The Ohio Valley Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Science is led by a regional board of governors. Our Chapter and Emmy® Awards Administrator helps to manage the day-to-day activities of the chapter.
As leaders in the television industry, the Ohio Valley Chapter’s elected governors represent markets throughout the region. Governors are elected for two-year terms by the chapter’s membership. If you are interested in serving on the Board of Governors to shape and guide the direction of the Ohio Valley Chapter, please contact David Brinkley at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Board of Governors & Staff
David Brinkley – President
WKYU-TV, Bowling Green, Kentucky
David Brinkley has been involved with television and video production for the past twenty years and has been in Bowling Green, KY since 1995. He worked as a videographer and field producer at KET for five years before joining the staff at WKYU-PBS on the campus of Western Kentucky University.
He currently serves as the Production Manager at WKYU and is responsible for the station¹s magazine program “MainStreet”. He also manages the Hilltopper Sports Satellite Network, producing coaches shows and game broadcasts for WKU Football and Men¹s/Women¹s Basketball. David has done free-lance crane and camera work for ESPN for the majority of his career.
In 2010, he led the effort to open the first all-LED lit television studio in the Ohio Valley Region and the second nationally. The effort has reduced lighting power consumption by 97%.
David, originally from Somerset, Kentucky, graduated from the University of Kentucky with a Bachelor of Science degree. He is an adjunct faculty member at Western Kentucky University and teaches Electronic Field Production, Directing for Television and Remote Sports Production. He has four regional Emmy® Awards to his credit.
Aaron Ellis – Governor, Secretary
WAVE-TV, Louisville, Kentucky
I must be crazy if I work in news and I have done it for a while now. My name is Aaron Ellis and I am the Night Assignment Editor for WAVE 3 News in Louisville, Kentucky. I have worked in news all my life because I am no good in science and math so telling stories on people became something I got good at. I started working as a news photographer and have done most of the jobs at the station minus being on air. They say I am too pretty so that is why I am not on TV.
I enjoy Kentucky Bourbon, Kentucky Horses, Kentucky Basketball and really anything that says Kentucky. Yes I am a nerd, but I enjoy what I do. I am an Emmy® Award Nominee and Winner and hold awards from SPJ and the Associated Press.
Jim Timmerman – National Trustee
Central Satellite Services, Cincinnati, Ohio
Jim Timmerman is a freelance Producer/Director and Operations Manager for Central Satellite Services, a mobile uplink truck company. Jim worked at WCPO for 23 years, starting as a studio camera operator, then Director then Program Manager. Jim graduated from BGSU many years ago with a RTVF degree. While there he worked at WBGU-TV. Prior to that he was employed at WLIO-TV in Lima. Jim is also a guest lecturer at various Cincinnati universities. Jim is a long-time member of NATAS and has served on the board in one capacity or another for 20+ years.
Michael Rodriguez – National Trustee
WOUB Center for Public Media, Athens, Ohio
Michael Rodriguez has proudly served in public broadcasting for over 15 years. Since 2000, Michael has been a part of the WOUB Center for Public Media team at Ohio University. As Director of Production Services and Student Development, he leads a team of very skilled multimedia production professionals. He also is the point person for more than 250 students who arrive at WOUB each year seeking practical, hands on experience in support of their academic classes. Michael enjoys engaging and challenging students at every level.
Michael has directed, produced, written, and participated in just about every form of video production native to public broadcasting. One of his favorite assignments is being facilitator/Executive Producer for the multiple award-winning Gridiron Glory. He is proud of the many alumni that have moved on to high profile industry jobs.
Originally from the desert southwest, Michael currently resides in Athens, Ohio, nestled in the scenic Appalachian Mountains. He holds a Masters of Public Administration degree from Ohio University and a Bachelors degree from New Mexico State University. Michael is active in community service events around the region and highly values his time as a parent to three children.
Cherie Housley – Chapter and Emmy® Awards Administrator; Alternate Trustee
Panoramic Productions, Dayton, Ohio
Cherie Housley is the owner of Panoramic Productions which produces a variety of videos from broadcast commercials to corporate marketing pieces to internal training videos. She also works as a producer/director/editor for projects with ThinkTV, the Dayton PBS affiliate. Prior to starting Panoramic Productions in 1991, Cherie was a promotions producer at WRGT-TV, the Fox affiliate in Dayton, Ohio and spent a couple of years as the head of the television department at the International College of Broadcasting revising the curriculum to meet the demands of the changing industry. She started her career at WOUB-TV in Athens, Ohio while still in college, and was fortunate enough to be one of the original staff hires when WDZL-TV was preparing to sign-on-the-air in Miami/Ft. Lauderdale in 1982.
Cherie has served on the Ohio Valley Chapter’s Board of Governors in various capacities since 1986. She was the Emmy® Awards Chairman from 1989-2000, Chapter President from 2000-2004 and National Trustee from 2004-2008. Currently, Cherie serves as the Chapter and Emmy® Awards Administrator. In addition, she has been actively involved in her community serving over the years as the president of the Heights Community Theater and as a Board member for the Huber Heights Chamber of Commerce.
Cherie graduated summa cum laude from Ohio University in 1982 and is the proud recipient of several awards including a Silver Medallion from the International Film and TV Festival of New York, a local Telly Award and 4 Regional Emmy® Awards.
Leslie Blackstone Favors – Student Activities Co-Chair
The Money Club, Columbus, Ohio
Leslie Blackston-Favors is a former business owner and the creator of The Money Clubhouse, which since 2007 has produced after-school programs that teach low-income Ohio youth to manage money wisely and achieve life goals. She has served actively on state and regional boards devoted to increasing youth financial literacy, including the Ohio Treasurer of State’s Personal Finance Commission, and as Ohio Coalition President for the Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy based in Washington, DC. Leslie holds a B.A. in Communication from The Ohio State University, and often puts her business skills to work producing special events for Columbus-area nonprofits. She enjoys travel that requires a passport, wearing vintage clothes from the 1950s, and creating delicious meals for non-vegan friends. Working as production manager on video and short indie film productions is another favorite pastime. Winning a regional Emmy® Award is now on her bucket list.
Robert Busby – Governor
WLWT-TV, Cincinnati, Ohio
For the past 32 years, Robert has been employed as a news photojournalist for WLWT-TV. He has received 12 Regional Emmy Award nominations and has won four of the golden statues. He is the recipient of numerous other journalistic awards including the Ohio News Photographers Association, the Society For Professional Journalists, and the Ohio Associated Press. He was the first winner of the Max Karant Award for Excellence in Aviation Journalism. Robert has mentored numerous young people who are interested in television journalism; taught media courses to various community groups, including churches and other non-profits; volunteered as videographer for his church; official webmaster and videographer for not for profit UCanSpeakForMe; videographer and producer for Honoring the Lions program for the Urban League of Greater Cincinnati; graduate of the African American Leadership Develop Program (Class 5) of the Urban League of Greater Cincinnati; served on numerous panel discussions about the impact of the media providing insight into how the media works He enjoys photography, listening to music, spending time with my four grandsons and my family.
Ben Carpenter – Governor
Kettering Health, Dayton, Ohio
Ben Carpenter started his career 12 years ago at KION in Central California as a news producer for the evening news blocks. In 2008, Ben transitioned to Los Angeles where he founded ACF Productions, a nationally award winning and Emmy nominated production company, focusing on commercial production for hospitals and other businesses. His company produced commercials for Mercedes, Amazon, California Lotto, Softsoap, and Iams. In 2013, he moved to Dayton, OH where he currently works as the Visual Manager for Kettering Health Network overseeing all commercial, video, and photography production. Since joining the healthcare network, Ben continues to bring his experience and knowledge to produce national quality content. With an MBA from Ohio University, Ben partners with several non-profits each year to travel with and produce marketing, educational, and fundraising videos. He has traveled to Nigeria, India, Nepal, Malawi, Honduras, Kenya, and China.
Gilbert Corsey – Governor
WDRB-TV, Louisville, Kentucky
Gilbert Corsey joined the WDRB news team in January 2011, as the co-anchor of News at 4. It is the latest stop in a broadcasting career that has taken him across the country.
Gilbert started reporting in Abilene, Texas at KTXS-TV and specialized in education stories. This work earned top honors from the Texas chapter of the Associated Press. He then moved to Eastern North Carolina and added anchoring news and sports to his resume along with producing his own shows.
Just prior to joining WDRB, Gilbert served as the weekend anchor at a FOX and ABC affiliate in Charleston, West Virginia. He graduated from the Edward R. Murrow School of Communication at Washington State University and remains a diehard Cougar fan.
Nancy Cox – Governor
WLEX-TV, Lexington, Kentucky
Nancy Cox is a three time Emmy Award winning anchor and reporter. She is also a regional Edward R. Murrow Award winner, and has been named “Best News Anchor in Kentucky” by the Associated Press multiple times.
She’s a native of Taylor County, Kentucky, and a Summa Cum Laude graduate of Western Kentucky University. After serving a year as Miss Kentucky and competing in the Miss America pageant, she feels blessed to have been able to spend her entire career in the home state she loves. Nancy is in her twenty-third year at WLEX-TV in Lexington, and currently anchors the station’s five evening newscasts. Some of the most memorable assignments have been the first inauguration of President Barack Obama, a one-on-one sit down interview with Hillary Clinton in the final weeks of her campaign for President, and fourteen Kentucky Derbies.
Susan Dinkel – Indiana VP
WTHI-TV, Terre Haute, Indiana
Susan Dinkel is News Director and 5 p.m. Anchor for WTHI-TV 10 and MyFOX10 in Terre Haute, Ind. She joined the WTHI team in 1995 after graduating from DePauw University.
In 2012, Susan accepted the Special Achievement: Station Excellence Emmy for WTHI-TV 10. This prestigious honor was presented by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences’ Ohio Valley Chapter. In 2008, she and Chief Photojournalist Mike Latta earned the station’s first Emmy for a Feature News Report-Series called “New Day, New Way.”
Susan’s earned several Midwestern Regional Emmy nominations. Her work has also been recognized by the Associated Press, Society of Professional Journalists, Indiana Broadcasters Association and the Indiana State Teachers Association.
Susan was born and raised in Terre Haute, where she resides with her husband and two daughters. She is very active in her community. Susan believes in giving back to her profession. She serves on the Board of Governors for the Ohio Valley Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences as the Indiana Vice President. She also serves on the Board for the Indiana Associated Press.
Sean Dunster – Governor
WHIO-TV, Dayton, Ohio
Sean has been at WHIO-TV since 2012 when he started as the News Technology Manager. He is currently the New Director. Prior to WHIO he was the Assistant News Director then News Director of KTVM/NBC Montana. Sean worked at WCPO-TV in Cincinnati from 1988 to 2010 serving as Sports Videographer, Special Projects Producer and Executive Producer of Special Projects. He has numerous Emmy Award nominations and is a two time Emmy recipient.
Maria Durant – Columbus VP
WSYX-TV, Columbus, Ohio
Maria Durant is a 4 time Emmy® Award Winning Reporter for ABC 6 and Fox 28 News. She has also received numerous Associated Press Awards and has been honored with several awards from the Society of Professional Services.
A graduate of The Ohio State University with a degree in Broadcast Journalism and Political Science, little did Maria know she would someday become a news story herself. In 2006 Maria was diagnosed with Breast Cancer. But instead of hiding her diagnosis, Maria decided to share her story in hopes of helping others. Maria is involved with several cancer organizations and wants women to know – especially young Asian American Women – that it can happen to them. But that early detection is the key.
Maria is also involved with many other community organizations such as the Asian Festival, The Columbus International Program and The Central Ohio Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
Maria came to ABC6 & FOX28 after working in Huntington/Charleston West Virginia.
Roy Flynn is an instructor of Electronic and Digital Media at the University of Dayton. In the past, he has served the Ohio Valley Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences as a Board of Governor, Chapter President and National Trustee. Roy is a six time Ohio Valley NATAS Emmy recipient.
Amy Hess – Governor
The Local Traveler, Lexington, Kentucky
Amy Hess is a professionally trained actress, who studied in Los Angeles at The American Academy of Dramatic Arts, a renowned acting Conservatory and The Groundlings, a premiere Improvisation and Comedy School. Her career as a Performer began with several television guest-starring spots on shows like Beverly Hills 90210, In the Heat of the Night, USA High and The Wayans Bros. Her career as a Producer began at Paramount Pictures, where she gained experience in researching and associate producing.
After returning home to her beloved Kentucky, Amy recognized the need for a local magazine series that encouraged viewers to invest in their own marketplace. This would not only strengthen areas economically but also better connect consumers to their community.
In response, she founded Beloved Productions and produced a pilot called Go Local, which was funded by The Kentucky Department of Travel and Tourism and The Kentucky Department of Agriculture. Go Local aired on KET and received an Emmy award in the Magazine Show category. The pilot was picked up by Gray Television and Amy renamed the series, The Local Traveler™, which aired regionally on WKYT, WYMT, WVLT and WBKO. Amy is the Creator, Executive Producer, Writer and Host of the series, soon to begin its 5th season. Amy is also the Host and a Segment Producer for Kentucky Collectibles on KET. She has also filled various other roles over the years at KET, such as hosting live performances, producing field segments, hosting pledge drives as well as co-hosting Kentucky Life. Amy’s work over the past 4 seasons as Host and Producer has garnered her 14 Emmy nominations and 5 Emmy awards. She also lists a Telly Award, an International Summit Award, and multiple Addy Awards among her top honors.
Telling the stories of the people, places and products that make Kentucky unique is truly what inspires Amy. She feels incredibly blessed to have been afforded so many opportunities, particularly early on in her career. Amy is forever grateful to the people who took a chance on her and is committed to paying that forward. She also recognizes that every production is a collaborative effort and feels incredibly fortunate to work with such talented people.
Amy considers being a mom her greatest and most fulfilling role and owes her achievements to her supportive family, the amazing people she works with and most importantly her faith in God.
Matt Hilton – Governor
Kentucky Farm Bureau, Lexington, Kentucky
Matt Hilton serves as a video production specialist for Kentucky Farm Bureau Federation for over ten years. As Video Production Specialist he co-produces and hosts the organization’s weekly television program Bluegrass and Backroads. He also travels the state co-producing the weekly Kentucky Farm Bureau Minute, which is sent to all Farm Bureau county offices and is uploaded to numerous KFB social media properties. Hilton came to Farm Bureau following a year and a half as news photographer at WLKY-TV in Louisville. He also served as photographer and production assistant as a student with WKYU, a PBS affiliate in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Mr. Hilton has won numerous awards for his video productions, including 18 Emmy Award nominations and three Emmy Awards, as well as two AP news nominations from his work at WLKY. He received a BA in television production from Western Kentucky University with a major in Broadcast Communications, and is a graduate of Trinity High School in Louisville. Mr. Hilton, his wife Kasi, and their daughter Kylie and son Carter reside in Mount Washington, KY.
Dan Hollis – Governor
Marshall University, Huntington, West Virginia
Dan Hollis is a professor of journalism with the W. Page Pitt School of Journalism and Mass Communications in the College of Arts and Media at Marshall University. Dan was the 2012 West Virginia Professor of the Year as recognized by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. He was also honored with the university’s Marshall and Shirley Reynolds Outstanding Teacher Award in 2011 and the Pickens-Queen Teacher Award in 2001. In addition to his teaching, Dan also produces award-winning creative work and has received 10 first-place awards from the National Broadcasting Society. Before he came to academia, Dan worked in TV news and video production primarily in Evansville, Indiana and Nashville, Tennessee. He has degrees from the University of Southern Indiana and the University of Kentucky.
Harrison Hove – Governor & Scholarship Chair
WCMH-TV, Columbus, Ohio
Harrison Hove is a meteorologist and reporter who most recently worked for the Ohio News Network. Harrison is a Certified Broadcast Meteorologist designated by the American Meteorological Society. Originally from Ponte Vedra, FL, Hove moved to Columbus in 2008.
Harrison’s career has taken him across the globe. In 2012, he was the only local television reporter selected to report from Antarctica by the National Science Foundation. He has also sat on numerous local, regional and national committees, including a special committee through the US Department of Education to help determine national science curriculum standards in 2009.
Harrison has received 3 Emmy® Awards and earned 9 nominations. He has a degree in meteorology from Florida State University and degrees in political science and telecommunications news from the University of Florida.
Ralph Merkel – Governor
University of Louisville, Louisville, KY
Ralph Merkel has been a member of the Communication Department faculty at the University of Louisville since 2004, teaching video production, advanced video, journalism and campus media classes. Merkel serves as executive producer of “Kentucky Health,” a weekly medical news program airing on the networks of KET. He involves high-level students in the production of the studio-based program. Merkel joined U of L in 1988 to create a weekly business news program, “The Bottom Line,” that aired on KET from 1988-1998. He also pioneered streaming media at the university long before YouTube by video-streaming a speech by Hillary Clinton in 1997. He is asked to speak at conferences about his use of streaming media in education.
He founded the Louisville Media Institute in 2014 to serve as a training ground for college journalists in the region. The first institute attracted editors and reporters from The Chicago Tribune, The Cincinnati Enquirer, The Louisville Courier-Journal, The Toledo Blade, The Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting, CBS Interactive, WDRB-TV and WAVE-3 TV. With a BS and MS from the Medill School of Journalism, Merkel previously worked as a reporter for WLKY-TV, WJCL-TV and the Savannah Morning News. He is the president of his homeowner’s association in the west end of Louisville
Jackie Shafer – Governor
WOSU-TV, Columbus, Ohio
Jackie Shafer is the Producer & Editor for WOSU-TV’s Emmy-award winning program “Broad & High.” The weekly half-hour magazine show, entering its fourth season in fall 2016, showcases stories within the vibrant arts and culture scene of Central Ohio. She is a frequent contributor to the PBS NewsHour arts blog and her stories have been seen on dozens of PBS stations nationwide, including WGBH-Boston, WHYY-Philadelphia and SOCAL-Los Angeles. A native of Cleveland and a graduate of Kent State University, she spent several years as a copy editor on the news desk of the Columbus Dispatch before joining The Ohio Channel (managed by WVIZ-PBS/ideastream) where she spent 10 years as a production manager overseeing the video needs of elected officials, government agencies and non-profit organizations. She most recently served as the station manager for CGTV in Aspen, Colorado – the nation’s oldest, continually operating community television station – before returning to Ohio in 2013 to launch “Broad & High” on WOSU Public Media. Jackie sits on the board of the Ohio Art League and is a recipient of three regional Emmy Awards.
Renee Shaw – Governor
KET, Lexington, Kentucky
As a lover of PBS since childhood, Renee jumped at the chance to work at one of the nation’s largest PBS affiliates, Kentucky Educational Television, in 1997. She started off as a public policy reporter and associate producer. In the fall of 2005, she launched the first statewide minority affairs program on KET Connections with Renee Shaw. As one of KET’s public affairs program producers, Renee is producer/managing editor and host of KET’s legislative coverage, co-hosts election night coverage, hosts KET’s health series, and produces/hosts numerous other issue-centered programs at KET. A former adjunct professor of media writing at Georgetown College in Kentucky. Renee has trained journalists in Southeast Asia on reporting principles and standards, and produced multi-platform, public policy reports for a national news service. She travels across the state moderating public issues forums and speaking about diversity, media, political and state legislative matters.
John Simpson – Governor
WEHT/WTVW-TV, Evansville, IN
John Simpson began as a news photographer at WTVW in 1991 after receiving his bachelor degree in communication from the University of Southern Indiana. He became the Chief Photographer in 1993. After a stint on the assignment desk from 2000-2005, Simpson decided photography was more fun and went back on the road. In 2011 WTVW merged with WEHT & relocated to Henderson, KY. Simpson is a two time Emmy nominee but is still chasing the golden lady. In 2006 Simpson was awarded the “Board of Governor’s Citation” from the Ohio Valley NATAS for his actions during a tornado that killed 25 in the Evansville area. He’s won a regional Edward R. Murrow Award, several AP and SPJ awards. Simpson’s hobbies include a computerized Christmas light extravaganza at his house every year but his proudest achievement is working with young photographers and reporters at the beginning of their careers. He hopes serving on the Board of Governors will help educate our newest co-workers.
Rochelle Young – Governor
WBNS-TV10, Columbus, Ohio
Rochelle Young is currently the Executive Producer of Special Projects at WBNS-10TV. She began as Special Projects Producer at 10TV in 2004.
Young started her career at “The Morning Exchange” at WEWS-TV in Cleveland, Ohio. Her career took her to producer of “Golden Opportunities” at WKYC-TV before landing as a Broadcast Associate at CBS This Morning in New York, NY. In 1999, Young became an Associate Producer at CBS The Early Show, booking and producing segments for the morning news program. She worked on stories such as 9/11: The Attack on America, Elian Gonzalez in the U.S. and the Sam Sheppard wrongful imprisonment trial. Young also served as a Production Assistant for the 2002 News and Documentary Emmy Award winning segment “The Church on Trial” on 60 Minutes II. She is a Regional Murrow Award winner and has received seven Regional Emmy Awards in her career.
Young is a graduate of John Carroll University in University Heights, Ohio and has an MBA from Capital University in Columbus, Ohio. Young is involved in the regional theater community and performs on stage regularly in central Ohio. She is also active in the Big Brothers Big Sisters Project Mentor program.
Chris Williams – Governor
WHAS-TV, Louisville, Kentucky
Chris Williams is quite possibly the only NATAS member to ever serve on the Board of Governors for three different chapters. In October of 2015 Chris returned to the Ohio Valley Region to work as the Political Editor and Investigative Reporter at WHAS11 in Louisville. Chris served in the Ohio Valley Region from 2004 to 206 before his career took him to other TV markets and presented opportunities to serve in the Mid-America and Rocky Mountain Southwest chapters.