out to the world. I’ve built my career on helping people find creative ways to tell their unique story. I have the creative and technical know-how, the intuition and the drive to help you succeed. There is nothing more exhilarating for me than to nail it — for you.
As Castle’s Vice President, Events and Marketing, I am responsible for planning and managing high profile events, building complex event registration websites and systems, implementing marketing plans and creating solutions for Castle and its clients. During my 16-year tenure, I have exceled at developing fully integrated marketing communications plans, project timelines, full-blown branding campaigns, marketing collateral, direct mail, publications, presentations, signage plans, website content, online registration systems, email marketing, advertising, list management — and more.
I have also led many of Castle’s high profile events projects for clients including Google, Ocean Spray, Fidelity Ventures, Fidelity Center for Applied Technologies’ TEDxBoston, Salus Capital Partners, MIT, ISO New England & New York ISO, Ruderman Family Foundation, Pegasystems, Inc., Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, The Boston Harbor Association, Covestor, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, Biogen Idec, Dunkin’ Brands and Harvard Medical School.
Way back when, I studied Business Administration at Salem State College as well as Marketing Communications and Public Relations at the University of California. What do I do in my “spare” time? I make it a priority to spend quality time connecting with my family and friends. I also enjoy exploring the Boston restaurant scene, cooking, yoga and crossword puzzles. My latest obsession is building websites for friends.
Philip T. HausermanVice President
What is the plan? My family groans when I ask that question, mostly because it’s not just one question I’m asking. They know there are a million follow-ups coming, almost all of which start with the familiar refrain of “What if…”
Maybe this is why our kids practically need snorkels just to breathe in the backseat when we go on road trips. It’s not because we drive across the country or because we have a small car, it’s because I pack, re-pack, and ultimately over pack to make sure we are prepared for as many different situations as possible.
This same thinking guides my approach to communications strategy. Taking the time to think through and plan for all the possibilities – including the dreaded worst case scenario – allows me to help clients see that a “crisis,” if planned for in advance,is nothing more than a minor disruption that requires careful management. I’ve utilized these same tactics to lead communications programs and critical events for major corporations, educational institutions, and professional service firms across the United States. While I’m certainly no stranger to high-profile situations – discrimination in its many forms, wrongful termination, workplace violence, sexual assault, and executive misconduct,to name a few – I’ve found that even the smallest blip on the radar can escalate surprisingly fast if there isn’t a plan for delivering concise, consistent, and timely communication to the audiences that matter most.
Crisis or not, a good communicator knows how to connect people and create opportunities, two things that I enjoy doing on a daily basis. Whether I’m in the office, at a networking event, or out in the Atlanta community, I’m always thinking about ways to bring value to others. Then again, that may also just be the helpful Southerner in me.
Speaking of the South, I graduated from Presbyterian College in Clinton, South Carolina, with a bachelor’s degree in English and a minor in business administration. Along the way I also managed to collect the single-season hit-by-pitch record (23) while playing baseball for the Blue Hose (yes, you read that right).
When I’m not working you’ll find me outdoors with my wife, Ashley, and our two children, Emma and Henry. I’m a fan of baseball, good books, and home-cooked meals. I’m also a four-time Ironman finisher. My best ideas almost always come to me while I’m swimming, biking, or running.
Carole McFallVice President
If you grew up at my house, there was one rule that no one broke: The family gathers every evening for dinner—no matter what, no excuses. More often than not, friends and extended family were at the dinner table, too. I learned early on that sharing experiences, humor, ideas and opinions unite us in a powerful way. The spark was lit for me at a very young age. A career in communications was my destiny.
My professional experience has spanned the realms of science, entertainment, and higher education. No matter what industry I’ve worked in, my approach to creating a communications plan is strategic and collaborative, whether launching a new program, raising visibility, or handling a crisis.
Prior to joining the Castle team, I led internal and external communications for Emerson College, where I worked with colleagues campus-wide to present unified messages across the college’s distribution channels. Earlier in my career, I planned and executed national and regional media relations campaigns at the Museum of Science, Boston for nearly 10 years. This job made me the “coolest” aunt in the family. My nieces and nephews couldn’t believe that I went to work every day among dinosaurs, mind-blowing exhibits—and the best gift shop, ever. After the Museum, I combined my deep appreciation for science with my longtime love for television, developing marketing and media relations campaigns for national public television programs NOVA and NOVA science NOW.
The communications field has changed a lot over the years, with more opportunities to be strategic and creative in how news is shared. The core elements of an effective communications plan are the same, however—building relationships and great storytelling.
It comes back to those dinnertime conversations and connecting with people over our shared human experience. Today, working with a variety of clients, and helping to tell their stories alongside a team of passionate, professional communicators at Castle—is the icing on the cake.
As for education and what I do in my free time: I have a Bachelor’s in Communications from Northeastern. I enjoy cooking/entertaining, gardening, going to the ballet, tennis, skiing (but not the cold weather), and reading a great book (suggested reads are welcome!).